After receiving much requests, the VideoLAN organization finally started accepting Bitcoin donations in February 2014. Since then, we received around 12 BTC. During the past year, the price skyrocketed and today we still hold more than 10 BTC. This unexpected surge of the Bitcoin market price makes it difficult to HODL securely. The volatility adding up to the processing time makes it quite impractical to spend.
The introduction of the Bitcoin whitepaper by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008 was an amazing breakthrough and is already reshaping the future of payments and banking as a whole but we don’t think BTC (and derivatives) will be the de facto crypto-currency the world will use for daily transactions.
One of the key reason is the transparency of the Bitcoin blockchain. Our donation address being publicly available, the wealth we hold can be easily tracked between addresses and that makes us vulnerable. In the crypto-currency world you are your own bank, therefore you can become a target as soon as you hold enough money. No one else besides you can protect your funds from being stolen using a virtual, or even physical attack. And we don’t want any of our community members to be harmed because of that. We truly think privacy of the blockchain cannot be optional. Encrypting all transaction details: sender, receiver and amount is the most effective way to protect the people in a crypto-currency era.
Also, because of this blockchain transparency, all coins exchanged are not equal. You may think that 1 BTC = any other BTC but let me tell you, this is a wrong assumption. Imagine for a second that you received a payment containing a coin that was previously used (many transactions ago) to trade “stuff” on Silkroad, your coin is now forever tainted and might not be accepted on exchanges or payment processors. This lack of fungibility can make some of your money worth nothing, or worse, you could even be accused of money laundering.
Another major issue we experienced with Bitcoin is the processing time. Anyone dealing with BTC these days can attest that doing a payment is a pain and can easily take hours if not days. Especially if you have a lot of small inputs (like we do). Sending some random amount can costs us more than $100 in fees and can still take days to be processed. We usually end up using a free tx accelerator in order to speed things up. And we’re not alone in this space, few days ago Steam published a blog post saying they are no longer accepting Bitcoin payments for these reasons.
Let’s be honest, it’s the golden age of crypto-currencies: new crypto are launched every day and many of the people investing are betting for huge gains while most don’t care, or are just fooled, about what the technology can effectively bring. But in the end, maybe five years from now, there will only be a handful amount of crypto widely adopted. To be qualified as a possible winner, there are some characteristics to look for:
Must be fully open-source
Trusted development team
Active and sane community
Solid technological grounds
Scalable while maintaining low fees
Private and secure
User-friendly (mobile, hardware wallets, …)
Out of pre-mining / ICO / scam
Let me reassure you, we are not yet to a point where we think of launching our own ICO, but if we were about to, we would definitely call it the ConeCoin! ;-)
We believe that there is still no perfect crypto-currency and we’re still quite far from it but we think that one is more in line with our core values and fits most of the critical points raised above: Monero.