The Bitcoin to dollar ratio has climbed to over $6,000 for the first time ever. In May it was around $2,000. At the start of 2017, it stood at about $1,000. And one year ago, in October 2016, the BTC/USD ratio was about $750. Some “analysts” are calling this a massive speculative bubble. Others say it’s a technological and monetary revolution that has only just begun. One thing’s for sure: Bitcoin has lived and died many, many times before. Just search for “Bitcoin obituaries", and you will find a long list of people crying that cryptocurrency has died throughout the past several years.

Following the August 1st hard fork, whereby the Bitcoin blockchain split off into two separate networks, the price rallied from about 2,000 USD to almost 5,000 USD in a matter of weeks. This was due in part to the fact that some people expected the fork to “break” Bitcoin and destroy the currency and its blockchain. When nothing of the sort happened, investors perceived this as a buying opportunity.

Other cryptocurrencies have seen even more astronomical gains. Ethereum, for example, is up roughly 2,000 percent year over year, having gone from $7 to $300. Litecoin is up well over 1,200 percent, from $4 in 2016 to over $55 today. Vertcoin is up over 1,500 percent, from $0.07 earlier in the year to over $2.00 today.

Many other cryptocurrencies have seen similar gains, such as Ripple, NEM, and Bitshares.

Bitcoin is an innovation of epic proportions

Bitcoin represents the first ever-digital money transfer mechanism that does not require a third-party. There is no intermediary such as a bank or PayPal. Users can exchange value directly, instantly, and for a small fee.

Discuss this news on Eunomia

While many people do not have an elementary grasp of the fundamental technology that underlies cryptocurrency and blockchain, some experts have summarized the concept quite well. Take John Macafee, for example, creator of Macafee anti-virus software.

“This is not a speculative investment, even though it is being used as such by people who do not understand the technology”, he says.

Note that in the Youtube video above, the news at that time was about Bitcoin reaching what was then a record high above $4,000. That was August of this year, about two months ago at the time of this writing.

A revolution overdue

In the end, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies will revolutionize not only the financial services sector but all aspects of technology as we know it. They have already begun to do so. Having a decentralized and public ledger of transactions eliminates any need for a third-party and allows for total transparency. And currencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin, and others provide a secure and semi-private means by which to exchange value online with no intermediary. Other coins, such as Monero, Dash, and Zcash, allow for total anonymity in transactions.

While critics again point to this as a haven for criminal activity, such activity has always existed, and always will, regardless of the mechanisms to do so. Blaming it all on cryptocurrency is a weak argument at best. Shameless attempts at demonizing this radical, disruptive, and innovative new technology have persisted for years, and will likely not stop anytime soon.