Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales took to X (formerly Twitter) on Dec. 11 to take a potshot at Bitcoin, crowing that while many users have lost their Bitcoin because they forgot their BTC wallet passwords, he’s never lost any money due to mislaying his bank password.
Wales’s comments didn’t resonate well with the wider Bitcoin and crypto community, who snapped back at the Wikipedia co-founder about its dependence on donations to run day-to-day operations.
In his X post, Wales sarcastically claimed that he forgot the password to his bank account and lost all his cash, only to then mock the BTC community by adding, “Actually, that didn’t happen because banks work and Bitcoin doesn’t.”
I forgot my bank password and lost my entire net worth. No, actually, that didn’t happen, because banks work and bitcoin doesn’t.— Jimmy Wales (@jimmy_wales) December 10, 2023
The Bitcoin community blasted the Wikipedia co-founder for taking an unprovoked potshot at BTC and reminded Wales that while banks might work, they’re not for everyone, and there are many people around the world who don’t have access to banking services.
Alex Gladstein, chief strategy officer at the Human Rights Foundation group, reminded Wales that banks work decently in countries with the rule of law and strong currencies. He added that only about a billion people out of the world’s population of 8 billion have access to banking services.
Banks work decently so long as you live in a country with rule of law and a strong currency. So maybe ok for ~1 billion people out of 8 billion people. And they tend to not work very well if you criticize the government or voice provocative opinions— Alex Gladstein ⚡ (@gladstein) December 10, 2023
Lyn Alden, the founder of Lyn Alden Investment Strategy, said even those with bank accounts aren’t secure at all times, citing the example of a Lebanese doctor who lost 95% of the value of their savings as a result of hyperinflation.
One of the most heartbreaking emails I got was from a Lebanese doctor who lost 95% of their net worth due to hyperinflation, because they held it in banks/currency.
They were too busy being a doctor rather than a hands-on investor on the side as well, assuming the money is safe.— Lyn Alden (@LynAldenContact) December 10, 2023
Bitcoin proponents like Samson Mow went on the offensive and remsneered atin the Wikipedia co-founder about the plight of his firm that depends on donations for its survival. Mow said if Wikipedia just “bought Bitcoin a few years ago as I suggested, you wouldn’t have to beg for donations every year in perpetuity.”
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A few others pointed out the centralization expected of the banking system and reiterated that it doesn’t work for everyone.
Banks work just great it’s about asset ownership and with that comes greater responsibility pic.twitter.com/voe65OExcZ— Lauren Sieckmann (@LaurenSieckmann) December 11, 2023
Danny Scott, CEO of Bitcoin exchange Coin Corner, told Wales that he is comparing two different things. He noted that the scenario is more akin to a user forgetting his password to a Bitcoin exchange, in which case they could reset it, like a bank. He added, “Physically storing the cash yourself would be a better example, but you lose that, and it’s gone, the same as Bitcoin.”
You’re comparing 2 different things
That scenario is more akin to forgetting your password to a Bitcoin exchange, in which case you could reset it, like a bank.
Physically storing the cash yourself would be a better example, but you lose that and its gone, the same as Bitcoin.— Danny Scott ⚡ (@CoinCornerDanny) December 10, 2023
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