This Week in Bitcoin: Big Bangs, Huge Swings, and a Word From the White House
Every week we tell ourselves “This one’s got to be quieter” and yet every week we’re proven wrong. Welcome to the latest and craziest edition of This Week in Bitcoin. We’ve no idea where this madness is gonna end; all we know is that there’s no time to assess the situation – there’s too much stuff happening in bitcoin. For those of you who were forced to sleep at some stage this week, here’s a roundup of what you may have missed.
Bitcoin Goes Bang
We tried to teach you about ways in which bitcoin is changing the world. We tried to inform you of cryptocurrency regulation in developing countries. We even tried to impart cautionary advice regarding margin trading. But all you wanted to hear about was bitcoin appearing on The Big Bang Theory. We said:
[Bitcoin] has been featured on many television broadcasts over the years. This includes shows like The Good Wife, Mr. Robot, The Simpsons, and even on Jeopardy. The Big Bang Theory’s upcoming show was also filmed a while back when bitcoin was averaging $5K per BTC….This week’s BBT episode is sure to bring more attention towards the ‘Internet of Money’ alongside a touch of laughter.
All of this week’s most popular stories were of the low-brow variety, but that’s okay: amidst all the heart-pounding drama of watching the ticker hit $11,300, shed $2,000 and then rise again like a phoenix from the flames, some respite was needed. You got all that in our tale of a man who lost 1,000 bitcoins thanks to a faulty thumb drive. As the unfortunate Australian put it, “If my wife knows, I’m dead”.
Other click-friendly stories included The World’s Worst Named Cryptocurrencies. We said:
Classics that are dead in the water include Fck Banks Coin, Fellatiocoin (it blew), Groincoin, and Crimsoncoin whose devs “sold their coins and ran off in less than a week”. No prizes for guessing what happened to DodoCoin.
…And Now For Some Real News
By midweek, the bitcoin roller-coaster was making everyone giddy and causing overloaded exchanges to tap out. There were more memes, media headlines, and soundbites than we could keep up with, though we tried to summate the best in our piece on bitcoin going parabolic. We said:
The only way to find out whether this rocket is filled with paper straws or moon fuel is to keep going. One thing’s for sure: up this high in the atmosphere, things start to get scary. It’s a long way down.
Welcome to the School of Bitcoin
With all the new money and newcomers pouring into cryptocurrency, we decided it was time to dispense a few elementary lessons, including one on calculating transaction fees and another on how to safely store your bitcoin. In Stay Safe By Keeping Your ‘Bitcoin Business’ to Yourself we urged:
Leaving your private information out in the open or bragging about [your bitcoin holdings] on social media is not the greatest idea because thieves and even jealous friends can become very real.
Kiss Goodbye to Another Whirlwind Week
For an intangible digital currency, bitcoin sure stirs up strong emotions. From elation to anger and greed to disgust, we did our best to capture the best and worst elements of the sector as we covered such stories as the IRS receiving the data of 14,000 Coinbase users and bitcoin hitting new highs in Zimbabwe. We said:
After years of theory and debate, the decentralized currency has its real-time case study as a refuge for those seeking to store their wealth in a medium that will hold its value or better.
In a week where politicians correlated bitcoin with getting kids hooked on drugs and Turkey deemed the currency un-Islamic, it really was a jam-packed seven days. Oh, and we haven’t even mentioned bitcoin futures, which are totes coming. Like, for real this time. December 18th. This week’s required reading from elsewhere on the web, incidentally, is The Three Economic Eras of Bitcoin by Rusty Russell and an excellent piece on bitcoin’s true value by Miguel Cuneta. Stellar stuff.
The week ended with more drama as we revealed that proposed U.S. legislation may criminalize people who ‘conceal’ bitcoin. Y’all had a lot to say about that one in the comments – turns out you’re not big on Diane Feinstein. Eric Wall also returned to deliver his second trading column in which he pondered whether now’s a good time to buy bitcoin.
Could next week’s round-up surpass the giddiness and drama of this one? You wouldn’t want to bet against it. See you next week for more all-time highs (possibly), bankers saying dumb stuff (certainly), and crazy tales from the bizarre world of bitcoin.
What was your favorite story from the past seven days? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and Zambian Astronaut.
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