One of Bitcoin’s best and worst qualities is its decentralized nature. This opens the doors for doing a lot of things people otherwise would not have the capability of, such as online gambling. While this is a great thing in that it gives more choice and less regulation, it does come with it the negative perception from the outside.
From the Outside Looking In
Those of us that are already involved with Bitcoin understand that it has both good and bad uses, just like anything else. Cash can be used for illegal activities as well, and Bitcoin is essentially the same as cash in how it’s used. But the media likes to focus primarily on Bitcoin’s dark side: things like illegal gaming and other nefarious uses of the currency. This has been creating a somewhat dark veil over the cryptocurrency for many people, in that they feel that it’s only good for illegal uses (and that simply isn’t true). For example, let’s look at Bitcoin gambling.
Most countries don’t even view Bitcoin as being a currency. Because of this, there is no regulation on it in terms of Bitcoin gambling legal, even when they do have laws against betting real money. This makes it completely legal to gamble in venues where casinos accept Bitcoin, whereas in the past there was no option to do so without breaking one law or another. Some countries have even decided to accept Bitcoin’s decentralized nature and allow it to roam freely, refusing to get involved at all (but also not trying to push their residents away from it). In all of these cases, Bitcoin becomes the perfect suitor to those that want to gamble online; especially when offline methods either aren’t available or could result in heavy penalties for doing so.
The problem with all of this is that when the media focuses on things like gambling, they look at the bad part. It turns into a situation of how “people can use Bitcoin to gamble online illegally,” when this is simply not what it’s designed for (just like how people can find local businesses that allow gambling illegally using cash doesn’t automatically make cash a crime enabler). But as more and more people hear about these things, they turn away. It adds the feeling that anyone using the currency is a criminal, and that there are no positive uses. Really, this is far from the truth. Even places like PayPal, Overstock and Newegg are all starting to embrace what Bitcoin is bringing to the table – and none of these are seen as being a negative entity. As time goes on and more of these major players pick up on how cryptos can benefit them, the theory is that the negative stigma around them will start to go away and the global Bitcoin acceptance will continue to go up, but the first step is to start focusing on the good aspects instead of the bad ones.