Peter Thiel: Bitcoin Payment System 'Badly Lacking'

Investor and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel has again expressed lukewarm views on bitcoin, saying it lacks a payment system.

Sep 12, 2014 at 5:08 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 11, 2021 at 11:09 a.m. UTC

Peter Thiel, the notable entrepreneur and Silicon Valley venture capitalist who co-founded PayPal, has expressed his dissatisfaction with the current volume of bitcoin payments, saying a payment system to surround its technological base is "badly lacking".

Thiel made the comments while participating in a Reddit AMA (ask-me-anything) earlier today, where several questioners asked his opinion on bitcoin and other digital currencies.

He responded:

"PayPal built a payment system but failed in its goal in creating a 'new world currency' (our slogan from back in 2000). Bitcoin seems to have created a new currency (at least on the level of speculation), but the payment system is badly lacking."

"I will become more bullish on Bitcoin when I see the payment volume of Bitcoin really increase."

Thiel did not respond to follow-up questions on the matter.

Person of interest

Given his anti-establishment political stance and past involvement with PayPal and hardcore libertarian projects like The Seasteading Institute, German-born Thiel has long been watched by the bitcoin community. As he noted himself, a key goal behind the original PayPal concept was to create an internet-based global currency.

His Founders Fund was also an early investor in BitPay, to the tune of $2m.

His views on bitcoin otherwise, however, have been lukewarm. While he appears to believe in its underlying principles, in 2013 he said bitcoin had a "20% chance of success".

Just a couple of months later he appeared more optimistic, telling a conference that bitcoin and encrypted money systems had the potential to change the world.

He said at the time:

“It is worth thinking about money as the bubble that never ends. There is this sort of potential that bitcoin could become this new phenomenon.”

He also noted that many of the arguments against bitcoin, including that its value was fake or the result of a bubble, also applied to the world's fiat currencies including the US dollar.

Image via Fortune Live Media / Flickr


Read more about
The Festival for the Decentralized World
Thursday - Sunday, June 9-12, 2022
Austin, Texas
Save a Seat Now

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

Trending

1
CoinDesk - Unknown
Regulators Are Paying Attention to UST

The collapse of terraUSD (UST) is algorithmic stablecoins’ Libra moment.

The collapse of terraUSD (UST) is algorithmic stablecoins’ Libra moment.

CoinDesk - Unknown
2
CoinDesk - Unknown
San Francisco NFL Player Alex Barrett Taking His Salary in Bitcoin

The most valuable crypto stories for Thursday, May 20, 2022.

The most valuable crypto stories for Thursday, May 20, 2022.

CoinDesk - Unknown
3
CoinDesk - Unknown
Justin Sun Still Thinks Algorithmic Stablecoins Are a Good Idea

The crypto mogul also said LUNA and UST might make good "meme coins," he said on CoinDesk TV’s “First Mover.”

The crypto mogul also said LUNA and UST might make good "meme coins," he said on CoinDesk TV’s “First Mover.”

CoinDesk - Unknown
4
CoinDesk - Unknown
Former BitMEX CEO Arthur Hayes Sentenced to 2 Years Probation

Hayes pleaded guilty to one count of violating the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) in February, and faced a sentence of up to 12 months in prison.

Hayes pleaded guilty to one count of violating the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) in February, and faced a sentence of up to 12 months in prison.

CoinDesk - Unknown