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Welcome to the Metacurrency Project

Welcome to the Metacurrency Project

Matslats - Community currency engineer | "Blessed is he who has found his work. Let him ask no other blessing" - Thomas Carlisle open money New Currency Frontiers LETSystems - the Home Page Bitcoin and ethics Recently I have been following and participating in some political discussions on IRC and the Bitcoin forums. What has impressed me is the diversity of political opinions expressed in relation to Bitcoin. In one discussion you can find a person defending libertarian islands, while in another someone else is espousing the virtues of socialism. What seems abundantly clear to me is that Bitcoin is not a political movement. Long ago anthropologists noticed that there was a big difference between what people say about what they do and what people actually do (the classic reference here is Malinowski, but I would also cite a much more recent discussion in Ferguson). When you ask someone why they use Bitcoin, for example, they will likely give you an explanation that will tell you about their political views or personal values. So what is the Bitcoin ethic? These features, and others that I have not mentioned, form the ethics of Bitcoin. Photo credits: flickr aimeefleck and keep_bitcoin_real

GiftPunk: A Twitter Tool for Giftcasting Recently I’ve been thinking about communities, and how to build them. Communities are in some sense defined by the flow of gifts, rather than market-based transactions. Perhaps the kinds of behaviour encouraged by the market is one of the reasons communities have been in decline in recent history. As one person put it to me recently, “community building is a truly 21st century problem.” If gifts define community, it might be because they encourage feelings of generosity and gratitude, and hence bonds of kinship. After experimenting with #PunkMoney, a promise currency based on Twitter, I’ve been exploring how Twitter can be adapted and repurposed to do new, unexpected things. How it works A community sets up a central account, for example @OccupyLondonGifts. For example, if Alice wanted to offer legal advice, she could tweet: @OccupyLondonGifts I offer an hour of legal advice. – Alice GiftPunk can find Alice’s tweet, interpret it and tweet through the community account: – @OccupyLondonGifts

Game over, Bitcoin. Long live human-based currencies! While being a tremendous proof of concept, the distributed cryptocurrency Bitcoin is fundamentally flawed as an alternative money system, critics say. It is now time for truly radical monetarists to build on this technical experiment and move to the next level of the monetary revolution: a truly human-based digital monetary system. Since its launch in 2009, Bitcoin has turned from a crypto-anarchist project into a hype topic in the worldwide web community and beyond. From London’s squats to Berlin’s Kreuzberg neighborhood: not everyone uses Bitcoin, but everyone is talking about it. Bitcoin can be described as a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency, in other words a distributed monetary system that enables anonymous and relatively secure transactions without any centralized authority. Everyone agrees that Bitcoin is an amazing proof of concept from a technical standpoint, and has succeeded in raising much awareness for the current flaws of the monetary system. Which is bad, Felix Salmon says:

Art Brock / Prezis In One Month, Everyone In Iceland Will Own Cryptocurrency The cryptocurrency craze spun into a new realm of ridiculous with Kanyecoin, Dogecoin, Ron Paul Coin and the bounty of other clone-coins that sprung up to ride the Bitcoin wave. But the latest altcoin to enter the market, Auroracoin, wants to take the futurist trend back to its cryptoanarchist roots. The altcoin was designed specifically for Iceland, and the creator plans to give every citizen of the Nordic country a digital handful of Auroracoins to kickstart their use. Auroracoin is the brainchild of cryptocurrency enthusiast Baldur Friggjar Odinsson, and he'll be the one distributing pre-mined coins to the entire population of Iceland at midnight on March 25 in a countrywide "airdrop." "So I intend to leverage this system so everyone has a chance to verify their ID and get their share of Auroracoins. Why would someone want to give away over 10 million digital coins? Iceland's new 10,000 ISK bill is worth about $85, according to the Central Bank. So can it work?

Michel Bauwens: A peer-to-peer economy This interview is part of an exclusive series is doing with the CulturaDigital.Br festival in Rio. is CulturaDigital.Br’s media partner and is bringing our community a taste of the keynote speakers’ talks ahead of the event. Peer-to-peer originated in technology… but can it help transform society? Michel Bauwens, leading P2P advocate, tells that Yes, it can. Michel Bauwens is an academic, former dotcom entrepreneur and information management pioneer who coined the idea of the ‘cybrarian’. These days, he is pretty prominent as founder of the Foundation for P2P Alternatives, which works with global researchers to study peer to peer trends with the aim of proposing strategies for political and social change. Above all, it’s a relational dynamic in which people exchange not with each other as individuals, but with a commons. Models born from accepting shared innovation commons, limiting intellectual property rents and monopolies. There are two ways to get involved.

#PunkMoney: How to Print Money on Twitter NB: For a more up to date post on #PunkMoney, go here. In the Middle Ages, producers created their own money as a promise to deliver goods and services in the future, and spent it with people who trusted them. The promisee, who became the bearer of a new credit note, could transfer it to a third party as payment, by signing it on the back. Today, as we face another shortage of sovereign money, why not revive the old practice with new technology? So here’s a proposal on how to literally print money with Twitter, called #PunkMoney. To make #PunkMoney work best, I’ve put together a set of minimal rules for money issuance, transfer and redemption. My suggestion is to make promises you feel you can actually keep, as this makes it all much more fun for everyone else. Print money To create new money, just tweet it into existence as a promise to somebody. @someone I promise to pay you, on demand, [Insert whatever you promise here] You might want to add some details, like an expiry date That’s all

Les Etats s'intéressent enfin à la «chose» bitcoin Si on tenait compte de tout ce qui a été écrit sur le bitcoin, on pourrait en conclure que cette monnaie virtuelle née en 2009 s’est imposée comme un phénomène économique majeur. Ce qui est manifestement faux: sur la base des derniers cours, on peut estimer que les 12 millions de bitcoins en circulation actuellement représentent aujourd’hui un peu plus de 7 milliards d’euros. Ce n’est pas négligeable, mais c’est peu si on rappelle par exemple que le PIB de la France dépasse 2.000 milliards d’euros ou que les réserves de change de la Chine en dollars, euros, etc. excèdent maintenant 3.800 milliards de dollars. publicité Vu avec intérêt aux Etats-Unis…. Ce sont d’ailleurs aujourd’hui les déclarations des autorités qui sont à la source des principales fluctuations du cours du bitcoin qui, après être monté jusqu’à 1.200 dollars au début de décembre dernier, a ensuite perdu presque la moitié de sa valeur avant de revenir ces derniers jours au-dessus de 900 dollars. … et interdit en Chine