Just a quick update on this: our Bitpay integration is feature-complete and can be added to your store now.
Due to the fact that it's a very new feature and not something we're ready to roll out to all stores just yet,
you will need to contact me to have it enabled, and I may want to follow up with you for your feedback once
you've been using it for a while, but it works. When active, Bitpay will appear as a credit card processor
in the Checkout page of your shop admin - enter your access key and you'll be all set to go.
One caveat: at this time, Bitpay functions in the same way as the other credit card processors on Shopify,
meaning that you can't use Bitpay in conjunction with Authorize.net, Stripe, or other credit card processors.
PayPal Express Checkout can be used as a secondary option with Bitpay in the same way it can be used with all
To activate, email me your shop URL at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll do my best to get everyone up and running promptly!
One caveat: at this time, Bitpay functions in the same way
as the other credit card processors on Shopify,
meaning that you can't use Bitpay in conjunction with
Authorize.net, Stripe, or other credit card processors.
I've used it, not much though - maybe $100 worth of bitcoins.
>Purchases aren't tracked
List of transactions from your wallet is visible to anyone.
>being sucked up by some SIGINT program
As far as you know, but I wouldn't be surprised if your transactions are "sucked up" by some SIGINT program. Or maybe they aren't because there are websites that enable anyone to easily view transactions.
>no fees (even in exchanging, if you do it right)
I'd love to hear more about this. How can you buy bitcoin online without fees? Meeting with someone and buying them in person kinda defeats the purpose, you could go out and buy the items you want with cash - there are no fees for that either. And is the effort really worth the small transaction fees? Not to mention that by the time you get back home from cash-purchase the price may have gone down and you can't even buy the item you wanted now.
>I don't have to give my CC # to the vendor.
That one is true.
Also, when paying with bitcoin you (in most cases) don't have absolutely any customer protection.
With the important side note, that nobody needs to know it is your wallet. You can create as many wallets as you want if you care about privacy.
I'm not suggesting this would put you completely in the clear from NSA/professional hacker level audits, but it is miles away from doing a query in a database "Where CC=..."
There's a lot to be learned from the public blockchain, especially if any transaction in the chain can be linked to your identity (such as sending/receiving with exchanges or online wallets).
I assume that authorities have access to your identity at exchanges and online wallets, can link your identity to addresses used for deposits and withdrawals, to IP addresses you use, and from there to historical and future transactions.
Of course, you can always buy Bitcoin with cash (:
And I'd never even consider calling either pseudo-anonymous.
But peercoin could stand a chance to become a sort of online trading currency because of it's inflationary policy. Something BitCoin should also have in order to become a widely accepted currency instead of a hoarding mechanism that gives the early adopters huge advantage over anyone else.
* The nature of BitCoin could make it from an asset worth 350 USD to 0 USD overnight.
* Gold has been there for centuries.
I won't even comment on the asteroid thing.
No. Not unless it stops being traded for anything. Read this:
It makes sense if you think about it. As long as 2 parties will accept Bitcoin as a trade medium, it literally MUST have a value in order to carry that exchange value. Whether it's 10,000 coins for 1 pizza or 1 coin for a gold bar.
So no, it will never go to zero anymore unless something as useful and unique comes out which is at least twice as good (due to network effects).
That doesn't mean a portion of the current value isn't speculative. But the speculative value is NOT "all" the value.
You: Not true, it would only fall arbitrarily close to 0 USD.
Me: Not reassured.
So if it ever goes back to there, it will most certainly be a buy... which will of course drive the price higher, into the speculative space.
Basically, since the cat is out of the bag, it won't be possible to get completely rid of the speculative portion of the value, but the fundamental portion of the value WILL keep rising (at this rate).
I'm optimistic myself about BTC, but don't think your comment as written is a good reason to think so in the context of the GP's point.
 specifically, "As long as 2 parties will accept Bitcoin ... it literally MUST have a value ... Whether it's 10,000 coins for 1 pizza ...". That last bit is the "arbitrarily close to zero" lower bound I was attributing to you.
But like startup customers, bitcoin users exist and eventually the new product takes over.
Because you can't refute it?
It's a complete irrelevance unless you're specifically talking about 100+ years in the future.
There is not really an agreement in the ivory towers that a limited amount of currency is a bad thing per se.
Could someone explain this to me?
As for the inflation / deflation thing: I'm pretty sure we all agree that the faster the relative prices of things can change to reflect changes in the underlying reality, the better.
A priori, it seems that these relative adjustments should be independent from the average adjustment and hence the overall price level.
However, economic actors tend to resist a nominal decrease of income much more than a real decrease of income. You may not think that this is rational, but you have to work with the reality that you have.
This means that inflation is beneficial, because it allows real decreases of income without nominal decreases of income, and this means that real income can decrease more easily, which is what you need for relative prices to adjust reasonably quickly.
This is why people think a little moderate inflation is good for an economy, and deflation is bad. A currency needs to be spent to be of use, but if it is going to always increase in value, the sensible thing to do is to spend something else and keep the increasing currency as a nest egg. Unless you can mandate everyone only transact in Bitcoin, people will tend to spend other things and hoard bitcoin if it keeps increasing in value.
Macroeconomists really have no idea what they are doing - except, I believe them that a sudden drastic drop in the money supply is bad
The primary service provided by a currency is facilitating the exchange of goods. Being inflationary is imperative for the population to use it. It is true that currencies are forced upon population by governments (or any form of governance) and it's true that anyone would rather be holding an asset that will not lose value over time compared to one that will.
Inflation is an indirect motive to spend money today and not hoard.
Now the above is the generally accepted truth in micro-economics and social theory, so I'm not feeling any heat proving the dominant view on this. It's how our world uses currencies actually.
All in all, to me makes sense: a currency SHOULD lose a small (1% or 0.5%) amount of purchasing power over time, to boost commerce/spending and so on. It's an indirect way but works. Until we find another way, I think we are stuck with it.
Bitcoin in my view, will never be a largely used currency because it does not have this imperative characteristic any currency should have. So people would rather spend dollars (as a user already said about PPCoin for example..) or any other inflationary currency instead of spending an asset.
Why is spending good? If I spend money on the things I don't really need because I'm afraid I'm gonna lose otherwise, why do you think it's good for the economy? Some spending is good, some spending is bad. If everyone spends money on cars while they don't really need that many cars, why is it good? Inflation might create some jobs, but those jobs wouldn't be secure for long, because workers would be producing things people really don't want. I don't understand how scaring people into spending is a good idea.
>Bitcoin in my view, will never be a largely used currency because it does not have this imperative characteristic any currency should have. So people would rather spend dollars
Since you argue that people would rather spend dollars, here's a thought experiment. Let's say Bitcoin is accepted in most places. Say you store your wealth in Bitcoin. Now you want to buy something. Why would you want to exchange it into USD, pay commission to the exchange and then make a purchase instead of paying it in Bitcoin in the first place?
Maybe you need to provide a complete frame, because I'm not sure I follow.
ps. I have a deep respect for Anarchism, as I have for Communism (Marx/Engels), although I don't endorse their views about society. That said, believing that bitcoin is in any way close to anarchy because you don't pay taxes is wrong. As Prof. Shamir (the 'S' in RSA) showed some time back, 98% of BTC is controlled by 2% of portfolios. If you have a financial background you can see how this is deeply flawed and extremely centralized.
What Bitcoin is able to do is to break this vicious cycle. Of course, governments are not going to give up easily, but fighting a war against mathematics is arguably a bad idea.
As for 98% of BTC being controller by 2% of portfolios - same can be argued for almost any currency, that's the state of the world. The difference with Bitcoin is that although those players can shift the market, they have a lot less power than any government. They can't force me to buy from them. And they arguably didn't get their money by stealing it from others.
The fact is that you know who runs the FED. You don't know who owns 95% of BTC in circulation.
They didn't stole directly, but it's a perfect Ponzi scheme if they choose to liquidate their BTC overnight :-) ... They are in a position to create "money" out of thin air. Money issued by people trusting BTC. So there is no difference from a trading Wall Street crook who sells garbage stocks for gold to naive investors (calling Goldman Sachs)...
For transactions the exact value does not matter, only matters how liquid this value is. And liquidity is measured by number of people willing to buy that assets at that price. In case of Bitcoin, the more people want to hold it, the higher the price will be (because they need to buy them from someone and outbid others).
Now, imagine Bitcoin and Freicoin. Freicoin loses value ("demurrage") over time. So people would be motivated to hold bitcoin instead. So Bitcoin will gain bigger liquidity and higher value. People will see that Bitcoin is more sellable on the market and thus is wider accepted. So they can rely on Bitcoin's price when doing transactions. While Freicoin remains less liquid and thus less suitable for exchanges.
The currency is the most marketable, most valuable asset. And to make it so it must be the cheapest to store and transport, hardest to produce and impossible to counterfeit.
The USD Gov allows to you to pay taxes in USD, not in BTC. Even if BTC get taxed you still will have to pay your taxes in USD.
If and when the US gov will start accepting taxes in BTC all this reasoning might have a solid ground. Until then, it's a utopia.
ps. The above, will never going to happen though. It's insane/stupid/unthinkable for a state to give such power to unknown people (%98 of BTC are located in 2% of portfolios) instead of controlling it's own currency by a central authority (FED, ECB, ...).
Unfortunately, the state is cutting the tree they are sitting on. Their massively inflated money supply is going to hit them hard when China and other foreign nations will refuse to accept USD as a reserve currency and all that printed nonsense will hit US economy and destroy it by hyperinflation. Or, USG will put up massive capital controls to avoid that thus closing the country in an iron curtain. Considering that externalised inflation destroyed a lot of production inside the country, isolating people from global market will also destroy what remains of the economy. In no theory it is sustainable in the long run to print shitload of money and not have its value massively dropped at some point of time. Each day it doesn't happen only makes the inevitable hit harder.
Once people all over the world start tasting Bitcoin and moving savings off fiat currencies, they will naturally hyper inflate - people will be trying to get rid of them quickly. This has nothing to do with orders of the state: it'll happen legally or illegally. And policemen will be among those people who try to save what's left of their savings.
Also: did you notice what Obama said when he asked Congress to raise debt ceiling? He said he wouldn't be able to mail the social security cheques. In other words, he admitted that there's absolutely no money that was extracted from people is available in form of cash or real investments. That he must have to issue new debt to pay that debt. Isn't it a good enough proof that the whole monetary system is going to collapse any time Link: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x14y4cx_obama-tells-america...
As for the fact that they can't force you to buy from them it's totally irrelevant. They (or he) can drive the market back to 0.5USD : 1BTC in less than 24 hours should they choose to do so, and there's nothing stopping them. The fact the you don't know who this player is, makes things a lot worst compared to FIAT controlled by the state.
The monetary system is a total mess, but that's because of abuse from those in power, than by design. BitCoin is a good thing to have, but it will never replace the USD and it wasn't suppose to IMHO. It's properties attracted only the illegal market and various low level speculators so far.
The fact that BTC went up instead of down after SK bust shoes clearly that the general consent has little to do with its price. BTC became famous because of SK. Now will be used even less as a currency. Instead it became even more expensive.
My initial point stands though: As a currency BTC is/has failed. As an asset might work, but I don't know for how long.
In the real world most poor people cannot let any amount of coin remain unmoved for 30 days, so Peercoin in a privilege based coin and SunnyKing the creator intended this.
A simple change = Allow all coins no matter age accrue interest. Sunny is a rich millionaire and does not care about the wealth divide his coin will cause if it took off.
Besides, I hate fees in my coin, it hurts microtransaction applications.
The seller would also have to trust bitpay (who it seems shopify are using) to store the coins securely, but that's really just like trusting any other payment provider, and hopefully bitpay have insurance and proper financial controls, unlike many exchanges.
Great to see this happening though - I wonder what the comparison on fees is between accepting bitcoin and credit cards, have the fees just moved from one provider (mastercard say) to another (bitpay), or are they significantly lower?
Is there anyone here accepting bitcoin who can enlighten us on the pros and cons?
Also, I'm not sure what you mean by price fluctuations. BitPay accepts bitcoin from the customer and automatically converts it to the seller's local currency at market price. So the price is always fair and the seller never deals with bitcoin.
Sounds good at $30 a month or 1% per transaction, $30 per month almost too good to be true, but I guess they can make it up in volume if they have enough customers sending payments through. The only drawback would be persuading customers to pay in bitcoin, but that could come in time.
Ah I see, thanks for the correction - I'd assumed the seller set a price in bitcoin. Can't see much risk for sellers then if the prices are not set in bitcoin and it goes through a payment processor who moves it immediately to their local currency, and pays out (immediately?). I guess bitpay then has the risk as they have to hold bitcoins till they can sell them and deal with fluctuations in the meantime.
If Bitcoin shouldn't be spent then what use are they?
Yes, there's no intrinsic value.
Yes, the exchange rate could fall by 90%, or expand by 10,000%.
It's also true that Bitcoin has survived and thrived far longer than experts predicted. Acceptance is increasing rapidly, and globally.
Pretty cool how all of these things can be true at the same time.
I always find this argument silly, as I see intrinsic value in finance as a logical fallacy, but I'll entertain the idea anyway. From Wikipedia:
>In commodity money, intrinsic value can be partially or entirely due to the desirable features of the object as a medium of exchange and a store of value. Examples of such features include divisibility; easily and securely storable and transportable; scarcity; and difficulty to counterfeit.
I see Bitcoin as three things: a commodity, a 'trust-less' payment network and a distributed ledger. Now, those are all value-worthy features in my book, especially the latter two.
If you live in a bankless country without a stable currency, Bitcoin is a very powerful tool that has 'intrinsic' value in its capacity to serve your financial needs where other instruments have failed or are entirely absent. Same goes for folk stuck in countries with severe capital controls or vicious austerity measures.
If gold has "intrinsic value", so does Bitcoin. In fact, Bitcoin has more value from that perspective; since when you could you divide gold infinitely? It's also counterfeitable; Bitcoin, not so much. That's what all these clowns like Joe Weisenthal don't seem to understand because they are so caught up in their own ideas of sound money that they can't see the value that Bitcoin brings to the table. Their loss.
Sure there is. The goal of BitCoin is to be as popular as USD and EUR. There are maximum of 21,000,000 bitcoin. Imagine owning 1/21,000,000th of all the USD!
Based on M0, you'd have about $148,090.
(presume bitcoin takes off this way)
I find this limit a really interesting part of the bitcoin experiment.
What sets the limit though? Is it technically possible for the developers to revise this limit at a later date, thus causing a drop in value for existing holders?
I'm not sure of the exact minimums necessary to change the limit, but roughly speaking if you could convince more than half of active bitcoin users and enough miners to control more than half of the network hash rate, you could change the limit.
However even this wouldn't necessarily change the limit in the way you expect. It would create a hard fork where you would have two versions of bitcoin. All coins made before the fork would exist in both versions, but coins made after would only exist in their respective version. So you'd have A-bitcoins with a limit of say, 1 billion, and B-bitcoins with the old limit of 21 million. Whether anyone would still use B-bitcoins depends on how many clients/miners decide to stay on the B-bitcoin branch.
There are many bitcoin fans who think the hard limit is a very good thing.
Historically, people were more willing to "cash out" by spending coins during boom periods: https://blockchain.info/charts/n-transactions-excluding-popu...
That is what I was getting at, in order for Bitcoin to have a reason to exist people must spend them on goods and services. Bitcoin most likely would not exist for long if it became purely a store of wealth. Not that that will happens but many people are treating that way.
> no tax implications
Wouldn't that be tax evasion?
Gold is not currency because it's too damn expensive to store and move.
Capital gains tax evasion - maybe, I'm not a lawyer and I'm not advocating it. But it's clearly a motivation for some people to spend bitcoins directly without going through an exchange.
You avoid paying Capital Gains tax.
They're using BitPay's service to instantly convert to fiat, so they're not getting any bitcoins.
which is a more generic version of another similar service
It may be a matter of time before any site can accept bitcoins indirectly if people started using these services.
This is quite asinine. I assume you've never tried to purchase an item in country A from merchant A' accepting currency A'', while you are in country B using bank B' with an account denominated in B''. The hurdles, generally, are numerous and diverse. Any lack of hurdles is quite exceptional, and completely dependent upon international agreements between nations, banks, and any number of permutations thereof.
Instead, you could simply transact in BTC.
Not sure I'm following.
All of the rampant downvoting on this thread and blinkered discussion regarding Bitcoin really bothers me.. it sounds like /r/bitcoin has taken over HN.
Don't get me wrong, I believe bitcoin is the future of payments. I have absolutely no doubt that in the coming years it will become a global payments infrastructure that will destroy the idea of an international money transfer and change global e-commerce and payments forever. But the idea that it is already there is totally misguided. OP is right. There is no sense at all to use BTC to purchase legal items in the vast majority of countries.
If you know how to move money quickly between those locations, you can make lots of money. It isn't easy problem, because otherwise the arbitrage opportunity wouldn't exist.
I've had quite a few bad experiences trying to purchase internationally (if your billing address and your shipping address are in different countries, you're in for trouble), but I don't think BTC solves any of those. BTC doesn't solve the shipping part, and BTC doesn't solve the fact that some stuff isn't internationally available (for example, music/movies/TV shows).
In my country at least, if you want to purchase something online and in a different currency than your account and CC's denomination, the conversion is done automatically for you at checkout, at whatever the bank has set for the rate, usually a fair one. Works like this regardless of what store you buy from, could be in the U.S, Europe or somewhere else on the globe.
People in less developed countries don't buy online not because they don't have credit cards, they don't buy because they don't have money. If you make $5/day, bitcoin doesn't suddenly give you the ability to buy brand new iPhone.