As part of the Digital Currency Council’s Continuing Education partnership with Inside Bitcoins, the DCC’s Director of Curriculum, Dan McArdle, has had the opportunity to interview the thought leaders that will be speaking at Inside Bitcoins Singapore on January 29-30. Today, we share insights from Ric Shreves, Co-Founder of CoinAcademy.
Dan: Tell us a little about your background in Bitcoin and Digital Currencies, and how and why you got involved?
Ric: My involvement stems from personal interest in the technologies and underlying concepts. I did not get seriously involved in the movement until we hatched the idea of Coin Academy in the summer of 2014. Since then, digital currencies in general, and Coin Academy in particular, have occupied more and more of my time!
Dan: What excites you the most about the long-term prospects for Bitcoin in general?
Ric: Primarily, the potential in the underlying technology of the blockchain. Distributed consensus ledgers will change finance and to the freedoms introduced by digital currencies will change the way people think about money. The former will happen quickly, the latter will take longer!
Dan: What worries you the most about getting there? What is the biggest challenge to success?
Ric: Right now the threats / issues are: volatility, perceptions of the integrity of the system, lack of cogent regulation. The biggest challenge to success is education, which is where Coin Academy and DCC are poised to make a difference.
Dan: People often say that the Bitcoin ecosystem today is like the early internet. Do you think that’s a sensible analogy? If so, what stage would you say we’re in relative to development of the internet?
Ric: I don’t have a problem with that. We could pick it apart at the micro level, but the utility of comparisons of that nature lies in the ability to help people get their heads around complex concepts; that is valuable and much needed. We (the digital currency community) need to make a conscious effort to reduce the complexity of this topic for the masses and avoid falling into the trap the Linux community has stepped in, that is, the exclusion of non-technies in the name cool and the creation of coterie of die hards.
Dan: How can we in the Digital Currency profession help Bitcoin adoption in general? How do we educate the public and communicate the benefits to potential new users?
Ric: Keep it simple, keep it credible, and keep up the enthusiasm.
Dan: Ric, thank you very much for your time, insight and support of the Digital Currency Council.
Ric: My pleasure! Thank you for asking.