Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/2/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Bitcoin is unregulated virtual currency with a life of its own.

Imagine a currency that isn't controlled by any central bank or government. Transactions that can be made without fees. Currency that can be used to buy anything, even a pizza. Welcome to the world of bitcoin.

Bitcoin is a newly-popular universal currency, entirely unregulated by governments or banks.

Bitcoin is a newly-popular universal currency, entirely unregulated by governments or banks.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/2/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Business & Economics

Keywords: Bitcoin, currency, digital, virtual, government, control


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Bitcoin has captured broad public attention, now that it has surged to $1,200 per coin, which is by far an all-time high. The coins were valued around $13 apiece just under a year ago.

Bitcoin is a virtual currency. You can't hold it in your hand, or carry it like cash. However, more and more transactions are occurring in the virtual realm, with banks exchanging dollars and every other kind of currency by virtual means. When you think about it, unless you still deal in cash, most of your transactions are virtual.

Bitcoin works exclusively in this virtual realm. It was introduced in 2009 as a "peer-to-peer" open-source virtual currency, which means that it's not controlled by any one entity, but rather by the users of the currency itself.

Bitcoins are created, mined, if you will, by users who install programs on their machines. These programs generate bitcoin that people can put into digital wallets. Wallets are just long strings of randomized characters, designed to be encrypted and virtually impossible to hack. Your string of characters can even be written down and carried in your wallet rather than saved online, however there are digital wallets online.

Bitcoins can be traded for cash via exchanges, and a market has developed with people exchanging the virtual currency across wider and wider networks-although these markets have thus far proven speculative and a bit risky. Still, trade in bitcoin thrives.

Until recently, bitcoin was the unofficial currency of the virtual black market, being used on "The Silk Road" a criminal website that sold a variety of illicit products paid for via bitcoin. That site was recently shut down by U.S. authorities, but is reportedly back online.

However, bitcoin is gaining mainstream acceptance. Online retailers are preparing to accept bitcoin transactions, banks are opening up to the virtual currency, and even Virgin Galactic has announced that it would accept bitcoin.

Locally, bitcoins can be exchanged with retailers and other people. In some places, you can even order a pizza with the currency. New mobile apps allow you to scan QR codes at restaurants and retail stores.

Lending to the currency's preference is its relative anonymity. Unlike as credit card transaction, bitcoin signatures are encrypted, so you do not attach your name to a transaction, just your encrypted digital signature. Although it is possible to decrypt a digital signature to reveal a name, this requires special software and exhaustive work, so for now, at least, the transactions are quite anonymous.

There are no fees attached to transactions either. It costs nothing extra to deal with someone overseas.

Finally, bitcoin has scarcity built into its very being, ensuring that bitcoins act like virtual gold. Bitcoin is capped by design at 21 million coins. The coins are created at an ever-decreasing rate with production halving at regular intervals. Eventually, production will stop at 21 million bitcoin, a milestone that will be reached in 2140.

This makes bitcoin scarce, and preserves their value. Fortunately, bitcoin can be broken into very small units, which ensures the currency can be used virtually forever, with prices eventually dropping as people accept smaller and smaller payments in bitcoin. It is regarded as a genuine deflationary currency.

Right now, bitcoins are popular and in demand. Anything can be used as currency as long as others believe it has value. The dollars in your wallet are just strips of paper blended with cloth, but they have perceived value which makes them exchangeable for goods and services. Bitcoin is the same, and with mainstream adoption now taking off, the virtual currency looks like it's here to stay.

Even better, there are no central governments or banks which can regulate or even stop bitcoin. Fortunately, even the banks are endorsing bitcoin to the federal government and did so last month during hearings on the subject.

In a time of increasing government control and regulation of everything, even freedom of religion, the popularization of bitcoin is refreshing.

So get ready-there's a new currency on the market and you may find you like it better than what you have in your wallet now.

A birth foretold: click here to learn more!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2016
Universal:
Respect for Women: That in every country of the world, women may be honored and respected and that their essential contribution to society may be highly esteemed.
Evangelization: Holy Rosary: That families, communities, and groups may pray the Holy Rosary for evangelization and peace.



Comments


More Business & Economics

100k Americans work for China as China continues to purchase major US companies Watch

Image of New reports indicate nearly 100 thousand U.S. jobs report to China (AMC Theatres).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

China has been purchasing major American companies, resulting in nearly 100,000 U.S. citizens working to support the Chinese economy. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - State-owned companies and those closely-related to the Chinese government are responsible for the ... continue reading


The world of news is changing, Buzzfeed struggles to keep up Watch

Image of Buzzfeed is struggling, can they cope with the shift in media culture?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

There's growing concern that Buzzfeed doesn't have a very bright future, at least as far as news is concerned. The firm has missed its projected revenues, and it may look to the news for the place to cut. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - It's hard to get news ... continue reading


Two hundred French police raid Google over unpaid taxes as it's revealed firm may owe nearly $2 BILLION! Watch

Image of Police have raided the Google headquarters in Paris, seeking evidence of tax evasion.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Your favorite brands may be in trouble for tax evasion. Over a hundred police officers and another hundred support personnel have raided Google's headquarters in France as part of an investigation into the company's taxes. Google is one of many brands that may owe ... continue reading


Censorship in America is alive and well. You'll be surprised to see who you can thank! Watch

Image of Obama and Zuckerberg work closely. It's not clear on what.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Freedom of the press may be the most important fundamental right in a free society. This is why censorship, particularly on social networks such as Facebook, is particularly onerous. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Freedom of the press is enshrined in the First ... continue reading


Facebook censor scandal - What is Zuckerberg up to? Watch

Image of Facebook censorship scandal prompts Zuckerberg to move (Pinterest).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Mark Zuckerberg is set to hold a meeting on Wednesday with Glenn Beck and Dana Perino to talk Facebook's censorship scandal. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Recently a Gizmodo report accused Facebook of suppressing conservative news in the "trending" section.The ... continue reading


YES, bosses should let their employees power nap. So why don't they? Watch

Image of Studies show a short nap at work and increase productivity, alertness, memory, and cognition.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

There's something to be said for the afternoon siesta, after all. Or at least a power nap, according to one sleep expert from the University of Adelaide. Research shows that a ten-to-fifteen-minute nap in the afternoon improves performance. LOS ANGELES, CA (California ... continue reading


191 THOUSAND mining jobs lost since September '14 Watch

Image of With less coal, the US will need to turn to other countries (Pinterest).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Coal provides a cheap and efficient source of power - and the United States has lost 191,000 miners to provide this commodity. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the <a href=http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/empsit.pdf>Bureau of Labor ... continue reading


Obama brags in face of economic failure Watch

Image of The Obama administration claims the economy is thriving - but what is REALLY going on (TPNN)?

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

We all know "that guy." You know the one - the guy who is obsessed with conspiracy theories and who swears the government is out to get us. Well, according to newly released economic data, "that guy" might be (partially) right. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - U.S. ... continue reading


Yes, there's definitely something wrong with millennials, and here's what it is! Watch

Image of As far as millennials are concerned, the American dream is just that -- you have to be asleep to believe it.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Across the country, the news is shocking. Over half of the millennials think socialism might be a good thing. Most of them believe the American dream is a myth, and public perception is that something is wrong with them. Why do they just want "free stuff?" LOS ANGELES, ... continue reading


Billionaire Soros warns China is near economic collapse Watch

Image of China's economy may be heading for trouble.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Billionaire George Soros is sounding the alarm, China is about to go down and the rest of the world could follow. According to Soros, there is a major resemblance between China now and the United States in 2007-2008 just before the U.S. economy entered the Great ... continue reading


All Business & Economics News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES Killer nanny asks judge for freedom because ...
  • Christians stand your ground: Graduating class recites The Lords ...
  • St. Mechtildis: Saint of the Day for Tuesday, May 31, 2016
  • Daily Reading for Wednesday, June 1st, 2016 HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Tuesday, May 31, 2016
  • Advent Prayer HD Video
  • The Visitation Continues. Learning to Evangelize from Mary

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Zephaniah 3:14-18,
14 Shout for joy, daughter of Zion, Israel, shout aloud! Rejoice, exult ... Read More

Psalm, Isaiah 12:2-3, 4, 5-6
2 Look, he is the God of my salvation: I shall have faith and not be ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 1:39-56
39 Mary set out at that time and went as quickly as she could into the ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 31st, 2016 Image

St. Mechtildis
May 31: Benedictine abbess and miracle worker. She was ... Read More