Why Motherboard Is Capitalizing ‘Bitcoin’ Again

  • In 2015, we elected to capitalize Bitcoin when talking about the system or protocol, and lowercase denominations of the currency: So, “I love Bitcoin, and I own many bitcoins.”
  • From here on out, we will capitalize cryptocurrencies when referring to the protocol or system—Bitcoin, Ethereum, Monero, etc.—but lowercase the denominations: “I love Ethereum and own a lot of ether.”
  • Bitcoin, for example, recently split off into two separate versions with nearly identical code and, most importantly, an identical transaction history up until the time of the split.
  • With this newly introduced confusion, our previous capitalization policy thrust us into the realm of value judgements: Should the new version of Bitcoin, called Bitcoin Cash, be capitalized when Bitcoin proper is not?
  • With yet another Bitcoin split on the way in November, it’s clear that the Bitcoin protocol (and community) is not as monolithic as we had presumed, and at the moment it’s not as resilient as other technologies we de-capitalize, like the internet.

A story about normalizing technology.
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