Bitcoin followup

Short followup - The Register has a nice article about this theft as well.

While the details are still the same (don't put all your money into your wallet!), the reaction from the Bitcoin people is far more interesting... a certain "Nils Schneider" is quoted:

 "The market just couldn't handle the sale of 25,000 BTC at once," he explained. The true value of the loss "would be more like $300,000 and cause the price to drop to around $10. Also, at the time he acquired the coins they probably were worth only $1000 or less. So the loss is in terms of USD is more a theoretical value. It's not like he put $300,000+ into bitcoins and lost them."

So.... somebody invests into your "virtual currency", and when he looses his money you tell him "Look on the bright side, you didn't actually have that much money in any case, it was just virtual"?

Bitcoin wants to be a real-world currency system - but the key feature of currency systems is that people TRUST them. Mr. Schneider has just gone and told every investor that Bitcoins are an empty promise - you get back what you invested, if anything, tough luck, sucks to be you... this puts Bitcoin on the same level as in-game money in online games like "World of Warcraft" or "Second Life". Yes, you can convert it back into real money somehow, but that's not the intention behind it... the intention is you buy some gaming money and gamble it away.

So, is Bitcoin really just a game to them? Or just an expensive version of Empire Avenue?

I wonder how that will go down with a certain subset of their users - those who allegedly run drug sales and other criminal stuff over Bitcoin. Fancy telling Don Corleone "Hey, thanks for using Bitcoin, have fun playing, you didn't really think you had several millions in REAL money?" - I rather doubt that would be taken well ;-)