It has long been said that Bitcoin could be useful for certain transactions that currently have to deal with a large amount of friction. The online gambling industry is definitely one such market where there are plenty of blocks and holds on transactions, and it’s actually quite surprising that it took the big players this long to test out Bitcoin for the first time. Although 5Dimes currently is in the process of testing Bitcoin payments with a few select players, they should be able to rollout this new deposit method to the rest of their customers in the near future. There have been plenty of Bitcoin-centric sportsbooks in the past, but too many of them turned out to be nothing more than scams. This new entrance into the Bitcoin market by 5Dimes should help build more trust around the idea of using cryptocurrencies to place bets.
Attacking Legal Grey Areas
The main reason that it makes sense for sportsbooks and casinos to accept Bitcoin payments is that these kinds of online games operate in a legal grey area in certain jurisdictions around the world. There are plenty of countries, such as the United States, where the ban of online gambling is not enforced that severely. While setting up an online sportsbook in the United States would not be a good idea, legislators have found it difficult to prevent players from betting on sports via sportsbooks located in other countries. They’ve been able to slow down the process of betting with credit cards by way of recent legislation related to banking laws, and there was also the famous case of PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker having their accounts frozen. The United States Government ended up seizing the funds of players on those websites, which is something that would be impossible to do when the correct Bitcoin configuration is used.
Betting with Bitcoin?
Although 5Dimes plans to allow players to make deposits via Bitcoin, they are not going to allow players to place bets denominated in bitcoins at this time. This will not be a huge problem for most players because the large majority of online gamblers are still wary of the bitcoin’s volatile nature. Perhaps Bitcoin enthusiasts will be able to place bets in bitcoins after the volatility calms down a bit more. For what it’s worth, 5Dimes management has claimed that they will be happy to support Bitcoin betting if it is something a large number of their customers begin asking about over the next few months or years.
Proving Bitcoin’s Intrinsic Value
One last thing to note about this move from 5Dimes is that it basically proves one of the main points that Bitcoin evangelists have been talking about for years. At its core, Bitcoin is a censorship resistant payment mechanism. This is what gives the protocol and currency its intrinsic value, and it’s something that cannot be taken away by regulators or bad actors. The only other form of censorship resistant money is physical cash, but you can’t use cash on the Internet. This is a point that is also missed by people who think bitcoins need to be backed by dollars, gold, or any other kind of asset. Bitcoins are the only form of censorship resistant money on the Internet that does not require any counterparty risk. Those are the only two properties it needs to give it real value.