Cryptocurrency has become extremely popular in recent years — all thanks to the inception of Bitcoin in 2018. While most people are familiar with the general concept of Bitcoin now, the cryptocurrency wasn’t always worth almost $35,000 per coin. The cryptocurrency was basically worthless upon its inception in 2009. Here’s everything to know about the history of the world’s most popular cryptocurrency:
Despite bitcoin being a popular form of currency in the modern-day, the person who invented its concept has never identified themselves to the public. Someone(s) used the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto when posting a message on a cryptography mailing list titled, “Bitcoin P2P e-cash paper.” Inside was a link to a paper titled “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.” Essentially, Nakamoto detailed the grandeur concept of a decentralized currency — where currency could be exchanged from person to person without a single administrator. The blockchain officially launched on January 3rd, 2009, after the first block, titled genesis block, was established.
For the first few months of its existence, Bitcoin had no real value. U.S. News Money reports that only miners used the cryptocurrency to validate the blockchain, uncover new bitcoins, and have fun trading back and forth with one another. It took more than a year for Bitcoin to officially be used in an economic transaction — and it was to buy two Papa John’s pizzas. Laszlo Hanyecz had mined some bitcoin and wanted to spend the cryptocurrency on something tangible, like pizza. He posted the following message on an online forum titled bitcointalk: “I’ll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas.. like maybe 2 large ones so I have some leftover for the next day.”
A British man ended up buying the two pizzas — and received 10,000 bitcoins for the deal. While we might say the man got a good deal considering how much each bitcoin is worth now, Market Watch reports that the British man made about $16 during the transaction in 2010. He had spent approximately $25 for the two pizzas, and the market price of bitcoin was estimated to be $41 at the time of the transaction. This deal is infamously known as Pizza Day — the day a Florida man ultimately spent what’s worth $357 million today for two Papa John pizzas. We hope he got extra cheese, at least. But when asked if he has any regrets about the transaction, Hanyecz told Coin Telegraph that he has “no regrets.” And what about the British man who received the 10,000 BTC? Well, he spent the cryptocurrency, too. When asked about the notorious transaction, he said, “I’ve never seen Bitcoin as an investment, and while it’s easy to look back and say ‘I could have been a millionaire,’ I think it’s more important to look at the mindset I had during the pizza transaction, not being that of acquiring an investment, but of making use of a form of currency. If I was looking to hoard coins, I very likely wouldn’t have been in the right place at the right time.” Pizza Day is celebrated on May 22nd of every year — the prices of those two Papa John’s pizzas gradually increase each year.
Even though one bitcoin is worth approximately $35,000 now, the general public seemed hesitant to buy and trade cryptocurrency at first. Bitcoin was the original cryptocurrency, so it was hard for people to grasp the meaning of a decentralized system where the currency wasn’t tangible. People naturally resist change — and Bitcoin almost seemed like folklore during its early years. People did not want to place their hard-earned money into a crypto coin they didn’t understand. The concept of cryptocurrency was brand new, so people didn’t feel like they could trust it. Since the value of bitcoin is constantly changing, many felt that the risk was higher than the reward. The worry that bitcoin was just a fad was also prevalent throughout society. Now that it has been a decade since Bitcoin was introduced by a mystery person(s), the cryptocurrency is soaring at a value of over $35,000. Tesla announced that they would consider accepting the currency for transactions with their company. When analyzing the journey of Bitcoin since its inception, it’s pretty clear that this cryptocurrency has a bright (and ultra-valuable) future ahead.