News From The Techdirt Insider Shop: Bitcoins, Black Friday & The 2013 Holiday Bundle

from the reason-to-buy dept

It’s that time of year again — we’ve got a bunch of treats for readers who want to support Techdirt while getting some new gear and perks for the holidays. Today we’re happy to make three big announcements about the Techdirt Insider Shop.

First, the shop is accepting Bitcoins! You can now use the internet’s native currency for any purchase — just fill your cart as usual and select the Bitpay option at checkout.

Second, in celebration of that upgrade and as part of the Bitcoin Black Friday event happening today, we’ve put a bunch of items on sale. There are savings on a bunch of Insider gear, plus big discounts on our offerings for serious fans: Lunch with Mike and an awesome day with Techdirt.

Last but not least, it’s time for the return of the Holiday Bundle!

This year’s bundle includes a pullover hoodie, your choice of a coffee mug or water bottle, and the classic logo tee in your choice of light or dark gray. On top of that, the bundle includes a Watercooler Special: one full year of access to the Crystal Ball and the Insider Chat, plus a monthly cache of First Word/Last Word credits and an exclusive group video chat with Mike. All together this package would normally cost up to $152, but for a limited time it’s available at $99!

If you’re ordering gear from the Insider Shop to give as a gift, please do it soon to ensure it ships in time! Unfortunately we are unable to guarantee Christmas shipping, but orders placed by December 14th (in the US) or December 9th (internationally) should arrive on time with all shipping options. Depending on your location, there may be express shipping options available as well.

Happy holidays and happy shopping!

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Comments on “News From The Techdirt Insider Shop: Bitcoins, Black Friday & The 2013 Holiday Bundle”

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26 Comments
Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Happy holidays, jerks!

So I see, once again, that my idea for a “Lunch With Dark Helmet’s Parents To Figure Out What The Hell Went Wrong” SKU was dismissed for yet another year. You know, Mrs. Geigner just wants a little company during the holiday season, and her cooking is top notch (in so far as cooking can be from an Irish woman).

Other ideas I had that were dismissed, just so Techdirt-ers know what they’re missing out on:

1. Tour of Dark Helmet’s palatial 2 bedroom apartment (won’t take long)

2. Lunch with Dark Helmet….at the strip club

3. Dark Helmet records your voicemail greeting in his best Christopher Walken having a seizure impression voice

Gwiz (profile) says:

Re: Happy holidays, jerks!

I think I’d rather see something like a “Dark Helmet’s Humble Bundle” which includes:

– You get to take DH to a Blackhawks game while making him wear a Chris Chelios Red Wings jersey.

– DH concedes to all of The Real Micheal’s religious fanaticism for 1 week.

– DH publicly admits that the Detroit Lions don’t suck this year.

(This list is still open – any suggestions?)

Androgynous Cowherd says:

First, the shop is accepting Bitcoins! You can now use the internet’s native currency for any purchase ? just fill your cart as usual and select the Bitpay option at checkout.

With the value of a single Bitcoin reportedly hovering around $700 at this time, they might be a bit less practical for buying T-shirts and Crystal Balls and Insider Chats than they would be at, say, a car dealership. Unless you expect a lot of people to buy stuff in bulk here. 🙂

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re:

With the value of a single Bitcoin reportedly hovering around $700 at this time

Last I checked it’s over $1000.

they might be a bit less practical for buying T-shirts and Crystal Balls and Insider Chats than they would be at, say, a car dealership.

Not at all. Bitcoin can be easily spent in pieces… So, yes, you can buy our stuff in Bitcoins, and some of you already have (thanks!).

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

If you are curious as to how exactly that magic happens here.

http://bitcoin.stackexchange.com/questions/13157/how-does-bitcoin-divisibility-work

http://bitcoin.stackexchange.com/questions/10897/how-are-parts-of-bitcoins-traded

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Raw_Transactions

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/FAQ#How_divisible_are_bitcoins.3F
https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Myths

From what I understand bitcoins trade in satoshis(0.00000001) and the keys generated describe transactions not the coins themselves, but I could be wrong.

Doubt?
See the prices of the Android phones here.
http://bitroad.co.uk/1133-large-screen-android-phones

The first one is BTC 0.18

You can look elsewhere too.
http://bitcoinmagazine.com/2651/where-to-spend-your-bitcoins/
https://www.spendbitcoins.com/places/

You can also buy fractions of bitcoins on every bitcoin trader out there.

Anonymous Coward says:

so you can divide bitcoins up to an almost infinite amount, but what happens when the transaction cost (confirming the ever longer hash) exceeds the value of the transaction ?

its an interesting experiment, but in the long term I think it will be a failure. Also trying to tie it to the worth of ‘real money’ is somewhat odd, for example, does TD tie the price charged in bitcoins to the current “market value” of bitcoins or some lesser amount ?

it will be interesting to see how it pans out, but I think it will result in market manipulation and a bubble that will quickly burst.

Leigh Beadon (profile) says:

Re: Re:

its an interesting experiment, but in the long term I think it will be a failure. Also trying to tie it to the worth of ‘real money’ is somewhat odd, for example, does TD tie the price charged in bitcoins to the current “market value” of bitcoins or some lesser amount ?

On the Insider Shop, bitcoin purchases are processed by Bitpay, which offers a Best Bid conversion rate based on a simulated sell order across multiple bitcoin exchanges, updated every minute:

https://bitpay.com/bitcoin-exchange-rates

Our prices are still set in USD.

Adding the option to pay with bitcoin was easy and made sense — as for those bigger technological and economic questions of bitcoin’s future, well, people with far more knowledge than me still seem to be fervently debating it from all angles. I too am interested to see how it pans out.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“On the Insider Shop, bitcoin purchases are processed by Bitpay, which offers a Best Bid conversion rate based on a simulated sell order across multiple bitcoin exchanges, updated every minute:”

thanks that helps, and I having nothing against bitcoins, it is an interesting experiment, but I also see lots of problems.

But I still find it odd that you have to check out the “value” of your money each time to intend to make a purchase or sale with that money, that in itself appears to be a retrograde step.

the reason why you have to tie it to USD is because its a far more stable source of currency that bitcoins, which means BTC as not really able to function as a source of funds, all BTC’s are ‘assessed’ in terms of USD not BTC’s being tied as such means its also tied in terms of inflation and not tied in terms of stability.

when you make a sale with bitcoins, do you convert that ‘money’ to USD immediately at that same rate from that web site ?

if not are you willing to absorb the price drop should that value fall back to $200 from $1000 ?

I can imagine that people would tend to use bitcoins when the price was high, and not when the price is low.

Or hold then and hope the price goes higher, do you think this wide price variation(and fast) is helping the ‘currency’ ?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

He is using bitcoins as a transport medium, and for that it will always be great.

People may not have access to a credit card but even the homeless have access to bitcoins.

Value is not important for that, it doesn’t matter if you need 1 or a million bitcoins to buy a t-shirt in this instance, what is important is that you will get the value equivalent that you asked transferred to you.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Look, cycles of boom and bust aka economic bubbles will happen is a function of greed not the underlying economic apparatus, so yes it will go bust.

What is really important is the accessibility and usability, it has to be universally accessible and be able to function as a proxy for work which means it has to be accepted by a lot of people to be useful.

URV’s in Brazil function like bitcoins they were virtual denominations created to counter hyperinflation and it worked beautifully, in the same way other currencies work with bitcoins to counter its shortcomings, when it is fluctuating severely you can just transform bitcoins to any other currency as fast as you can to reduce the risks of large loses and when it is in the boom time you can hold on to it a little longer still that is not the most important part, the most important part is that it easy and cheap to transfer funds(work) no matter the value they assume in the future.

If you see something wrong coming up transform your bitcoins into litecoins or PPcoins or pounds or dollars and when it stabilizes again you continue to use the currency for what is really good at and that is moving funds around.

Economic bubbles are super storms(naturally occurring phenomena), the shelter are other currencies, there is no stopping those things, eventually one will come to every economic system, there are no economic models in existence that can do away with them so yes eventually even bitcoins will suffer a boom and bust cycle, the thing is since they occur more frequently in that system there is no way that deep roots will be there to cause unimaginable destruction, I see those as the equivalent of letting forests burn annually instead of putting out fires all years creating the right conditions to a superfire that will cause severe damage, you can also call it temporal distribute economic pain management system, you allow small boom and bust cycles to occur so one big devastating one and really painful doesn’t occur in the near future.

Does it works?Who knows?
I don’t,

The one thing I know is that the only thing that helps me sleep at night in peace is the knowledge that if a lose everything, I can rebuild it with my own hands, if I have to, knowledge is my real treasure, that is the only coin I really entrust with my future.

Bitcoins and fiat currencies are just easier means to convince others to help me out, in that context.

Example:
Youtube: How to Make a Grass Rope – with Thomas J. Elpel

If your car gets stuck in the middle of nowhere and you don’t have rope to pull it out but you see a lot of grass around what would you do?

a) Check your bank account?
b) Try to buy some using bitcoins?
c) make some rope?

Don’t have food and need something to eat what do you do in the middle of nowhere?

a) Check your bank account?
b) Try to buy some using bitcoins?
c) find food?

These apps may save your life one day.

http://www.gardenista.com/posts/diy-identify-leaves-and-flowers-theres-an-app-for-that

http://leafsnap.com/

Do not fret about the value of bitcoins or any other currency, see how easy they are to be used and use them until they are no longer useful and try to mitigate loses as best as you can but don’t get paranoid about losing coins be worried of not being able to make anything now that will get you in trouble more than the lack of funds.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

“Look, cycles of boom and bust aka economic bubbles will happen is a function of greed not the underlying economic apparatus, so yes it will go bust.

and you don’t think ‘greed’ is applicable to bitcoins ?

bubbles are about differences in supply and demand that can be caused by many things, one might be greed, but things like the housing bubble was simply because supply exceeded demand, that could be because supply exceed demand and demand was less than supply, but its not greed its just less people needed to purchases houses, or(and) more houses were build that there was not the demand for.

So in that case, ‘greed’ may have gone down (less people greedy for a house, for a bubble to occur.

But the present high price for BTC’s is greed, (demand exceeding supply) that creates a bubble, and all bubbles burst sooner or later, but a managed economy it happens less often as there are more safeguards to prevent it.

BTC’s don’t have those safeguards, its 100% determined by market forces, with little or no basis in economics (indicated by the constant linking it to USD’s

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

I am sorry, for what I am going to say here, it will be harsh don’t take it the wrong way.

No, the housing bubble was problematic because supply exceeded demand, it could have been smaller and a lot less catastrophic than it was, if people hadn’t made “risk reduction schemes” you see the same tools that were used to make things “safer” were the very thing that made it horrible in the end. Bundling of bad loans to people who couldn’t pay with the people who could pay poisoned the very root system necessary to keep it safe there was no safeguards against that type of greed.

Bitcoins will have bubbles that is inevitable like any other economic system, and it is like clockwork every 7 to 10 years cycles in every economy system ever devised.

Bitcoins are great exactly because they have no “safeguards” that guarantee a) more transparency and b) bad greed doesn’t have room to grow hopefully.

What would have happened if the house bubble burst in the 90’s when just a small percentage of people would not have been able to pay for their homes? The more time it was “protected” with “safeguards” of all kinds the more it grew.

But hey if you don’t trust bitcoins don’t use them as currency but as transport agents only and you will have very little to fear, then inflation or deflation will make no difference if the only thing you want to do is transfer money to another place in an easier cheaper fashion.

You see there is nobody guaranteeing bitcoins, there is no interest in hiding or artificially inflating its value, if you got too much bitcoins and can’t transform them in another form of currency in one place alone you will have to find others to pay out, it self balances better than current economic systems.

The very thing that people say its bad is what it makes it great, because its all the things that current economic systems are not.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Economic bubbles are natural occurrences to any economic model every single one of them will suffer from it, the question is how severe from each system.

Who knows maybe smaller frequent boom and bust cycles are better than one giant one with all the pain at once, call it “temporal distributed economic pain management system” if you like.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

the great ‘bubbles’ we have experienced in recent history are been the result of speculation in alternate ‘currencies’ that created the bubble you talk about, the depression was because of speculation on stocks and shares, the ‘financial crisis’ was because of speculation in ‘credit default swaps’ and other forms of mortgage currencies.

The .NET bubble was speculating on IT and ‘internet’ with no underlying value.

all these were ‘get rich quick’ schemes, much like bitcoins with questionable real world value.
Like credit swaps, sub-prime loans, inflated stocks and inflated BTC values.

But one thing common to most bubbles is they burst.

I for one will be interested to see how BTC’s are going in 10 years from now.

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