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June 1 2013

Bitcoin will continue to function beyond the reach of government and law

When talking about the online currency Bitcoin a currency backed not by any nation state, but instead a series of mathematical rules coverage tends to focus either on the surging value of each coin (currently about $130 or £85) or the fact that Bitcoins are quite a handy way to buy drugs online, using the Silk Road website.

Both are of interest, but are roughly akin to focusing on how the aeroplane might disrupt the hot-air balloon industry: it's true, but drastically misses the true potential of an innovation to change the world for good or for ill.

The real transformative power of Bitcoin, or something like it, lies not in a speculative bubble, but in its potential to put currency outside of the control of governments, or law enforcement agencies.

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