It's been a strange couple weeks in the realm of Bitcoin, the cryptocurrency that defies government regulation. The first US Bitcoin ATMs went into service, popular exchange Mt. Gox seized up, and Joe Manchin, a Democratic senator representing West Virginia, called for a US ban on Bitcoin.
In a letter sent to the Treasury Department and other federal regulators, the senator characterized Bitcoin as "highly unstable and disruptive to our economy." He calls for a complete ban in the US. The letter is more about drawing attention to Manchin's view of the issue, rather than anything that will result in regulatory action.
The recent incident with Mt. Gox has brought up questions about the safety and reliability of Bitcoin, but it's far from a knife in the heart of the cryptocurrency. It does have a famously fluctuating value. CNET's Crave writers have lost a little money on Bitcoin recently. I sent $20 into a Bitcoin kiosk, and it's now worth just over $16. Crave's Eric Mack lost about $2 in the Mt. Gox failure. Instability aside, I'm not rushing to spend my small Bitcoin stash, but I'm also not sinking any more money into it.
Not everyone is a Bitcoin fan, but not everyone is calling for a ban like Manchin. Does his idea make sense to you, or are you against banning Bitcoin? Vote in our poll and share your Bitcoin experience in the comments.