Segments in this Video

Programmable Digital Cash (03:29)


Though the failure of the euro has created discord and fear of capital control in Europe, investors continue to become richer. Amund Sjølie Sveen discovered bitcoin via his interest in economics. Karl Ove Moene uses the analogy of cigarettes as currency in prison to explain how the system works.

Goals and Warnings (02:50)

Moene says that economists like Friedrich Hayek who wrote about decentralized money wanted to create competition in what would be accepted as payments. Bitcoin could be a way to experiment with alternatives to the centralized bank system. Norwegian authorities and others advise against the bitcoin system because of its connections with criminal activity and variances in value.

Billion Dollar Industry (03:02)

Sveen speaks to web developer Nicholas O'Malley about his understanding of bitcoin, explaining the power that the U.S. has over the world economy, which was exercised when the U.S. prevented payments to Wikileaks. It is unclear who invented bitcoin, but Satoshi Nakamoto is a name that often comes up.

Accepting Bitcoin (03:10)

Sveen sets off for Scandinavia and attempts to purchase gas with bitcoin, but he cannot. A payment option called Coinify exists to assist businesses in accepting bitcoin as payment. Chief product officer Lasse Olesen explains how Coinify works by accepting bitcoin and then transferring kroner back to businesses.

Regulating Bitcoin (02:33)

Lawyer Martin von Haller Grønbæk says that bitcoin is outside of norms and laws, but that it is not a threat to society and that regulations can be put into place. He compares the regulation process to that which is underway with Uber.

Bitcoin Meetup (03:57)

Bitcoin first came onto the scene in 2008 and internet coders tried to break it, but it still holds up. It may allow society to take control of money without relying on banks. Software engineer Philip Cheong considers it a paradigm shift.

Starting Somewhere (02:00)

Webhallen is the first large chain store to accept bitcoin, accepting it because of the technology-oriented clientele it caters to. The store uses a service called Bitpay that accepts bitcoin and repays the store in kroner. Only two and a half percent of the bitcoin exchange that occurs per day happens in shops.

Market Interactions (02:56)

Sveen gets a ride from a taxi driver, Mats Mood, who accepts bitcoin. Mood says that bitcoin will eliminate bureaucracy and create a society where it is not necessary to ask banks for permission to money already owned. He describes the block chain, an open account where all transactions are stored that operates as a system for transactions without central authority.

Democratic Significance (02:52)

In Uganda there are not credit card transactions, but bitcoin is expected to take off there in the country's quest for democracy. The Swedish Bitcoin Party meets outside Parliament in Stockholm and its founder, Christian Andry, describes bitcoin as a democratic, grassroots currency.

He Who Understood (04:00)

The block chain registers every transaction made by bitcoin, beginning with the first made in 2009 by Nakamoto. Sveen goes to visit Roberth Edberg, founder of the Cognition Church in suburbs outside of Stockholm. Edberg says that bitcoin re-establishes the connection between value and currency.

Transaction Confirmation (02:01)

Bitcoin aims to be a democratizing currency, a currency for the people by the people, but banks are resisting. Sveen heads to a hangar in Boden, Nordbotten where 43,000 specialized computers are housed, used to create the block chain.

Transaction Processing (02:12)

Chief operating officer of the facilities there, called KnCMiner, is Sam Cole who explains "bitcoin mining." The bitcoin network must guarantee that the coins sent and not reused; that all coins exist and are of worth. Cole says that no network is as secure as the KnC network.

Good for Boden (04:27)

To take over or attack bitcoin in a way that would allow a hacker to spend a coin twice or similarly misuse value, an attack so specialized would have to be performed that a hacker would need 100% of the current mining power. Director of the Data Center Development in Boden Nils Lindh says that Boden has all the requirements to be the headquarters of bitcoin development.

Credits: The Bitcoin Experiment (00:30)

Credits: The Bitcoin Experiment

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The Bitcoin Experiment

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Following the global economic crisis, more and more people are questioning the way global markets function. Some are turning to decentralized payment systems like bitcoin in an attempt to regain control of the economy. But what is bitcoin? How will it impact the way we do business and can bitcoin really challenge the banks’ monopoly and democratize society? Since 2009, the value of the bitcoin has varied by several million per cent. The currency has been linked with criminal networks and shady business. But despite the warnings, bitcoin has gone from obscure program to billion industries. Currently there are about 100,000 Bitcoin transactions per day. In comparison, Visa alone has 4,000 transactions per second. This has led people to question if the system will work on a large scale. Amund Sjølie Sveen takes us on a road trip across Scandinavia to learn more about bitcoin blockchains and digital currencies. Along the way he seeks out environments and meets people who have a relationship with Bitcoin, as users, lawyers, government officials, enthusiasts and sceptics.

Length: 40 minutes

Item#: BVL116085

ISBN: 978-1-63521-178-8

Copyright date: ©2015

Closed Captioned

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