HOW TO SPEND BITs

What can you do with a made up virtual currency that’s literally worth less than Monopoly money? How do you pull it up by its own bootstraps and make it into a viable currency that an online community would use for serious transactions?

You start with trivial transactions that use the currency more for its social novelty, like an MMORPG currency. Start with things that are low-effort, give immediate pay-offs, and which people often just do for free anyway.

HUMAN-POWERED FILE EXCHANGES

Is there a movie or a piece of software you want but the torrent is gone or the link was removed from mediafire? Well somebody probably still has it. They could sell it to you for a small fee in virtual money and send it directly to you in whatever way you want. It’s more anonymous and it incentivizes sharing.

TRANSLATION

Google Translate isn’t always very accurate. Do you want a blog post or news article or even a video translated by an actual human being? You don’t need to pay an expensive translation service. Just pay a few virtual credits to someone who knows the language and has nothing better to do.

GETTING AROUND PAY WALLS

Everything from news, academic papers and pornography sits behind paywalls. If you don’t want to give out your credit card information, just pay virtual money to someone who already has an account with the paywall you’re interested in to send you what you want.

SCANNING & PARSING

There’s a wealth of offline material that could be scanned, recorded, parsed and shared on the Internet: books, magazines, local newspapers, recordings of local radio broadcasts, etc. But there’s not much incentive to do that. The social novelty of a virtual currency could incentivize this. Is there a book you want that isn’t available for kindle? Pay someone who has the physical book to scan it and send it to you. Do you want local news from any place in the world? Pay someone to scan or translate their local newspaper for you.

PATRONAGE

If you’re a drawfag, a vlogger, a musician, etc and you want to start building a reputation you can accept patronage in virtual currency for small commissions.

BETTING

Unregulated betting on absolutely anything: politics, sports, the economy, etc. This could be thought of as a way to generate realistic discussion on current events by looking to where people are willing to put their money.