Ground Reports Concerning Salvadoran Bitcoin Law Highlight False Narrative Painted by Influencers – Interview Bitcoin News

On Tuesday, News spoke with Marc Falzon, a person who has been documenting the bitcoin rollout in El Salvador for the reason that legislation was carried out on September 7. Falzon says that there are a selection of points that nobody is speaking about in regard to the bitcoin legislation and the Chivo pockets, a government-crafted bitcoin pockets. One particular difficulty is the truth that Chivo pockets customers can not spend lower than $5 when utilizing the app.

Marc Falzon: Reporting on the Bitcoin Situation in El Salvador from the Ground

On September 7, 2021, El Salvador carried out the bitcoin tender legislation and now each bitcoin (BTC) and the U.S. greenback are authorized currencies within the nation. There’s been plenty of controversy surrounding the rollout and one survey shows {that a} majority of Salvadorans weren’t content material with the brand new legislation. There was even a street protest and Salvadoran residents took to the streets to object towards the brand new legislation. Marc Falzon recorded a protest on his drone and when he uploaded the recording to social media, a bitcoin influencer from El Salvador reposted the video and stated it was misinformation.

Interestingly, when News revealed the put up in regards to the protest, commenters stated the identical factor. Our information desk was informed that the protest was a small handful of folks that didn’t quantity to something related. Falzon stated that he additionally uploaded a few of his findings to the Reddit discussion board r/bitcoin and the put up was flagged. Subsequently, Falzon was additionally banned from r/bitcoin, though he managed to get reinstated. The r/bitcoin mods complained that the put up was “misleading” and Falzon has been getting plenty of flak for his reporting.

Falzon’s reporting has been getting plenty of consideration and his videos have been getting flak from so-called bitcoin influencers. Local media has covered Falzon’s findings and his perspective has been shared throughout varied social media channels. Despite the criticism from some crypto supporters, there are people who consider his reporting has been 100% objective and on point.

Chivo Wallet Does Not Process Transactions $5 and Under, Bitcoin Influencers Create False Narrative

Speaking with Falzon on Tuesday, he defined that the scenario is so dangerous it might depart a nasty style in Salvadorans in regard to cryptocurrencies on the whole. While some folks consider that regardless of the preliminary issues and forcing the forex on Salvadorans, the top end result will produce a silver lining, Falzon will not be so positive. At the second the problems will not be sustainable for individuals who wish to leverage microtransactions below $5 and his testing reveals the Lightning Network characteristic on the Chivo pockets is dropping transactions.

Misinformation, Falzon says, is stemming from the favored bitcoin influencers who’re portray a shiny and synthetic narrative of how issues have been going. There have been issues and influencers are performing as if the whole lot works nice whereas shopping for objects from chains like McDonald’s and Starbucks. News requested Falzon concerning the points with microtransactions, as spending small increments of cash is important to purchase meals and issues like espresso.

“Right now in El Salvador any transaction (using the Chivo wallet) under the amount of five U.S. dollars is being blocked,” Falzon informed News. “There was never any mention of that when the [bitcoin tender] act came out. In fact, they said in the commercial promoting Chivo wallet, to the population here, that people would be able to buy everything. But during the initial launch, people are not able to make any microtransactions.” Falzon added:

Today is day six, and so they [Chivo wallet] simply introduced that they’ll in some unspecified time in the future, decrease the minimal threshold to a single penny. So it looks as if will probably be a short lived downside.

Lightning Network Transactions Lost, Businesses Worried

When requested if this was the case for each onchain bitcoin (BTC) transactions and the Lighting Network, Marc stated: “Excellent question and that’s just something we don’t have an answer to right now.” News then requested if Lighting Network transactions had been accessible in any respect.

“That’s a complicated question and let me explain why. So in theory, yes, you can use Lightning for amounts over $5,” Falzon remarked. “However, in my testing, Lightning Network transactions at this time are being lost. To give you a specific example, in one of my videos I have a friend who is a local here send me $10 via Lightning Network to my wallet. That transaction was six days ago, that money still has not arrived in my wallet. Now what makes this scary is that the money has been deducted from my friend’s balance. So in his app, it shows he sent the money.”

“To make matters even worse, in the Chivo wallet app there’s no way to see any information about the transaction,” Falzon continued. “One of the really big problems is that it’s not affecting me but that it’s affecting supermarkets and restaurants. To give you a specific example there’s a health food market near me and the owner is friends with all the owners of other supermarkets. She said that the other markets are worried because they have transactions sent in that are not showing up. So do you just let the customer just walk out of the store? By law, they need to accept the bitcoin transaction.”

Bitcoin Acceptance by Salvadoran Merchants Is Not Optional Unless They Don’t Have Technical Infrastructure

On August 24, News reported on the Salvadoran president Nayib Bukele promising that the bitcoin legislation wouldn’t be pressured on residents. Falzon says in some methods, Bukele’s statements are right however in different cases, it isn’t true. “The president has said that bitcoin here in El Salvador was optional and that the Chivo app is also optional,” Falzon relayed. “However, that is actually not true. The president is correct that individuals can choose not to use the Chivo app. Like when they buy things they can use cash. They don’t have to use the Chivo app to use Lightning.” Falzon additional added:

However, retailers, retailer house owners, enterprise folks, mother and pop outlets, should settle for bitcoin from the Chivo app. If the client is available in and so they wish to purchase one thing with the Chivo app, the service provider should settle for it. For retailers acceptance is obligatory, and subsequently the Chivo app is obligatory.

“The way that the law is written, article seven says that all merchants must accept bitcoin by law, with the threat of force, you must do it,” Falzon emphasised in his statements on the telephone. “However, article twelve in the law, says that merchants who are not currently able to be equipped as far as technology to accept the payment will not have to accept bitcoin until they have been properly equipped. About half the residents in El Salvador do not have an internet connection. For these people, from what I understand, they will not have issues with the government if they don’t accept it. Unless they are equipped to accept it.”

Although Falzon stated that some small companies do have the aptitude so as to add the expertise and they’d be pressured to just accept bitcoin. “Some small business owners do have the technology, they do have mobile phones,” Falzon burdened. “These business owners would no longer fall under article twelve. Article twelve doesn’t mean you have a choice not to accept it, it means that you have a little more time before you have to. If you have the technology then you fall under article seven.” The cryptocurrency advocate continued:

For most individuals it’s not a loophole, most individuals are simply not accepting it right here, interval. They simply say no. The solely locations that I’ve discovered that settle for bitcoin proper now, are massive chains similar to McDonalds, Starbucks, all of the stuff that you’d see from influencers. But the person outlets that I’ve seen which might be outfitted and I’ve provided to pay in bitcoin, they simply say no. They don’t give a motive, they simply say no.

Bitcoin Law Is ‘Encouraging Traditional Centralized Banking as It Has Always Been’

What’s even worse is that Falzon says many retailers are turning to an software crafted by the most important financial institution in El Salvador known as Banco Agrícola. Instead of selling a peer-to-peer digital money system, these Salvadoran retailers are dealing with bitcoin briefly as they virtually instantly get a fiat alternative for the bitcoin they settle for.

“The sad part about this is that the supermarkets and the business owners are getting an app called Wompi,” Falzon concluded. “What the Wompi app does is that it lets merchants accept bitcoin and it immediately converts it into USD and puts it in the merchant’s bank account. As if I paid in fiat. Businesses are using this app, to get around article seven,” Falzon highlighted. His findings present that the antiquated and centralized system of the previous nonetheless stays absolutely useful.

“What’s sad is that the Wompi app is made by the largest banking institution, Banco Agrícola S.A. (Banco Agrícola),” Falzon stated. “Banco Agrícola developed the app. So basically, the situation that we have down here is [bitcoin is] not only not being used as a currency but it’s encouraging traditional centralized banking as it has always been.”

What do you concentrate on Marc Falzon’s findings and the scenario in El Salvador? Do you agree along with his evaluation of the scenario? Let us know what you concentrate on this topic within the feedback part beneath.

Tags on this story
Article Seven, Article Twelve, Banco Agrícola, Banco Agrícola fiat app, Bitcoin, Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Act, Bitcoin Influencers, Bitcoin Tender Law, BTC, BTC influencers, Chivo ATMS, chivo wallet, Chivo Wallet Issues, El Salvador, Ground Reporting, interview, Law, Lighting Network, Marc Falzon, Marc Falzon findings, Marc Falzon investigation, Microtransactions, Nayib Bukele, onchain transactions, Salvadoran President, Salvadorans

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