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Ayd Asraf

Corporate Senior IT Executive - Release Team, Aramex International

TEDCRED 30+

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Are "Bitcoins" the future of money?

It is clear that there is still a debate raging about the future of cash. Cash is one of the other traditional bastions of the old guard of financial servicing.

Yet with mobile wallets, ebanking, contactless everything and real-time transactions, does cash really have a future?

Some say ‘yes’, due to the unique attributes of cash, other says 'no' due to the recent disruptive invention that is called "Bitcoins".

For those whom are new to the term mentioned above, Bitcoin is a digital currency designed to be controlled through encryption rather than a centralized authority. Operating in exactly the same way as cash, Bitcoins are fully exchangeable as an anonymous form of currency in real-time across the internet and, shortly, at Point-of-Sale.

Seems tempting right? but cannot things go bad with all of this anonymity? knowing that Bitcoins has no refund feature and it's solely left to the consciousness of the second party to refund you your money, wouldn't that be a concern?

Let me know what you think about the future of money, Bitcoins or Cash? what do you think is good & bad about Bitcoins, as well as cash?

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  • Jan 23 2014: We are having a lot of trouble here with the credit and debit card system for identity theft and other things. We also already have Paypal, etc. here. but these have not been popular as well. I am not sure how the "bitcoins" can circumvent all the pitfalls of the other cash media. Furthermore, if and when the "bitcoin" could completely work as good as cash, then the government will come in and to either outlaw or control them.(because the "cash" system is their monopolized product)
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      Jan 23 2014: "not sure how the "bitcoins" can circumvent all the pitfalls of the other cash media"

      this is called the nirvana fallacy. a solution does not have to solve each and every problem in order to be viable. after all, the current money system and its derivatives have all sorts of problems, yet we use them.
      • Jan 23 2014: But the question here is whether the Bitcoin will be the "FUTURE OF CASH". My comment was that at best it could only be as good as the bank debit (cash) card or the Paypal on the internet trade, they are having their problems recently, such as the restriction on processing charges or high interest charge, etc. As a matter of fact, even a few sovereign currencies could become extinct in the past, and probably will happen to the Argentinean currency in near future.
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          Jan 23 2014: if you only see from the aspect you listed. but the true strength of bitcoin is not in that. it is these: independence of governments, total lack of inflation. these are properties that so far only gold had, but gold is rather awkward and cumbersome in comparison.
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        Jan 24 2014: I was told that Bitcoin is formed by the 4-key concepts, including: Stigmergy, Cryptography, Peer to Peer (P2P) or Network, Open source software.

        In short, Bitcoins is " modern barter e-currency " & " silent trade by P2P ".
        (P2P: The Person's performance and credit are issued by the network members).

        Question: If some Countries do not have Peer to Peer system, what can they do?
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          Jan 24 2014: why they don't have? if because they don't have internet and computer penetration, i have no idea. they should first aspire for that i believe.
      • Jan 24 2014: Please notice my last sentence: the governments will not tolerate another currency, whether it is inflation proof or not (I rather doubt it could). Because if the Bitcoin becomes a major currency and as you said it would be inflation proof, then it could drive out the government issued currency In the so-called "good currency drives out the bad currency" phenomenon.
        Someone mentioned, as also claimed by the "inventor", that Bitcoin is backed by genuine gold coins, but if that is reality, then it will stimulate the demand for gold, then it will drive up the gold price, eventually devalues all the government issued currencies. So do you think that the governments will tolerate it without intervention? The world already have lot of credit market exchanges, still the "currency" market are currently in such turmoil as manifested by the worldwide financial crisis in the last two days. So, regardless of the fancy terminology, EVERYTHING ABOUT A CURRENCY STILL HAS TO FOLLOW THE "LAW OF THE MONETARY SYSTEM"!
        Here is a quote from BBC News today. This situation would occur everywhere, if a certain "foreign money" started to encroach on the sovereign currency of any nation:

        "Under the presidency of Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Argentina has introduced a number of restrictions on transactions with foreign currency.
        This week, it introduced new restrictions on online shopping as part of efforts to stop foreign currency reserves from falling any further.
        Anyone buying items through international websites must sign a declaration and produce it at a customs office, where the packages have to be collected.
        The government now limits tax-free purchases to two a year.
        Argentina's reserves of hard currency dropped by 30% last year, making support for the peso increasingly unaffordable.
        In 2002, millions of Argentines saw their incomes and living standards collapse amid a crisis that included a government default on international debts and 41% inflation."
    • Jan 23 2014: If bitcoins is serious about being a currency it should grow up and use gold to stabilize it's value. Currently it is so speculative the coins value is eradict. Financial Markets generally like sure things or predictability. If bitcoin can find a way to anchor its value to gold it would be worth the computations that create it.
      • Jan 24 2014: Gold stabilizes nothing. Gold is just another commodity.
        • Jan 25 2014: maybe if you are referring to a failed marriage.

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