Who runs Bitcoin? Could it turn off one day?

in cryptology we trust

So who runs Bitcoin anyway? Bitcoin is decentralized, no single person, country, or entity manages the Bitcoin infrastructure. The important parts of the Bitcoin infrastructure are:

1. The publicly shared ledger which tracks every single wallet containing every single Bitcoin there is (wallets are tracked but not their owner info). This isn’t on any one computer, it’s shared across all Bitcoin computers all over the world.
2. The Bitcoin clients like Bitcoin-qt and Blockchain.info where all Bitcoins are securely stored by their owners.
3. The miners or volunteers that run the Bitcoin software. The Bitcoin program no longer needs an admin or central authority. Without getting into too much detail, Bitcoin manages itself and is stable and reliable.

These entities all work together via the Internet to produce what is Bitcoin.


Could Bitcoin turn off one day?

This is an important question because a consumer requirement for wide spread adoption is long term stability. It’s also a hard question to answer. My short answer is it would be tough to kill Bitcoin at this point and even if the Internet went away or governments started to ban Bitcoin, it could still carry on. Look at the 3 items listed above, it would be pretty hard to completely wipe out one of those across the entire global Internet. And what if the Internet went away? That would be a significant event, but even so Bitcoin could exist on an alternate network. The fact is, there are now companies that focus 100% of their business on Bitcoin. They and many others have significant interest in Bitcoin’s continued prosperity, which is an important milestone for longevity.

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