“Our dreams are a second life.” ~Gerard de Nerval
One of the oddest bits of news to emerge from the economic collapse of Cyprus is a corresponding rise in the value of Bitcoin, the Internet’s favorite, media-friendly, anarchist crypto-currency. In Spain, Google (GOOG) searches for “Bitcoin” and downloads of Bitcoin apps soared. The value of a Bitcoin went up to $78. Someone put out a press release promising a Bitcoin ATM in Cyprus. Far away, in Canada, a man said he’d sell his house for BTC5,362.
Sky News in the UK has a report currently available on YouTube that wonders if Bitcoin is merely a scam or a Ponzi scheme:
Linden Lab’s Second Life also has a virtual currency, the Linden dollar which, while nowhere near the scale of Bitcoin, can be virtually bought and sold. Is virtual currency “real”, viable, safe? Mr Ford concludes his article by saying:
Maybe Bitcoin’s devotees are right, and it’s the currency of the future. Or perhaps it’s a ridiculous joke—a speculative, hilarious enterprise taken to its most insane conclusion. Given that the founder is nowhere to be found, it feels like a hoax, a parody of the global economy. That the technology used to implement it has, so far, shown itself to be impeccable and completely functional, and that it’s actually being exchanged, just makes it a better joke. The truth is, it doesn’t much matter if it’s a joke or not. It works.
The piece is worth reading for a brief yet critical look at “both sides of the coin”.