Bitcoin 2014: Year in Review

Bitcoin 2014: Biggest Year for Bitcoin News

2014 was a year that would mark the beginning of bitcoin visibility for the masses where it was previously less mainstream.  2013 was the year for bitcoin rise to prominence in terms of visibility to the general public. During 2014 the public intrigue with the digital currency further piqued. There was more merchant adoption, high profile criminal arrests, and a volatile price on a downtrend over the year.
The first bitcoin was mined on January 3 2009, its 6th year anniversary will arrive in the new year of 2015. It was during the first month of 2014 that we saw some retailers move forward with the new currency.

Overstock announced on January 9th that it would begin accepting bitcoin, becoming the first online retailer to do that. In the press release, CEO Patrick M. Byrne said, “digital currency will be an important part of the future and Overstock is excited to be the first major online shopping retailer to accept it.”Other retailers such as TigerDirect followed in Overstock’s footsteps in the following months. TigerDirect announced a partnership deal with BitPay to accept bitcoin. This trend of adoption by online retailers were positive signals of things to come for bitcoin in the eyes of those paying attention.

However, the state of affairs have not been without negative in the cryptocurrency universe.

A present drawback to bitcoins are its connections with black market enterprises such as the silk road. The big problems for the cryptocurrency has been, and continues to be, its perception. When people think of bitcoin it triggers associations of money laundering, drugs, and other black market activities. There was CEO of bitcoin exchange BitInstant Charlie Shrem, who was arrested on charges of laundering money. Shem was accused of securing $1 million in bitcoins for Robert Failla, a Silk Road user who the government argued provided a service for underworld rings to swap bitcoin for cash. Shem was also the vice chairman for the Bitcoin Foundation.

Looking back, Bitcoin had a pivotal year in 2014, here are some of the most important events:

Bitcoin is legit, here are some sources:Financial Times: “Bitcoin company Coinbase lands $75m investment from NYSE and BBVA”
http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/b6f63e4c-a0af-11e4-9aee-00144feab7de.html
FORTUNE: “Why bitcoin is poised for big momentum in 2015”
http://fortune.com/2015/01/09/bitcoin-momentum-2015/ThechCrunch: “Bitcoin Will Fix Remittances With Or Without The Western Unions Of The World”http://techcrunch.com/2015/01/16/how-western-union-and-others-can-avoid-becoming-the-blockbuster-video-of-finance

Bill Gates: “Bitcoin Technology is Key”
https://www.cryptocoinsnews.com/bill-gates-bitcoin-technology-key/

WSJ article about FINCEN recognizing bitcoin:
http://online.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424127887323407104579037301852662422

Bitcoin Wikipedia page
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin

Bloomberg article about IRS legitimizing bitcoin as property:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-25/bitcoin-is-property-not-currency-in-tax-system-irs-says.html

PayPal now lets shops accept Bitcoin:
http://money.cnn.com/2014/09/26/technology/paypal-bitcoin/index.html?iid=HP_LN

BBC: “Microsoft to accept payments made in bitcoins”

https://commerce.microsoft.com/PaymentHub/Help/Right?helppagename=CSV_BitcoinHowTo.htm

Bitcoin goes mainstream:
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/sep/29/bitcoin-circle-cryptocurrency-jeremy-allaire

Bank Of England: Digital currencies and how do they work
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxDKE_gQX_M&feature=youtu.be

The Federal Reserve Publishes Another Paper on Bitcoin
http://cointelegraph.com/news/113209/the-federal-reserve-publishes-another-paper-on-bitcoin
World Bank Report: Bitcoin is a NOT a Ponzi Scheme
http://insidebitcoins.com/news/world-bank-report-bitcoin-is-not-a-ponzi-scheme/24346

Merchants which accept Bitcoin:

PayPal, Microsoft, TIME Inc, DELL, VirginGalactic, CheapAir,TigerDirect, OverStock, Expedia, Newegg,Warner Brothers, Xhamster, Sacramento Kings,Uber, WordPress,Wikipedia, Mozilla, Khan Academy, EFF, United Way, Burning Man,Nas, 50 Cent,Greenpeace, Wikimedia Foundation, Zynga, Dish Network, Suntimes, Gyft,Ronald McDonald House, Intuit, 1-800-Flowers, LordandTaylor, Shopify, Foodler, Digital River, Scan, OkCupid, PointTown, Overclockers, Takeaway, Wix, Cheaperthansteam, eGifter, Etsy, King’s College, OKCupid, Mint, Pizzaforcoins, Reddit, Square, Twitch.tv, Zappos, Menufy, DailyDealy, Dynamism, Grasscity, Save the Children, American Red Cross, Greenpeace, The Water Project, United Way, Literacy Bridge,TradingView, Spar,CeX, F64 Studio, ESPN, Fiverr, Shipito, DriveWealth, Runbox, Archive.org, Golden Gate hotel and casino, gaming industry, US political campaigns, etc.

Social Networks with Bitcoin integration:

Social networks: You can send/receive bitcoin (instant real money, for free) via Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, etc. using ChangeTip.

Read more:  http://www.businessinsider.com/bitcoin-blockchain-technology-dominic-frisby-2015-1#ixzz3PVZ9Qrfp

Bitcoin is at a pivotal point where consumers are aware of bitcoin. Merchants and services are integrating bitcoin usage. Meanwhile, investors are starting to take bitcoin seriously as bitcoin investments legitimize during regulatory introductions.