Bitcoin Maximalism, Entrepreneurs and COVID-19 in Zimbabwe (Part 5 of a Six-Part Documentary Podcast Series)

On this episode, we'll join Anita Posch in Zimbabwe as she speaks with Tongayi Choto, a software developer, entrepreneur and a bitcoin maximalist.

Apr 16, 2020 at 1:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 8:29 a.m. UTC

On this episode, we'll join Anita Posch in Zimbabwe as she speaks with Tongayi Choto, a software developer, entrepreneur and bitcoin maximalist.

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In part 5 of this six-part documentary podcast series, Anita goes deep with Tongayi, who founded Afriblocks, a Global Pan-African Freelance platform connecting professionals around the world. They talk about the problems young Zimbabweans are facing and Tongayi's approach to make lives better. Later, Anita answers listener questions about the current use of bitcoin, other methods of payment in Zimbabwe and more.

Topics:

  • Africa: High potential, but not enough opportunities
  • Pan-African Freelance network
  • Payments in cryptocurrencies
  • The use of smart contracts for releasing funds
  • Scams like MMM, Onecoin, bitclub
  • The Volatility of bitcoin being a huge problem for poor people
  • The impact of the Lightning Network in Africa
  • Internet bundles

Listener questions:

  • What is preventing widespread usage of bitcoin? Tech? Awareness? Laws? Working, cheap alternatives (Ecocash)? Fees?
  • Are there bitcoin OGs in the community and if so are they still actively supporting the newcomers?
  • Not sure if M-Pesa is available in Zimbabwe/Botswana. But if so, why would anybody use bitcoin instead of already available digital payment solutions such as M-Pesa?
  • Did you hear anything about http://beforward.jp and bitcoin?
  • I am interested [in] how well people understand if their own governments money is good money for them (in terms of purchasing power, inflation etc). What share of people, in your impression (sic), are asking themselves this question in these countries?
  • Are Zimbabweans living overseas using bitcoin for remittances? If so, how does this channel work? How do bitcoin remittances compare to alternatives like Western Union?

A note from Anita:

This podcast special and my trip to Africa would not have been possible without my sponsors and supporters. I want to thank my sponsors first: Thank you: LocalBitcoins.com a person-to-person bitcoin trading site, Peter McCormack and the whatbitcoindid podcast, Coinfinity and the Card WalletSHIFT Cryptosecurity, manufacturer of the hardware wallet BitBox02 and many thanks to several unknown private donors, who sent me Satoshis over the Lightning Network.

This special is edited by CoinDesk’s Podcasts Editor Adam B. Levine and published first on the CoinDesk Podcast Network. Thank you very much for supporting the Bitcoin in Africa series with your work. Thanks go out also to stakwork.com - stakwork is a great project that brings bitcoin into the world through earning.

One can do microjobs on stakwork, earning satoshis and cash them out without even having an understanding about the lightning network or bitcoin. I think we need more projects like that to spread the usage of bitcoin around the world. Thank you also to GoTenna, for donating several GoTenna devices to set up a mesh network in Zimbabwe and to Team Satoshi, the decentralized sports team for supporting my work. This special is also brought to you by the Let's Talk Bitcoin Network.

Front page photograph provided by Martina Gruber Photography

Listen/subscribe to the CoinDesk Podcast feed for unique perspectives and fresh daily insight with Apple PodcastsSpotifyPocketcastsGoogle PodcastsCastboxStitcherRadioPublicaIHeartRadio or RSS.

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