Bitcoin and the birth of the Internet have a lot in common if you are to believe several speculators and digital currency evangelists. While there are certain similarities to be drawn, Bitcoin is also vastly different sometimes, too. But it looks like Bitcoin and the Internet are now coming together in the form of a Bitcoin Internet Service Provider.
Not Your Traditional ISP
When the news was first announced, people immediately had high hopes and wild dreams about what this could mean, not just for Bitcoin, but also the Internet in general. And, while the concept of a Bitcoin Internet Service Provider sounds attractive, this is not your average ISP in any way.
A normal Internet Service Provider offers you a whole infrastructure in place, for which you pay a monthly fee in order to be able to use it to its full potential. Whether it is a fiber connection, dial-up or even internet via satellite, you don’t have to worry about any of the technical aspects, except for turning on the power.
The Bitcoin ISP, on the other hand, does none of that even though they do provide you with bare metal, a Linux distribution of your choice pre-installed, root and IPMI/KVM credentials. And that is pretty much it, as the rest is entirely up to you to figure out. Needless to say, this will not appear in the homes of people who are not [extremely] tech-savvy.
Furthermore, Bitcoin ISP offers no shares servers, no VPS capabilities, and no “cloud” infrastructure or service. The plan is simple: working exclusively with data centers and providers explicitly advertising their willingness and “street cred” of disobeying rules, laws, regulations. To sum it up, any bulletproof form of hosting or web service will be able to join the initiative.
In terms of support, Bitcoin ISP will be offering some assistance on a case-by-case basis, but it is not a service they will be offering around the clock. This allows for people to learn about and become experienced sysadmin themselves, or ask about hiring a sysadmin on a freelance basis. And for everything else, hop on to IRC and ask your questions in the #bitcoin-assets chatroom.
Illegal Activity Is Still Punishable By Law
All of the above sounds like a thrown-together mad scientist project, with total disregard for legal or illegal activities. Don’t be mistaken, as illegal activities will still be punishable by law. The main idea behind Bitcoin ISP is to bring internet control back to the people using it, instead of several governments around the world trying to build their own locked-down internet ecosystem.
Bitcoin ISP does not constitute an open-ended license for anyone to do whatever they like. Anything that is considered dubious as far as legality goes, you should really ask yourself whether this is such a good idea or not. In the end, you will take full responsibility for your actions, as there is no one to cover for you.
Last but not least, Bitcoin ISP plans to publish monthly statements in order to keep people informed about interest in the project and how things are evolving. Once the first report has been published at the end of May 2015, Bitcoin ISP will make arrangements to be listed on MPex [under the ticker S.BISP].
Images courtesy of Shutterstock