Ten Reasons To Hire Bitcoin

Bitcoin is an amazing technological innovation enabling the transfer of value over a communications channel. There are many different use cases for individuals to buy and hold Bitcoin. Understanding the job that needs to be done is critical for prioritizing what extensibility to focus on.

1. Secure Online Transactions

Currently people use credit cards which are insecure for online transactions because the transaction details are reusable. A merchant (or thief) who has the credit card details can use those to charge against your account. Typically credit card companies cover this type of fraud, but in reality this "cost" is actually passed over to merchants who then pass the cost over to consumers.

That's why in theory a merchant should be able to give bitcoin users a discount... because the layer of fraud that adds cost is no longer there. I'll also add that you get a tad bit of anonymity because you do not need to provide your name or information to merchants. So paying for pornography would be more discreet for example.

2. Bail-ins

Across the world there are more and more banks who are etching in the ability to have bail in situations where when they go insolvent, the necessary funds are then taken from depositors accounts without their permission.

3. Negative Interest Rates

They are not popular across the world yet but they exist and in the unsustainable bubbles that quantitative easing cause, it could become more widespread in the future. Paying a bank to store your money (in addition to inflation) will reduce your wealth more quickly.

4. Borderless

Currently most money has to move traditionally through slow cumbersome systems that can typically add large fees on top. With bitcoin, anyone could be paid and there are no borders or boundaries. This certainly has advantages in many areas... remittance for example. The savings would be even greater in the case of remittance if bitcoin was used more widely and didn't need to be converted to other currencies at each end.

Capital controls are another area that fit under this feature. Some countries want to limit where you can send your money so they can keep your wealth inside the country. But maybe you just want to leave?

5. Irreversible

The irreversibility of transactions makes consumer to merchant fraud near impossible. This has special applications. There are some areas in the traditional economy where consumer to merchant fraud is rampant... such as the selling of virtual goods and probably pornography.

Some argue that it is a bad thing but the point is that it is better to have irreversibility with the option to have reversibility on top than it is to have only reversibility with no irreversibility option.

6. Deflation

Currently the USD is said to have 3.5 % inflation. Some reports say this is actually underestimated. If you keep large amounts of your wealth in money then you are losing more than the average person through inflation. In theory bitcoin will be deflationary but right now it is too volatile (small) to be considered either inflationary or deflationary. There is also the obvious profit potential of bitcoin I will include here. A normal dollar has 100 units of value.

So $1.00 is a dollar and 100 cents make up a dollar. Bitcoin on the other hand looks like this 1.000000000. Because there are only a maximum of 21 million coins there has to be a way for each bitcoin to represent large amounts of value. If one coin was worth a million dollars then it's smallest unit .0000000001 (one satoshi) would be worth one cent. But that isn't all.... in the future if it was necessary there could be more units added so it could be divided further.

This means that even though we are not in a steady deflationary period there is tremendous profit potential. Essentially owning bitcoin means that you own not only the monetary unit but a piece of the whole infrastructure that makes up the bitcoin network.

7. Programmable Money

Some will say bitcoin is really a protocol. Just like how email is a protocol for sending messages. Bitcoin is a protocol for sending money. The value this provides is very underestimated. There will be people who will innovate with bitcoin and provide features that ordinary money simply can't do. For instance the writer of a popular blog could provide an address that they can be tipped with.

Someone can tip them with bitcoin and neither of the two parties need to know any financial details of the other. The tipper doesn't need to make an account somewhere and load up their account with funds. They just send money directly to the public key that is represented by a QR code. A beggar could sit on the roadside with a sign that just displayed the public key of their wallet. A passerby could take a picture and post it to a forum.

A user of that forum could send funds directly to that beggar, using the picture as the only piece of necessary information to make the transaction. Another user will be able to send a bitcoin to their descendants... 100 years into the future in a time locked transaction. That means that the bitcoin will get carried around in their will and passed on for generation after generation until it can be spent. In 100 years. If estates were converted to bitcoin at the end of ones life the whole entire process of dividing things could be automated for example. These are just a tiny fraction of the possibilities.

8. Multi-Signature

Having transactions with the ability to have multiple signers opens up the possibilities for fancy things. You could have automated escrow... where 2 of 3 signatures are needed for a transaction to process. If you and the person you are trading with agree then you would both sign. The third signature would be an escrow agent who would intervene in the case of a dispute. By having 2 of 3 signatures it means that the escrow agent cannot run away with the funds.

That's just one example. Also in this category I would put the ability to break keys into n of m pieces. You can divide a key so that it requires 2 of 3 pieces to reconstruct... or 3 of 4 and so on. This makes the storage of your bitcoins very versatile. It makes it potentially more secure than anything else you can own. For example you could break a private key into 3 of 4 pieces.

1 piece can go to the safe deposit box in a bank. 1 piece can go to another bank in a different country. 1 piece can be kept in a safe in your house. Another piece could be memorized in your head. The only way a thief could acquire your bitcoins is if they broke into 2 banks in 2 different countries and then found their way into your safe as well. If you personally wanted to retrieve the funds you would have one piece memorized, one in your safe, and pick the bank of your choosing. If you forgot the memorized key you would still be fine because there are 3 pieces left.

9. Bitcoin 2.0

If you haven't already figured it out yet, the money part of bitcoin is just the first application on a platform that is the bitcoin platform. The ability to prove asset ownership is what makes the bitcoin platform have great potential.... maybe even moreso than the money aspect. Already some companies are using this aspect. A bond was issued by Patricky Bryne at Overstock. Degrees are being published on the blockchain.

Pay and go car leasing with the agreement all done through the blockchain is being experimented with. The amount of middle men this could cut out and the amount of potential industries it could disrupt is staggering.

10. Monetary Sovereignty

Mankind has never really owned their own money before. It's always been owned by their rulers. In the case of the United states that would be the Federal Reserve and it's board members . The Fed is not a part of government, but rather a private cabal. Even when our government had a currency actually backed by reserves it was only fractionally backed and therefore just an illusion.

Bitcoin gives the ability for people to actually own their own money. You can't possibly own something if someone else can dilute the value of it by making more and taking it from you through inflation. With bitcoin the amount that will be created is known and that is it.

Written by Trace Mayer on November 6, 2015.