Will Bitcoin survive? USA Today talks to a slew of experts and finds a general consensus that, yes, the currency will bounce back after the collapse of its largest exchange. "The Internet didn't die when the dot.com bubble popped," says one expert who works with Bitcoin entrepreneurs, a quote counted by a financial publisher who calls it "the beginning of the decline." Indeed, the opinions are wide-ranging out there. Some examples:
- Big trouble: "No matter how much cheerleaders continue to insist" that the collapse of Mt. Gox "doesn’t matter, it does," writes Megan McArdle at Bloomberg. "It matters a lot." Bitcoin needs lots more users if it hopes to avoid the fate of eight-track tapes, she writes, and this kind of instability is devastating.
- Bullish on future: "In the long run, Mt. Gox's death will be a good thing for Bitcoin," writes John Aziz at the Week. A currency of this scope needs an exchange much better than one that got its start as an online trading hub for Magic the Gathering cards. Other, better ones will emerge.
- Ditto: "To function as a currency, bitcoins need one thing: legitimacy," writes Heidi Moore at the Guardian. "The further it gets away from its shady, fantasy-currency roots, the closer it will get to practical reality."
- High-profile backers: Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss of Facebook fame are two of the biggest Bitcoin entrepreneurs, and they say they remain "strong believers in the future of Bitcoin." Venture capitalist Marc Andreessen says the fault lies with Mt. Gox."Bitcoin protocol is unchanged and other Bitcoin exchanges and companies are doing fine."
- Already recovering? Business Insider has a chart that goes back a few days suggesting that Bitcoin believers aren't panicking. "The entire Mt. Gox crash is basically totally erased."