Bitcoin History Part 16: The First Mt. Gox Hack Bitcoin ...

340 BTC

October, 2011 was when I first heard about Bitcoin. A friend excitedly told me about it, that the price had crashed, that it could be 'mined', and that it could be purchased on exchanges. He didn't own any, but he found it interesting, and so did I. I was instantly interested in acquiring some coins. That the price had 'crashed' meant a buying opportunity, and I further saw it as evidence that the system was somehow free, and had a life of its own. I did not purchase any right away, regretfully, since the coins were about $3 each. I did do some initial research, calculating mining profitability, and looking into the process for buying coins on MtGox. I also read about the thefts and hacks. I found it intuitive these incidents were matters of endpoint-security, and not reflective of a systemic weakness. Yet I would have much to learn if I was to avoid becoming a victim. I continued to casually follow Bitcoin developments, and occasionally checked the price.
Eight months later I came across a Timothy B. Lee article in Forbes that detailed the Bitcoin Richlist. It was my catalyst. It was time for a technical deep dive, time to understand what gave people the confidence to entrust millions of dollars of value to the system. Of everything I read that day, it wasn't the proof-of-work that seemed revolutionary, but simply the fact that a lost private key meant the coins would be irrecoverable. That signified Bitcoin put true and total control of money into the hands of users, and for that it was different and worthwhile. I decided to invest. All that was left was working out the mechanics of the transaction. And security. I was determined to not fall victim to a hack. An offline, paper wallet seemed like the easy choice. The price was in the $6 - $7 range.
My first purchase went though MoneyGram and Coinapult, with MtGox as my receiving wallet. I put in $150, and got out $130 worth of coins. The price had surged in the few days since I decided to buy, to slightly under $10 per coin. I transferred the coins off of MtGox and onto my paper wallet, and it all felt very real! I wanted to buy more, and settled on CoinFloor to avoid the hefty fees I paid the first time. CoinFloor also allowed for instant fiat funding via a deposit at a bank teller window. Depositing $900 directly into a bank account was not without risk, but CoinFloor came through and the money was credited within 5 minutes. It all went flawlessly, and soon with my 100 coins spread out over a few different paper wallets, I could rest easy, without fear of a hack.
Edit - I meant BitFloor, not CoinFloor
I occasionally checked the price, tested out Satoshi Dice, and read a little more on the technical underpinnings, but other than that, I mostly forgot about my Bitcoin investment for the next 6 months. Then, in early 2013, I read about a few seed rounds in Bitcoin startups, and I saw pictures of a Bitcoin booth at the CES is Las Vegas. Somehow that booth, with the Bitcoin logo, made it all seem even more legitimate. The price had climbed into the $14 - $15 range, and I wanted more coin. CoinFloor had been hacked and was out of commission. This time I would use the Dwolla to MtGox method of funding. I found myself seriously regretting not having done Gox's verification the previous summer, as the price quickly climbed while I waited. When my verification finally cleared, the price had shot up to $19, and I transferred in several thousand dollars and bought another ~150 coins. Over the next few months I kept buying until the price crossed $100 per coin. In total, I had put in about $10,000 for 340 coins. I worked part-time, with an annual income of about $25,000, so that $10,000 felt substantial.
The rise to $266 was exhilarating, as was the following surge to $1242. I mostly held, but sometimes tried to time the market with a small position (always 10% of holdings or less). I sold some coins the first time Bitcoin passed the $400 mark to recoup my initial investment, and I arbitraged when it was profitable. I lost a then-painful amount of fiat on MtGox, but not any coins. I held tight during the long bear market, with absolute confidence that the price would find a non-zero bottom, and it would only be up from there. The ecosystem was growing, the technology was maturing, and investment money was pouring in, and yet the price continued to decline. I would have loved to buy more, but doing so would have been truly irresponsible from a diversification perspective.
I have largely stayed away alt-coins, but I did mine-and-dump those I found annoying, and mined and held the one that I found interesting - Ethereum. I reluctantly pushed some BTC into Ethereum early this year, which turned out to be a good move. In total, over the past 5 years, I have returned about 200x on my initial investment, in the current form of about 250 BTC, about 700 ETH and approximately $300k of other liquid assets. The result is almost identical to a pure buy-and-hold from the beginning, but I felt the need to hedge as valuations changed over time. I feel no pressure to sell more coins, though I probably would convert a few in the $20k-$40k range, prices which I have long seen as likely, if not inevitable.
I am in my early 30's. Ask Me Anything! Though I might only have time to answer a few…
submitted by ThrowAway_OfCourses to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Thoughts on putting a quarter of net worth in bitcoin? Anyone already there?

I've been considering this for a few months now. I'm a 30 year old professional with net-worth ~$200k, mostly in diversified index funds. I first started investing in bitcoin in early 2014 (after the MtGox crash) and currently have ~$20K+ worth of BTC, so basically ~10% of my net worth. I'm strongly considering moving that up to 25%. I've done a lot of research on bitcoin over the past 2 years and believe I have a good understanding of the potential upside (huge potential as a safe store of value + worldwide decentralized transactions) as well as the risks (exchanges and online wallets getting hacked, private keys on cold storage or paper wallet getting lost or stolen, price volatility, altcoin competition, hard forking, China "cracking down on bitcoin" for the 16th time...). I'm solidly long on bitcoin I'm pretty confident we'll see 3,000 in 2-5 years and 10000 within 10, though it's probably going to be pretty hairy getting there.
A couple things I've already thought about in terms of reducing risks:
-Buying over several weeks/months in increments to smooth out cost basis. -Holding the actual bitcoin broken up into several different wallets (some cold storage, some online with trusted U.S. based wallets, some on major exchanges). Is there a 'good rule of thumb' people use for this? Like put no more than $X or Y%in any single online wallet or physical cold storage location?
For improving my upside, I'm going to margin lend some of my BTC broken up between 2 exchanges to reduce counter-party risk while still getting benefits of BTC interest income.
One thing I've been thinking about is the psychological component, from having so much volatility, and seeing price go up and down 10-20% in a couple days. Would appreciate any thoughts or advice from someone who's migrated from a "heavy dabbling" into having a significant fraction of net worth in a long BTC position.
Cheers
submitted by Platypodes_Attack to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

New peak on Bitcoin Days Destroyed

https://blockchain.info/charts/bitcoin-days-destroyed
Last time this happened, there was speculation about bitstamp moving his cold wallet. Today this may be related to MtGox moving his cold wallet to his hot wallet to solve the insolvency problem with their bitcoin withdraws (or at least that's my best guess).
On the other hand, last time this happened, there was also speculation about a incoming price crash due to the owner of the bitcoins selling them on the market, so i guess this HIGHLY SPECULATIVE post may be useful here.
submitted by T62A to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

Core/Blockstream is *not* Bitcoin. In many ways, Core/Blockstream is actually similar to MtGox. Trusted & centralized... until they were totally exposed as incompetent & corrupt - and Bitcoin routed around the damage which they had caused.

Core/Blockstream can't/won't grow any more.
Bitcoin is growing - and the only way it can continue to grow is for Core/Blockstream to get out of the way.
Core/Blockstream doesn't have any solutions for the graphs below - but that's their problem, not Bitcoin's:
https://blockchain.info/charts/n-transactions?showDataPoints=false×pan=all&show_header=true&daysAverageString=7&scale=0&address=
https://tradeblock.com/bitcoin/historical/1w-f-txval_per_tot-01071-blksize_per_avg-01071
Just click on these historical blocksize graphs - all trending dangerously close to the 1 MB (1000KB) artificial limit. And then ask yourself: Would you hire a CTO / team whose Capacity Planning Roadmap from December 2015 officially stated: "The current capacity situation is no emergency" ?
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/3ynswc/just_click_on_these_historical_blocksize_graphs/
Core/Blockstream has no solutions to these problems - because they don't want to solve them:
Lesser known reasons why Core developers want to keep block size small, in their own words
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/473i0h/lesser_known_reasons_why_core_developers_want_to/
https://medium.com/@elliotolds/lesser-known-reasons-to-keep-blocks-small-in-the-words-of-bitcoin-core-developers-44861968185e
But Bitcoin does have solutions right now. For example, one solution is already installed and running on over a thousand nodes:
Be patient about Classic. It's already a "success" - in the sense that it has been tested, released, and deployed, with 1/6 nodes already accepting 2MB+ blocks. Now it can quietly wait in the wings, ready to be called into action on a moment's notice. And it probably will be - in 2016 (or 2017).
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/44y8ut/be_patient_about_classic_its_already_a_success_in/?ref=search_posts
So, remember to be precise in your phrasing and your thinking:
"Bitcoin" isn't dying.
"Core/Blockstream" is dying.
That's all that's happening here.
Yes it could get ugly for a while.
The death of Core/Blockstream could get as ugly as the death of MtGox.
In both cases, people trusted a centralized institution which thought that it could control Bitcoin forever.
And then that centralized institution was revealed to everybody as incompetent and corrupt and rotten to the core.
People who had placed their trust in that centralized institution got hurt bad - but the people who hadn't trusted that institution, came out fine.
If you're part of the crowd that's been complaining about Core/Blockstream for these many months - that's the same as being part of the crowd that was complaining about about MtGox for many months.
Consider yourself one of the informed. Just like the people who didn't trust MtGox, the people who don't trust Core/Blockstream will emerge unscathed after this crisis is past.
But people who trust Core/Blockstream are gonna get hurt:
The Nine Miners of China: "Core is a red herring. Miners have alternative code they can run today that will solve the problem. Choosing not to run it is their fault, and could leave them with warehouses full of expensive heating units and income paid in worthless coins." – tsontar
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/3xhejm/the_nine_miners_of_china_core_is_a_red_herring/
As long as people continue to trust Core/Blockstream, the network will start to get clogged, and the price could crash - or just stay flat, as Bitcoin's expected price rise due to the halving, collapsing fiat financial markets, NIRP (negative interest rate policy from governments and banks) etc. gets cancelled out by Core/Blockstream's stalling and incompetence.
3 months performance of Dow Jones, NASDAQ, S&P500, FTSE 100 (UK), DAX (Germany), Nikkei (Japan), Shangai Composite (China), Gold, and Bitcoin (cross-post from /BitcoinMarkets - original post by brg444)
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/45u8cf/3_months_performance_of_dow_jones_nasdaq_sp500/
Once Core/Blockstream's failure/refusal to scale causes enough damage to make the majority of people understand that Core/Blockstream is not Bitcoin - then people will wake up and reject Core/Blockstream's failure/refusal to scale.
And remember, scaling for the next few years is easy: just change a 1 to a 2 in the code. Or set it to some average or median based on the previous blocks.
BitPay's Adaptive Block Size Limit is my favorite proposal. It's easy to explain, makes it easy for the miners to see that they have ultimate control over the size (as they always have), and takes control away from the developers. – Gavin Andresen
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/40kmny/bitpays_adaptive_block_size_limit_is_my_favorite/
There are plenty of simple scaling solutions solutions like this available (Classic, BitPay's Adaptive Block Size Limit).
Core/Blockstream thinks it can dominate Bitcoin by throwing around money and lies while they ignore users' needs - and certain people appear to be gullible enough to actually trust them (e.g. Chinese miners signing meaningless loyalty statements at 3 AM at some roundtable in Hong Kong).
But Satoshi carefully designed the incentives of Bitcoin so that it will always route around that kind of centralization and corruption.
As an investor, you're the one in control. The miners only provide a commodity (timestamping of transactions), and the devs only provide code (which is open-source, so it can easily be modified to suit our needs).
Forkology 301: The Three Tiers of Investor Control over Bitcoin
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/3t4kbk/forkology_301_the_three_tiers_of_investor_control/
https://duckduckgo.com/?q=site%3Abitco.in%2Fforum+spinoff
You still have X bitcoins on the Blockchain and there isn't a damn thing Core/Blockstream or the Chinese miners can do to change that.
submitted by ydtm to btc [link] [comments]

Erowid, a non-profit drug educational organization, gives a detailed look at how they used Bitcoin as a source of donations since March 2011

I recently sent Erowid a question about their Bitcoin donations (the quoted parts) and I got an extremely detailed reply about their history with Bitcoin donations. Thought I would share.
But first, here is a link for donating with a wide range of crypto-currencies.
I'm a regular user of Erowid and have donated some in the past and just some today: https://blockchain.info/tx/5fb862085e0803458d9e9e6ad97eebbc50c90132b161316913382249702dce46
Thanks! We really appreciate it. Bitcoin is one of the most useful and interesting new payment systems since zero-fee paypal in 1999, which has ended up nothing at all like it started. It's now a very useful email-address-based gateway to the giant international VISA/MC conglomerate. It's a handy system, but that whole transaction skimming conspiracy is a little disturbing, costly, and monopolistic.
I was looking at your address and see that it is only a month old, yet you have been accepting Bitcoin since Mar 2011. In the spirit of openness I'm curious about why you changed addresses and
Many Bitcoin advocates and technologists state that a new address for every transaction is actually the right way to improve privacy and to firewall tracking of payments and transactions. I believe that viewpoint is kind of the opposite of openness, it is based on trying to keep people's transactions more private, despite the entire BTC blockchain database being fully public and exposed.
I spent some time a couple years ago trying to get a server-based wallet set up that would generate a new address for each transaction and it wound up being a lot harder than I could get working reliably. The more unique addresses, the less erowid donors are tied together, thus a little more privacy. We will try again at some point.
Currently, we keep a local bitcoin wallet and backups and rotate the BTC addresses every month or three, depending on a variety of factors.
and how much you received on your previous ones. Also I would like to know if you hold a fraction of Bitcoin or convert all to fiat directly.
At the moment, I can give you a rough outline of how we choose when to sell bitcoins. It different than people who are on the buying end. We have always conceived of BTC as 'micro donations', but some number of people over the years (let's say 30) have asked directly to pay for a membership with BTC instead of other methods. In order for that to make sense as an organization, we need to convert those bitcoins around the time of the donation so that the donation in bitcoin results in the amount near the dollar value that the donor was offering.
So, for a t-shirt that might be a $45 donation. If/when that happens, we transfer the appropriate number of bitcoins out on or near that day to convert BTC into USD. Then we can enter that person's donation into our donation system and the accounting matches up: person gets a $45 membership, we get $45 into our bank account. Accounting is fun! :\
Further, because we are entirely a donation-based non-profit, we are always in the position of trying to have BTC donations be of non-zero USD value to the organization. That means selling them at some point. The question of when to sell them is obviously complicated.
One can view BTC as a deflating currency or an investment or a security or maybe a commodity.
We are generally conservative about them and have mostly sold the BTC we've received within a few months of their donation in order to generate USD for the organization. So, say we got 1 bitcoin 2 years ago when they were worth $30 each. If it wasn't tied directly to getting a sweatshirt or otherwise needed to wind up as a row in our banking records, I would hold onto to the coin and wait for a time when the value of BTC was going upwards and sell that bitcoin for more than it was worth when we received it. But I did not hold onto them for years, since that defeats the purpose of supporting the organization and it locks up the bitcoin trading market if everyone holds and never sells.
However, the goal is always to wind up with money in the bank sooner rather than later, since we run a business.
As far as previous addresses go, I believe that the reasoning behind the privacy concept is NOT to give out previous addresses, though obviously it's a tiny figleaf.
We sold 1 BTC last week when the value hit $500 and another this week when the value hit $600 and will probably sell again if the price continues to rise. If I had a completely configurable trading system, I would likely set a sell order for 1BTC at $675 OR sell 0.5 BTC in 14 days if the price is >= $600. My reality is that I have to make the sales manually, because I don't have a reliable trading site that delivers to my US bank.
The vast majority of total bitcoins we've sold were sold for under $30 a piece. When we opened our first bitcoin address to check out the system, The Faucet gave me 1 BTC just to help get the ball rolling. Obviously such things no longer exist and we're in a period where bitcoins are both volatile AND valuable.
We had one donor give us some bitcoin back in early December and requested we wait to sell it until it hit $1200, but ALSO required that we open a separate account at a bitcoin trading company that took two weeks to complete as the company confirmed our banking information and identity, etc. By the time we'd gotten the new account set up, we were well into the price crash and so we are holding onto that bitcoin for some future price that is closer to what the person donated it at.
On the other hand, we received several BTC last september when they were in the 100-200$ range and we sold all of those at between $800 and $1200 each in late november and early december as the price was running up. That was actually during the fall of MtGox who was our only trade location until October, 2013. I had initiated a sale of two bitcoins in early September and six weeks later, MtGox had not deposited the money in our account and had no estimate for when they would do it. Happily, they credited my account the USD, I bought BTC, and moved them back to an offline wallet.
I'm not sure how to be both transparent AND private, but I can tell you the current address is typical of better months from the last year. We currently get a few hundred dollars a month in BTC, unless we're doing a big fundraising push, in which case we get double or triple that.
With the price increase in the last 14 days, May was a good month.
Happy to answer more questions and chat about how we manage bitcoin, but the main concepts to keep in mind are : trying to limit the exposure of blockchains for privacy reasons, trying to optimize for USD coming into our budget, generally being conservative so we will choose to sell rather than hold bitcoins, and having a rule of never selling all our bitcoins but selling off parts of what we receive over time to reduce risks and exposure.
We currently use coinbase and bitpay, after having gone through 10 or so different BTC->USD systems. What we need is reliable and stable and most of the others have run afoul of the federal money cops in the US and have been shut down or had their banking connection shut down.
I'm always interested in recommendations for other trading / sales sites, but we need one that can deposit into a US bank for it to be useful for erowid center. And we need one that is stable, represents a real business, and is unlikely to poof into a cloud of oily smoke.
I see today we got a .01 and a .05 bitcoin donation to the current address, bringing our total for the last month up to .654 ish, which is great! With the price heading upwards (rather than hovering at $400), that's actually a useful amount of money. Thanks!
Looking at the charts today, it seems like a lot of people decided to start selling as the price hit 650+ and so the price had a small crash today while I wasn't paying attention.
Anyway, hope some of that is useful. Erowid Center's budget (income and expenditures) are all public information, but our list of donors is not and we do what we can to protect the privacy of the people who choose to support our controversial project.
Thanks again for your contribution! Hurray that you didn't have to pay VISA 0.35 + 2% to do it.
earth
submitted by cybrbeast to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

OHCC Exchange Partnership and the fractional exchanges that support it. Your exchange may be counterfeiting cryptocurrency!

OHCC Exchange Partnership
OHCC is the behind-the-scenes trading that goes on between the big three chinese exchanges - OKCoin, Huobi, and BTC China. Many of the players in this partnership deal with long/short loan trading and freely join their reserves via a trust agreement. The owners of these exchanges were unsatisfied with the meager income they earn from transaction fees, so they came up with a solution. During this current Chinese National holiday til the 8th of october, all banks are closed, this would be the perfect time to unleash the plan to the market..
They noticed that everytime favorable news came out, huge market moves would happen, so, the exchange owners would create counterfeit fiat on each exchange in order to foster optimism about the future market for the buyers on the exchange. Whenever the markets were to go bad, they would to do the opposite. In order to amplify downwards movement on the exchanges, “war bots” were created that push the markets down in an aggressive manner, causing margin calls and generating profit for their trading partners.
http://i.imgur.com/9Q0xTet.png
Employing traders with large fractional reserves, OHCC uses these fictitious funds in order to garner more real money deposits via leading recharge code sellers. In order to prevent the loss of the counterfeited currency, collusion between exchange owners must be done at the same moment. BTCChina decided that due to losses of funds in the past caused by bad encryption and bugs in the system, they needed to partner together and now think that the best hope to regain funds is to bring the price down to zero, in order to buy as much coin as possible and refill said reserves. Their counterparties in other exchanges agreed that they will aso use the same means, in order to collude and gain profits on their own reserve accounts. It is made to look that everyone is competing on the surface, but in private there is a mutual understanding within the industry that those who remain silent will receive the benefits of silence.
Yesterday's Litecoin crash, combined between all the exchanges had turnovers as high as 20 million coins moved, way more than the sum of all the transactions made within the past week and the day before the transaction currency trading market volume closed at 35 million LTC, while the total LTC in circulation is only 31 million! This means that regardless of how much money you have to buy the dips, many will be put into the bottomless black hole.
Public reserve is intended to ensure that the exchanges cannot fake these funds and ensure that that each is at 100 percent reserve, which is to have a completely open Bitcoin wallet address for both the cold and hot wallet, to ensure that they do not create counterfeited currency.
Not open exchange reserves
Yes, the above story is happening around us. Many players excessive dependence on trading platform, the coins stored in the platform, and trading platform does not fulfill its obligations disclosed reserves. Caused a trading platform for profit making counterfeit money to manipulate the market and malicious trick users into real money.
So, how should users involved in this market protect themselves?
1) Do not store in Bitcoin and other platforms! If you're long-term bullish market, then Bitcoin, and Litecoin should be stored in their wallet. Some platforms will be committed borrowing interest, do not because of the platform for the petty and the coins and other bits on the platform, and finally you get the benefits far outweigh the losses!
You just put the coins and other bits emerged, the trading platform will mention now facing pressure. Such power can be reduced more or less of them false.
OpenBlock
MultiBit
2) Use legal weapons to protect themselves, and urge the public to prepare gold trading platform. If you feel your rights have been infringed, the user should actively protect their legitimate rights and interests with legal weapons. False trading trading platform is an offense, the player must zero tolerance.
3) Vote with their feet, leaving no open exchange reserves, to publicly exchange reserves to deal. Now open reserve all transactions:
chbtc
796 Futures has a open reserve for both hot and cold wallet as well as all member wallets
Peatio
No public exchange reserves should be open as soon as possible to prepare gold proved reserves include the number of hosted prove cold wallet address and user renminbi. You must ensure that the trader is not real money in exchange for false then the exchange of digital databases.
The method proved reserves See: proof-of-solvency
Ending OHCC Exchange
http://i.imgur.com/njub1Nr.jpg
The largest Bitcoin exchange MTGOX previously collapsed with bankruptcy and no funds for partners seem to be recoverable. With their collapse the crazy behavior of the Willy bot still vivid in our memories. So what will be the final outcome of OHCC exchange? Will OHCC Exchange will become the second MTGOX? To be honest, the editors do not know the fate of the players involved, as it is in their own hands.
submitted by trixisowned to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

My bitcoin value has surpassed my decade long stock account

Throwaway account because I'm revealing more than I want tied to my primary account.
I'll put the TL;DR at the top.
TL;DR: Apparently, I'm well off and 2 years of bitcoins are worth more than 10 years of stock market investment.
I'm nearly 50 years old. A few years out of college and I just barely broke $20k salary. That was worth more than $20k today, but was still a lousy wage with college loan debt. I briefly (1.5 years) had a dotcom job at the turn of the millineum making more than I do now, but I had never had money like that before and boosted the economy instead of putting any aside. I did get some nice toys, though.
Add on another 1.5 years of unemployment, living off my wife's meager salary and a few odd under-the-table jobs, and I finally landed a decent paying job again. Nothing like the dotcom days, but close. However, I'd learned we could live on much less and I wanted a cushion. I dumped tons into my 401k, my savings account and opened a Scottrade account. A little money goes each month to savings and Scottrade.
Roughly ten years later, my 401k is about 3 times my annual income. The Scottrade account is about 30% of it.
Two years ago, I heard about bitcoin on Slashdot. It sounded interesting. I started mining on my son's gaming machine, which meant it was only mining when my son wasn't playing games and if he remembered to start the miner when he was done.
I mined solo for a few days, and quickly joined a mining pool. I was getting a bitcoin every three or four days initially. That didn't last long.
I opened a MtGox account, added some cash and purchased btc almost at the height of the 2011 spike.
I felt like an idiot.
I bought some Casascius coins. I left my MtGox account alone.
This was also around the time the 99% protests were going on. I felt very sympathetic. I remember in reading about the protests, I stumbled across a site that showed what percentage people were based on annual income. With mine and my wife's income, I was above the 90th percentile and below the 95th. I remember the horror and disbelief I felt.
Througout it all, I continued mining. I got lucky during the early 2013 spike and sold some of the MtGox stuff I'd had sitting there. I also got a high end SLR camera at bitcoinstore.com almost at the peak. I was feeling pretty good.
I bought a ButterflyLabs Jalapeno with bitcoins just before that first 2013 spike. I also stopped even trying to mine with a graphics card soon after that because it made no sense. I did eventually get delivery of the Jalapeno. It's earned almost .68 bitcoins. Don't ask what it cost in bitcoins, because I don't remember and I don't want to know.
After realizing my MtGox profits couldn't be pulled out in dollars in any reasonable timeframe, I converted them to bitcoins and pulled them out. I got more bitcoins than I sold them for, but not by much.
So, now I own bitcoins in the high 2 digits, about a third of them are still in physical Casascius coins. I only have an account on MtGox, so I have no real way of converting any of them to cash. I still have $100 sitting in the MtGox account, which I should have converted into bitcoins and pulled out long ago, but I'm frustrated by the premium bitcoins require in USD on MtGox.
For nearly ten years, I've been putting money in my Scottrade account. I saw the collapse in 2008 and mostly held. I bought bank stocks at that time and made a killing. That killing was offset by the REITs I'd invested in before the crash.
In ten years of regular transfers to Scottrade and investment that has gotten better as I've gotten older and more cynical, I've accumulate about 30% of my annual income.
In the last few days, even with the purchase of a cool SLR and the cut involved in Casascius coin purchases, my double-digit bitcoin ownership has now surpassed my Scottrade account in value. I don't have an easy way of converting that bitcoin to USD, but I'm also not concerned about that because I think that easy methods will exist soon.
I fully expect that my bitcoins will be worth less in the near future. However, I believe in the long term, they'll be worth more and that I'll have a number of easier possibilities for converting them to USD if I want to.
I also believe the analogies to the early WWW are flawed. I think analogies to the IP protocol are more apt and that we've only begun to imagine the possibilities.
I'm in it for the long haul. They'll either be worth nothing or much more than now. And, if I add up my electricity costs and the small investment I made during the spike in 2011, I'm still ahead of the game because I have an SLR camera that my wife would never have let me buy with cash.
I'm already ahead of the game and I think the game hasn't even started.
EDIT: Grammar
submitted by throaway419 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Estimating DPR's income after expenses & exchange rate

The FBI indictment states that SDPR earned ฿614,305 in commissions. It's been suggested that the expense of running SR, and the large changes in the exchange rate, may substantially reduce how many bitcoins DPR actually could have saved up, possibly to as low as ฿"150-200k". (The logic here is that if SR earns commissions of ฿100 in 2011 but needs to pay $100 of hosting bills, it needs to sell all ฿100 but in 2013, it would need to sell only ฿1.)
DPR surely spent some of the commissions on running SR & himself, but running a website isn't that expensive, and how badly the exchange rate bites will depend on details like how it fluctuated over time, how sales grew over time, and how big the expenses really are. The reduction could be tiny, or it could be huge. It's hard to tell based just on a gut estimate.
So: below, I take estimates of SR growth from Christin 2013's crawl and the FBI indictment, infer linear growth of SR sales, estimate daily expenses, and combine it with historical Bitcoin exchange rates to show that DPR probably has most of his bitcoins and 200k or lower is right out.

Model

My strategy is to model Silk Road's growth as linear in dollar amounts, but with different amounts of bitcoins each day depending on the exchange rate, subtract a daily operating cost, and then sum the commissions.
So say that on 1 January 2012, SR did $10k of business, and the exchange rate was 1:100, so ฿100 in turnover, and SR gets an average commission of 7.4%, so it would get ฿7.4.
To do this, I need to estimate the revenue each day, the expenses each day, the commission each day, and the exchange rate each day. Then I can multiply revenue by commission, subtract the expense, and sum the left overs to get an estimate of the total bitcoins available to DPR which he could (or could not) have spent.

Expenses

  1. Employees: we know that Libertas and one or two others were employed at salaries of $1-2k per week. I'll assume there were 2 others, and each was paid the max of $2k per week, which means total daily employee expenses is (2 * 2000) / 7 = $571 per day. (Unfortunately, the indictment doesn't give any clear indication of their numbers, just referring to them as 'they'.)
    This is a conservative estimate since I'm pretty sure that SR was a one-man operation until probably in 2012.
  2. The servers: we know there were at least 2 servers (the main site, and the forums). The task of hosting the sites does not seem to be too bandwidth or disk-space intensive, and servers are extremely cheap these days. The use of DataClub.biz and GigaTux suggest DPR was using cheap VPSes. I'll estimate a monthly expense of $500 ($250 a piece) which per day is $16.
    This is also very conservative.
  3. DPR: his rent of $1000/month has been widely bruited about, and in general he reportedly spent little. Makes sense to me, I've met and seen the rooms of a few well-paid geeks in SF like DPR, and I would believe them if they said they didn't spend much money on anything but rent & food. I'll bump this up by $1000 for food and all expenses, since he apparently didn't even eat out very much. So $2000/31=$65.
    Doubling his rent for total expenses is probably also conservative; for most people, rent is not >50% of income, but SF is incredibly expensive to live in.
This gives a daily expense of $652 (or a monthly total of $19.1k in expenses). As you can see, the employees are by far the most expensive part of running SR in my estimate, which makes me wonder if maybe Libertas was the only employee.

Hitmen

Assuming the details about DPR hiring hitmen in the indictments are reasonably accurate, we can throw in two large expenses:
  1. an $80k expenditure for killing his Maryland employee. The first payment of $40k was made on 4 February 2013 and the second/final payment of $40k was made on 1 March 2013 (pg9). If we use the exchange rate of those two days, then the hit cost DPR (40000 / 20.42) + (40000 / 34.24) = ฿3127
  2. the second hit was priced in bitcoins (pg23):
    Through further messages exchanged on March 31, 2013, DPR and redandwhite agreed upon a price of 1,670 Bitcoins
So the hits cost DPR somewhere around ฿4797. An extremely large and painful amount, by most standards, but still nowhere near ฿10k - much less higher.

Revenue over time: first and last days

Christin:
Table 3 provides a breakdown of the feedback ratings from 184,804 feedback instances we collected...In Figure 12, we plot an estimate of the daily commissions collected by Silk Road operators as a function of time. We simply reuse the previous estimates, and apply both the fixed 6.23% rate, and the schedule of Table 4 to each item. We find that the new schedule turns out to yield on average a commission corresponding to approximately 7.4% of the item price.
The FBI:
From February 6, 2011 to July 23, 2013 there were approximately 1,229,465 transactions completed on the site...$79.8 million (USD) in commissions.
According to Bitcoin Charts, on 23 July 2013, the MtGox price was $91. (As the most famous exchange, any FBI estimate almost certainly used it.) So that implies $79,800,000/91=฿876,923. Or to put it the other way, at $79.8m in transactions, then using Christin's 7.4% estimate, total sales were $1,078,000,000 or ฿10,780,000.
Wikipedia says "These transactions involved 146,946 unique buyer accounts, and 3,877 unique vendor accounts.", and "The total revenue generated from transactions was 9,519,664 bitcoins. Commissions collected from the sales by Silk Road amounted to 614,305 bitcoins."
(So the numbers aren't too different: 614k vs 876k and 10.8m vs 9.5m.)
We'll set 6 February 2011 to $10 in sales (probably not too far from the truth). But what about 23 July 2013? pg20 of the indictment says:
For example, on July 21, 2013 alone, DPR received approximately 3,237 separate transfers of Bitcoins into his account, totaling approximately $19,459. Virtually all of these transactions are labeled "commission".
19459 / 0.074 = $262,959 that day. $20k in commissions is extremely impressive, since Christin estimates only $4k/day commissions as late as the end of July 2012 - so SR must have grown by 500% from 2012 to 2013. We use this revenue estimate as our endpoint and interpolate from $10 to $262,959 over the ~900 days SR existed. This is a conservative way of modeling SR, since the graphs in Christin indicate that SR saw sigmoid growth in 2012, and 2013 would've seen even more growth (to be consistent with the 2013 July commission datapoint being 5x the 2012 July commission datapoint).

Exchange rate

I grab weighted price for each day between 6 February 2011 & 23 July 2013, and stuff it in a CSV.

Analysis

R> sr <- read.csv("http://dl.dropboxusercontent.com182368464/dpr-exchangerate.csv") R> sr$Sales <- c(10, rep(NA, 890), 262959, NA, NA) R> # revenue increased by $300 a day: R> l <- lm(Sales ~ as.numeric(Date), data=sr); l Coefficients: (Intercept) as.numeric(Date) -285 295 R> sr$Sales <- predict(l, newdata=sr) R> sum(with(sr, (Sales * 0.074 - 652) / ExchangeRate)) [1] 803397 
Or we can run the estimate the other way: if DPR had to spend $652 a day and converted at that day's exchange rate, and we took into account the hitmen, how many bitcoins would he have spent in total?
R> sum(with(sr, 652 / ExchangeRate)) [1] 127154 R> (614305 - 127154) - 4797 [1] 482354 

Conclusion

Obviously ฿803k > ฿614k, which implies that the linear model overestimates sales in the early life of SR; but going the other direction and estimating just from costs & hitmen & total commission, we still wind up with nearly ฿500k (and that was after making a bunch of highly conservative assumptions). The fewer sales (and commissions) early on, the less of a fixed number of bitcoins will be sold. So, while it may initially sound plausible that DPR could have been forced to part with say ฿400k to pay for SR and sundry expenses, the distribution of sales and fluctuations of Bitcoin value mean that this simply does not seem to be the case.
Unless there are some abandoned yachts floating around the SF Bay Area, DPRoss Ulbricht probably has ฿500k-614k.
submitted by gwern to SilkRoad [link] [comments]

Are Advanced Trading Tools Causing the Bitcoin Price Drop?

Arthur Hayes (CEO, BitMEX):
“No I don't think so, what is negatively affecting the price is the supply of mined Bitcoin and merchant adoption.”
Joseph Lee (CEO, BTC.sx):
“Trading tools by nature do not drive the price down. Their value to Bitcoin's economy is that more liquidity is given to the market. In other words, they may appear to control the market price, however in a free floating currency market (such as Bitcoin), supply and demand simply dictate the price.
One threat to Bitcoin is if business owners start running in a fractional reserve manner, whereby bitcoins held do not account for 100% of what should exist on their customer accounts. MtGox's demise was ultimately caused by a hack which caused a balance mismatch of this type. Regardless of the trading tool or business, whether it is a synthetic derivative or an exchange, the threat of immoral business practices will far outweigh affects of individual traders.
Bitcoin as an asset type is not shielded from the basics of economics 101, that is, that supply and demand dictates price movements. The market cap of Bitcoin is currently ~$5.5 bn. As an asset type this is tiny and large Bitcoin holders and high net worth individuals will have a far greater effect in controlling the (still small) market. In comparison the daily FX turnover in the wider world of finance averages $4 trillion USD.
My bottom line? Trading tools may appear to be a convenient scapegoat, however wider adoption as well as macro economic factors will dictate price movements far more then anything else. The most recent announcement from BitPay and Paypal highlights this fact very clearly.”
Changpeng Zhao (CTO, OKcoin):
"The recent price decline has led to people grasping at straws for the causes. The conclusion that it is due to the futures trading is absurd.
The basis of this conclusion is that by providing an avenue for traders to short Bitcoin on leverage is harmful as it adds downward pressure to the price. However, they are neglecting that these leverage tools are also present when the price is moving upwards, which happens very frequently; daily, hourly, and even every minute.
Furthermore, futures have been available for 166 years since it was introduced in Chicago in 1848. This is a very mature tool in established financial markets. There is never a saying that having futures will drive the stock market price down.
I believe that the highest risk of these tools isn't pushing the price of Bitcoin down, but rather ordinary users getting burned trying to trade with tools they don't have sufficient knowledge of. With this in mind, OKCoin will be releasing guides and video tutorials explaining just how these tools work and how everyone can use them to their benefit."
Thomas Xie (CEO, LakeBTC):
“There are a number of reasons but the most popular ones are leverage, price manipulation, and trader mistakes. Often these factors stack on each other to further worsen the situation, very quickly.
[..] It might not be the right time to introduce leverage trading, be it margin/short trading or P2P lending, to the Bitcoin world. Don't get me wrong - leverages, futures, options, plain vanilla or exotic, and all varieties of other derivatives and structured products are useful financial instruments, and LakeBTC will introduce them sooner or later. The thing is, market needs to be ready, and more importantly, the exchange itself needs to be ready.
Leverage is a weapon of massive destruction, just like CDO (collateralized debt obligation) and CDS (credit default swap) in the '08 financial tsunami. If not used properly, it's a disaster to everybody onboard. There are enough bad examples in the traditional capital markets that are supposed to be mature, liquid, and robust. Even the fixed-income and foreign exchange markets, which are well known for their unlimited liquidity and endless depth, are not immune to crashes.
Arming Bitcoin exchanges run by a bunch of geeks and technologists with financial WMDs? Not a good idea. It is always easy to copy something from the traditional markets. Running it right with appropriate risk management is what really matters here.”
Greg Wolfson (Senior BD Manager, BTC China):
“I see new products like futures, short selling and margin trading as healthy developments in the maturation of our industry, and I am not very concerned if they negatively impact the Bitcoin price in the near term. Rather, in the long run, these products increase liquidity, expedite price discovery, reduce volatility and lay the groundwork for yet more products and a more robust Bitcoin marketplace. While perpetual price increase is the dream of those holding long positions, these new products are important for price stability and broader adoption of Bitcoin among businesses and consumers.”
...
http://cointelegraph.com/news/112629/are-advanced-trading-tools-causing-the-price-drop-exchanges-experts-weigh-in
submitted by jadenlj to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

Getting bubbly but some good news for longs

Today we're on our third consecutive long green candle
http://i.imgur.com/ez5oHle.jpg
USA Bitcoin typically reverses on the 4th day of such a technical formation . probably have another 100-150 pts of gas left until the reversal tomorrow.
The good news is China is driving bitcoin price as opposed to earlier this year when mtgox was the leading exchange, so if bitcoin does ultimately crash 80% or more it would have to originate from China and the likelihood of that occurring seems to be much less than in the USA. They are less risk averse, have more people , limitless disposable income from their booming middle class, tech savvy, and a propensity to gamble and speculate. btccny crashed a couple weeks ago after having surged 150% in the proceeding days. This correlated with a 100% gain in bitcoin prices everywhere else. With btccny at 6500 we probably have another 100% to go at least which would put bitcoin at $2000+ everywhere else
submitted by mybitcoin to BitcoinMarkets [link] [comments]

[uncensored-r/Bitcoin] 340 BTC

The following post by ThrowAway_OfCourses is being replicated because some comments within the post(but not the post itself) have been silently removed.
The original post can be found(in censored form) at this link:
np.reddit.com/ Bitcoin/comments/79d20u
The original post's content was as follows:
October, 2011 was when I first heard about Bitcoin. A friend excitedly told me about it, that the price had crashed, that it could be 'mined', and that it could be purchased on exchanges. He didn't own any, but he found it interesting, and so did I. I was instantly interested in acquiring some coins. That the price had 'crashed' meant a buying opportunity, and I further saw it as evidence that the system was somehow free, and had a life of its own. I did not purchase any right away, regretfully, since the coins were about $3 each. I did do some initial research, calculating mining profitability, and looking into the process for buying coins on MtGox. I also read about the thefts and hacks. I found it intuitive these incidents were matters of endpoint-security, and not reflective of a systemic weakness. Yet I would have much to learn if I was to avoid becoming a victim. I continued to casually follow Bitcoin developments, and occasionally checked the price.
Eight months later I came across a Timothy B. Lee article in Forbes that detailed the Bitcoin Richlist. It was my catalyst. It was time for a technical deep dive, time to understand what gave people the confidence to entrust millions of dollars of value to the system. Of everything I read that day, it wasn't the proof-of-work that seemed revolutionary, but simply the fact that a lost private key meant the coins would be irrecoverable. That signified Bitcoin put true and total control of money into the hands of users, and for that it was different and worthwhile. I decided to invest. All that was left was working out the mechanics of the transaction. And security. I was determined to not fall victim to a hack. An offline, paper wallet seemed like the easy choice. The price was in the $6 - $7 range.
My first purchase went though MoneyGram and Coinapult, with MtGox as my receiving wallet. I put in $150, and got out $130 worth of coins. The price had surged in the few days since I decided to buy, to slightly under $10 per coin. I transferred the coins off of MtGox and onto my paper wallet, and it all felt very real! I wanted to buy more, and settled on CoinFloor to avoid the hefty fees I paid the first time. CoinFloor also allowed for instant fiat funding via a deposit at a bank teller window. Depositing $900 directly into a bank account was not without risk, but CoinFloor came through and the money was credited within 5 minutes. It all went flawlessly, and soon with my 100 coins spread out over a few different paper wallets, I could rest easy, without fear of a hack.
I occasionally checked the price, tested out Satoshi Dice, and read a little more on the technical underpinnings, but other than that, I mostly forgot about my Bitcoin investment for the next 6 months. Then, in early 2013, I read about a few seed rounds in Bitcoin startups, and I saw pictures of a Bitcoin booth at the CES is Las Vegas. Somehow that booth, with the Bitcoin logo, made it all seem even more legitimate. The price had climbed into the $14 - $15 range, and I wanted more coin. CoinFloor had been hacked and was out of commission. This time I would use the Dwolla to MtGox method of funding. I found myself seriously regretting not having done Gox's verification the previous summer, as the price quickly climbed while I waited. When my verification finally cleared, the price had shot up to $19, and I transferred in several thousand dollars and bought another ~150 coins. Over the next few months I kept buying until the price crossed $100 per coin. In total, I had put in about $10,000 for 340 coins. I worked part-time, with an annual income of about $25,000, so that $10,000 felt substantial.
The rise to $266 was exhilarating, as was the following surge to $1242. I mostly held, but sometimes tried to time the market with a small position (always 10% of holdings or less). I sold some coins the first time Bitcoin passed the $400 mark to recoup my initial investment, and I arbitraged when it was profitable. I lost a then-painful amount of fiat on MtGox, but not any coins. I held tight during the long bear market, with absolute confidence that the price would find a non-zero bottom, and it would only be up from there. The ecosystem was growing, the technology was maturing, and investment money was pouring in, and yet the price continued to decline. I would have loved to buy more, but doing so would have been truly irresponsible from a diversification perspective.
I have largely stayed away alt-coins, but I did mine-and-dump those I found annoying, and mined and held the one that I found interesting - Ethereum. I reluctantly pushed some BTC into Ethereum early this year, which turned out to be a good move. In total, over the past 5 years, I have returned about 200x on my initial investment, in the current form of about 250 BTC, about 700 ETH and approximately $300k of other liquid assets. The result is almost identical to a pure buy-and-hold from the beginning, but I felt the need to hedge as valuations changed over time. I feel no pressure to sell more coins, though I probably would convert a few in the $20k-$40k range, prices which I have long seen as likely, if not inevitable.
I am in my early 30's. Ask Me Anything! Though I might only have time to answer a few…
submitted by censorship_notifier to noncensored_bitcoin [link] [comments]

New to bitcoins. Can anyone give me a rundown of this?

As the title says, I'm new to Bitcoins. I started mining a few days ago for fun, I have a Radeon 5970 that I use for gaming so I thought...well, why not? Also, got started with BitMinter since it was so easy, but I'm open to other mining pools.
Anyways, on to the questions:
  1. Why has the price been soaring the last few days? Is it because the ASIC machines just hit the market?
  2. With the new ASICs out, is it even worth GPU mining anymore? I get about 600 MH/s, and given current prices I can make a decent amount of USD (not saying I would, but it's an idea.) If I had some disposable income to buy an ASIC machine, would that even be a good idea at this juncture? It seems with the bubble this will be a new fad.
  3. Speaking of exchange rate, what kind of things can you buy with BitCoins? I'm not a big TOR or drug user, so SR is out of the question. Aside from that, in all my searches most of the services seem to be..quirky at best. Design services, web hosting, and T-shirts. Is there anything else to buy?
  4. What are some decent mining pools? I've read a bit, and it looks like BitMinter is pretty good. MtRed has been down so I haven't tried that. BTC Guild seems HUGE, is there an advantage to being in such a large pool like that?
  5. What are these hashes actually USED for? When I think of other at-home calculation software, like folding at home, or SETI, they all have distinct purposes. What's actually being solved when I solve a block?
  6. I want to invest in BitCoins. The stock market has always fascinated me, and it seems like BitCoins could be a very similar venture. I've also thought about investing in a BitMining company; might not make as much money as a getting a 1500GH/s machine, but it'd still be a worthwhile investment I think. Good idea? Bad?
  7. How likely is a crash? It seems the price has gone up by about 100x in a month. What are the ramifications of this? Is there going to a bubble-burst model in the foreseeable future?
  8. What's the end-game for BitCoins? Is it supposed to completely take over the dollar? Be a supplement to it?
  9. How likely is it that the US government will get involved in this? I know it'd be very hard to take BitCoin down, but given the level of traffic it's getting it almost seems likely.
  10. Last but not least: How does one actually buy and sell Bitcoins for USD? I've looked into the big bit exchanges, like MtGox, and apparently all you really need is some BitCoins and Dwolla. Is it really that easy? How long does a transfer to and from Dwolla and MtGox usually take?
Thanks in advance. I think I had more questions, but this should be enough for now.
submitted by See-9 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Mt Gox BITCOIN DUMP Incoming? - China Crypto Rankings - Chicago Mayor Crypto Adoption - XRP Ovex Peter Vessenes: The Cause Of MtGox 202k Bitcoin Payout Delay Mt Gox CRASHES Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Market! ($500m Selloff) BITCOIN WARNING: HUGE CRASH INCOMING BEFORE MASSIVE PUMP ... Bitcoin crash on mtgox exchange ( timelapse ) April 10 ...

When the house of cards collapses – and believers in the theory are sure, that it will – a giant crash will crunch Bitfinex, Tether, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It will be worse than Mt. Gox. More Theories about Bitfinex, Tether and Bitcoin’s rally. Everything Bitfinex’ed writes is pure speculation. Maybe it is even a malicious ... Mt Gox BITCOIN DUMP Incoming? – China Crypto Rankings – Chicago Mayor Crypto Adoption – XRP Ovex – China Crypto Rankings – Chicago Mayor Crypto Adoption – XRP Ovex February 19, 2020 Thinking Crypto Crypto Video Leave a comment Mark Karpeles is the man who built the world's largest bitcoin exchange. But now that the digital currency is reaching the mainstream, his success may slip through his fingers. Bitcoin Technical Analysis & Bitcoin News Today: Is Mt. Gox the reason why Bitcoin is crashing? I’ll use technical analysis on the Bitcoin price to make a Bitcoin price prediction. Watch the video to learn more! 0:58 Bitcoin Analysis 5:57 Fundamental Analysis 8:57 Fiat Is Bad 9:57 SCAMS! 11:57 . Support Me Via Affiliate Links r/Bitcoin: A community dedicated to Bitcoin, the currency of the Internet. Bitcoin is a distributed, worldwide, decentralized digital money … Press J to jump to the feed. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts. r/Bitcoin. log in sign up. User account menu. 132. What the fuck just happened on MtGox? Close. 132. Posted by. u/brezmans. 8 years ago. Archived. What the ...

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Mt Gox BITCOIN DUMP Incoming? - China Crypto Rankings - Chicago Mayor Crypto Adoption - XRP Ovex

Mt Gox still haunts us and is contributing to the panic sell-off happening in the market right now. Mix that with fear and uncertainty about what happens next for Bitcoin and you have the perfect ... Magic, MtGox, Bitcoin, a few notes that are not often made clear - Duration: 13:43. Edwin the Magic Engineer 820 views. 13:43 . How to Buy Cryptocurrency for Beginners (UPDATED Ultimate Guide ... Try TRADE HILL instead: http://www.tradehill.com/?r=TH-R1323 Price crashes from $17.5 to $0.01. That i not a typo. ONE CENT. Here is the official statement f... Mt Gox CRASHES Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Market! ($500m Selloff) - Hello everyone, todays video is about the March 7 Bitcoin Crash. The cryptocurrency market has gone through quite a crash today ... Close. This video is unavailable.

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