The largest of the non-profits in the digital currency world, the Bitcoin Foundation has been making a lot of negative headlines over the last few years with some justified and others that just seem to be personal attacks. The question that now lingers is there a future for it or any of the many non-profits scattered across the globe in the digital currency industry anymore.
As a founder of a non-profit association myself back in 2014 I personally have experienced and seen the important role these organisations play in education, advocacy and adoption of Bitcoin to mainstream society, businesses and corporations.
Bitcoin is still fairly new to the majority, many may have heard of it but very few still understand it at all.
As I am sure it is the same with all non-profits around the world when there are positive news headlines in the mainstream press, there are individuals, businesses and corporations who have looked into it and want to understand the inner workings more.
They are interested in the protocol and its future possibilities, are eager to either invest in the digital currency, the potential of its public ledger or just simply learn how to accept it for their business from consumers.
From experience the first point of call for education, help and advice on these matters are the non-profits.
Speaking to other founders of non-profits playing an active part in the industry in their areas I have heard the same negative points made from them all, that it is a payless, thankless job.
So why do they continue going and what is their objective?
These guys like myself have been around for quite a few years and when they set-up their organisations it was to fulfil an important gap in the industry to take the protocol and its future applications out of the world of programmers, traders and developers and educate and promote in a simplified way to the average Joe.
The constant travelling, hours of Skype and phone calls and endless explanations in helping educate those interested in making their first purchase of the currency, from setting up and understanding how to use a wallet to transferring money to exchanges or helping a business learn how to accept the currency for their products has played a silent but major part in bringing the ecosystem to where it is today.
Most of us have set-up these non-profits at our own expense, very few are highly profitable and I don’t believe many of the executive directors in the local initiatives are actually paying or receiving a wage for what they do.
Then you have the few corporations in the industry backed by millions of pounds in investment trying to jump on the advocacy bandwagon purely for profit and publicity of their companies trying to destroy and diminish the work of the non-profits in the process.
You won’t see the E.Ds or VPs of those corporations jumping into their car and travelling hundreds of miles to help businesses set-up and except the digital currency and providing weeks of back-up support for free. So they should stick at the business model they are working on and leave the non-profits to do their job as the ground work they do brings them trade from new clients anyway.
These companies would benefit more by sponsoring the non-profits, than setting up in opposition against them.
Although the International Bitcoin Foundation has made many mistakes and is on a different level than the local initiatives I personally believe with the right strategy it has a very important role to play in the future of adoption, education and advocacy of the global Bitcoin ecosystem, but an important rule should be at the cornerstone of all these non-profits.
By the people, for the people!
We are here to provide the mainstream society and Bitcoin community with an important service and without their support we wouldn’t exist, so it is them we are here to serve and at no time should that mean to control.