Are Digital Currencies, Crypto Currencies or Bitcoins, Money? Problem with being a store of Value. Part 3 of many

A BIG problem for Bitcoins to be called money is the store of value problem it has.. Even if we overlook all of the other risks and problems of using Bitcoins, a big problem is that over time the value is changing by large amounts. As an example, last December I setup an account with Coinbase and put in $50 USD in Bitcoin. I just checked right now and that $50USD in Bitcoin is now $20.81, for a loss of about 60% in a matter of months. Now, if prices had declined by the same amount, so the purchasing power of the original $50 was in line with prices, that might not be a problem. That has not happened so storing my $50 USD in Bitcoin is down 60%, not exactly what anyone would expect when they ‘stored’ money, in any form, for a while. One of the arguments in favor of Bitcoin is that Bitcoin avoids transaction fees and currency exchange costs, but that sort of does not work, since in this example I lost 60% to avoid a few percent in transaction fees or currency exchange costs.

Hopefully, the problem of having Bitcoins as a store of value will fix itself as there are more in circulation and the prices of the coins become less volatile when compared with other store of value and forms of money, like USD. The amount of volatility that Bitcoin should have when compared to USD should be something like interest rates and/or the real rate of inflation. Most of the recent changes in price for Bitcoins all seems to be driven by speculation, first on the spike up as speculators piled into Bitcoins as they price rose, and now on crash as people panicked and got out of Bitcoins as the prices fell, just like the crowds do in any boom and bust cycle with all market frenzies.

Louis J. Desy Jr.
Thursday, August 23, 2018

Comic Book Sales – Iceman as of 12/17/2017

As a followup to Just Some Guy video about the Iceman comic book series
( Dear SJW Marvel: Why Does Iceman #3 exist? )

I took a look at the sales as reported by Comiccron for Iceman.

In summary, what I have found, is that the sales look like that after only a few issues are below the 15,000 copies per issue, where it is rumored that Marvel would cancel a series.

Here is a chart and graph of the sales as reported by

(Change is change from prior issue)

Chart of sales through issue #6

While the most recent issue for which sales are available, issue #6, do show a large jump, almost back to the initial first issue, it looks like there was some kind of special promotion that may explain that jump in copies. If this is correct, then when sales for the next few issues are reported, I would expect sales to resume their decline as though the promotion never happened. The one good thing, that a quick look at the numbers seem to show, is that the rate of decline seemed to be starting to ‘level off’ with issue #5, and it looks like the series should be be able to hold at or above 12,000 copies. The only problem is that this would be 3,000 below the rumored Marvel cancellation level of 15,000 copies for a series.

Based upon how it looks like the decline in sales is half as what is was in a prior month, here are my projections for the decline in subsequent sales of the series:

Projected Iceman sales for issue #7 through #12 as of 12/17/2017

There may be disruption in the decline trend due to the large jump in issue #6, but I expect that over time that reported sales by Comicron would revert to near this trend.

I will try to update this data as new sales are reported.

Agree or Disagree, Like or Dislike, I look forward to the discussion about comic book sales and its effects on stores and the industry as a whole.

Good Luck and Take care,
Louis J. Desy Jr.
Sunday, December 17, 2017

UPDATE on Friday, December 29, 2017:

sales update:
Iceman #7 12,677 November 2017 Comic Book Sales to Comics Shops

Apparently, Iceman is being canceled as of March 2018:
And Now Iceman is Confirmed Canceled Too

Are Digital Currencies, Crypto Currencies or Bitcoins, Money? Part 2 of many

In the previous, first part, we discussed, “What is Money”. In this discussion we will compare money to Digital Currencies and whether or not they can be considered money. My short answer is that Digital Currencies are a form of money but are still forming and hopefully becoming less volatile in terms of value for transactions.

As a review for something to be considered money it has to be or have:
1: Medium of Exchange
2: Unit of Account
3: Store of Value
4: Sometimes a standard of deferred payment.

So the question is, do Digital Currencies have all of these elements, and are thus a form of money?

1: Medium of Exchange – Digital Currencies have exchanges that allow one to exchange them with other people, either in typical United States Dollars or even to transfer BlockChains from one person to another in exchange for goods or services. So Digital Currencies can be used as a Medium of Exchange.

2: Unit of Account – Digital Currencies do have a Unit of Account in that one can talk about or refer to them in whole units or parts, and convert them into other mediums of exchange. One of the more common exchanges where this is done is ( ) Here people can setup an account and exchange other forms of money for various Digital Currencies.

3: Store of Value – Digital Currency can store value for use immediately or for use at a time in the future.

4: Standard of Deferred Payment – Digital Currencies can be last a long time, as long as proper care is taken with the BlockChain used to store the item. The BlockChains can be stored on a computer or online with an exchange for later use.

The main ‘problem’ I see with any of the uses of Digital Currencies as money is with the large recent run up in the prices of some Digital Currencies, the value of them is very volatile. From what I am able to tell, most of the run up is due to a large number of people piling into Digital Currencies all at once, and thereby driving the price of them up overall. This is not a good thing for the long term use of Digital Currency since no one would want to pay out for anything for a currency that was going to rise a lot more in the future.

As an example of this volatility problem, the first purchase made with a digital currency was a pizza for 10,000 BitCoins back on May 22, 2010.

The First-Ever Bitcoin Purchase Was Remarkably Inglorious:

Citing to:
BitBeat: Happy Bitcoin Pizza Day!

The short story is that a programmer, Laszlo Hanyecz, in Florida put out a message online offering to exchange some Bitcoins for a pizza. A while later another programmer in England saw the message. They agreed to exchange 10,000 Bitcoins for two pizzas. The programmer in Britian then used his credit card to make the purchase of the two pizzas from a Papa Johns and have then delivered. According to an account of the story the delivery person was ‘confused’ as to how and why someone in England would be arranging a delivery of pizza to someone in Florida; however this was the first know Digital Currency transaction. One part that is interesting is that at that time there was not much, if any market for using Digital Currency as money, since this is the first know transaction of Digital Currency, but both programmers apparently felt that 10,000 Bitcoins were an acceptable trade for two pizzas.

Louis J. Desy Jr.
Saturday, December 16, 2017

Digital Currencies, Crypto Currencies and Bitcoin – Part 1 of many – What is money?

The first part of looking at Digital currencies, Crypto Currencies or Bitcoin, is to define, “What is money”; since we need to decide and agree what is money before we can discuss if Digital Currencies, Crypto Currencies and Bitcoin are money or not.

First, a definition of money from Wikipedia:
“Money is any item or verifiable record that is generally accepted as payment for goods and services and repayment of debts in a particular country or socio-economic context.[1][2][3] The main functions of money are distinguished as: a medium of exchange; a unit of account; a store of value; and, sometimes, a standard of deferred payment.[4][5] Any item or verifiable record that fulfills these functions can be considered as money.”
Which further cites to:
4. Mankiw, N. Gregory (2007). “2”. Macroeconomics(6th ed.). New York: Worth Publishers. pp. 22–32. ISBN 0-7167-6213-7.
5^ Jump up to:a b c T.H. Greco. Money: Understanding and Creating Alternatives to Legal Tender, White River Junction, Vt: Chelsea Green Publishing (2001). ISBN 1-890132-37-3

So, for something to be considered money it has to be or have:
1: Medium of Exchange
2: Unit of Account
3: Store of Value
4: Sometimes a standard of deferred payment.

What are each of these things?

1: Medium of Exchange – The item or record is used instead of barter. Without money the only way to get or exchange goods would be by barter where you would exchange something you had for another item from someone else. The main problem with any barter system is that it only works or trades can be done where there is a “coincidence of wants”; i.e. I want what you have and you want what I have, so we can make an exchange. One top of that there is still the problem of quantities or amounts under a barter system.
Example: I have a used car and a famer has vegetables. The farmer wants my used car and I want some of the food, so we can make a barter exchange. The problem is amounts. The used car is probably worth a lot more than the food in small quantities, so unless I am willing to take large amounts of foods, and have the ability to transport and store the food, we still have a problem as to how to make the exchange. While we can introduce another party to the exchange where I take the large amounts of food in exchange for the car and another person does a barter exchange with me for the amounts of food I do not want, we are making the trade more complex and difficult to arrange a complete transaction.
With money, the farmer just gives me the agreed amount and then I can parcel out said funds as I see fit, or even save them for later use.

2: Unit of Account – With money it is easy to tell ‘how much you have’, you just total up the units of money and the value. Here in the United States one would normally talk in terms of United States Dollars (USD) when discussing how much money something was or how much they had. With a barter system, things have a value depending on how many of other items are wanted or needed and there is no clear unit of account to compare across items.
Example: In my earlier examples of a used car, how would one describe or talk about its value or unit of account? With the farmer, he would describe it in terms of how much food he was offering to exchange it for, but when comparing his offer to other offers, how would they compare. As an add on to the original example, lets say there was another buyer for the used car, a carpenter; he offers 100 hours of his labor on house repairs in exchange for the used car. At the same time the farmer offers 100 cases of 8 x 15oz cans of corn. Which is a better deal? How does one compare to the other in terms of what is offered? With money assigned to each, it is easy to make the comparison. Without money, it is hard to know which would be a better deal or how to value barter exchanges.

3: Store of Value – Money needs to be able to be stored for use later. An item or record that could not be stored or saved until later would not be useful for money since it would need to be used or exchanged immediately in order to avoid losing it. Most forms of money last a somewhat long time, even paper currency since those are usually made of some material that will last a while. One example is the United States Dollar. Even though most people talk about dollars being “printed on paper”, it is really printed on a material of linen and cotton. The typical printed USD can last, on average, 5.9 years. ( )

4: Standard of Deferred Payment – This means that money is the preferred way or allowed way to pay a debt. The reason this would be one of the elements of what money is, is that no lender would want to have a payments made on a loan they made in money that was or had lost value.

Agree or Disagree, Like or Dislike, I look forward to the discussion about Digital Currencies.

Louis J. Desy Jr.
Saturday, December 16, 2017

#ComicGate and comic book sales

In my looking around at various web sites and YouTube videos, I came across the term ‘ComicGate’ recently. While there was a video a few months ago that I viewed that talked about the comic book industry ‘inching its way towards its own comic gate’ ( The Comic Book Industry is Inching Its Way to Its Own Gamergate By Just Some Guy, published Aug 08, 2017 ) The term ComicGate or #ComicGate I assume is a reference to the #GamerGate of a few years ago.

There is definitely a problem with comic book sales, especially with the fact that even years after the 2008/2009 financial crisis has been over, for about a decade now, numerous comic book stores continue to close. Over a number of years I have compiled reports on comic book store closings which I sent out to a few people; friends that worked their own stores, in the industry or are interested in the industry.

From my viewing of the reports over time, what I have found alarming is that stores that survived the 2008/2009 financial crisis, and the Borders closing in 2011, do not appear to be ok or financially stable. I would have normally expected that those stores were now safe or ok, in that the economy and industry was back to a more normal state where a store should be able to stay in business without any serious problems.

Instead, what I have seen, and reported on in the subsequent years is that a number of stores are on the edge financially and either end up closing once they get to the end of their lease and/or the owner retires and is unable to sell the store as a going business because it is not making any money. In a few cases, the store ends up ‘financially imploding’ where the store is evicted from its retail space.

While I have looked at this years sales numbers, and I do see some declines in sales, my initial looking at the numbers do not seem to show the decline as huge, but does show a decline on top of a decline on top of years of declines.

While I do think that the changes in many comic book series are contributing to these declines and these additional declines in sales is pushing a number of comic book stores ‘over the edge and into a financial abyss’, causing them to close. (i.e. The stores are so close to not being able to stay open that an additional decline cause by changes in a number of comic book series causes the store to close.)

In the coming days I am going to look at the comic book sales numbers and see if a simply charting of total dollars and total units shows anything of interest.

After that I think an ecometrics look at the numbers would be interesting to see if the recent declines are all due to changes in a number of comic book series or if something else, such as a downturn in the economy, could explain the changes or if it is a combination of factors, all of which are working together to cause the declines.

One big advantage of an ecometrics look at the numbers is that a properly done multivariable look would give us an idea as to how much each factor is helping or hurting sales and how the factors relate to each other.

Why would the or a competent man would be interested in this topic? The reason I would put forth, is that if there is some kind of #ComicGate going on, or about to start, is that it would be an interesting study in if a business or an industry would be able to correct sales declines or, if a number of critics of the comic book industry are correct, that an ideology and feelings of a group of people is now allowed to override facts and logic; and in the process destroy an entire industry.

Agree or Disagree, Like or Dislike, I look forward to the discussion about comic book sales and its effects on stores and the industry as a whole.

Good Luck and Take care,
Louis J. Desy Jr.
Sunday, December 10, 2017

Virtual Private Server (VPS) setup and working for web site

This past weekend, on Sunday, October 15, while I was at my sister’s house, I decided to purchase a Virtual Private Server (VPS) and migrate from a shared hosting plan to a VPS plan.

The advantage is that instead of sharing resources with other web sites, I will have my own Virtual Private Server with its own dedicated resources.

The big items, that I think were slowing down the site when on a shared plan, was that according to a reverse IP lookup, the shared IP address for my web site was being shared with over 2,000 other web sites.

Now, on a VPS, only the sites I setup are on the IP address, of which at the moment is only one.

There was some confusion since the files did migrate, but the site was still on the shared hosting package, so the web site was running, but the files on the VPS were not what was showing, it was my shared hosting package.

Around Tuesday at noon I started to realize that something seemed wrong, and cancelled the shared hosting package, at which point the web site went offline because I had not setup the DNS on my VPS.

The DNS is where you setup the IP to where everyone’s traffic is directed when they type in the IP name, plus tells the server what IP address to associate with the domain name (the name that ends with a .com usually.)

It took me a few days to figure out how to get the cpanel working, the DNS working, and them correctly modify what they call the A record in the DNS entries.

It was somewhat of a surprised and relief when it all of a sudden started working, since even with the correct DNS entires, sometimes it can take as long as 24 hours for the changes to make it across the Internet.

Louis J. Desy Jr.