Inclusivity is Good, But Hard.
Eliminating discrimination in institutions seems like an unwinnable battle. We see case after case of powerful decision makers at institutions unfairly discriminating against other people. While we all know this is a problem, or at least not ideal, we don’t know how to solve it.
We speak out against it, protest, pass laws and prosecute against discrimination. However, in the end, we know that human fallibility means we can’t entirely get rid of discrimination in any institution that has humans in positions of power.
Nobody is in Charge of Bitcoin.
Bitcoin has a novel solution to the “humans discriminate” problem. The solution is that Bitcoin removes humans from the equation of who is permitted to use it. Bitcoin’s unique construction means that nobody is in charge of any aspect of it. If the mathematical conditions to send bitcoins from one place to another check out, the transaction clears. By having nobody in any role which could discriminate against anybody’s use of it, Bitcoin avoids any human biases.
Everybody Can Use Bitcoin
Since nobody is in charge of Bitcoin, nobody can exclude anybody else from using it. And voila, it follows that everyone can use Bitcoin.
No other institution in the world is built to allow everybody to use it to the extent Bitcoin is. This makes it the world’s most inclusive institution. You don’t need an invitation. You don’t need to live in any particular country. You don’t need a home address. You don’t need government issued photo identification. You can be any age, any race, any gender.
You don’t ever need to tell Bitcoin anything about yourself to use it. All you need is to run the software. In fact, you don’t even need to do that. But you should.
Money, to be valuable, must be widely used.
Nobody is forced to use bitcoin. Anyone can come and go freely. Everyone who uses bitcoin voluntarily consents to using it. Its use is a personal choice.
By being open to all people of the world (and its robots too), Bitcoin becomes more widely used with every passing day. Bitcoin may in the not too distant future become the most widely accepted money ever to exist. Why? The more widely used Bitcoin is, the more valuable it becomes. As it becomes more valuable, Bitcoin can be used for more purposes, and that encourages even more people to choose to use it. This virtuous cycle repeats over and over in a positive feedback loop driving up both the users of Bitcoin and its value. As there are no limits on who can use it, the sky’s the limit for how many users and how much value Bitcoin ultimately obtains.
It may not be long before the world’s most inclusive institution, also becomes its most participated in institution, and possibly even its most valuable one. If so, solving the inclusion problem will have turned out to be very valuable in more ways than one.
Want more? This entire series (plus a 26th bonus article) is available as a pdf or kindle ebook at https://swanbitcoin.com/whybitcoin.
This is article 14 of the Why Bitcoin Series.
Next: Why You Should Care About Bitcoin