Back to Basics
Sometimes it is important to revisit why Bitcoin is significant. There are many reasons, beyond the appeal of making profits, to develop and utilize the Bitcoin blockchain.
Two major reasons are censorship and surveillance. When utilizing third party services as a conduit for holding and transmitting funds, you are completely at the mercy of another. When dealing with finances, this should never be the case.
With Bitcoin, the holder is in complete control, and retains full responsibility of the asset. There is no way that an outside entity can simply ‘lock-down’ your holdings.
While living in an interconnected world has its benefits, overall we have lost any semblance of privacy.
A perfect example of the issue at hand is a currently developing situation between ‘The Hacker News’ and ‘Paypal’. These two companies are currently in a standoff, as Paypal has frozen assets belonging to The Hacker News.
While Paypal retains the right to do so, per their terms of agreement, many do not believe this will happen. For a corporation that is reliant on utilizing Paypal services, having the flow of money stopped can prove to be very costly.
Another recent example was seen between CIBC and Canadian cryptocurrency exchange, QuadrigaCX. In a situation that developed over the past year, CIBC had decided to ‘freeze’over $28 million worth of funds belonging to QuadrigaCX – placing a great strain on the young and growing company. In recent weeks, it was ruled in court that CIBC had no right to do so, and the funds were to be returned to QuadrigaCX.
Both of these situations are ones that involve a third party. Each of these third parties have complete power over another’s funds, while at the same time take profits off of transactions. Institutions such as traditional banks are relics of the past, and will soon no longer be needed.
Tweets of Frustration
As many do in today’s world, The Hacker News took to a public forum to voice their displeasure with the situation.
The company posted the following tweets on December 29th.
An Uphill Battle
Unfortunately, despite the ideological allure of a decentralized currency, with no governing body, Bitcoin faces an uphill battle.
While these aspects of the digital currency will appeal to, and attract, a certain crowd, it remains that the vast majority of people simple want convenience and profits. Due to this, the immediate future of Bitcoin is in the hands of the latter. It is the former, however, that remains steadfast during turbulent times, and continues to develop network infrastructure to support future growth.
As Bitcoin continues to evolve, the original dream of eliminating third parties from financial transactions is becoming reality. No, Bitcoin does not perfectly resemble the original envisioning of Satoshi Nakamoto – It has grown beyond this, and will continue to do so. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
The Hacker News
The Hacker News was founded in 2010, and is based out of Buffalo, New York. They are an online outlet that specializes in reporting news related to cybersecurity.