Do you believe in Bitcoin conspiracies? Discover the popular bitcoin conspiracy theories and their possible implications in our fun roundup.
Bitcoin and its top conspiracies
Since its inception, Bitcoin has been shrouded in mystery and become a target of a number of conspiracy theories. And no wonder — the founder(s) of the cryptocurrency is anonymous, and the asset is digital, making it completely different in nature to all other means of exchange throughout human history. There is massive room for wondering if the true purpose of Bitcoin is the only one as it’s claimed to be in the paper that first introduced Bitcoin.
What drives people to believe in crypto conspiracies?
“Every age has its peculiar folly: Some scheme, project, or fantasy into which it plunges, spurred on by the love of gain, the necessity of excitement, or the force of imitation.”
“Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds”. Book by Charles Mackay, 1841.”
People historically get drawn to mysteries, schemes and tales, especially if there is a source of gain or it supports one’s beliefs. Take “Gold bugs”, for example. According to the Urban Dictionary, it’s someone who’s into the gold standard, wants to use gold as money along with the Dollar, religiously invests in precious metals awaiting for an ultimate crash of fiat ‘paper’ currencies. These gold bugs share some common attributes and beliefs along with other conspiracy theorists, 9/11 “truthers,” survivalists, tax protesters, racists, anti-Semites, misogynists and the far-right views.
Nowadays, the trust in the state and the financial regulators is in a steady downtrend. Why would you trust a government, that consistently devalues your money by printing more of it? Another reason for distrust is the increasing role of state surveillance, especially regarding how we spend our money. Additionally, 2020 is the year of fake news, deep fakes and profile hacking. Who is really telling the truth?
In such an environment, along with the rise of digital technologies, no wonder that cyberpunks came up, promoting Bitcoin as the escape from being watched and robbed by the state.
Next, it doesn’t take long until more people get lured into the idea, prompted by shiny prospects of buying early and getting rich very soon because “I know something”.
Top Bitcoin conspiracy theories
Along with the theories about Bitcoin being a “way out”. There are others, some of them are opposite, viewing the cryptocurrency as the tool to enslave common people even more.
The project of Uncle Sam
Individuals can use Bitcoin to send money anonymously, it spurred the theory, that the US National Security Agency created Bitcoin to fund its secret missions. Why NSA? Bitcoin has a system, known as Proof-of-Work. NSA invented the SHA-256 algorithm, which functions within the Proof-of-Work.
Although the SHA-256 algorithm is an open-source, which cryptographers have scrutinized for over fifteen years without finding anything suspicious, believers in the Uncle Sam’s theory claim, that NSA could easily create a “backdoor” in SHA-256 to track all web activity.
You can certainly understand why this theory has gained popularity when you consider the story of the Swiss encryption company Crypto AG. Since World War II, the company has been successfully selling encryption devices to over 120 countries’ governments making millions of dollars. Washington Post, together with the German Public broadcaster, discovered, that the CIA secretly owned crypto AG. The company designed the devices that it sold in a way, that the CIA could easily decipher any encrypted secrets that other governments sent out.
The followers of this theory assume the involvement of the Chinese government in the creation of Bitcoin. The evidence to support the theory is quite contradictory, though. On the one hand, China is the biggest crypto mining country in the world; on the other hand, China intended to ban bitcoin mining. Also, China is testing digital yuan in four cities as its new digital currency which potentially could compete with bitcoin and the US Dollar.
So, why would somebody believe China created bitcoin? Firstly, the country has enormous financial resources, political power and has experienced rapid growth in tech and AI. That it monitors its citizens via face-recognition and uses social credits to reward or punish them, adds further fuel to this conspiracy.
The works of the devil
This conspiracy theory revolves around the events that were described in the Bible in the book of Revelation:
“And he causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name:…666” (Rev. 13:16–18).
What does it have to do with bitcoin? The Revelation apparently talks about a single world currency — “a mark”, that can also be interpreted as human-made items like a stamp, engraving or even implanted microchip. “A mark” is somehow tied to the identity of every citizen regardless of any social or cultural beginnings (“small and great, rich and poor, free and slave”). Furthermore, it’s tied physically (“on their right hand or on their foreheads”).
Let’s look at some features, that make Bitcoin a candidate for this tool of the antichrist.
1.The world currency — It doesn’t seem likely that paper money will become the world currency. Paper money is gradually devaluing (as the central banks around the world keep printing it) while still being hard to track for the regulators. Digital currency makes more sense. The blockchain of Bitcoin can easily record and verify all transactions in the publicly verifiable database.
2.Bitcoin address can be tied to identity — people want security and stability. Throughout history governments successfully used fear to convince people to accept unpopular policies. The fear of terrorism, epidemy or invasion opens the door to the increased state surveillance, travel restrictions or financing of the military power. It won’t be surprising to see the enforcement to tie identities to Bitcoin addresses in the name of safety and stability. In this way, everyone’s economic life can be controlled via blockchain and presumed “criminals” eliminated.
3.Digital wallet implants — Implantable chips are becoming increasingly popular. Some people install bitcoin wallets under their skin. While the features of such a wallet are still far from controlling the world population, the trend is clear — more people would want to “upgrade” their bodies, even before it becomes mandatory. Take a look at the biohacking trend, for example.
Although some of the qualities of Bitcoin seem to match this conspiracy, there are many other digital candidates that could pick up the role of “the mark”. And with the pushing of compulsory vaccines, track and trace and other worrying movements like human microchipping, perhaps Bitcoin doesn’t get authority on this one.
What is a conspiracy theory? A crazy wacky fringe movement? An alternate way of thinking? Something different from mainstream news? Or a dystopian look at a future reality? We love reading the news from all angles here at Contentworks Agency and welcome your thoughts on Bitcoin conspiracies.
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The Contentworks team