Bitcoin is Ten: Let’s Look at the Cryptocurrency’s Top Defining Moments in Its Decorated History
A single decade can be a lot of time, or hardly any, depending on the situation. In the case of Bitcoin (BTC), the first and largest cryptocurrency currently on the market, these past ten years represent its entire existence. Since Bitcoin is the first digital coin, that also means that the past ten years represent the entire history of cryptocurrency.
In that regard, a decade is a short period which did not allow digital coins enough time to properly develop and take care of the emerging problems. However, the same decade was filled with various events, incidents, and other types of extremely important moments in Bitcoin's history. These were the moments that defined the coin and influenced its path. Without them, Bitcoin may not even be around right now. Or, it might have been bigger, better, and more widely accepted. That — we can never know.
However, what we do know is that the coin was defined — for better or worse — by these events. Here are a few of them.
1) The Publication Of Bitcoin's White Paper
Following the financial difficulties, on October 31st, 2008, a mysterious individual who called himself Satoshi Nakamoto published a document which we now know as Bitcoin's white paper. While this was still not the official launch of the coin, many have taken this event as the birth of Bitcoin. Nakamoto released the Bitcoin software, on which he was supposedly working since 2007. Only two months and three days later, on January 3rd, 2009, Bitcoin's first block was mined, and the coin went into circulation, starting a crypto trend that spread around the world.
2) Nick Szabo Presents His ‘BitGold' Proposal
On December 27th, 2008, Crypto OG Nick Szabo proposed a new monetary system on his blog, calling it BitGold. The idea of digital money was not new at this point, as Bitcoin's own white paper got published two months earlier, on October 31st. However, the two projects did share a lot of similarities, such as PoW, a limited supply, and its independence from any kind of centralized third party. For a lot of people, this was proof that Szabo is actually the man behind the name Satoshi Nakamoto, Bitcoin's mysterious creator.
3) The First Bitcoin Transaction
Only nine days after the mining of Bitcoin's Genesis block, the first ever BTC transaction was made. Nakamoto made it himself, sending the funds to a cryptographer Hal Finney. Since then, many suspected Finney of being the man behind the name, although it was never proven. Finney was later diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease, only two months after Nakamoto himself withdrew back into the shadows. Finney denied being Nakamoto, although he stated that he always loved crypto. Finally, he passed away in 2014.
4) The Most Expensive Pizzas In The World
We all know how valuable Bitcoin is these days, and while it is far from its all-time high, its value is still not something that should be dismissed. However, this was not always the case, and BTC was literally worthless in its early days. After it started receiving value, people got interested, although they were desperate for a real use case for the coin. So much so, in fact, that one man, called Laszlo Hanyecz, offered to give 10,000 BTC to someone who would deliver him two Papa John's pizzas, back in 2010. Back then, 10,000 BTC was only around $41. These days, that amount would be around $39 million.
5) The Birth Of HODL
Back in the final days of 2013, a drunk crypto trader made a post on BitcoinTalk stating that he is done trading. His new plan was to buy the coins and hold them until BTC reaches some higher price. However, while typing drunk, he made a tiny typo that gave birth to a meme, which later turned into a well-known crypto trend. This is how the term HODLing was born, and it means just what the trader said — holding the coins for a long time while waiting for an improvement in regards to price.
6) The Hack Of Mt. Gox
Not all of the events that impacted Bitcoin are funny, and some of them were quite damaging at the time. One such event is the hack of Mt. Gox, which was pretty much the only Bitcoin exchange back in 2014. Tomorrow, February 28th will be exactly five years from the incident, when hackers managed to breach the exchange's defenses and steal 740,000 BTC ($460 million). This was a huge incident at the time, and while exchange hacks are no laughing matter, they are quite common these days, unfortunately.
7) Bitcoin Hits The $20,000 Mark
Many events surrounding Bitcoin made history, but one of the biggest ones was when the coin reached the price of $20,000 on December 17th, 2017. This was a huge deal for the coin that was called worthless only a few years before, and the market behavior at the time is still considered the longest and largest bull run to date. Of course, it was followed by a catastrophic decline which started the longest and harshest crypto winter in the past ten years, but the achievement still stands.
There are many more events that made history, impacting Bitcoin and the crypto trend, although we consider these seven to be the largest ones. For more of them, you can check out decryptmedia's list which lists up to 17 such events.