On August 17th, 2013, I was interviewed by Tony Stiles for his radio show, the Tony Stiles Show. We talked about the basics of Bitcoin and why this technology is so important. Listen to the full interview below:
In November 2013, I was interviewed by China Radio International for their program “People In The Know.” We discussed the basics of the Bitcoin technology, the history of Bitcoin, as well as future innovations that could be implemented using the Bitcoin protocol. Listen to the full interview below:
In June 2013 I gave an interview about the fundamentals of Bitcoin with liberty activist and writer Amanda Billyrock. We discussed how bitcoins are produced, how the network is secured against fraud, how people can start using bitcoins, and why Bitcoin is so important historically, socially, and economically.
Originally posted on PokerListings.com
Cypto-currency Bitcoin remains an intriguing option for online poker players.
We investigated the subject earlier this year in a Bitcoin feature we did on SealsWithClubs founder Brian Micon.
We’re going one step farther today with a special Q&A by Nadia Hanna with Bitcoin experts John Light and Adam Sah.
John Light is an entrepreneur with a professional background in business operations and online marketing. He discovered Bitcoin when researching alternative currencies and eventually decided to move to Silicon Valley to start a Bitcoin consulting business where individuals and companies can learn about the digital currency.
Adam Sah opened an artisan food store, Buyers Best Friend, in 2012 and experienced the pain of handling cash, processing credit cards, costs and fees. They company designed their own Point of Sale (POS) system for processing bitcoins.
1. PokerListings: Why do you think the Government want to regulate Bitcoin? And who do you think is behind the drive to over-regulate it?
Adam Sah: It’s not true that the government wants to regulate “everything”– but in practice, the minute there are disputes or risks to large numbers of people, they have to step in.
In fact, I don’t see much evidence that anybody is materially trying to “overregulate” Bitcoin, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the sophisticated approach of the Obama administration, where they’re saying that regulation will come, without committing to the details.
Meanwhile, they took the obvious steps are restricting anonymity, which removes the egregious uses of Bitcoin for illegal purposes such as money laundering.
John Light: Less than a year ago, people didn’t think bitcoins were money anymore than arcade tokens or Linden Dollars, but now a serious discussion is being had. It’s incredibly positive in terms of measuring Bitcoin’s impact on the way people think about money and currency.
2. PL: What do you think is the future of BitCoin and can it bring increased financial freedom?
John Light: I think either Bitcoin or something like it – another cryptocurrency – will become very common, if not dominant, in the currency market.
People are realizing the benefits of this technology more every day, whether it’s the ability to transact with almost the same level of privacy as cash over the internet, or the ability to prevent wealth from being taken by privileged and powerful people, as is occurring all over the world.
Wealth confiscation en masse is very difficult, if not impossible, with Bitcoin. So yes, I think Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can bring increased financial freedom when implemented and used properly.
Adam Sah: More merchants need to accept it, which means easier processing and integrations with commercial POS and accounting systems. Bitcoin needs to find its way into mainstream use– everyday people have little reason to carry it.
BtC brings freedom to the extent that any new currency or capability brings freedom– you’re travelling internationally and currency exchange is a pain, now you can use Bitcoin.
3. PL: Will an international currency like BitCoin reduce the power of other significant currencies like the USD /GBP/EURO?
Adam Sah: By definition, yes. But the major reserve currencies already face “competition” from other reserve currencies and I doubt BitCoin will materially affect that.
John Light: Bitcoin has the potential to do so, especially if the organizations who control these currencies continue to devalue them with endless inflation, which benefits first recipients of new money in the short-term and punishes savers in the long-term.
4. What advice would you give to Bitcoin users in this regard?
John Light: Learn how to use encrypted offline cold storage solutions to keep your coins safe from theft, and try to always buy twice as many bitcoins as you plan to save or spend so that you can save half and spend the other half.
This keeps the economy liquid while also allowing you to build up your savings.
Bitcoin has gone from being completely worthless 4 years ago to over $100 per coin today; we’re still right at the beginning of a steep adoption curve of Bitcoin or Bitcoin-like technology, which will only continue to push the value higher (the law of supply and demand dictates this).
That said, long-term, Bitcoin is still a speculative investment, but if you believe in the potential for good that this technology has then it’s a bet worth making if you have some spare change to invest.
Adam Sah: I don’t have advice per se– we keep a limited amount of BtC on hand and don’t speculate on its value, instead focusing on our core business, which is bringing artisan food to the masses.
5. PL: Bitcoin is becoming an important option in the online poker world for players concerned about Gov. oversight/seizures/regulation – have you ever tried playing online poker, do you see it as a viable solution?
John Light: I have never played online poker myself, but know several people who make a living playing poker online. They’ve had to move out of the U.S. in order to continue making their living due to the laws here.
Bitcoin would be a great solution for the online/ mobile gaming industry for several reasons:
1) Bitcoin transactions are irreversible. Site operators do not have to worry about chargeback fraud.
2) Bitcoin offers instant gratification. When a customer wants to withdraw their funds, it takes a matter of minutes to receive the bitcoins, not hours or days as with bank transfers.
3) Bitcoin has built-in privacy for customers. People can gamble without having to expose their personal or financial information as is the case when using other payment methods.
4) Bitcoin has extremely low transfer fees. The standard network fee is .0005 bitcoins, which is a little over 5 cents USD right now. This fee is only paid by the sender of coins, not the receiver.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: John Light
Announcement Blog Post: https://bitcoinconsultant.me/2013/07/01/buttonwood-sf-p2p-cryptocurrency-trading/
“Buttonwood SF” Brings Digital Currency Trading to the Real World in San Francisco
Bitcoin consultant and entrepreneur John Light has organized a weekly Meetup group called “Buttonwood SF – P2P Cryptocurrency Trading” for the purpose of making cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin easily available to the people of San Francisco. Until recently, the only options for acquiring bitcoins were registering on often difficult-to-access online exchanges, or attempting to find someone nearby who had bitcoins and was willing to sell them. Buttonwood SF bridges these gaps by providing a group setting for trading in a public space, allowing for liquidity, convenience, and strength in numbers. Inspired by the Satoshi Square meetups in New York and Los Angeles, Mr. Light hopes that by providing a convenient place for people to learn about and trade cryptocurrencies, their use will also become more widespread.
“San Francisco is a city of immigrants and transients, and I’m sure a lot of them send money to their homeland and get hit with ridiculous fees. Cryptocurrencies could fill a real need here, and having a safe and easy way to buy and sell them could be a godsend for low-income people who are sending a couple hundreds bucks back home every month,” he said in a recent email update to the Meetup group. In addition to providing a low-cost way for people to send money overseas, cryptocurrencies offer businesses an easy way to accept payments from anyone anywhere in the world with less fees than credit and debit card networks and zero risk of charge-back fraud.
San Franciscans and others in the Bay Area who are interested in learning about and trading cryptocurrencies should meet at the Northwest corner of Jackson Field in the Potrero Hill neighborhood this Thursday between 7:00-9:00 PM PST. Everyone is welcome, so those who are interested in attending are encouraged to bring friends and family so they too can see the benefits that cryptocurrencies have to offer.
For more information please contact John Light through his website at www.bitcoinconsultant.me
I’m happy to announce that as of June 28, 2013, the San Francisco Bay Area has its own “Satoshi Square” called Buttonwood SF. Partially inspired by the Project Buttonwood blog post that Josh Rossi published shortly before organizing the first Satoshi Square, partially the result of months of procrastinating, I have decided that now is the time for a truly peer-to-peer cryptocurrency trading group to organize in my adopted city of San Francisco. Every Thursday from 7:00-9:00PM PST we will be meeting in the North-West corner of Jackson Field (by the bleachers) in the Potrero Hill neighborhood, and if we need to head indoors for any reason then the backup location will be the Whole Foods Steep Brew cafe/bar which is 2 blocks down at the intersection of 17th and Rhode Island St. Trades will be done by open outcry method, and eventually I’d like to use some sort of order-tracking system so we can record prices and allow for real-time price discovery, such as the Buttonwood Web App Josh Rossi developed for Satoshi Square.
Everyone of all ages and trading experience is welcome, including people who have never used or heard of cryptocurrencies but are interested in learning. Serious trading will be taking place, but of course casual conversation about cryptocurrencies is welcome and encouraged as well. There is a playground at the park, so people who have to bring young children are welcome to let their kids play safely nearby to minimize distractions for the traders.
If you have any comments, questions, criticisms, and/or suggestions, please leave them in a comment below or you can reach me through the contact form on this site. Since this meetup group is brand new, nothing is set in stone, therefore I am completely open to changes if they are beneficial to the purpose of Buttonwood SF.
For those of you in San Francisco, I hope to see you this coming Thursday at Jackson Field. Happy trading!
On June 11, 2013, I was given the opportunity to participate in a webinar hosted by Roger Royse of the Royce Law Firm. The webinar was organized as part of the Royce University, which offers business, tax and personal finance ideas and information to help founders and executives recognize and grasp new opportunities and make meaningful connections. I was joined by several other very knowledgeable panelists who shared their perspectives on various aspects of the emerging Bitcoin economy, from regulatory issues to technical developments and business opportunities: Andreas Antonopoulos of Root Eleven and Let’s Talk Bitcoin, Dan Held of ZeroBlock and BitAngels, David Johnston of Engine.co and BitAngels, and Constance Choi of Payward. If you’d like to see more Bitcoin-themed webinars from Royse Univesity, feel free to contact them and express your interest.
When I first heard about Forbes journalist Kashmir Hill‘s week-long experiment to live a strictly Bitcoin lifestyle, I had a feeling that she was going to encounter some difficulties, being so new to the currency. After reading her day 1 article, I was proven correct. I reached out to her by email and offered to answer any questions she may have, in hopes of making the rest of her journey more enjoyable. She replied saying that her main concern at the time was paying rent, and after giving her some suggestions I was pleasantly surprised to receive not only a mention but a link-back as well in her Day 3 article (thanks Kash!). After her week was over, Kashmir organized a Bitcoin meetup through the SF Bitcoin Social meetup group at Sake Zone, a sushi restaurant in San Francisco that accepts Bitcoin. Knowing this would be a great opportunity to meet her in person and find out how the rest of her week went, I made sure to be there. Both her and her camerawoman were present, mingling with the crowd while also getting interviews for a Forbes feature video. Here is the end-result, featuring yours truly. This was a really fun night – big thanks to everyone who helped make it happen!
I attended the New Living Expo from April 28-30 to educate exhibitors and attendees about the benefits of Bitcoin. I was lucky to share a large booth with the San Francisco Tesla Society, the Seasteading Institute, and the Golden Gate Liberty Revolution meetup group, which was attracting a lot of foot traffic. Many people were exposed to Bitcoin for the first time ever that day, and left with my brochure in hand.
While I was at the Expo, I took the opportunity to make a video with GGLR Treasurer Jun Dam showing how easy it is for an organization to begin accepting Bitcoin donations using only an Android smart phone with the Bitcoin Spinner app installed. Watch the video below to see how easy it can be for anyone with an Android smartphone to begin using Bitcoin in less than two minutes.
On April 26, 2013 I had the opportunity to discuss Bitcoin on the China Radio International program “Today on Beyond Beijing” with Professor Steve Hanke, CATO Senior Fellow and Professor of Applied Economics and Co-Director of the Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. It was a great conversation, and I look forward to participating in more discussions like this in the future.
Topics discussed include: What is Bitcoin? Why is Bitcoin important? How does Bitcoin work? Is Bitcoin money? What is Bitcoin used for? What is the regulatory environment for Bitcoin like?
Please like and share if you enjoy the conversation!