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Re: Can I donate in bitcoin?

martin f krafft <madduck@debian.org> writes:

> The benefit of using Bitcoin for DebConf and sprints is to be able to
> reimburse people without the costs of cash or international money
> transfer. This is, in fact, one of the main ways I could see Debian use
> Bitcoin.

Ah, yes, that's a good point.  In other words, if someone is willing to
take Bitcoin or some national currency that Debian does *not* generally
hold, it may be cheaper or at least more efficient for the project to hold
Bitcoin to reimburse those people instead of converting to either Bitcoin
or the national currency in question.

This would probably not come up for people who are happy to be reimbursed
in USD or EUR, but could well come up for reimbursements in other

I think that would be a great question to ask the treasurer.  One step
forward would be to start asking people, whenever we reimburse them,
whether they would have preferred to be (or even just wouldn't have minded
being) reimbursed in Bitcoin instead of whatever currency Debian gave
them, particularly people who are getting payments in currencies other
than USD or EUR.

> So yes, even if we thought that Bitcoin was useful as a reimbursement
> means, we could buy them on the spot to send.

> Then we simply pay commission twice, once to sell, once to buy.

Yeah, and this still might be worth it if that's less than the currency
conversion loss, but it would be even better if we had BTC on hand.

> And with this ins mind, the effort involved, and the fact that we are
> not even facing this sort of problem right now, as Debian holds a
> whopping 0.1 BTC (in my hands), I think we could certainly say that
> Debian will hold up to 10 BTC (or make it 5, or 2, the actual number
> doesn't matter and can be amended) as a buffer and only sell/buy above
> that limit.

> I see this less as endorsement and more as liquidity.

Good point.

I do think it would be worthwhile at least gathering information where we
can on whether we would be able to use Bitcoin for reimbursements at any
scale.  We could start that any time -- it's common to survey people about
such things in advance of actually offering it.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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