Have you been frustrated at all of these Bitcoin explainers that leave you with more questions than answers? Can someone please break it down for me? As hard as I wracked my brain, they still didn’t make sense.
I finally figured out why. It wasn’t that I didn’t get Bitcoin. Actually, I didn’t understand money — and currency.
It turns out that money is unusually complicated. This new video from the awesome folks at RetroReport and Quartz is the best explainer I’ve seen.
On what money is actually based on:
“Money is a communal story about who owns what. It’s always been just a matter of who we trusted to tell that story.” – Nathaniel Popper
On how blockchain’s innately superior way to track transactions:
“Imagine that you have a piece of paper and that any infinite amount of people are also holding a piece of paper. What blockchain technology does is it makes what you wrote on your piece of paper show up nearly at the same time on everyone else’s piece of paper, exactly how your wrote it.” – Amanda Gutterman
On the risks of cryptocurrency:
“Digital assets that aren’t backed by gold or governments only have value if people keep believing that they do, and only if the computers creating them remain secure.”
On possible consequences of using such a private (and public) way to transact:
“The virtues that we want to preserve are the virtues we’re going to have consciously fight for because the technologies themselves don’t bring those values with them. If you want those technologies to have those values, you have to bring them yourselves.” -Vinay Gupta
Want to go deeper? Check out these 8 bitcoin infographics.