Home Today's Paper Most Popular Video Gallery Photo Gallery
Subscription Blog Signin Register
Logo
Monday, December 11, 2017 06:17:32 AM
Follow Us On: Facebook Twitter Twitter Twitter Twitter

Bitcoin must be self-regulated

By
12th-Mar-2014       
Comments
Share your thought
Post a comment »
Read all () »

Christiaan Elderhorst :
In the wake of Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox's bankruptcy filing, more than four hundred of its customers have expressed interest in filing a class action lawsuit against the parent company and its chief, Mark Karpeles. Mt. Gox was the cryptocurrency's largest marketplace. Although Bitcoin's functioning is still incomprehensible to many its value is real. Mt.Gox's losses are estimated at $480 million.
The accusations of fraud and negligence are certainly justified, but a lawsuit might not be the best way to seek justice in the unregulated Internet economy. It's odd that members of the Bitcoin community, many of whose members oppose government intervention in the money supply, are so easily persuaded to appeal to government legal systems once the situation goes awry.
A lawsuit will undoubtedly open up avenues for lawmakers to further complicate use of Bitcoin and similar cryptocurrencies.
American political activist Samuel Edward Konkin III popularized the term "counter-economics" to describe all voluntary transactions that occur outside of the realm of the government-regulated marketplace. Bitcoin, and cryptocurrencies in general, fulfill an important role in this counter-economy by taking fiat money out of the equation entirely. However, to fully sustain the power of the counter-economy we must integrate non-state legal systems into its overarching framework. Instead of running back to the state when things take a wrong turn the opportunity must be used to discuss and develop systems by which businesses in the counter-economy can be held accountable for their actions.
An example of counter-economic regulation comes from the community around the Silk Road, a Bitcoin-based online marketplace for the buying and selling of illegal drugs. A group of its users calling themselves the LSD Avengers ran chemical analysis on acid they bought to test whether they were in fact in possession of genuine LSD, providing other users with a safety standard by which drugs could be ordered and consumed safely.
This illustrates how a black market can self-regulate without resorting to the imposition of bureaucratic agencies like the Food and Drug Administration.
Bitcoin itself plays a liberating role in places like Ukraine and Iran, providing a system of payment independent of governments meddling and directives set forth by central banks. It is plausible that if the fate of Mt.Gox is placed at the hand of judges then regulation will follow. Regulation might satisfy our western need for guaranteed illusory feelings of safety. But it will hurt economic freedom in countries with people less fortunate than in the West. This will detract from the revolutionary potential of digital currency.
Currently there is no system by which Bitcoin marketplaces can be held accountable. Resorting to government legal systems might indeed be the only way by which Mt.Gox customers can receive the restitution they deserve. What does have to be kept in mind is that this option is far from optimal. Further talk of government regulation of crytocurrencies will not be a surprising result.
In fact it seems inevitable. In the future the digital counter-economy will have to find ways to regulate itself. The ingenious online methods that are bound to come up might lead to insights by which we can regulate our own "analog" communities as well. One day government regulation of the marketplace will be a thing of the past as the self-regulating counter-economy replaces it entirely.
(Christiaan Elderhorst is a columnist writes mostly on economics)

Tariff
Add Rate

News Archive

Inside The New Nation

International »

Chinese billionaire-in-exile wants regime change in Beijing


AFP, New York :Billionaire Guo Wengui, who is seeking asylum in the United States after accusing officials in his native China of corruption, wants "a change of the regime" in Beijing and the introduction of democracy in the world's most populous country."I want to try and to have rule of ...

Editorial »

Aman harvest has no effect on rice market


PASSING the Aman harvest, rice price has not come down as government leaders earlier said and rather gone up to the dismay of the common people all over the country. Though farmers are happy with higher price; although they have suffered production loss at many places due to late receding ...

Cricket »

Players of Comilla Victorians celebrating after dismissal of Chris Gayle of Rangpur Riders during the Qualifier-2 match of the AKS Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Twenty20 Cricket between Comilla Victorians and Rangpur Riders at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in the city's Mirpur on Sunday.


Sports »

Members of Rongdhanu RDS, the runners-up of the Hedayet Hossain Memorial Night Cricket Tournament pose for a photo session at Bangladesh Ground in Old Dhaka recently.


Entertainment »

Gauhar makes to sexiest Asian list for fourth consecutive time


For the fourth consecutive year, Bollywood actress and model Gauhar Khan has been voted to the top 10 list of ‘50 Sexiest Asian Women list’ in the world. It is an annual UK poll, which has been released in London recently. The actress, who is known for her choice of ...

City »

Convenor of Nagorik Oikya Mahmudur Rahman Manna speaking at a discussion organised by 'Mayer Dak, a social organisation at the Jatiya Press Club on Sunday with a call to bring back forced disappeared people to their mothers' laps.


International »

Ex-Fox news anchor Huddy claims Trump kissed her


Huff Post :A former Fox News anchorwoman who accused Bill O'Reilly of sexually harassing her in 2011 is now claiming that Donald Trump kissed her on the lips in an elevator.Juliet Huddy said Thursday morning on the "Mornin!!! With Bill Schulz" podcast (which has a paywall) that it happened around ...

Editorial »

Dust pollution takes toll in cities’ air


PRESENCE of dust and pollution in the air of our cities has reached alarming levels. It's happening mainly due to chaotic construction works, poor management and protracted traffic jams. According to Air Quality Index Report of the Department of Environment's (DoE) "Clean Air and Sustainable Project" earlier this month, air ...

Sports »

Chanchal emerges unbeaten champion in Blitz Chess Championship


BSS, Dhaka  :Chanchal Kumar Ghosh emerged as unbeaten champion in the Blitz Chess Championship with 6.5 points after the 7th round game on Friday at E Commerce Club hall room in Uttara. Five players finished in second to sixth position with 5.5 points after the tie breaking system. They are ...

Sports »

First-place Nao Kodaira (center) of Japan stands with second-place Lee Sang-hwa (left) of South Korea and third-place Arisa Go (right) of Japan after the women's 500 meters at a World Cup speedskating event Friday in Kearns, Utah.


Entertainment »

Akshay to back out of Gulshan Kumar's biopic?


 Akshay Kumar, who has films like Padman and 2.0 lined up for 2018, has created a stir after rumors of him stepping out of the film titled Mogul came to the forefront. Mogul is a biopic on the creator of T-series, Gulshan Kumar. According to the rumors, Akshay Kumar and ...

City »

BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, among others, at a discussion organised on the occasion of 10th founding anniversary of Bangladesh Kalyan Party at the Jatiya Press Club on Saturday.


Editorial »

Mysterious theft of fertiliser from Govt depots


DESPITE fertile land loss, inclement weather and depleting irrigation water, Bangladesh's agriculture keeps contributing a fifth of the GDP each year. Along with other factors, government's policy support in the form of fertiliser subsidy plays a big part here. But misappropriation of the key agro input such as fertiliser by ...

City »

`National Committee for the Implementation of Prime Minister`s Approved Gazetted Salaries` formed a human chain in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Friday to meet its demands.


.

Entertainment »

Are Virat and Anushka getting hitched?


Over the past few days, there are some reports doing the rounds that ace cricketer Virat Kohli and Bollywood starlet Anushka Sharma are getting married. According to these reports, both these love-birds will tie the knot in Italy.  The manager of Anushka has already slammed these reports by saying these ...

 
Items that you save may be read at any time on your computer, iPad, iPhone or Android devices.
 
Are you new to our website? Do you have already an account at our website?
Create An Account Log in here
Email this news to a friend or like someone
Email:
Write a comment to this news