MIT Publishes a Plan to ‘Destroy’ Bitcoin [Yes, Really]

via CCN

The MIT Technology Review has a plan — or three — to take down Bitcoin.

Writing in an article titled “Let’s Destroy Bitcoin,” tech writer Morgan Peck presents three scenarios that she believes could lead to Bitcoin’s eventual demise.

The first option is a “government takeover,” whereby governments create their own digital currencies — dubbed “Fedcoins” — which will allegedly “improve upon the efficiencies of Bitcoin,” presumably reducing or even eliminating demand for decentralized cryptocurrencies.

Another of MIT’s strategies to take down Bitcoin involves the “tokenization of everything.” In this scenario, economic activity evolves into a hyper-efficient mass-barter system, in which virtually every company releases its own cryptocurrency and an automated system allows users to seamlessly trade their “FacebookCoins” for “ToyotaCash” depending on which asset they need to complete a transaction.

“Think of this as an incredibly efficient barter system,” says Campbell Harvey, a finance professor at Duke University. “Barter is generally inefficient, but if you have a network and you tokenize the goods and services and enable it with a blockchain, it can become very efficient.”

The author’s most unique strategy to take down Bitcoin involves social media conglomerate Facebook masterminding a stealth takeover of the cryptocurrency.

In this scenario, Facebook launches a multi-pronged attack on the cryptocurrency’s current implementation.

First, the company creates a proprietary, third-party Bitcoin wallet and integrates it throughout Facebook’s product suite, a scheme designed to trick users into giving the company outsized control of the Bitcoin ecosystem.

Peck explains:

“For those who already use Bitcoin, the experience is so vastly superior to what they’ve previously experienced that they immediately migrate their funds to their Facebook wallet. Those who don’t yet own any bitcoins, or have never heard of them, could be given the option of earning some on the site, either by watching advertisements or by writing Facebook posts for others to see.”

Meanwhile, the company would secretly launch a mining operation, which it could perhaps augment by allowing users to opt-in to a Coinhive-style mining script in exchange for an ad-free browsing experience.

Once Bitcoin has firmly entered the mainstream and become inseparable from Facebook’s product suite, the company could wield its influence to quietly fork Bitcoin and force its users — most of whom are ignorant of the software’s technical details — to adopt the new version, which will be structured however the company sees fit.

Could one of these scenarios come to fruition, leaving Bitcoin as currently structured by the wayside? Peck certainly seems to think so. I, however, have my doubts. Stay tuned for a follow-up post in which I explain why I believe these strategies are far-fetched.


A Facebook wallet is exactly where I would want to store my money :rofl:


I was expecting more from something that came out of MIT. It seems like all their attacks are about moving away from independence and towards centralization/institutional authorities.

When they describe the facebook scenario…isn’t that basically a bank?


Wouldn’t it be hilarious to see a counter article titled “Bitcoin Publishes a Plan to “Destroy” MIT. [Yes, Really]” with some serious details as a sly way to say “Do not fuck with BTC.”?


How about a coin with all of the bells and whistles that an ubber amazing coin would ever need that is only forked for community voted improvements. The coin sold and MIT university is purchased and the community owns it and then we fire that professor. Call it MITSTFUcoin.


I should have read before responding. I concur


The three plans listed show the financial ignorance of the M.I.T. Technology Review author (it is, after all, a Technology journal).

  1. Fedcoin is the continuation of FED printed fiat that creates inflation. Bitcoin is popular because it is counter inflation. Digital fiat is still fiat. Plus, FED can censor any Fedcoin payment at any time.

  2. ‘Tokenisation of everything’ is yet another inflation created by the scam ICOs. The suggestion of living with infinite kinds of crypto currencies, a.k.a infinite inflation, is laughable.

  3. ‘Facebook tokenisation’ situation belongs to plan 2. The author did run out of ideas.


MIT authors have to much spare time on their hands. I have a much easier plan to destroy Bitcoin. The government could facilitate public mass executions of everybody that bought bitcoin with their real names and anybody that was is/was involved in the crypto space. They could top that of by dropping hydrogen bombs on mining facilities. That would scare people from buying or using Bitcoin. Done and done.

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Facebook wallet, wow, much good idea so much safe and privates :joy:


All I can say is bring it on. Obviously MIT’s standards have been lowered significantly if this student is producing this type of junk.


But while many central banks are exploring how to digitize their national currencies, it is not outside the realm of possibility that the promulgation of state-backed digital currencies could increase demand for Bitcoin, which — unlike Fedcoin — is uncensorable, shows no respect for national borders, and has its monetary policy hardcoded into its software.


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