Crypto Bits with Bruce Fenton
Bruce is the Managing Director and founder of Atlantic Financial Inc., a global investment company whose primary focus is helping the global community. Bruce is a bitcoin lover and evangelist. He is a member of the Bitcoin Association is a not-for-profit group focused on increasing adoption of Bitcoin and related technology. As a libertarian he is well known in the bitcoin community and economic circles for his promotion of free markets and crypto currency. Thank you Bruce for speaking with us.
Bruce what is crypto currency to you and why are you so passionate about it?
Cryptocurrency to me represents freedom and change. I’d define it loosely as currency and related tokens which are digitally represented and backed by cryptography. I’m passionate about it because I believe it has amazing potential to change the world. Never before have we been able to send something of value in this manner without a trusted third party. It opens amazing doors and is very exciting.
You had some words to say regarding the Bit-License in New York. There has been talk of this also happening in California. Do you expect these things to continue down the road?
Yes, unfortunately. Sadly, we have become so conditioned as a society to think that government regulation is needed that something like this can occur now where 20 years ago the government was relatively hands off the Internet. Government meddling in this space is unlikely to yield any positive results and is very likely to cause a lot of damage including lost jobs and opportunity.
What do you see as the biggest potential with crypto-currency?
Well the ultimate potential is for the app of Bitcoin to replace some meaningful portion of the global financial system. This, in turn, would have all kinds of implications for personal empowerment and protection and would reduce power of a lot of bad actors including governments and major corporations.
What would you say is its biggest obstacle?
Right now, volatility is a key one. It’s also key to increase understanding. Hopefully as understanding increase, adoption will increase and this will lead to more stability.
Do you see bitcoin as a tool that can stop the chain of wars we’ve been experiencing for decades and decades?
Yes actually. To be unfortunately realistic, it will be an uphill battle…but it can indeed make a difference and that would be great.
How do you feel about the current downtrend people have been speaking on year end of bitcoins 2014 run?
The fall in price has been discouraging to be sure. However I see the front lines of new tech and new investment in the space and remain encouraged.
What are your thoughts on Ben Lawsky’s newest revision to the ‘bitlicense’ is it the lenient Xmas gift the media claims it is?
No. Many of us predicted this would occur in the way it has: bold announcements, followed by pretending to listen to the community, followed by a media show (and purposely timed arrest of Charlie Shrem) followed by a ridiculous proposal….followed by backing off from some aspects of the proposal to give the illusion that it is more reasonable. It’s not. Lawsky is a dishonest and corrupt unelected official who is an enemy to progress. Unfortunately the State has the guns and jails so we must abide by their crony driven political whims.
The dollar index is doing very well at the moment and the Ruble is not. How do you think these fiat currency activities affect Bitcoin’s current structure?
Some speculate so but to be honest Bitcoin is so small in terms of global economic size that I don’t think there is much of a relation.
What is your opinion on Alt-Coins and App-Coins in the market right now? Is there room for many CryptoCurrencies in your opinion, or are they just a waste of time?
Most are a waste of time, but if one does something that Bitcoin does not or serves an entirely different purpose, that can be interesting. Ideally I’d like to see these new coins piggyback on top of the existing Bitcoin Blockchain…this helps everyone.
Everybody loves to talk about main stream adoption. Recently we’ve seen PayPal, Microsoft and others open their gates to bitcoin. Do you think we still have quite a ways to go for mass adoption to happen?
We have a ways to go, but this is very encouraging to be sure. It’s like the early days of the web when it was major news that a big company got a web page. One day we were saying “Wow, Disney got a page, this thing is for real.”
What kind of things need to happen in order for Mass adoption to happen? For example does the market need to self regulate itself? Services protecting its users with insurance and theft protection. This kind of thing.
Self regulation would help, this also occurs through more mature teams and investors joining the space. Also, Bitcoin market size needs to increase which in turn likely decreases volatility. All of these things are developing and will continue.
Do you convince others to invest in bitcoin regularly or do you think the current downtrend or volitilty would scare people away?
I talk about Bitcoin all the time and do everything I can to convey my excitement that Bitcoin is disruptive and potentially world-changing tech. But I don’t urge people to invest. It is still risky and volatile and unproven. No one should invest more than they can afford to lose. But that does not stop me from discussing its potential with everyone I can. I honestly wear my Bitcoin shirt when I’m in a large public place like an airport. I love when people ask about it and I’ve done everything from address misconceptions to discuss the nature of what money is with strangers, best of all is when I run into fellow Bitcoin geeks.
Thank you Bruce for doing this interview with us. Thank you for your service in teaching free markets and decentralized applications.