Years ago I came across bitcoins. I considered investing a little of my own “real world” money in them but ultimately decided against it. I wasn’t much of an investor or risk taker at age 17. However, it seems to have caught on a lot better than I ever expected. I’ve even come across a few online retailers that have started offering that as one of their accepted payment methods.
If you aren’t familiar with bitcoins I suggest you check out the Wikipedia page I linked to at the start of the post. Basically, the bitcoin is a form of currency that is used online and backed by the internet community. No government is involved in managing the currency and many believe it to be a safer investment than a national currency such as the dollar.
Another benefit to the bitcoin is that transactions are anonymous. It is extremely difficult to track transactions and find who the individual purchaser or seller really is. I’m sure it can be done but as far as I understand its pretty secure. A lot of people see this as a huge advantage in a world where purchases are becoming easier and easier to track every day, where “big brother” is always watching.
While selling guns in the manner described in the above article may be illegal, it may be near impossible to prosecute anyone if bitcoin transactions are as secure as they claim. If gun laws continue to restrict our access to firearms I believe we’ll begin to see a lot more of this in the future.
It has a bit of a “black market” feel to it but using bitcoins in general is not illegal. No government backs it but none denounce it either. Its only as useful as its patrons find it to be. I suppose all currency starts that way: People get together and decide something has value, even if its not a coin or paper. After all, people were using chickens and pigs as currency long before gold and silver.
What are your thoughts on the bitcoin? Is it here to stay or just a fad that will die out? Will this help fuel the black market for guns or do you think it will somehow be restrained? Will the government allow such a currency to exist or will it become illegal to trade using such a currency? And if it becomes illegal, will they actually be capable of prosecuting anyone using it? Let me know what you think in the comments.