The struggle to define Bitcoin has begun in so many different arenas. The securities and exchange commission, the
IRS, the state and appellate courts, congressional committees, federal and state regulators, coders, relatives, bankers, and everyone else that has heard of this fabulous cybercurrency all have given it a try.
What has resulted is shocking. By trying to define Bitcoin, through challenges in court and attempts to regulate it and through the criticism and accolades of wealthy and powerful both belittling and applauding its existence, Bitcoin has become relevant.
Why are people struggling with the definition?
The main reason is that Bitcoin can be classified in so many ways. It has been described as money, a store of value, a stock, a commodity like gold, personal property like Pokemon cards, a platform for technology, and a medium for exchange.
With so many different classifications it has frightened many people that desire to maintain the status quo and maintain order in well defined boxes. However, it has inspired those that like to challenge the structure of society, expand the universe, disrupt the mainstream and leave the comfort zone.
Why do people even care to define it? Because they “gotsta” know.
The answer to that question does not really matter presently as we are still in the defining stages of cybercurrency and its use and evolution will define the space moving forward without anyone having to define it.
Thinking about how to answer this question reminded me of the famous line from Dirty Harry “Did I fire 6 shots or only 5? In all of the excitement I have forgotten myself” The resulting answer does not really matter for purposes of what was going to happen to the criminal. However, for his own edification, Clint Eastwood’s criminal pleaded, “I gotsta know.”
Great scene https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Xjr2hnOHiM from a great movie (relevant part starts at the 1 minute 45 second marker).
And that is what is happening. Everyone seems to be engaging in the process of defining bitcoin because they “gotsta” know what it is because not knowing is the worst thing.
But how will Bitcoin evolve and how will it define itself?
I believe that it will evolve like the internet has and is evolving. However, because Bitcoin is now challenging and disrupting those that make monetary policy (hello banks and government), I believe a far more interesting political battle is brewing.
That being said, because Bitcoin is an international phenomena it may, like the internet, define itself without the burdens and confinement of centralized authority. In other words, how it is used and adopted will create the definition organically.
We will see soon enough as people everywhere struggle to define Bitcoin.
Fornaro Law is leading the charge as an early adopter in the space.
See more about Fornaro Law and cybercurrency at http://www.fornarolaw.com/practice-areas/bitcoin-cybercurrency/