A blog about affiliate marketing, which is a form of selling products that are given away in exchange for visitors to your site. I want to talk about affiliate marketing because it’s an extremely effective way of making money online, but it’s also very complicated and you need to be careful or you’ll end up losing money instead of making it. People say affiliate marketing is easy once you’ve figured it out; but figuring out affiliate marketing isn’t at all the same thing as getting rich with it.
Crypto currencies have come to the attention of many, but most are still confused about what they are. In this blog I hope to explain all the essential points, in a way that will be clear and understandable even to beginners.
This article explains how crypto currencies work. It’s a bit technical – even for me! But every point is backed up by evidence from real-life use, which should make it easier to follow than my usual attempts at humor and satire.
In short, you can use crypto currencies to buy things you can’t get with ordinary money. And because the prices are set by market forces rather than central planners (and so can’t be manipulated), you don’t need to worry about stability.
Is it a good idea? That depends on who you ask…
In the late 1990s, the price of a popular new kind of stock had risen to about $100. The company’s CEO, for some reason, had chosen to announce that his shares were now worth $1,000. People were outraged.
“This is ridiculous,” they said. “Who would pay $100 for a computer chip? It can’t be worth that much.”
The stock lost its value in a few weeks to less than $5. The CEO blamed the whole thing on a misunderstanding, and said he would buy back all the stock at $5. That was good. The bad news was that he did not have any shares left to buy back, because he had sold them all in order to make himself richer more quickly. At least there was an explanation: the CEO was stupid and greedy and self-destructive; not something we would have expected otherwise.
That’s the story of Bitcoin — or “cryptocurrency,” as those who distrust it call it. It is designed to be money: a reliable store of value over time, like gold or silver; and money that can be transferred from one person to another without going through a bank or a government or a middleman like PayPal or credit card networks like Visa and MasterCard.
The price of a good or service changes all the time. The price of a cup of coffee varies with the time of day, the place you are in, and whether you are buying it to go or sit down with. The price of a hotel room varies depending on where you are staying and whether there is an extra bed, but also on what day of the week and what time of year you are travelling. The price of a house varies depending on where it is and how far away from the centre it is, how many bedrooms and bathrooms there are, how much maintenance it needs, and so on.
The prices for items sold by retailers also change all the time. These prices are not made up by each retailer independently, but rather by aggregating the prices that other retailers charge for similar items. So if you want something really cheap, you had better be careful which reseller you buy from; they might pay others to drop their prices too.
For most of history, people didn’t use money. Just about everything an adult needs to live was available in some kind of barter system. People traded services, or used whatever things they had in common, or hunted and fished together. It was a very rough-and-ready system, but it worked well enough for anything you needed for the day-to-day life of a hunter-gatherer.
It wasn’t until the invention of farming that money became necessary for trade. In place of barter, which depends on having something valuable to trade, it relies on having something valuable to acquire. It’s not strictly true that everything useful can be obtained by trading: some things will be more useful than others, and some things are never useful at all; but today almost nothing is useless except air.(1)
The traditional way of sharing information is to use a computer network, such as the Internet. In the old days, information was expensive because it had to be stored on computers. The cheapest way to share information was to print it out and hand it out, but then you were limited by the number of copies you could make in a given time period.
Then someone came up with the idea of connecting computers together in a network, so that if one computer had something valuable to say about some subject, you could get at least some of what it had by asking any other connected computer. That made sharing information much cheaper , and yet more of it could be shared simultaneously.
Soon after that, people began linking computers together so that they could exchange money for goods . This is now called “barter.” But then someone came up with the idea of using money itself as a kind of information instead of just recording ownership or transfer. This led to a new way of thinking about money: currency as a record of debts owed by one person or company to another person or company.
But then someone came up with an idea even more radical than this: not only record debts but create new debts electronically. And not only create new debts electronically but exchange those new debts electronically too, without