“The internet needs an open and free marketplace that allows buying and selling, using the money of the future: cryptocurrency.” -said OpenBazaar investor William Moguayar. OpenBazaar- a Bitcoin marketplace is a software that is working at answering the question most people have. Where do we spend our Bitcoins and other cryptocurrency? A new release for OpenBazaar, version 2.0 just went live and is giving us a glimpse of how shopping with cryptocurrency would look like.
The new version 2.0 now allows the users to keep their stores open even when they are offline. Before this change the platform worked that when a device would go offline, the store would no longer be visible to the network. Now that the software can store offline data retentions, users do not need to waste their electricity by keeping their computers running just so they can sell their products. It seems that cryptocurrency is taking huge steps into becoming mainstream. A Reddit user also has suggested that Litecoin Foundation should pay for a Super Bowl ad to be the first cryptocurrency to introduce themselves to the mainstream public that way.
However, since OpenBazaar does not have central authority to monitor it there is still a small percentage of the stores that are offering illicit merchandise such as prescription medicines like Adderall and illegal drugs like marijuana. This is just the minority of things that are sold there reports Cryptovest, where most shops were selling fan art, t-shirts, electronics an original comic books.
The existence of illegal items will however prompt authorities to potentially impose laws to the website as they did when Silk Road- a deep web marketplace that was taken by the FBI in 2013. MasterCard CEO Ajay Banga has said that digital currencies could lead to “all the illegal activities in the world” due to their lack of transparency.
Although, just the minority, these illegal activities will need to be blocked somehow for the website to fully work and be ethical towards it’s visitors. We will see with future updates how this problem is to be tackled.