Vitalik Buterin, known mainly for being the co-founder of the Ethereum network, disagreed with the way in which the Government of El Salvador is driving the adoption of bitcoin (BTC).
The Russian-Canadian programmer also criticizes the maximalists of the first of the cryptocurrencies, who applaud every move of President Nayib Bukele since he announced his plan for the crypto asset to become legal tender.
Buterin, who is one of the most prominent people in the cryptocurrency ecosystem, went to Reddit to refer to the Bitcoin Law of El Salvador for the first time. According to him, forcing merchants to accept cryptocurrency is a measure that goes against the ideals of freedom that he believes should be defended by the community.
According to article 7 of the regulations, “every economic agent must accept bitcoin as a form of payment when it is offered to him by whoever acquires a good and a service.” The only exception will be for those who “by fact” do not have access to the technologies that allow executing transactions in BTC.
Bukele has insisted on pointing out that the use of the main cryptocurrency is optional. However, it has been said that is not the case for merchants, who are required to accept payments in bitcoin , as reported by media in El Salvador. However, once the payment in BTC is received, merchants have the option to change them to dollars instantly, without commission cost, through the government purse Chivo Wallet.
That companies have to compulsorily accept a specific cryptocurrency is contrary to the ideals of freedom that are supposed to be important to the crypto space. Furthermore, this tactic of bringing BTC to millions of people in El Salvador at the same time with almost no prior education attempts is reckless and runs the risk of a large number of innocent people being hacked or scammed. An embarrassment to the bitcoin maximalists who praise it uncritically.
Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of the Ethereum network.
The renowned programmer uses the term “bitcoin maximalists” to refer to the bitcoiners who have been supporting Bukele’s plans and points out to them as stewards of things that could go wrong .
For Buterin, a hasty adoption, without any education, exposes people who come into contact with BTC for the first time at risk of being hacked or scammed.
Bitcoin advances in El Salvador
Why is there no hassle when governments impose the use of fiat?
Hundreds of Reddit and Twitter users reacted to Vitalik Buterin’s comments. Among them, there were those who wondered “why is no one flinching when governments force citizens to use fiat money like the dollar?”
On Twitter, Marty Bent defended Bukele’s measure who, from his perspective, is encouraging companies to “accept the best free market money that has ever existed.”
Other users share the same point of view, like NefariusNa who on Reddit In Bukele’s defense, he points out that countries impose the use of “their national currency for all commercial transactions.” “I’m not sure why this is negative,” he adds.
Regarding being hacked or scammed, the user said that the amount of bitcoin that El Salvador has bought is kept in a wallet that custody of the Government. For this reason, he believes that “the risks of piracy and fraud are the same as sending money to people to their bank accounts,” he said in response to Buterin’s comment.
On the other hand, they are also who agree with Buterin that it was necessary to educate people before implementing the Bitcoin Law . This is because “ordinary people would have been saved a lot of problems, they would have learned what should and should not be done and the risks associated with this, how to stay protected from scams.”
El Salvador is the first country in the world to adopt bitcoin as legal tender and, after one month of the entry into force of the law that establishes it, the population tries to discover the benefits and dangers of adopting to cryptocurrency as an asset for regular use .
Regarding the concerns pointed out by Buterin, in effect Salvadorans are being victims of fraud associated with the Chivo Wallet, which is the wallet created by the government of Nayib Bukele to spread the use of bitcoin in the Central American country.
As reported by CriptoNoticias, Salvadorans began to denounce through social networks that their personal data was used by third parties to access the wallet and withdraw funds.