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Mt. Gox Working With Japanese Cops; Creditors Want CEO To Testify In US

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the somewhere-someone-is-on-the-beach-with-a-margarita dept.

Bitcoin 62

jfruh (300774) writes "The latest developments in the sad saga of Mt. Gox's missing bitcoins: the exchange has announced that it's working with Japanese police to try to determine who (if anyone) stole the bitcoins entrusted to Mt. Gox, resulting in the company's collapse. There are serious doubts as to Japanese law enforcement's abilities to deal with the technical issues involved. Meanwhile, Mt. Gox creditors [have rejected] Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles offer to testify in their lawsuit against him from Taiwan, and have demanded that he come to the United States."

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Yeah right... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592171)

Come on over to the US for trial, we promise to treat you fairly.
It might very well be that the mtgox CEO is corrupt, but in the current state of affairs why whould anyone trust the US government enough to go there of their free will to testify?

Re: Yeah right... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592217)

Stay in Japan man. The US will just water board you until you confess, then execute you. Don't take your chances

Re:Yeah right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592279)

To prove wrong those evil people lile Kim Dotcom, Julian Assange and Snowden among others maybe. No.

Re:Yeah right... (5, Funny)

i kan reed (749298) | about 7 months ago | (#46592287)

Point of fact: he ran a bank that lost a whole bunch of people's money. If he comes here for trial, he'll probably get a bail out and a bonus.

Re:Yeah right... (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | about 7 months ago | (#46592385)

Point of fact: he ran a bank that lost a whole bunch of people's money.

Point of fact: he ran something which people think looks like a bank, but wasn't.

This is more along the line of a private company offering to hold onto your money for you.

Re:Yeah right... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46595049)

>This is more along the line of a private company offering to hold onto your money for you.
What the shit do you think a bank is?

Re:Yeah right... (4, Informative)

DarkOx (621550) | about 7 months ago | (#46592419)

Which is the wost part of it. At the end of the day there was at least a period where they were accepting money and promising to deliver bitcoins he did not have and had no plan to obtain.

Yet everyone is jumping all over this to point out: see see you have to have regulations.

Which is bullshit. What they were doing was simple fraud. It does not matter if bitcoin is a currency, commodity, security or anything else, it does not require additional banking laws. Already a crime without any fancy securities laws, or regulators.

Common law fraud: is the intentional misrepresentation of material facts presented to and relied upon by another party to his detriment and in order to get them to act.

Re:Yeah right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46595329)

It's not that clear cut. Even if they were selling something they did not have it doesn't necessarily amount to fraud. Even knowing you don't have what your selling doesn't amount to fraud. If that were the case then offering pre-orders of goods not yet produced would be fraud or selling inventory that hasn't arrived yet would be fraud. Have you ever had a company contact you and say "sorry, we ran out, have to cancel the order". Or a company has sold "gift cards". Chances are they took your money before they have the items you'll eventually order.

What would be fraud is if they hadn't been operating a business in the first place or knowingly selling something they couldn't get from the get-go with the intent of stealing that money. A one week period isn't anywhere near sufficient to amount to fraud. Not for a business that had been operating for years on end.

What happened was they didn't know how to solve the problem of missing funds. Not knowing how you may or may not be able to solve the problem is not fraud. It's just a problem yet to be solved. Mt Gox could still be considered to being a company that is trying to solve that problem. They are going through legal proceedings in an effort to resolve the problem at hand. The CEO could have just fled. Then it would look more and more like fraud, but even in that scenario it's not fraud beyond a reasonable doubt. There is still a possibility the CEO fled out of fear rather than any fraud committed. Had he fled with significant portion of the bitcoins... then it would be more apparent fraud was committed.

Re:Yeah right... (2)

slew (2918) | about 7 months ago | (#46595943)

What Mt. Gox did was not fraud in the US because they were not operating in the US as a bank, only as a money services business which is mostly only concerned with reporting to prevent money-laundering.

What Mt. Gox did was not yet fraud in Japan because they claim it to be theft (someone stole their bitcoins) and there are currently no regulated monetary reserve requirements for such an enterprise (e.g., the mere fact that they didn't hold the bitcoins doesn't constitute fraud). However, it could turn out to be fraud, if it wasn't really theft and they did something fishy and didn't tell anyone.

Even if Mt. Gox was a bank, just because someone bank employee is embezzling money from a bank and if the bank knows this doesn't tell anyone for a month and the bank eventually declares bankruptcy, doesn't necessarily make it fraud (even if they continue to take deposits during this time). It all depends on when the bank knew they were insolvent, not when they knew they lost some money...

If you want a car analogy, you shouldn't generally willing hand over your car to someone that is judgment proof (e.g, no assets, no insurance), because if they lose the car, unfortunately, you are the one that has lost the car... You might try to assert that they fraudulently tricked you out of your car, but that's a loser case...

Re:Yeah right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46598555)

Common laws in the U.S. Are laws that are set based on court precedent rather than laws passed by a legislative body. [wikipedia.org] It would not apply in this case. Federal criminal law, yes, as there are laws governing this type of fraud that were passed by Congress and have been upheld by the courts.

Re:Yeah right... (1)

NotDrWho (3543773) | about 7 months ago | (#46594571)

Point of Fact: He dared challenge the U.S. Dollar

A while back, a certain IMF chief tried that [guardian.co.uk] . Ask him what happened next.

Re:Yeah right... (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 7 months ago | (#46594779)

It's like how we're invading the EU for the Euro becoming the currency with the highest market cap.

Wait. We're not doing that at all.

Re:Yeah right... (1)

NotDrWho (3543773) | about 7 months ago | (#46595019)

Starting WWIII is a little different that throwing some asshole in handcuffs on some trumped-up charges.

Re:Yeah right... (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about 7 months ago | (#46595159)

Oh so there's a global hegemony conspiracy except when it's inconvenient, and might involve removing actual competitors.

Re:Yeah right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592337)

Slashdot, don't be like the big TV media corps - some celebrity dies or something and just because they could act or sing, we all act like we personally knew them (somehow), or we act like we had no idea celebrities were mortal too, so you have to hear repetitive stories about it for at least three months.

Enough with the Mt. Gox stories. Be better than the mainstream drivel specifically targeted at a 5th-grade reading level for the comfort of the dumb masses (which mainstream American media is - look it up - they can't even say "legislator", they have to say "law-maker" like children). Be much better than that. Instead of all these hourly updates, do something classy: wait until the whole thing is completely over, then tell us how it went. Once. Then move on.

Re:Yeah right... (2)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46594729)

> Enough with the Mt. Gox stories

You must be new here. Don't you know it is Bitcoin-Wednesday!? ;-)

--
Microsoft Windows 8: A 64-bit compilation of 32 bit extensions and a graphical shell for a 16 bit patch to an 8 bit operating system originally coded for a 4 bit microprocessor written by a 2 bit company that can't stand 1 bit of competition with 0 bit of understanding good UI.

OT ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46594923)

You win sig of the day.

Japan and technology (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592173)

There are serious doubts as to Japanese law enforcement's abilities to deal with the technical issues involved.

It's well known Japanese are technically illiterate and that Japan is a third world country with no tecnical expertise.

Re:Japan and technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592315)

You sir, are a racist troll..

Re:Japan and technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592363)

Woosh

Re: Japan and technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592399)

Sarcasm, Google it!

Re: Japan and technology (1)

Redmancometh (2676319) | about 7 months ago | (#46593747)

Is it possible that was like..meta-sarcasm? And..double reverse-whoosh?

Cuz that would be cool.

Re:Japan and technology (3, Interesting)

Chikungunya (2998457) | about 7 months ago | (#46592377)

As in the case of Yusuke Katayama, Japanese law enforcement proved to be quite ignorant about technology crimes. After getting death threats on messages boards they managed to "get" confessions from several people that later were proved to be just victims of malware in their computers. It is normal to have doubts about their capacity to deal with cybercrime.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592527)

Japanese police are used to certain types of crime. Crimes that are common on US shores (threats, bullying, creating fake profiles to defame someone) tend to not be common in Japan, just because it isn't part of the relatively conformist Japanese mindset to be a troll [1].

Now, if someone tried smuggling or fraud, the Japanese police know exactly what to do.

[1]: Wish part of that mindset would come to the US... Conforming isn't surrender... it is being able to give up something, no matter how small, so the community around one doesn't suck as much.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46592857)

Japanese police are used to certain types of crime. Crimes that are common on US shores (threats, bullying, creating fake profiles to defame someone) tend to not be common in Japan, just because it isn't part of the relatively conformist Japanese mindset to be a troll [1].

Now, if someone tried smuggling or fraud, the Japanese police know exactly what to do.

[1]: Wish part of that mindset would come to the US... Conforming isn't surrender... it is being able to give up something, no matter how small, so the community around one doesn't suck as much.

The Japanese have a great deal of conformity of behavior, expressed by lots of social protocols and expectations. More than one American has gone there and learned that small gestures that seemed insignificant at the time were major faux pas. Of course anyone who visits a culture without learning about it first is leaving themselves open to such mishaps...

The Americans have a great deal of conformity of ideas and philosophies, expressed by trends, political forces and a completely homogeneous media. These are mostly failed philosophies in which fundamental assumptions are not questioned. They are designed only to produce never-ending circular debate to give the appearance of legitimacy and public involvement in major decisions.

What most Americans call "individuality" still requires a large group, an audience, to which it can be conspicuously shown off. It seldom involves anything less superficial than mannerisms or styles of dress or tastes in music. It seldom involves concerns less mundane than "what is everybody else doing?"

I would say that the Japanese notion of conformity is much less dangerous but that particular meaning is far from universal. I'm not the typical insecure "you must be a moron" Slashdotter, so I will ask instead of assuming: is what you wrote intended to encourage conformity for its own sake, or do you simply believe that a bit more would be a social improvement (or some other possibility that did not occur to me)?

As a tangent, I believe this kind of emotional immaturity, lack of desire for real meaning and preoccupation with the opinions of others (i.e. widespread childishness) is why the US federal government is so out-of-control. The power-hungry see that and say "these are not people who will realize the implications of what I am doing, and certainly aren't going to put any effort into stopping it, not as long as they're fat and entertained". It's a green light. Read about the Whiskey Rebellion [wikipedia.org] and ask yourself if you think the people involved were more concerned with singers and actors than with what their government was doing.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | about 7 months ago | (#46593003)

I'm well aware of the whisky rebellion, the people involved were really concerned about being able to make and market whisky, their resistance was little more than illegal brigandage. So yeah, they weren't concerned about "singers or actors," they were too busy beating people up for trying to enforce a law. The average whisky rebel's motivations would be easily recognizable to the average confederate soldier.

Is the Whisky Rebellion really your sine qua non of an enlightened citizenry defending its rights? Sit-Down Strike [socialistworker.org] much? Or Nat Turner's Slave Rebellion [theatlantic.com] ? These are people that were fighting for real rights, their livelihoods, their liberty and their lives, as opposed to mouthing empty-headed platitudes in order to get out of paying a tariff.

Re:Japan and technology (4, Interesting)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46593381)

If I didn't use the word "enlightened", it was not an accidental omission. Effectively putting words in my mouth by adding connotations I was careful to omit, and then complaining about the presence of the connotations you just added, well, that really doesn't benefit anyone. It does, however, represent the general decline of Slashdot because far too many people are either doing that, or disclaiming claims that were never made in an attempt to prevent someone else from doing that. Look deeply at the situation and you will find within yourself a subconscious (you see and understand that word "subconscious", right?) need to display your cleverness and to appear "right" in the eyes of others, i.e. what is commonly called insecurity. It leads to all sorts of absurd behavior like this.

The point (that you had to work to miss) was: in a supposedly representative republic that supposedly carries out the will of The People, extremely unpopular laws were impossible (and downright dangerous) to enforce. It's no coincidence the population at that time had far fewer opiates in the form of entertainment, sports, and becoming obese. Now contrast that with, for example, the modern ongoing prohibition of marijuana that most people do not support.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | about 7 months ago | (#46593803)

If I didn't use the word "enlightened", it was not an accidental omission.

That's extremely disingenuous; you characterized the whisky rebels as manifesting superior and contrary values to celebrity-obsessed moderns. If you aren't saying they were fighting for the true values of the revolution, which we should all say were enlightened, then what are you saying?

Look deeply at the situation and you will find within yourself a subconscious (you see and understand that word "subconscious", right?) need to display your cleverness and to appear "right" in the eyes of others, i.e. what is commonly called insecurity. It leads to all sorts of absurd behavior like this.

I think what's going on is you're one of those people that constructs an argument so abstruse and subtle, so obfuscated by insinuations, and so muddled by generalization, that it fails to say anything, and for every 100 words of positive argument you spend 1000 words telling people they're interpreting you wrong.

The point (that you had to work to miss) was: in a supposedly representative republic that supposedly carries out the will of The People, extremely unpopular laws were impossible (and downright dangerous) to enforce.

Well, except for the fact that Washington won, with broad public approval (western Pennsylvania notwithstanding), and the law stayed on the books until Jefferson repealed it.

They didn't tax whisky because it was an opiate, they taxed it because it was being used as a commodity currency.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about 7 months ago | (#46594777)

This whole discussion reminds of me of Monty Python's Constitutional Peasants ...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

We now return you to your scheduled bickering ...

Re:Japan and technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46598611)

abstruse

Me thinks you were trying to use too many big words and made yourself look like an idiot ... again. Isn't it time for you to go back to class or something?

Re:Japan and technology (1)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46614595)

That's extremely disingenuous; you characterized the whisky rebels as manifesting superior and contrary values to celebrity-obsessed moderns. If you aren't saying they were fighting for the true values of the revolution, which we should all say were enlightened, then what are you saying?

I have already clarified what I said about the Whisky Rebellion and that there was a reason why I stopped short of characterizing it. I can tell a man that two plus two equals four, or that there is not in fact a Venusian standing in the corner, but it is ultimately up to that man whether he will believe me.

I think what's going on is you're one of those people that constructs an argument so abstruse and subtle, so obfuscated by insinuations, and so muddled by generalization, that it fails to say anything, and for every 100 words of positive argument you spend 1000 words telling people they're interpreting you wrong.

Neither the mods operating in this thread nor the two other posters replying to it had any difficulty interpreting my meaning. That tells us something. It tells us that some, like you, want to play the "hostile audience" and be intentionally obtuse because they just have to make the other guy wrong. Meanwhile, other more reasonable people will read what was written with the intention of trying to understand what I am saying, and find that it really isn't difficult. It wouldn't be difficult for you either, if you had any intention of doing it.

They didn't tax whisky because it was an opiate, they taxed it because it was being used as a commodity currency.

Note I never said that whisky was an opiate. Again you are deliberately failing to comprehend what was written. I said that entertainment, sports, and excess food ("becoming obese") are currently opiating the population today, unlike back then. This manner you have of twisting around what was said, it would be much more successful in a verbal conversation. In a written conversation where what I said is right there for all to see, it is doomed to fail. Re-read the post yourself, you will see that I said the people living during the Whisky Rebellion lacked the opiates so common today.

But then, you already knew that. You have painted yourself into a corner and your chief concern is saving face. Your only sensible option now is to admit that you failed to comprehend what I read. But we both know you won't do that. It would require more honesty and security than you possess. You'd rather continue hopelessly and pointlessly bickering in an effort to wear me down. Because if you never, ever admit you were wrong, then no one will notice, right?

These childish ego games are destroying the fun of Slashdot more than any shitty Beta redesign could ever hope to do.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

david_thornley (598059) | about 7 months ago | (#46603247)

Conformance Japanese style, from "Japan at War", a collection of post-WWII interviews with Japanese who had been involved:

One man found he was selected as part of the suicide corps, intended to pilot an oversized manned torpedo (kaiten) into an Allied ship. He considered trying to get out of the assignment, when a classmate pointed out that might bring dishonor onto the whole class. (Spoiler: he never got a target, and thus was never sent out, and thus was considered a waste of protoplasm, but he did survive the war.)

Re:Japan and technology (2)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46592579)

As in the case of Yusuke Katayama, Japanese law enforcement proved to be quite ignorant about technology crimes. After getting death threats on messages boards they managed to "get" confessions from several people that later were proved to be just victims of malware in their computers. It is normal to have doubts about their capacity to deal with cybercrime.

That's not a problem with their capacity to deal with "cybercrime" (which is merely old-fashioned fraud, with a computer).

That's a much more fundamental problem with their ability to coerce confessions. If you let any police force do that, just so they can maintain an illusion of competency and effectiveness, you will have these problems. It has worked out that way every single time it has been tried. Japanese police in particular are known for worrying about their appearance first, and the facts second, though this hardly makes them unique among cops.

The US has its own version of this, but it's not implemented directly by the police. It's implemented by the prosecutors. Someone commits a crime, and you don't want to bother with all the time and effort of a proper trial. So you invent an excuse to charge them with something very much more serious, twisting legal language as much as necessary, to scare the hell out of them. Then from the "kindness" of your heart, you let them plead guilty to a far lesser charge that actually does represent the crime they committed. There it is -- you just coerced a confession. This takes much less time than fair trials do, allowing you to take on many more cases in a given timeframe, allowing you to look like a highly effective and desirable prosecutor to the masses of people who never look deeply into anything.

Anytime this kind of intimidation is used on people whose guilt has not (yet?) been established, it will be abused.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

jythie (914043) | about 7 months ago | (#46592883)

It is normal to have doubts about Japanese law enforcement in general. They do not exactly have a reputation for fairness and are often regarded as even worse then the US when it comes to 'as long as you catch someone, we will make sure they go to jail, guilt is irrelevent'

Re:Japan and technology (1)

cusco (717999) | about 7 months ago | (#46594945)

It's pretty reasonable to have doubts about any law enforcement organization's ability to deal with cybercrime. They become cops because they want to 'catch the bad guys', not because they want to be computer experts. They don't have budgets necessary to hire computer experts or contractors. By and large, if they can't touch it they don't want to be responsible for securing it.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 7 months ago | (#46592921)

The tech companies are good, but the government? Local police?

There is currently a story out about 800 government employees working in a hole. All they do is manually process new federal employee retirement papers, sans any computer automation. Kind of scary processing retirement papers counts as a medium-sized business (> 400 employees).

Re:Japan and technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46594305)

They have technical expertise, but what they have is a culture problem. The old, senior technical people who actually ARE illiterate about new technology do not get to benefit from the fact that the younger, more tech savvy people actually can do something, because of their arcane professional totem pole. A junior engineer cannot tell a senior engineer what the problem is, because that would be impolite and a violation of the totem pole.

Re:Japan and technology (1)

Animats (122034) | about 7 months ago | (#46594941)

There are serious doubts as to Japanese law enforcement's abilities to deal with the technical issues involved.

Surprisingly, this is correct. The National Police Agency, as of last summer, was just setting up their computer crime unit. [phys.org] It's mostly aimed at infrastructure protection. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police also set up a cybercrime squad in 2013. [houseofjapan.com] So they're just getting started on this.

For better or worse, security paranoia after 9/11 has funded substantial computer crime analysis capabilities in the US. Japan's JPCERT [jpcert.or.jp] is a small industry-funded nonprofit. US CERT [us-cert.gov] was a small nonprofit before 9/11. It's now part of Homeland Security's empire. The Secret Service and the FBI also have big computer crime units.

Why would he go to the US? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592239)

Surely he will stay in Taiwan with all the money he stole and pretended to lose?

Too, too funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592257)

Hurray for BitCoin! Its so cool to be anti-establishment because, well, you know that government is evil! Its so much better that we are untraceable, anonymous and outside of all oversight! Hurray for us!

Hey, those anonymous people stole my money. Police! Police! Come find my money! Haul the operators into court and sue them! Help me, government, help me!

What a bunch of fools... Now do you understand that being totally anonymous, untraceable with no oversight is worse then the government? No, probably not...

Your stereotype is out of date (3, Insightful)

SteveFoerster (136027) | about 7 months ago | (#46592431)

Stop stereotyping -- there are reasons to use Bitcoin other than just to be anti-establishment. It's an inexpensive and instantaneous way to transfer value internationally, for example.

Besides, Bitcoin isn't untraceable. The blockchain means it's rather the opposite, and thus is much less suitable for crime or tax avoidance than its detractors say.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592509)

Stop stereotyping -- there are reasons to use Bitcoin other than just to be anti-establishment.

Yup, drugs and whores!

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592545)

It's an inexpensive and instantaneous way to transfer value internationally, for example.

So is Western Union, and WU transfers don't wildly fluctuate in value.

Besides, Bitcoin isn't untraceable. The blockchain means it's rather the opposite, and thus is much less suitable for crime or tax avoidance than its detractors say.

The blockchain just indicates what wallet addresses had coins. Discarding an address and creating a new one is a trivial task. Bitcoin only has an advantage over real money when smuggling cash across borders or buying drugs.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (1)

Raseri (812266) | about 7 months ago | (#46592881)

real money

There is no such thing. The dollar, the yen, the pound, everything, they are *all* fiat currency. The only difference with bitcoin is that it's not controlled by a government and/or private corporation (a la the US Federal Reserve).

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46593801)

Please, PLEASE stop with the "fluctuate in value" bull. Given the age of the currency, it's stabilized MUCH faster than any other currency ever in history.

The issuers of fiat's around the world are pretty stable, thus the exchange rates are pretty stable. Watch the exchange rates over the next 20 years (implying there's likely to be a major global war) and see how "stable" any of the pairs are.

Given the polar discrepancies behind the "backing" of bitcoin; i'm not surprised in the slightest that it looks "volatile". This is life with most new things.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46597277)

Please, PLEASE stop with the "fluctuate in value" bull. Given the age of the currency, it's stabilized MUCH faster than any other currency ever in history.

Stablized??? when did that happen? did I miss a slashdot article here today or something?

Re: Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46597887)

One bitcoin was worth six hundred dollars this morning, but only five hundred tonight, because it's stabilized in value, or something.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46598221)

Please, PLEASE stop with the "bitcoin is stable any day now guys! GUYS!!!! It's backed by the same thing as real money!!!!! honest!!!11!" bullshit.

Real currencies are stabilized in two ways. First, they are in effect pegged to the value of the economic productivity which people are willing to trade for them. (Or, if not pegged, heavily influenced by it.) And second, they are stabilized by volume.

Bitcoin lacks both. The trading depth on bitcoin exchanges is pathetically shallow, whether in absolute terms or as a percentage of the bitcoins in existence. It's trivial for a single bitcoin "whale" to tank the price within minutes or hours. And almost none of the volume which exists represents real economic activity. It's just you asshats falling for an endless series of BUY-BUY-BUY or SELL-SELL-SELL rumors.

In other words, Bitcoin is a penny stock, a tulip bubble. You are right that there is no surprise that it looks volatile. It looks volatile because tulip bubbles are always extremely volatile, and this one isn't even backed by as much real-world value as Dutch tulips were.

You are wrong in your bizarre confidence that this will end soon. The much ballyhooed "mainstream adoption" examples of Overstock.com and TigerDirect are failing businesses which saw that they could extract some easy venture capital money from the combination of Bitcoin fanatics and Bitcoin payment service startups. These startups insulate the etailers from actually having to touch bitcoins, which they simply cannot accept directly as they can't pay their suppliers or employees in bitcoins.

Thanks to Bitcoin's failings as a payment processing option (it's slow, overcomplicated, and generally clumsy), and thanks to the middlemen, the process of actually buying stuff with Bitcoin on these websites is stupidly complicated, prone to failure, and often results in bitcoins held in limbo until a tech support drone can get around to refunding them after a failed attempt. The middlemen also take a hefty bite out of you, the consumer, by offering exchange rates which are decidedly in their favor, which makes a mockery out of the "NO FEES NO FEES!!!!" mantra bitcoiners regurgitate at the slightest provocation. Nobody outside the coiner echo chamber believes this shit is going mainstream.

"It's just like all new things" is not a good argument. Can you point at any new currency which ever caught on as a functioning currency in spite of fluctuating as wildly as bitcoin? Most of the time, this sort of thing happens because a government makes it happen. For example, Brazil (I think, if it wasn't Brazil it was another South American country) escaped a terrible inflationary spiral by creating a new national currency, pegging its value to important daily commodities, and pushing everyone in the nation off the old national currency on a timetable. They also did all the hard work of ensuring that it was smooth and easy to process payments in the new currency across the whole nation. It's certainly possible to create and stabilize new currencies, but it takes coordinated government action by intelligent policymakers, which is anathema to the entire "EBIL ILLUMINATI BANKSTER GUBMENT BAAAAD" ethos of Bitcoin.

Which is why Bitcoin should not be expected to stabilize. Based on history, it will likely just flail around until you true believers run out of real money to pump it up, upon which the whole thing will collapse into a flaming wreck of idiotic libertarian witterings. Some of you will wake up, some of you will spend the rest of your lives believing you had a realistic chance at being hyper rich and blaming evil conspiracies which kept you down.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (1)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46592661)

Besides, Bitcoin isn't untraceable. The blockchain means it's rather the opposite, and thus is much less suitable for crime or tax avoidance than its detractors say.

I find that most debunkers and detractors operate out of some kind of emotional offense. They seem to think having strong feelings about a thing excuses them from learning the facts about that thing. What you hear from them is not an accurate representation of reality, but a caricature that has been drawn from a process of demonization that occurs in their minds.

I make no exaggeration when I say: how so many people can do this while congratulating themselves for a job well done is one of the great unsolved problems of civilization. Detractors who attack something while offering no alternatives or constructive solutions have zero credibility until proven otherwise, even if so many soft-minded people continue to believe them.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46593025)

I find that most debunkers and detractors operate out of some kind of emotional offense.

I can't speak for other detractors, but I do so out of enlightened sarcasm.

Detractors who attack something while offering no alternatives or constructive solutions have zero credibility until proven otherwise, even if so many soft-minded people continue to believe them.

Stating that something is a faulty solution in search of a problem does not mean that it must be replaced by a better solution to continue searching for a problem.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (1)

causality (777677) | about 7 months ago | (#46593291)

I find that most debunkers and detractors operate out of some kind of emotional offense.

I can't speak for other detractors, but I do so out of enlightened sarcasm.

Detractors who attack something while offering no alternatives or constructive solutions have zero credibility until proven otherwise, even if so many soft-minded people continue to believe them.

Stating that something is a faulty solution in search of a problem does not mean that it must be replaced by a better solution to continue searching for a problem.

"Stop searching for non-existant problems" would constitute an "alternative". It was for this very purpose that I said "alternatives or constructive solutions" and not merely "constructive solutions" alone.

Reading comprehension on this site continues to decline. I predict that eventually, follow-up posts made for the sole purpose of correcting faulty reading comprehension will reach 50%, and at that point Slashdot will become as useful as unmoderated Usenet discussion and Dice Holdings will tank.

I appreciate sarcasm myself.

Re:Your stereotype is out of date (3, Informative)

QilessQi (2044624) | about 7 months ago | (#46594231)

I find that most debunkers and detractors operate out of some kind of emotional offense

Well, to be fair, most fans and defenders probably operate out of some kind of emotional defense. For example:

I have no strong feelings about Bitcoin, for or against. Which is why I found it amusing that when I mentioned the transaction malleability issue in a recent discussion -- and subsequently quoted the 3rd party sources (Forbes and TechCrunch) which attributed Silk Road 2's problems to this issue -- one of Bitcoin's staunch defenders accused me of wearing a "tinfoil hat", which was odd because I was neither putting forth a conspiracy theory nor quoting a source which was. This individual said that I could either believe his facts or [what he asserted to be] non-facts from sources that I consider to be slightly more reliable than a random pseudoanonymous Slashdot user. Yes, "Appeal to Authority" may be a logical fallacy, but you can't counteract it simply by claiming to be more authoritative, all the while resorting to Argumentum ad Hominem.

Has Bitcoin been demonized? Well, it has gotten bad press, because of various things. What it has been used to purchase. The problems with various exchanges. The perceived complexity of use compared to conventional fiat currency.

Then there are the Bitcoin fellow-travelers, like the Winkelvoss twins and Bill Gates, who I think manage to turn a lot of Slashdot readers off Bitcoin simply by singing its praises. Sure, that's irrational too. If I found out that Steve Ballmer liked chocolate and kittens, I wouldn't immediately hate those things. True, I'd enjoy them a little less because of the uncomfortable association, and I wouldn't eat them in the same sandwich like he does, but still. Chocolate and kittens.

Are non-Bitcoin adopters jealous of the ones who jumped on the mining bandwagon early? Maybe, in some cases, there's a fox-and-the-grapes issue at work. But mostly I think there's just a lot of eye-rolling at the picture of a bright, shiny, government-intervention-free financial future that some cryptocurrency advocates are hyping. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com] to understand what this is like on the receiving end.

So let's allow for a little irrationality on both sides of the fence.

research: tx malleability at MtGox unlikely (2)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 7 months ago | (#46592381)

Unlikely to be the cause of the vast majority of the claimed 'lost' coins, that is.

Bitcoin Transaction Malleability and MtGox
http://arxiv.org/abs/1403.6676 [arxiv.org]

In Bitcoin, transaction malleability describes the fact that the signatures that prove the ownership of bitcoins being transferred in a transaction do not provide any integrity guarantee for the signatures themselves. This allows an attacker to mount a malleability attack in which it intercepts, modifies, and rebroadcasts a transaction, causing the transaction issuer to believe that the original transaction was not confirmed. In February 2014 MtGox, once the largest Bitcoin exchange, closed and filed for bankruptcy claiming that attackers used malleability attacks to drain its accounts. In this work we use traces of the Bitcoin network for over a year preceding the filing to show that, while the problem is real, there was no widespread use of malleability attacks before the closure of MtGox.

He's right... likely no "Massive" theft through (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592743)

malleability.

The concept of "Transaction Malleability" sounds good to the uneducated. When you look at the details of how it works... the 'scammers' would have almost had to have had a direct line to customer service at MTGOX and been mashing transactions for years, all day... every day. Reality wise... that's crazy talk.

Wether it was an accident or on purpose... a crapload of coin is not in the wallets of the owners. Even a single bit of coin goes out of any of those wallets and that kid is going to wind up in the river. Wow.

Check out TheCleanGame[.]Net/scc if you're looking for .5% a day on your btc... :)

With all the places going down these days surrounding btc... it's going to be nice when some solid companies start putting in ultra-secure options for the rest of us labled as "The General Public" LOL

Keep it Clean!

Mod scumbag down. (1)

Animats (122034) | about 7 months ago | (#46594763)

Check out TheCleanGame[.]Net/scc if you're looking for .5% a day on your btc... :)

Sigh. Another Bitcoin Ponzi.

There seem to be a significant number of Bitcoin users who can't recognize an obvious Ponzi scheme [wikipedia.org] on sight.

Re:Mod scumbag down. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46595085)

Well yeah. They're already participating in one, why would you think they could recognize another?

real medicine language of the heart & spirit (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592445)

a quick photon shower & we're almost new again... thanks moms

Mt. Gox? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46592671)

It's still not a Mountain, guys.

what? (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 7 months ago | (#46593257)

"determine who (if anyone) stole the bitcoins" That's how you know their accounting system was top notch.

He should know better than to come to the US (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46594271)

He'll be arrested the moment he sets foot on US soil.

Dollars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46595201)

It seems to me that there are a whole lot of those icky dollars being passed around to settle this mess. Future of currency, my ass.

Stolen by NSA and CloudFlare (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46597921)

The bitcoins were stolen by the NSA, with the aid of CloudFlare, who MtGox relied on for service availability. CloudFlare is effectively a Man in the Middle, and because they abide to U.S "laws", it means they do what NSA tells them to do. Any website handling sensitive data must stay away from U.S-based services, or they may be subverted by the NSA.

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