Bitcoin has always been a very volatile currency.
Its value is subject to dramatic rises and falls, and this has always worked against it, discouraging investors.
In recent times the value has been declining steadily, even as transactions using it increase.
However, while its value has greatly decreased, Bitcoin still stands a monstrous giant above the other cryptocurrencies which were created in frenzy over the last few years.
Back in March, Reddit announced the end of RedditCoin, and sacked the manager they had placed in charge of it.
As was reported by Vocativ, this spoke of the further woes faced by bitcoin’s younger siblings.
These lesser currencies were created in the hope that they could reach the heights that bitcoin was striving towards; however, none of them ever really took off.
Now the minable cryptocurrency that comes second behind bitcoin, Litecoin, is worth just 0.01BTC.
Dogecoin, which makes the top 5, albeit in last place, is worth just 0.000001BTC.
So why have all the altcoins been dying? The answer can actually be put quite simply: Currencies only have the value that people are willing to give it.
In other words, unless a lot of people are using the currency it won’t ever be worth very much.
Bitcoin was a novelty and took off because of this, and because of the fact that it could be used for anonymous transactions on the Dark Net.
The altcoins were created to try and copy Bitcoin’s success. As Reddit user melarina put it:
“Most altcoins are worthless. They are copies of Bitcoin and use Bitcoin source code (often via Litecoin or Peercoin) with a few tweaks and some new artwork. Most of these coins have no chance of ever being successful. They only exist to make their developers (and miners) rich. Several new coins along these lines emerge every day yet the pool of potential buyers on exchanges is not expanding at the same rate, in fact, it’s probably shrinking. Less demand and greater supply lead to lower prices.”
The decline in value of Bitcoin can be reasonably blamed on the drastic increase of mining operations in China at the moment.
As Bitcoins appear more rapidly, each one is worth a small bit less.
However, we know that there are a finite number of Bitcoins, and therefore as the total number of bitcoins remaining decreases towards 0, the time between discoveries of the correct codes vastly increases.
So long as Bitcoin remains in use it is safe. As for its siblings, the future is much more bleak.