Why Digital Currencies are the Fastest Way to a Safer World

Executive Brief

As the years go by, we tend to forget that digital currencies have been around for quite a while now. For some of us, it is a technology that almost feels like a habit. We can’t imagine the world without it. However, to people who have not yet been introduced to the finer details, cryptocurrencies remain a grey area - something that certainly seems interesting but, at the same time, feels just a bit dangerous. It is our mission to help them understand one simple truth: digital currencies are the single, safest option for our future.

Read the full story below. 

In recent years, we have witnessed several happy events in the cryptocurrency business. Unfortunately, crypto has had more than its share of sad moments as well, and – human nature being what it is – those bits of negative news tend to be the things that everyone remembers. Take the Mt. Gox incident, for example. It still provides fodder for crypto opponents, as well as raw material for negative stories in many newspapers. The Silk Road scandal is another instance where the media painted with an overly broad brush – tying Bitcoin to the drug and money-laundering internet scheme, despite the fact that no sensible person would believe that Bitcoin could be held even remotely responsible for that website’s existence or the activities for which it was used.

But that has been the pattern we’ve seen whenever criminals have used Bitcoins in any sort of illegal activity. The rush is always on to tar digital currency with the acts of those who misuse it. Any rational observer with a fair-minded approach to such things cannot help but notice that physical currency never receives the same type of negative coverage when crimes are committed. Does the media blame the U.S. Treasury or the dollar bill when criminals are caught using U.S. currency to run a money-laundering scheme or some other financial crime?

The fact is that only human beings are responsible for crimes using any type of currency. In the instances cited above, Bitcoin was just the technology used to perform illegal acts - nothing more. In that sense, Bitcoin is very similar to fiat money, and we all know that physical money is used for a variety of illegal activities on a daily basis. On the other hand, in some ways digital currency is nothing like fiat money, and actually outperforms it in ways that most people never hear about.

Just a few short days ago, Dutch police arrested a number of people who were involved in a Bitcoin money laundering investigation. That in and of itself is not the remarkable thing, of course. After all, crimes happen every day, and criminals will use any resource available to them as they pursue their nefarious plans. But if the attention turns to Bitcoin, the coverage is almost certainly to be as negative as it always is whenever an incident like this occurs. What is truly remarkable is that it is all but certain that the singular most important part of this story will receive virtually no mainstream media notice.

Are you wondering how the Dutch even had any idea that this scheme was underway? According to reports, the raids that led to those arrests were prompted by suspicions over a number of sizable Bitcoin trades. Did you catch that? There was actual traceable activity that led the police to become suspicious that something illegal might be occurring. Will the media focus on this particular aspect of the case?

And therein lies the problem. The media never gets around to mentioning that digital currency is uniquely designed for such traceability. Oh sure, we all like to imagine that cryptocurrency guarantees real anonymity, but we also know that’s not the case. Every time someone makes a transaction with Bitcoin, a record of that transaction immediately shows up in the Blockchain. As a result, it is always possible to see where digital currency came from and where it went.

When we compare this feature to fiat currency, we see a whole different story. Fiat currency is probably the most anonymous monetary system you can imagine. You can go out and buy a load of armaments from a crooked arms dealer and if neither of you make a record of that transaction the world will probably never know. That type of activity happens on a daily basis and few people ever question why we allow such a system to continue. The fact is that we prefer to use the things we know best and we fear that which is new and unknown.

So what is our mission? Should we endeavor to convince the mainstream media to provide more positive coverage for digital currencies? Though that would certainly aid us in the cause of gaining more widespread acceptance for crypto, our time might be better spent pursuing a different path.

We should work to make sure that everybody discovers the true advantages that cryptocurrencies offer. Once people are aware that there is a worthy and viable alternative to fiat money, their eyes will open. They need to discover that this alternative is far superior to fiat currency in every respect, and that it can provide every necessary function of money: as a unit of account, as a medium of exchange, and as a store of value.

We have to spread the word so people finally learn that the vast majority of transactions between two parties can be made with nearly zero cost - and just this change alone means that hundreds of billions of dollars can be saved in global commerce. Getting that information out there will take time and persistence, but it’s a goal well worth the effort. At the end of the day, the public has to be led to the realization that digital currency offers the fastest and safest way to a better world.

The views expressed by the authors on this site do not necessarily represent the views of DCEBrief or the management team.

Author: Christoph Marckx

Freelance journalist from Belgium with a passion for cryptocurrency. Received a Bachelor's degree in journalism at Katholieke Hogeschool Mechelen and currently studying at Antwerpen for his Masters of Science, Political Science and Government.

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