A brief history of Bitcoins.
If you’ve had a life and decided that spending tens of thousands of dollars on out-of-date video cards was a bad career choice, you’ve probably never heard of
butt Bitcoins. Bitcoins are a decentralized, anonymous P2P “currency” created for Internet Libertarians and Nutjob Conspiracy Theroists who think that just because the US Dollar isn’t backed by gold anymore that somehow that makes the $15,000,000,000,000 economy backing it worthless. So these smelly shut-ins decided that they needed a new currency to buy things like beef jerky and fleshlights with. What better man to create Bitcoins, than a mysterious Japanese man named Satoshi Nakamoto.
That’s a right, an honest to goodness Japanese man! No Otakus here! Bitcoin was created in early 2009, and since it was basically a worthless hobby no one cared. You could “earn” Bitcoins a number of ways, either through people giving them away, exchanging good and services, or mining them using a program on Mac or Windows (or Linux if you’re a terrible person). If you let your PC run long enough and had a powerful enough out of date video card, you could fart out a hash number that for some reason another nerd would give you money for. A number of sites specializing in Bitcoin trading sprung up, including unregulated Bitcoin-to-USD exchange sites such as Mt. Gox. Bitcoins were worth a couple pennies back then and Internet Libertarians had fun pretending that their Monopoly Dollars could be worth anything, but still able to cash out to real money if you need to. Life was good and Bitcoin was mostly a hobby.
That all changed in on June 1st when Gawker published an article titled “The Underground Website Where You Can Buy Any Drug Imaginable“ that detailed a website called “Silk Road” that allowed anyone to buy drugs on the internet, backed by the anonymous currency “Bitcoins”. Finally, Bitcoins had a purpose! After this article came out, many people
exploited took notice of Bitcoins. The price shot up, and people started “investing” in Bitcoins, putting tens of thousands of real dollars into Bitcoin mining hardware and buying Bitcoins on the exchange market. It was baby’s first financial experiment! Fiat currency was dead! Long live Bitcoins!
With the price of Bitcoins over $15, these OCD nerds started doing dumb things. Very expensive, very dumb things. Like spending thousands and thousands of dollars on video cards to mine Bitcoins, paying 300% over retail in some cases.
You gotta spend money to make money though, can’t become an internet millionaire without spending some dough. And what kind of returns on investments could a Bitcoin miner expect?
It’s totally worth it.
Just like any job though, you have your occupational hazards that pop up from time to time.
What a way to go. Be proud to tell your kids you died doing what you loved; burning 13 acres of rainforest trying to fart out Buttcoins.
But then something happened. The price kept going up, and up, and up, and many people simply lost their fucking minds.
There still was no value in a Bitcoin. No one accepted it as real currency, no physical stores took it in exchange for goods and services. The value of Bitcoins fluctuated by the minute, and would often times lose 30% of it’s value on the weekends for no reason. The exchange process into USD was slow and tedious.
Someone decided they could read the writing on the wall, and dumped all their Bitcoins at the peak.
This crashed the market instantly. The internet spergs started getting all Chicken Little, claming the end was near and that the game was over. Luckily the cheerleaders were able to shout louder, cheering on their currency-that-could back into normalcy and starting another rally to Peak Buttcoin.
Some members even found a valid use for an anonymous currency.
But then something glorious happened. Something that happens to anything that’s A) of value and B) completely lives on the internet. The largest Bitcoin exchange marketplace, Mt. Gox (which stands for Magic The Gathering Online eXchange) got hacked, someone stole 400k Bitcoins worth about $8 million, and tried to sell them all until they were worthless.
Obviously, the Bitcoin community was upset. Did they demand a regulated market with oversight and guarantees that manipulation of a single exchange would not cause the entire Bitcoin economy to grind to a halt? No, they expressed their rage by weeping quietly into their Cheetos and Noxzema pads. They also turned to their favorite social media groups to air their disgust.
Mt. Gox decided to man up to the hack, strengthened their security and paid losses through their insurancbwahahahahaha … just kidding, they shut everything down and called a “Mulligan”, basically wiping the day’s transactions and saying they were going to start over again. The effectively halted the entire Bitcoin economy as no one could turn worthless hashes into stacks of greenbacks. They reopened their doors
the next day, the day after, 6 days after they said they would, but by then everyone had forgotten about Bitcoins, the market had stabilized, the miners were stuck with tens of thousands of video cards that Newegg will soon stop returning, and still no reputable merchant will take their stupid Zimbabwe e-coins.
Where do we go from here? Who knows. Will Bitcoins take off? No chance in hell. Will the price drop again? Maybe, but if everyone’s mining and no one’s spending, the price will stagnate. Will Buttcoins, the Crypto-currency for Internet Libertarian Truthers still be funny? You bet your sweet ass it will.