Cryptocurrency Regains its Reputation in Paradise

Can a renowned tourist hub in Bali become a bitcoin wonderland?

The luxurious Hotel Santika, now accepting bitcoin / Photo courtesy of

Ever since Mt. Gox, once the world’s largest bitcoin exchange, filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, it’s been hard to take big cryptocurrency projects seriously. Once heralded as an independent, universal, and secure utopian currency, many now see bitcoin as one more site of human error, greed, and duplicity. So when two bitcoin entrepreneurs from Indonesia, Oscar Darmawan and William Sutanto, floated a plan this spring to convert an entire island to bitcoin compatibility, even crypto enthusiasts were skeptical. But as they reveal more of their business plan, and the project continues to gain momentum, it seems like they just might have found a recipe for success. They’re calling their venture BitIslands, and tapping the renowned tourist hub of Bali as their, hopefully, first cryptocurrency paradise.

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Puppy Love

What a canine-emblazoned cryptocurrency can teach about philanthropy

In March, NASCAR driver Josh Wise received an email from a member of the social-networking service Reddit about a crowdfunding campaign to sponsor his car for a May race at Talladega Superspeedway. At the time, Wise’s team was only eight strong—this on a circuit in which the biggest stars have hundreds of staff and millions of dollars’ worth of sponsors. Earlier that month, at the Food City 500, Wise had driven an unsponsored car. He needed at least $70,000 to get his crew to Talladega.

The fundraiser was collecting money not in U.S. dollars but in something called dogecoin. All the coins were being deposited into a digital “wallet,” and they all had a dog’s face on them.

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