jansman wrote:Humour me here please... Supposing I had bitcoin and it was 'worth' £10,000.How do I cash it in?Who is going to give me physical cash for it,so I can trade it for goods in the normal way?
Call me simple,but I get paid in cash.With that cash,even if it is in the bank,(I can use a debit card,which is in lieu of readies),I can buy stuff.
With these ' virtual' currencies ( which I have hypothetically purchased with real money),how do I spend it in the real world? How can it be actually valued.I know that survivalists talk of 'fiat currency', but that pound sterling is the accepted trading medium - and will be for a long time hence.
What backs it? I bought this house with cash, and also by cashing in some actual gold- for cash.I don't see houses for sale for in anything other than £££'s.To me it seems bitcoin is like the fable of The Kings New Clothes.
1) There are a lot of "online exchanges" where you sell your bitcoin for cash and they transfer the money direct to your bank account. It takes about 2 - 3 mins to make a confirmed transaction happen and then however long your traditional bank decides is reasonable to actually credit your account. The cost would be a few pence from the exchange.
2) There are credit and debit cards available already where you can hold your Bitcoin (or any other digital currency) and you can use them in the real world same as one from Barclays, Lloyds, Santander etc. The funds are held in your "online digital wallet" which works like a traditional bank account but on your mobile phone, in your pocket. Transaction costs are a fraction of a penny usually and always much lower than VISA or Mastercard etc.
3) You can buy pretty much anything you want online using Bitcoin including houses, cars, boats, weekly shopping, fuel, restaurant meals etc. Admittedly Japan is the pinnacle for those kinds of sales, where Crypto currencies are already officially accepted as legal tender, but it probably wont be long now before the same are available here in the UK.
4) Trust is what backs digital currencies, in exactly the same way as it is trust which backs fiat currencies and when (or if) that trust goes in either of them, the system comes crashing down. Fiat currencies are not backed by anything real like gold or silver anymore, so more and more people are choosing to put their trust in Crypto currencies rather than the promises of governments or central banks. Cryptos are backed by pure mathematics and encrypted formula, completely transparent and decentralized from any central control whatsoever. The blockchain is as awesome an invention and development as the internet.
Last month searches for Bitcoin exceeded those for Trump for the first time:
http://uk.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-p ... ?r=US&IR=T
(Not the best search comparison I know but it shows the interest level none the less)
If we are heading for a cashless society in the UK sometime soon, then decentralized, crypto currencies, outside of the control of the established banking elites and instead under the control of "the people" has got to be a good thing IMO.