Bitcoin News Feature (Click the [CC] at the bottom for English)
This is a video of a news report about Bitcoin that was broadcasted on YLE 2, a Finnish television channel on August 14th, 2012. The language in the newscast is in Finnish but at the bottom bar for the video is a [CC] which can be checked to view English subtitles.
The report covers the presence of Bitcoin at the Assembly 2012 event in Helsinki, Finland and provides an excellent overview of where Bitcoin is today.
The restaurant that sells sandwiches for bitcoins didn’t care what the current exchange rate for bitcoin was, nor that the exchange rate might be volatile. This is because the merchant uses a service to convert all coins received to Euro. If Bitcoin is the form of payment customers want to use, the merchant will accept them.
While no Bitcoin corporation exists, there are companies who provide products and services and thus have an interest in promoting Bitcoin and seeing its use grow. Featured in the video was a sponsor, BitPay, eCommerce and payments service which just added its 1,000th merchant partner. Another sponsor that had a big part in Bitcoin’s presence at the event shown in the newscast is Bittiraha.fi, (@bittirahafi) a Finnish online Bitcoin community.
Also shown in the video was the map provided through LocalBitcoins.com (click the green “Show map” button to see traders near you wanting to buy and sell, in-person).
What this video shows is a technology where the network effect is beginning to take hold. There are areas where the density of Bitcoiners is sufficient for Bitcoin to start catching on for bricks and mortar just as it already has for the online merchants that are already using it. Following this event a dentist has begun accepting the currency. That dentist might then use those bitcoins to pay staff, who could then use their bitcoins to eat at Vegamesta. Currently Vegamesta is cashing out to Euro, but at some point they’ll be wanting bitcoins to make purchases as well, and will start keeping those coins for future purchases.
And that is when the Bitcoin economy starts to snowball. But it can’t get there without first climbing these initial steps.
Evidence now shows that the climb is not only happening but is increasing at an even faster pace.
Forbes contributor and Bitcoin Foundation board member Jon Matonis (@JonMatonis) wrote a post on the announcement that WordPress now accepts bitcoin payments. Excerpts:
“Leading web publishing service WordPress.com announced that they will begin accepting the nonpolitical cryptographic money Bitcoin as a payment method for various upgrades.”
“WordPress spokesperson Andy Skelton said, ‘Unlike credit cards and PayPal, Bitcoin has no central authority and no way to lock entire countries out of the network. Merchants who accept Bitcoin payments can do business with anyone.’ And thus the planet becomes immediately open to their products and services.”
”’[Credit cards and PayPal are] unusable for those bloggers [under restrictive regimes] because they expose the payer’s physical identity.’ With user-defined anonymity and identity privacy, bitcoin offers unparalleled safety to dissident bloggers and free speech advocates.”
“WordPress may not stand as the lone giant for very long since Reddit CEO Yishan Wong hinted last week at the social news site’s willingness to begin transacting in Bitcoin for Reddit Gold subscriptions.”
“[Considering this move by WordPress, other] merchants will increasingly be asked: ‘What’s your Bitcoin strategy?’”
GoWest (@GoWestBTC), blogging on TheBitcoinTrader.com, shows some metrics describing where Bitcoin shined in 2012. Excerpts:
“The current market cap is actually at a peak for 2012, exceeding the spike in August. This can be attributed to the fact that tens of thousands of Bitcoins have been introduced into the economy since August.”
“These have shown steady growth over the past year: The number of items listed at Bitmit (an auction site that operates in Bitcoin), the number of users at Ogrr (an MMORPG marketplace), and the number of views of the ‘What is Bitcoin’ YouTube video.”
“Bitcoin’s top poker site, SealswithClubs, is gaining new users on a daily basis, with attendance at the tables on the rise.”
“The Bitcoin discussion on the TwoPlusTwo forums, the most popular poker discussion forum on the ‘net, has 3,000 posts and 165,000 views!”
“All-in-all, a very impressive year for Bitcoin. Here’s to an even stronger performance in 2013!”