Bitcoins: Nothing Inherently Bad with the Currency

Bitcoins: Nothing Inherently Bad with the Currency

Bitcoins: Nothing Inherently Bad with the Currency

With some senators calling for a ban of Bitcoin, technology policy expert Jerry Brito argues that Bitcoin is digital cash, and like any form of cash, it can be used for good or for ill.

“We don’t ban hard to trace paper cash because we understand that there’s nothing inherently bad about it; it’s what people do with it that’s can be problematic,” said Brito. “Bitcoin should be treated the same way.” 

Brito says that if the federal government seeks to go after Bitcoin, it won’t be able to take down the network. However, the weakest links in the Bitcoin system are the exchanges, like Mt Gox, which allow you to trade your Bitcoins for dollars and vice versa. “At this point, there’s not a lot you can buy with Bitcoins, so the ability to trade them to a widely accepted currency is important,” he said.

Brito believes there is a possibility for Bitcoin to become part of the legal system rather than be shut down by the DOJ. “What I hope we’ll see emerge is a properly licensed and legally compliant domestic exchange that is as committed to fighting money laundering as Citibank,” said Brito. “That would certainly help test Bitcoin’s legality.”

For more information or to book an interview with the scholars featured in this article, please contact Kate De Lanoy, Associate Director of Media Relations

Featured Scholars

' '