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posted by martyb on Saturday January 08, @10:43AM   Printer-friendly
from the charge-the-miners-more? dept.

Kosovo bans cryptocurrency mining after blackouts:

The government says security services will identify and clamp down on sources of cryptocurrency mining.

The mining is energy intensive and involves verifying digital transactions to get cryptocurrencies as a reward.

While all of Europe faces sharp price rises, Kosovo is enforcing rolling blackouts amid an electricity shortage.

The Balkan state's largest coal-fired power plant was shut down last month over a technical issue, forcing the government to import electricity at high prices.

A 60-day state of emergency, declared in December, gave the government powers to allocate more money for energy imports and impose stricter restrictions on power usage.

The blackouts have sparked protests and calls for the resignation of Economy Minister Artane Rizvanolli.

Energy prices are skyrocketing across Europe for various reasons, including low supplies from Russia and high demand for natural gas as economies recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The spike has been fuelled by geopolitical tensions with Russia, which supplies one third of Europe's gas. Russia has rejected European accusations that it has limited gas deliveries while tensions are raised


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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by khallow on Saturday January 08, @12:37PM (10 children)

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday January 08, @12:37PM (#1211040) Journal

    And while the crypto it produces is allegedly valuable, it has no actual usage whatsoever.

    Except for the traditional uses that money gets put to. Those are extremely valuable.

    Say what you will about cash, but you could in theory burn it for warmth or melt it down for metal, whereas crypto can't even do that.

    In other words, a very slight value as opposed to no value. Thus in theory, there's no real difference in value between cash and cryptocurrency as a result.

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @02:52PM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @02:52PM (#1211059)
    There's two huge differences between fiat currency and cryptocurrency.

    1. The cost, both to produce fiat currency, and to the encirclement, is much lower.

    2. There's no limit to how much fiat currency can be produced. There's only a fixed number of coins for cryptocurrency, and when they're gone, they're gone. How you gonna mine more? At that point, the gold rush is over and the cryptocurrency collapses.

    There's also the issue of permanent loss of cryptocurrency - there's plenty of couns that can no longer be used for anything because the password is lost.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @03:17PM (3 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @03:17PM (#1211063)

      Could you expand on this meaning of "encirclement"? I see it's a military term, perhaps in a currency context it has something to do with the army of the country that issues the currency?

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Saturday January 08, @06:11PM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Saturday January 08, @06:11PM (#1211100) Journal
        I'm guessing that it's something like infrastructure or investment. Translation weirdness. English has such a bizarre history and much overloading of words. For example, to encircle a town or fortification is to beseige it. But a synonym for beseige is invest.

        A military historian might well call an encirclement an investment.
      • (Score: 2) by coolgopher on Saturday January 08, @10:34PM (1 child)

        by coolgopher (1157) Subscriber Badge on Saturday January 08, @10:34PM (#1211142)

        Looks like an auto correct of what should have been "environment".

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @11:17PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 08, @11:17PM (#1211147)

          Yep. Damn auto correct strikes again. Even after you've supposedly turned it off, stupid browser still uses it "because it can't be turned off in the browser - for your convenience."

          Maybe I'll change the system language to something else and auto-correct won't try to fix english … or try to sanitize certain "bad words."

          And people seriously want me to consider Idiot-of-Things devices? Maybe I can sell an NFT of my saying "fuck off."

  • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Saturday January 08, @06:53PM (4 children)

    by fustakrakich (6150) on Saturday January 08, @06:53PM (#1211110) Journal

    Thus in theory, there's no real difference in value between cash and cryptocurrency as a result.

    Cash is way more robust. You don't need a computer, or even electricity, to use cash/scrip

    --
    Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday January 09, @12:08AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday January 09, @12:08AM (#1211159) Journal

      Cash is way more robust. You don't need a computer, or even electricity, to use cash/scrip/quote How many people don't have that? And if you're speaking of some society level dysfunction, well, I bet physical cash won't fare so well in a post-electricity society.

    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday January 09, @12:09AM (2 children)

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday January 09, @12:09AM (#1211160) Journal
      Trying again:

      Cash is way more robust. You don't need a computer, or even electricity, to use cash/scrip

      How many people don't have that? And if you're speaking of some society level dysfunction, well, I bet physical cash won't fare so well in a post-electricity society.

      • (Score: 1) by fustakrakich on Sunday January 09, @03:34AM (1 child)

        by fustakrakich (6150) on Sunday January 09, @03:34AM (#1211186) Journal

        There will always be local markets [nyt.com], physical coinage will be the only viable medium in your "post apocalyptic" society, no ATMs and 5G to count your bits

        --
        Ok, we paid the ransom. Do I get my dog back? REDЯUM
        • (Score: 1) by khallow on Sunday January 09, @05:28AM

          by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Sunday January 09, @05:28AM (#1211198) Journal
          So local markets and physical coinage (that doesn't presently exist except as a niche collector item). So not something that you could use over the present day internet, right?

          To give an example of the advantages and disadvantages of cryptocurrency, there's those bitcoin wallets with large amounts of bitcoins that have been untouched by everyone, owners through national actors. If everyone knew that there was a billion dollars of cash piled up somewhere, something would have happened to that cash by now, backhoe operator or national tax collector. The existence of these dead wallets indicates that there's a place to put stuff that's beyond the reach of even the most powerful. You can't do that with cash.