Starting about a year ago and through the rest of 2013, bitcoin was one of the most buzzed about topics on the internet. It was during this time that we saw the price of BTC surge over US$1000. Since then, bitcoin seemed to have fallen out of the public eye, and the price has fallen as well. However, while out of the spotlight, bitcoin has made significant progress towards mainstream acceptance and may be poised for another breakthrough.
One of the major barriers to bitcoin adoption is the lack of acceptance among merchants. Over the past several months, we have seen several big companies including Dell, Expedia and Newegg, start accepting the digital currency. Last week, Paypal announced a partnership with Coinbase that will allow merchants to immediately start accepting bitcoin through its subsidiary Braintree. Support from these companies is paramount in lending legitimacy to bitcoin.
The largely positive reactions from the US government have also provided bitcoin with a safer image. The government's decision to auction off the bitcoins it seized from Silk Road has been viewed as a vote of confidence in bitcoin. The Federal Reserve has recognized bitcoin's potential as a boon for global commerce. Last week, TeraExchange received approval to launch its bitcoin derivatives platform, making it the first US-regulated financial product tied to bitcoin.
While these recent developments are not particularly exciting, they are important for laying the groundwork for widespread adoption and a potentially sustainable increase in BTC price.
We saw Bitcoin prices skyrocket a few months ago, followed by a bit of a tumble, yet prices remain much higher than they were prior to the initial jump. Many may be wondering what they should do with their stash. Should you hold? Should you sell?
Our feeling is kind of neither. If everyone holds onto their bitcoins, waiting for a good time to cash in, that could be very bad for the currency. It could stagnate and then eventually be followed by a sudden crash as it becomes essentially useless. We'd like to see Bitcoin become a legitimate currency, and the only way to do that is to SPEND IT.
We aren't saying you should spend your whole stash in one go, but spend it when you can. Companies need to be shown that there's a significant number of people who want to buy their goods and services using Bitcoin. Big retailers can see that prices are still quite volatile, and this may discourage them from wanting to accept Bitcoin at this point in time, so it's up to holders of the currency to show them it's worth the risk. Plus, using Bitcoin for commerce can help keep the flow steady and may stabilize prices, reducing the risk of accepting the currency in retailers' eyes.
The good news on this front is major e-retailer Overstock.com will start accepting Bitcoin later this year. Support this move and support Bitcoin! This is a great opportunity to show other major retailers that Bitcoin is for real. If there's something you need to buy, buy it on Overstock.com using bitcoins and then replenish your supply afterward. This way, you lose very little and do great medium-to-long-term good for the currency and its holders. This may seem like a bit of trouble, but ultimately it will be good for the market price of your stash.
Happy Bitcoin Black Friday! We're happy to announce that, starting with our next payment, the minimum amount needed for payout will be lowered from 100 µBTC to 60 µBTC. Hopefully this will make it easier for our new users to feel the excitement of earning their first bitcoins.
For all of our users, consider supporting our Bitcoin merchants while getting some great deals on Bitcoin Black Friday. For more information about this awesome event, click here.
You've probably heard about the rising price of Bitcoin and wondered "What's going on?" The simple answer is that there's been a spike in interest, specifically from Chinese investors. China now accounts for about a third of daily Bitcoin transactions and hosts the biggest Bitcoin exchange in the world.
So is it a bubble? There's no way to know, but if the intent of the big new investors is to speculate, i.e., make money off short-term fluctuations, which certainly could be the case, then it's possible we'll see Bitcoin come crashing back down again at any sign of a price falter be it a day or a year from now. The only way we'll see Bitcoin stabilize long term is if a larger proportion of investors hold it not with intent to speculate, but rather with intent to use it as a functional currency.
There have been some good signs of late on this front, from the Bitcoin ATM in Vancouver to China's search engine giant Baidu accepting Bitcoin for its firewall service. The importance of this cannot be understated: China has a massive internet market, and if we see other major Chinese internet companies mimic Baidu's move to accept Bitcoin, it may spur just the kind of heavy adoption Bitcoin advocates have been hoping for since its inception, which could in turn result in greater adoption around the world. Whether this will happen remains to be seen, but as of right now, we at BitcoinGet are feeling cautiously optimistic about the current price rise. There are more fluctuations on the horizon, but if adopters can manage to weather the speculation storm, the future is bright.
Wired ran a story today about a group of homeless men living in Pensacola, Florida that are using sites like BitcoinGet to help them survive. If you haven't read the article yet, be sure to check it out here.
Our goal with BitcoinGet has always been to create an easy way for people to earn bitcoins, but never did we imagine it would be used as a replacement for panhandling. It was interesting to read that the homeless followed in the article actually preferred getting paid in bitcoin because of its ease of use and the protection it provides against getting robbed. Earning bitcoins has also spared them from a lot of the embarrassment that comes with panhandling.
Naturally, the argument that technologies like Bitcoin can "solve" deep-rooted socio-economic issues has stirred up some discussion on Reddit and Hacker News. We are happy that BitcoinGet and similar sites are part of this discussion, and that they might actually serve as small pieces of the puzzle.
Here are some numbers after six months of BitcoinGet:
- Over 40,000 active users.
- Over 300,000 videos watched.
- Over 300,000 tasks completed.
- User earnings total over 115 BTC.
Thanks to everyone for their continued interest. Our goal from the start has been to make it easy for people to earn bitcoins, and the numbers show that we have succeeded, at least to some degree!
We are proud to announce that you can now have bitcoins earned through our service directly deposited into your BitVegas account. To start, just visit our partner page and enter your BitVegas/Minecraft username. It's that simple!
We, at BitcoinGet, have been huge fans of BitVegas ever since its launch several months ago. For those not familiar with BitVegas, it is a Bitcoin casino and vibrant community within Minecraft. It's truly a social gaming experience like no other. You can find more information on the BitVegas homepage.
BitVegas was featured on today's epidode of Plan B, a Bitcoin podcast. Hear about new and upcoming features as well as our partnership announcement:
For the past week, we have been holding special bitcoin giveaways via our Facebook and Twitter pages. We plan on doing more of these giveaways soon, so be sure to like and follow us for latest updates. To be eligible for the free bitcoins, you just need to be among the first X number of people to reply to our giveaway announcements with your Bitcoin address.
We're currently brainstorming for other contests and promotions that can be fun and rewarding. If you have any ideas or feedback, we'd love to hear from you!
As Bitcoin grows in popularity, we are seeing more and more businesses beginning to accept the virtual currency, from small specialty shops to large brands. While our blog is generally focused on earning bitcoins, today we're going to take a moment and go over some newer options for spending bitcoins.
Gyft is a mobile gift card platform that recently added support for bitcoin purchases of gift cards via its Android app. This immediately opens up over 50,000 retail locations across the US to bitcoin holders. What we love about this service is that there are no fees for purchasing gift cards. What we don't like is that the service is restricted to the US.
Coingig is a marketplace where anyone from around the world can buy or sell products using Bitcoin. They launched about a month ago and already have hundreds of products up for sale. Buying from Coingig is easy and safe—payments are protected with an Escrow system. They also have a simple and fair refund policy to ensure buyer satisfaction. Also interested in earning bitcoins? It's easy to set up a store, and their 2.5% selling fee is very competitive.
BitcoinStore is the largest electronics retailer that deals exclusively in Bitcoin. By taking advantage of Bitcoin's unique properties of no chargebacks and minimal fees, they are able to maintain highly competitive prices. Some products on BitcoinStore are even cheaper than on Amazon or Newegg. BitcoinStore officially launched a few months ago and has already generated over 6,000 BTC in sales.
A controversial change was recently put into the next Bitcoin release that will effectively block any transaction with outputs less than 54.3 µBTC. The motivation behind this change was to discourage people from clogging up the blockchain with "uneconomic dust." You can read more and review the full implementation here.
We, at BitcoinGet, understand the importance of this change in ensuring the health and stability of the Bitcoin network. However, it will affect our operations to some degree. We will have to impose some threshold before pending balances get paid sometime in the near future. The threshold will be reasonably low—100 µBTC or so. For a majority of our users, this shouldn't be an issue.