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Porn Will Be Bitcoin's Killer App 216

Posted by timothy
from the we-call-this-the-duh-factor dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In December, porn.com started accepting Bitcoin for its premium services, and the virtual currency quickly came to account for 10 percent of sales. At the start of January, a post on Reddit's Bitcoin subforum boosted the figure to 50 percent, before settling down to about 25 percent. The tremendous interest has led David Kay, the marketing director at porn.com's parent company Sagan, to talk very positively about the virtual currency: 'I definitely believe that porn will be Bitcoin's killer app,' he told The Guardian. 'Fast, private and confidential payments.'"
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Porn Will Be Bitcoin's Killer App

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 18, 2014 @05:38AM (#45996991)

    Except HD. The porn companies had some significant issues adapting to HD because they used the lower quality to hide a lot of imperfections in the performers.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Saturday January 18, 2014 @05:42AM (#45997007)

    The transactions are public, but also hard to follow - most of the wallets are transitory. The path of payment for a typical porn purchase might go something like this:
    Buyer buys coins from exchange.
    Coins go from exchange to buyer
    Buyer spends them on porn, via a one-use payment address.
    Coins are transferred from there on to an exchange again to get dollars with.

    So identifying a coin purchaser would need to know:
    1. A coin the purchaser owns at the time. This could be found out by an insider at the coin-for-dollars exchange, or by someone giving coin to a publicly posted address.
    2. Confirmation that the one-use payment address is being used to pay for porn. As it's a one-use address, only someone inside the porn distribution company or the exchange could know this. Unless the company mixes all their payments into a single pool prior to dollar-conversion.

    So it could be done, but it's not trivial. You'd need someone inside the exchange willing to compromise confidentiality, which is the same thing you'd need to compromise conventional finance.

  • by Flammon (4726) on Saturday January 18, 2014 @09:12AM (#45997677) Homepage Journal

    Bitcoin is not a pyramid. A pyramid is a scheme where a few at the top depend on a large base to keep it going. Bitcoin is a peer to peer system like BitTorrent. Hard to believe you got a score of 5 Insightful for such a non-insightful comment.

  • Re:seems reasonable (Score:5, Informative)

    by Zocalo (252965) on Saturday January 18, 2014 @10:53AM (#45998145) Homepage
    I actually tend to side with Snopes [snopes.com], "Status undetermined" on this, and we'll probably never know for certain. That said, a lot of the key components of the story are demonstrably true, making for an awful lot of coincidences that all add credibility to it, including a retelling on Philips' own website and marketing materials of the time specifically mentioning the Furtwangler recording. Here's a link [uni-essen.de] to a story by one of Philips' own engineers on the development process, documenting a sudden (and quite drastic) design change from Sony that had to have been triggered by something. All in all, I think there probably is some truth behind it, but were it a court of law most of the "evidence" would probably be classed as circumstantial, and I also suspect it may have been exaggerated after the fact by the marketing departments of Sony and Philips; it's a nice story, after all.
  • Re:seems reasonable (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 18, 2014 @10:51PM (#46002559)

    If they really wanted to put more music onto a single disc, the easier way would have been to encode the audio's amplitude on a logarithmic scale rather than linear. The current CD format is linear in amplitude and wastes a lot of bandwidth by recording very fine grades of amplitude differences in very loud sounds, not enough for very quiet sounds. Digital telephony uses logarithmic encoding because it's such an easy way to reduce bandwidth.

    Logarithmic encoding gains dynamic range at the expense of increased distortion, and makes dithering more difficult. It's acceptable for voice, because distortion doesn't affect intelligibility much, but is unacceptable for music. Without dithering, 8-bit linear sounds severely distorted (think Amiga, Sega Genesis, etc). With dithering most of that distortion goes away and becomes a quite audible hiss, about on par with bad compact cassette at 44.1kHz. At 12-bit it sounds more like good compact cassette with dithering, and still quite distorted without.

    So, they could have made CD hold 50% more by degrading the quality considerably (12 bit), or 100% by making the product unmarketably bad (8 bit). Given that practically all albums in their back catalog were around 35 minutes/side, it was a reasonable choice to go with the higher quality choice.

    Because the CD audio format was uncompressed and so bloated because it was encoded linearly, it compressed fantastically (roughly 10x)

    WTF. Moving to an 8-bit log format only gets you 2x density, and as I explained, totally dogshit quality. The invention of MP3 roughly 10 years later, and requiring PC level computation to decode has nothing to do with anything.

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