The rise of Bitcoin in value has created a number of millionaires and if its growth continues countless more will join the crowd of these Crypto-winners. At the moment many early adopters who backed Bitcoin for the technology and because they believed in its goal could be sat on a fortune.
It was always likely that some people would cash-out, and they are well within their rights to do so. The marketplace has become flooded with speculators and it’s moved Bitcoin from currency to commodity in a short space of time. The ‘Gold rush’ has seen dramatic price rises in the last few weeks and if growth continues more and more people will reach the heady heights of millionaire status.
Bitcoin promised to change the world, to be the biggest disruptive change since the industrial revolution, but it appears to be falling into the trap of greed, becoming entirely focused on it’s ‘value’ and not on its technology. This wealth is being created and some early adopters hold a huge amount of power in their hands. Do they have a responsibility to further the cause of Bitcoin, or perhaps the world?
Bitcoin Social Responsibility
This week has seen massive price rises, a huge ‘Bitcoin hack’ and one of the most heartwarming stories I’ve read in the BTC arena. Step forward, Andreas M. Antonopoulos.
Many of you will know of Andreas, either from this week’s news or from his informational talks or youtube channel. For 2 years he has been supporting the rise of Bitcoin, taking a hugely technical topic and allowing it for digestion for the masses.
Roger Ver formerly regarded as Bitcoin Jesus, ‘Bitshamed’ Andreas after he posted a link to his $5 Patreon subscription page by stating that Andreas should be a millionaire by now if he had invested in Bitcoin in its early years, possibly hinting at a lack of belief in the project or some deception about his personal wealth.
He had worked largely for free since the start of his championing and was forced to sell his Bitcoin for rent and to support his family. He believed in the project but knew he had a duty to his family, something that should be supported.
The Bitcoin community rallied around Andreas and in 24 hours a slew of Bitcoin donations reached him. Over 150 Bitcoins had been donated to Andreas, making him a Bitcoin millionaire. One Crypto-Multimillionaire by the handle David Bowie Spears donated a huge 42 Bitcoins to the cause. This unprecedented generosity was followed by a tweet highlighting the simple reasoning.
The past couple days have been extremely emotional for me. To be at a place to be able to do what I'm doing. It feels like destiny. It is profound. I have wept. I'm going to try to do so much good with my crypto. I'm probably not going to do it right but bear with me.— David Bowie Spears (@Tether_is_Fiat) December 7, 2017
With Great Power comes great responsibility
This new elite that Bitcoin has created has a role to play not only in the future of Bitcoin, but in the future of the world. The value of Bitcoin could rise to any value, and no-one knows where it will settle. Some early Bitcoin holders could be the richest people on the planet and many will have come from nothing.
They will have the money to change the world and perhaps this class of millionaires will be the ones to do it. Bitcoin has a problem with its large use of energy, perhaps some of this money could be funnelled into clean energy research. Bitcoin was used in poor, 3rd world countries where their own country was far too volatile, perhaps it could be used to solve inequality around the world?
Whatever these millionaires decide to do with their new found wealth, there is a clear opportunity for them to make the world a better place, but will they fall into the usual traps of consumerism?