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NYU Professors Working on Bitcoin Class

Are you eager to learn more about Bitcoin mining and what this is all about? Well then, you’re in luck. That is, if you happen to be part of the New York University. Two NYU professors, finance professor David Yermack and law professor Geoffrey Miller, have proposed to start a class regarding Bitcoin and other popular digital currencies.

These professors truly seem to understand the huge importance that Bitcoin represents in the modern world and most of all; the great deal of confusion and lack of understanding that revolves around the crypto currency.  Professor Yermack and professor Miller would like to assist their students sail trough the rough waters of regulation and comprehend the currency’s true value.

The class hasn’t been approved yet, however these teachers have already created an early outline to pitch their superiors on “The Law and Business of Bitcoin and Other Cryptocurrencies.” Their courses will deal with topics such as money laundering via Bitcoin, ways to measure the currency’s trading activities and deep analysis on the question that seems to be the biggest one: is Bitcoin even a real currency?.

According to the duo, “Our proposal is for a combined offering of the Law School and the Stern School and would be open to registration for both law and business students. The class would be a 2-credit class for law student and a 1.5-credit class for business students. To adjust for the difference in credit, there would be four extra law classes for law students, not required for business school students, taught at the beginning of the semester.”

What Else Can you Buy With Bitcoin? Oh Yes, a Villa in Bali

Finding and purchasing the right Bitcoin mining hardware can turn out to be a huge deal for you. Of course by now you know you can use your Bitcoins to purchase a great assortment of items online in retail stores such as Overstock.com, play online games in Zynga.com by using your coins or even walk to live store and pay for your sandwich with the virtual currency. However, if you have played your cards right and have yourself a juicy amount of coins lying around, you can also purchase a luxury property in a few easy steps.

Real state is also a part of the Bitcoin movement and an excellent example of this took place last month when an individual purchased a two-bedroom luxury property in Bali, Indonesia. The sale took place via BitPremier – known as “the bitcoin luxury marketplace.” – and was for 800 Bitcoins.  Sellers list properties and other goods on BitPremier and these are then listed in Bitcoins as well as American dollars. The company takes a 5% Bitcoin commission if and when items are sold.

BitPremier’s founder and CEO Alan Silbert stated the 3,000-square-foot luxury villa sold for more than $500,000. According to Silbert the sale is “by far the largest” since the company’s launch in May 2013. He believes this purchase is a great advancement in the Bitcoin industry and proves that more and more people are willing to expand their assets with different investment opportunities such as these generated with virtual currencies.

Overstock.com Over $1 Million in Bitcoin Sales

Online retail giant Overstock.com’s customers truly understand what Bitcoin is all about. Proof to this is that the company has recently reached and passed the $1 million mark in sales that have been paid with the popular crypto currency.

According to Overstock.com Chief Executive Patrick Byrne, “We did not expect to hit this milestone so quickly.” Byrne believes that more customers are paying for purchases with Bitcoin than he had initially expected when the company begun accepting the coin back in January. “Bitcoin customers are good customers, and we’re pleased to provide them this service.” The company had initially thought about accepting Bitcoin payments in the second half of 2014, however Overstock.com decided to enable these earlier in the game in order to avoid some other online retailer from taking the lead due to Bitcoin’s increase in popularity.

More than 4,300 customers, in what Overstock.com estimates more that half are new customers, have paid for their purchases using Bitcoin. Some of the most popular items paid with the digital currency include electronics, mobile phone cases and bed sheets. Byrne added that customers who pay with Bitcoin are spending more, with average orders of $230 in comparison to the $150 for conventional orders.

Bitcoin was first introduced in 2009 and users are able to mine for Bitcoins or create these themselves with the use of proper Bitcoin mining hardware that solves complex mathematical problems. Bitcoin owners are able to send and receive these coins and change them on virtual exchanges or ATM’s for fiat currencies.

First Lamassu Bitcoin Machine in the U.S.

Operated by Enchanted Bitcoins, the first Lamassu Bitcoin vending machine is now fully functional in Albuquerque, New Mexico. As a matter of fact, this is the very first Bitcoin vending machine in the United States. There are several ATM Bitcoin machines spread across the country but this is the first of its kind. Now, individuals in this area can acquire Bitcoin for cash in an instant manner. Others can go ahead and acquire the proper Bitcoin mining hardware if they feel the need to create the coins themselves.

The vending machine is permanently located at Imbibe, an upscale cigar bar and lounge in the Nob Hill neighborhood that is adjacent to the University of New Mexico. A proper launch party is set to take place on February 21, 2014.

According to Lamassu CEO Zach Harvey, “This is very special for us. Enchanted Bitcoins are paving the way for mainstream Bitcoin accessibility in the Unites States. They have put in a lot of time and effort on the compliance side, and we’re very excited to see them open for business.”

In compliance of its responsibilities as a money transmitter, as indicated in guidance of 2013 from FinCEN, customers can rest assured that Enchanted Bitcoins has established a full Anti Money Laundering program and has registered with FinCEN as a Money Services Business.

“Congratulations to Enchanted Bitcoins on becoming the first Bitcoin sales kiosk in the United States. I’m proud to have helped Enchanted Bitcoins’ leadership develop a world-class strategy to manage the company’s end-to-end operational processes in a safe and compliant manner,” stated Juan Llanos, AML and regulatory compliance expert.

Canada Looks to Regulate Bitcoin

Canada has always been considered to be an open-minded, progressive nation with a government that is always looking out for the best interest of their citizens. In this respect, Canada has been on board with Bitcoin from its earliest days. Bitcoin mining in Canada is a hot trend and hardware is available for those that can afford it.

In 2013, the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada, the country’s financial intelligence created to collect, analyze and disclose financial information and intelligence on suspected money laundering and terrorist activities, let Bitcoin companies know that this digital currency was not classified as money services businesses under the law. In other words, these companies would not have to register as such or comply with Canada’s rules that apply to those specific businesses.

However, things seem to have changed in the past few months and the government has now decided that they will like to keep this crypto currency on a closer leach for the time being and in the future apply a possible regulation.  The news was revealed in a federal budget earlier this week and according to Reuters Canada intends to prevent money laundering and terrorism financing.

According to Canada’s 2014 budget document, “It is important to continually improve Canada’s regime to address emerging risks, including virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, that threaten Canada’s international leadership in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.” The government plans to change laws and regulations in order to avoid crime syndicates and terror groups to use Bitcoin and also to prevent for online casinos to keep their illegal operations running without notice.

Canada’s Latest Views on Bitcoin

If you’re looking for the future in online transactions then look no further than Bitcoin. This revolutionary digital currency allows for users to transact peer to peer without the need of a third party regulator. If you happen to have the right Bitcoin mining hardware, you can even create your own Bitcoins by yourself. It was last year that Bitcoin went mainstream amidst a huge explosion of excitement and an unprecedented flow of information between different countries and financial institutions alike trying to understand what will be the virtual currency’s position in the economic landscape.

A country like Canada has kept quite in regards to their real stance on the Bitcoin craze. However, just recently, Canadian officials have given users a little more information about how the government wants this debate to go.  According to an official from the country’s finance department, “Only Canadian bank notes and coins are recognized as legal tender in Canada.” This was included in a statement sent to The Wall Street Journal.  The statement also added that, “Bitcoin digital ‘currency’ is not legal tender in Canada.”

Nevertheless, these are not negative news for the popularity of the crypto currency in the True North as the government has also added that they are ready to move forward and continue monitoring the evolution of Bitcoin. A spokesperson for the Bank of Canada, the country’s central financial institution, stated they’re not giving up on the virtual currency just yet adding that, “Smaller, stand-alone payment systems for which there are many substitutes — like Bitcoin — should generally require much less intensive oversight and regulation because they pose much less risk to the Canadian financial system as a whole,” according to spokesperson Alexandre Deslongchamps.

Bitcoin Makes Great Strides in Romania

Many believe that Bitcoin will revolutionize the world. Many others think the change is already here. Bitcoin keeps growing and reaching even more users on a daily basis. In Romania, for instance, things are happening now and are happening fast for the Bitcoin industry. Just a few days ago the first platform to trade Bitcoins was launched in this Eastern European nation. The site btcxchange.ro was created by a young Romanian who hopes Bitcoin trading will reach ‘street level’ for a great variety of payments.

Furthermore, also in Romania, lawmaker and presidential candidate Remus Cernea Constance will be taking Bitcoin donations for his campaign. According to Cernea: “I’m the first politician in the world who has announced that his presidential campaign will accept donations in bitcoin. It is a world first as far as I know.” The politician is widely known for his campaigns versus discrimination based on religious affiliation and he’s also advocate of the separation of church and state. In addition, Cernea is founder of the Solidarity for Freedom of Conscience Association. The 39 year-old activist was a candidate for the Green Party and later on created the Green Movement.

The Bucharest native made headlines with his announcement and stated: “Bitcoin is a revolutionary virtual currency, which does not depend on any state and is not issued by a national bank. Australia, Germany, Finland, Canada was among the first countries that have formally accepted. In general, it is already accepted in democratic countries with mature market economies …”

Buy Whatever You Want at Overstock.com using Your Bitcoins

Earlier this morning, Overstock.com decided to move forward with their plans to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment. If you happen to have a few of these coins in your online wallet and want to purchase  a new mattress or perhaps a new dining table, then Overstock.com is the site you want to visit. So far today, the 2012 Compuware Best of the Web Gold award winner site has seen a flow of over $10,000 worth of Bitcoins from more than 100 customers.

The company is relying on the digital wallet company Coinbase to handle all their transactions. A few hours ago today on launch day, Overstock.com posted the following on their web site: “You can now buy thousands of Overstock.com products with Bitcoins! We’ve partnered with Coinbase to become the first major retailer to accept the digital currency. So shop away!”

Not only has Overstock.com made an important and unprecedented move by being the first major retailer to accept the popular crypto-currency, but it also means an incredibly big deal for Coinbase as well. Their site also posted vital information on their blog which indicated just how much this means to the growth of their firm as well as the world of digital currencies. “Starting today, bitcoin will be a purchase option for any item sold on Overstock.com via Coinbase. This marks the largest retail Bitcoin implementation to date. For the first time ever, customers can purchase a wide selection of goods with bitcoins — from electronics to home accessories — from a trusted, branded vendor. We’re excited to serve as Overstock.com’s official digital wallet to facilitate all related transactions on their site.”

Mobile Nations Adds Bitcoin Payment Option

December has been a busy month for Bitcoin. This was the month when Mobile Nations, the leading network of mobile-focused online communities, started accepting bitcoin payments. And it doesn’t really come as a surprise that the open-source, peer-to-peer digital money has been a success for the retailer. Launched in 2011, Mobile Nations now handles store fronts including ShopCrackberry, ShopAndroid, Windows Phone Central and, of course, the iMore Store – the leading online store for iPhone and iPad accessories. All of these stores take Bitcoin as payment since the beginning of the month.

According to Mobile Nations’ chief media officer Kevin Michaluk things are still moving slow in regards to the popular crypto-currency. Thus far, a rather small amount of payments have been made in Bitcoin with close to 0.004% of total orders. Even so, the average size of an order paid with Bitcoin is much higher than orders via other payment methods such as PayPal or Amazon. “The single largest order placed in our stores in December was actually paid for with bitcoin,” Michaluk stated.

In addition, Michaluk said that as the value of Bitcoin grew in the last few months and Bitcoin mining hardware was selling more than ever, many were expecting for Mobile Nations to take this route and introduce Bitcoin payments. Given that the holiday season was close and shopping was on the mind of many, the company decided to start taking Bitcoin.“Our tech team looked into the requirements and merchant services available and found the process to be straightforward. Implementation was easy, and a few days later we were ready to accept Bitcoin,” Michaluk added.

LeWeb Conference: Fred Wilson and David Marcus on Bitcoin

It doesn’t really matter if you understand it or you don’t, Bitcoin isn’t going anywhere. Not just yet at least. It appears that this digital currency is reshaping the online world as we know it and very possibly, it will become a huge force to reckon with in the near future. The LeWeb conference, where revolutionaries gather to plot the future, that took place today in Paris, gathered some of the most important names in technology and all agreed that Bitcoin’s future looks more than promising.

According to Fred Wilson, who was a strong supporter of the early days of Twitter and Kickstaters, Bitcoin is one of the most “investable” trends.”I think there is a lot more that is going to happen in the world of money very quickly, and that’s because of Bitcoin.” Wilson then added that, “We will now see payments and money flow on the Internet in the same way that content flows on the Internet and in the same way that images flow on the Internet.”

Furthermore, PayPal’s president, David Marcus, who also attended the conference, said that Bitcoin has more potential to revolutionize commerce than near-field communication (NFC) technology does. Marcus believes NFC is already becoming obsolete and that Bitcoin is where the future is shining even brighter. He also added that many are confused about what Bitcoin really is. Marcus considers that Bitcoin is more regulated and stable than many give it credit for. For the PayPal leader, Bitcoin is actually “a store value, a great place to put assets” and that it won’t become a currency until volatility declines.