Following up on the previous post, here are some more perspectives from Bloq employees now that we have more than ten years worth of perspective on the Bitcoin whitepaper and the Bitcoin Genesis Block.
Product & Strategy
From a technical perspective, the whitepaper was a confluence of computer science concepts that have long existed. The ingenuity was demonstrating in a very real and implementable way how power and money could be decentralized with the potential to transform how societies function. For me, mathematics and computer science translating into something with a potentially huge societal impact is what I found both fascinating and exciting.
Nicolas Del Valle
I started investigating cryptocurrency not long ago. I felt like this concept was a game changer for our society.
In 2001, Argentina’s president took drastic economic measures. Long story short, all USD savings (from all banks and all people) were converted to Argentinian pesos. This was a huge loss because, afterward, the government devalued the Argentinian peso and people ended up having almost nothing compared to what they had before. Even worse, some people were not able to withdraw their money from banks.
A lot of relatives and friends were affected. I was young but I remember their sadness and disappointment. After that, we learned not to trust banks any more.
A few months ago, the Argentinian peso was devalued again. Now its value is literally half of what it was.
I feel extremely lucky because I have a EU citizenship and I’m able to open a bank account somewhere else, where the economy is stable — at least for now — where I can save money without worrying that tomorrow I won’t be able to withdraw it, or that its value will be halved because of a president’s bad decisions.
Lots of friends and family are affected by this, not just in Argentina. In South America and everywhere in the world. We tend to be tied to where we were born or by where we have relatives. Some people are not able to enjoy freedom just because they were born in a country like Venezuela; they even die in the street protesting for it.
Cryptocurrency, for me, means a new hope. It gives people control — control of what it is theirs.
Director of Business Development
The Satoshi whitepaper represents a stake in the ground in human history — a forced look into the future where communities can/could be relied upon to contribute to the health of an ecosystem in exchange for participating in it and receiving the benefits of it. Though touted as a hat-tip to the libertarians, I believe that the Satoshi whitepaper forces us to look at a world where new technologies are not built on the backs of old technologies (á la “pave the cow path”) but where thoughtful consideration is given to why we have certain systems in the first place. This “trust layer” of the Internet could mean currency, could mean votes or identities or loyalty points or reputation; but in every case represents a community living by Metcalfe’s Law (the value of a network is the square of the number and diversity of its participants). Bitcoin was the first — and still the strongest — example of this community-building capability.
Business Development Manager
The Satoshi whitepaper and the advent of crypto has meant everything to me. For one thing, reading it launched me into a completely new career path. I believe I am one of the first in a growing population of millennials that are now actively seeking out jobs specifically in the crypto/blockchain “industry.” Outside of that, In my view, the biggest innovation the Satoshi whitepaper delivered was the concept of digital scarcity. I find nothing more rewarding and fulfilling than working in a space that has the potential to fix serious issues like protecting and proving that our purely digital assets scarce and secure, and finally helping to fulfill the original promise of an open, decentralized, yet secure internet.
Coming from a country where economic crises happen every 10 or 15 years — with frozen accounts, forbidden or daily-capped withdrawals and 50% devaluation overnight as totally routine things — the idea of a decentralized and secure way of storing and spending our money was and still is particularly appealing to me. Satoshi’s paper explains the technical aspects of it, but I can also say that Andreas Antonopoulos’ The Internet of Money made me passionate about the “why” of Bitcoin and its relevance in the current world.