It took about 11 years until a project started on some mailing list after the big 2008 crisis stormed our planet. I’m not backing up from my words, it literally disrupted the whole concept of money, created countless millionaires and billionaires, forced states to adjust their legislation just to make sense of it and created a market worth 2 trillions USD (at the moment of writing).
Some may argue that Bitcoin is already old tech. And I have to agree. The pace of innovation in this field was breath-taking. We have now many other alternatives. What they all lack, though, is the battle-tested experience and visibility of Bitcoin. As old as it is, Bitcoin is still working. And it’s known. And it has a sizable ecosystem of developers, advocates and supporters.
Some may argue that Bitcoin uses too much energy. If Bitcoin, as a tech, would be worth $0, then yes, that would be a waste. But if that electricity is used to support an entire financial system, all decentralized, incentivized by competition, then it’s cheaper than what it’s used to support the current financial system. Bitcoin uses a lot of electricity, but much of it is already green. And many miners are forced to move to greener energy, otherwise they will face backlash from local authorities.
As of yesterday, Bitcoin is also legal tender in El Salvador. When a currency is legal tender it means debt can be settled in it. A nation-state is now able to settle its debt in Bitcoin. Think about that for a while. Just stay with that thought for a few minutes. It’s been just a day since the law became official, and there are still some hiccups related to how it is implemented (mostly related to centralized app stores), but it seems it cannot be reversed. You can now go in a country where you can officially settle your debt in a cryptocurrency.
I’m still processing the effects of this, and I’m still waiting to see how it develops, but even at this stage, I believe we’re in a silent revolution. The noise around may be a bit too loud, as we’re trying to cope with all that fear-induced pandemic approach, or we’re just hustling to make ends meet, but I guess that’s what happened during any revolution. There was an epicenter in which things were crystal clear, from which the new path was visible, and then there were the outskirts, the place in which life was just going on as usual. The tsunami started in the epicenter eventually hit the outskirts too, and the world was radically transformed, as with any revolution.
I think some of us are in the epicenter now, but the majority is still in the outskirts.
Expect disruption during the next couple of years. Expect the tsunami. It already started.