September 05, 2011

Das Bitcoin-Problem

Die Technology Review des MIT sieht Bitcoin derzeit im Zentrum einer Blase (was wohl auch seiner Entstehungszeitpunkt, inmitten einer globalen Finanzkrise, geschuldet ist), aufgrund der Tatsache dass es kaum als Tausch- und Zahlungsmittel fungiert:
"Setting aside Bitcoin's cool factor - it might just as well have leapt off the pages of Neal ­Stephenson's cult science-fiction novel Snow Crash - a peer-to-peer electronic currency uncontrolled by central bankers or politicians is a perfect object for the anxieties and enthusiasms of those frightened by the threats of inflation and currency debasement, concerned about state power and the surveillance state, and fascinated with the possibilities created by distributed, decentralized systems.
Bitcoin is not going to make government-backed currencies obsolete. But while the system's virtues, such as anonymity and the lack of bank fees, may not matter much to most consumers, one can envision it being useful in a variety of niche markets (some legal, others not, like recreational drugs). Where anonymity is valuable, where trusted third parties are hard to find or charge high rates, and where persistently high inflation is a problem, it's possible that bitcoins could in fact flourish as an alternative currency.
Before they become such an alternative, though, the system will have to overcome a major, and surprising, problem: people have come to see it primarily as a way to make money. In other words, instead of being used as a currency, bitcoins are today mostly seen as (and traded as) an investment. (...) As a result, many - probably most - Bitcoin users are acquiring bitcoins not in order to buy goods and services but to speculate. That's a bad investment decision, and it also hurts Bitcoin's prospects."
Den ganzen Text findet man hier.

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