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Bitcoin Government Privacy The Almighty Buck

Bitcoin's Success With Investors Alienates Earliest Adopters 158

Posted by timothy
from the who-has-the-gold-wins dept.
holy_calamity writes "Digital currency Bitcoin is gaining acceptance with mainstream venture capitalists, reports Technology Review, but at the price of its famed anonymity and ability to operate without central authority. Technology investors have now ploughed millions of dollars into a handful of Bitcoin-based payments and financial companies that are careful to follow financial regulations and don't offer anonymity. That's causing tensions in the community of Bitcoin enthusiasts, some of whom feel their currency's success has involved abandoning its most important features."
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Bitcoin's Success With Investors Alienates Earliest Adopters

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  • by hguorbray (967940) on Thursday May 23, 2013 @06:30PM (#43807719)
    here's a pretty good technical overview of Bitcoin from El Reg today:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/05/23/bitcoin_spam_byzantine_generals/

    -I'm just sayin'
  • by ShanghaiBill (739463) * on Thursday May 23, 2013 @06:37PM (#43807769)

    I don't understand, how are they removing the anonimity of Bitcoin?

    They aren't. Bitcoins can now be used in new venues, but that does not stop private transactions. The article is just stupid. If I deposit cash in a bank, I will be recorded by a security camera. But that doesn't mean I can no longer buy stuff anonymously with cash at the local flea market.

  • by viperidaenz (2515578) on Thursday May 23, 2013 @07:15PM (#43807987)

    But you can wipe your fingerprints off that cash. Coins don't even have serial numbers and the numbers on notes are not tracked in every transaction.

    You can't wipe your bitcoin address off the block chain.
    If you associate that data with a person, they're forever tied to that transaction and you can follow it.

  • by ShanghaiBill (739463) * on Thursday May 23, 2013 @07:49PM (#43808195)

    You can't wipe your bitcoin address off the block chain.
    If you associate that data with a person, they're forever tied to that transaction and you can follow it.

    But you can create as many bitcoin addresses as you want. You can use a different address from every transaction. The only way it can be tracked to you is if "they" already know who you are by other means.

  • by viperidaenz (2515578) on Thursday May 23, 2013 @08:45PM (#43808465)

    Unless you use a different address for every transaction you will ever make, "They" find out your entire transaction history as soon as they match you to a single transaction, through one of these new services popping up that keeps and shares records with "Them"

  • by Rich0 (548339) on Friday May 24, 2013 @09:57AM (#43811925) Homepage

    I thought using a new address for every transaction was the advised method of using bitcoin.
    I don't use it myself, but I remember reading something along the lines of "never reuse your addresses" in the documentation.

    How do you get bitcoins into the new address? You either have to mine it, buy it, or transfer it from another address. Most likely you transfer it, and what account you transferred it from is public record. So, all your accounts are effectively linked, even if you use a new one for every transaction.

    Sure, you can have multiple completely-independent accounts, but you can't move money between them unless you pass it out through cash, or you mine it. The ability to pass it out through cash is limited due to the developments in TFA - banks are asking for ID. So, unless you mine ALL the cash you use in discrete unrelated bundles, you're traceable. Mining is pretty expensive and a hassle, though it can be done (though over time it will become less and less practical).

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