As the films title indicates,The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin is the Mross brothers love letter to bitcoin and itspotential to transform the global economy. The documentary provides unprecedented insight into the peculiar but growing bitcoinsubculture and introduces us to some entrepreneurs who have risked their livelihood and freedom to make bitcoinmore accessible to the general public.
Nick and Dan Mross came to New York last week to debut The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival, where they discussed the confounding complexities of bitcoinwith International Business Times.
International Business Times: “The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin” addresses the difficult question of what bitcoinis, exactly. The film does a really good job of illustrating how hard it is to explain it by comparing bitcoin’s comprehensibility to the early days of the Internet. Even now, most of us can’t explain exactly what the Internet is, even though it’s an essential part of our lives. Do you think there will come a time when bitcoin will be so embedded in our culture that we won’t have to define exactly what it is?
Dan Mross: I do … Every day when you use the Internet, you use a DNS system, and most people have no idea what that is. Right now, bitcoinis a protocol … and there’s nothing built on top of it. We’re just dealing with the raw material itself. You have to have a pretty deep knowledge of how it all works to use bitcoinnow, but there are startups that will make it more accessible for everyone.
IBT: I had previously thought of bitcoinas kind of wanting to take over federally backed currency, but after watching the documentary, it looks like that’s not the case, at least not right now. It seems like they need to coexist …
Dan: I’m really glad you said that because that’s what a lot of people hear about bitcoin… that these anarchist groups are going take down the banks with this thing. That’s the impression you get on the news, or that it’s about money laundering. But it’s just a protocol. That’s what we wanted to show.
Nick Mross: It’s a tool, and a lot of people can use it for different things. And if there are bad actors, they are separate from bitcoin itself. That’s what we wanted to show in the film — it’s this technology, and it’s not really tied to any one thing. How [bitcoin and centralized currency] will coexist across the globe will be interesting to see. But we’re hoping here in the U.S. that it finds a way to work within the current banking system.
IBT:Bitcoin has an open-source foundation, which is for the most part considered to be very secure, but the recently discovered Heartbleed bug exposed how easily a simple typo can wreak serious havoc. Did Heartbleed prompt anyone in the bitcoin community to rethink OSS? What is the worst-case scenario?
Dan:The Heartbleed security bug was a very bad problem, but security flaws occur in both open and closed source software. Open source software allows the greatest number of people to do auditing and testing, so I still firmly believe it to be a better development methodology. Bitcoin would not be possible any other way without fundamentally altering the properties that allow it to function as a global currency
IBT: I still feel like I don’t fully understand how bitcoin can be used. I haven’t noticed anywhere in New York where you can use bitcoin to buy a cup of coffee. Is that where we are going?
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'The Rise And Rise Of Bitcoin' Filmmaker: 'There Is No Answer Yet'