Bitcointalk Accounts Are Being Bought and Sold

By
Rick Mac Gillis @ManWithNoBrows
September 23, 2014

Buying and selling accounts on the popular Bitcoin forum bitcointalk.org is not against the rules of the forum, but it could have social repercussions if someone tarnishes your good name. “SirWilliam” was laughed down by “hilariousandco,” a forum staff member, for speaking up about this dark corner of the usually ethical Bitcointalk.

Not everyone realizes that account sales are taking place, much less that Bitcointalk allows these sales to transpire.

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Bitcointalk Allows Account Sales

Consider what happens when someone buys your account. It’s not much different than someone who hacks into your account, and you don’t realize it. You’ve spent months, and maybe years building your account and lots of people on the board have seen your account. Perhaps they even know who you are. The new account holder happens to be a shyster who’s operating a business to steal people’s money through Bitcoin. Your once legitimate account where all of your friends kept in touch with you is now being used to tout an illegal operation as legitimate. Your friends think the account is still yours, and they send you a private message, but instead of it being you who receives the messages, the shyster receives them and replies with rhetoric. He’s able to convince your friends to use his service and steals their money, and your friends now despise you as they think you stole their money.

It’s frightening how much damage can occur when someone has complete control over your account. So, it’s very important to announce that your account is being sold so that people realize the account is no longer your account. Having several members quote your announcement that you’re selling your account will allow you to have something to point to if the buyer decides to remove your announcement and tarnish your good name. Be sure to tell all of your friends that your account is being sold before you sell it. The more public your announcement is, the lower the chances of a new account holder getting people to believe they’re you. Your account is your identity for the website. Treat it with care and if you sell your account, make sure you know who’s buying it.

Why do people buy Bitcointalk accounts?

The older the Bitcointalk account is, or the more well known, the more valuable the account becomes. People tend to listen to older accounts on Bitcointalk as they’ve been around a long time, and they have a standing in the community. A legitimate reason for buying an account would be if you’re starting a new legitimate business and you don’t want to get shouted down for being a “newbie.” Having an older account gives you that “special charm” that allows you to find more success in business. However, “hilariousandco” states that “99.9% of accounts sold [on BitcoinTalk] are done so for signature campaigns.”

How do you feel about the fact that BitcoinTalk allows people to buy and sell their BitcoinTalk accounts? Were you aware that BitcoinTalk permits account sales? Leave a comment below and express your views on this.

Disclosure: I own the “CozyLife” account on BitcoinTalk.org. If I sell it at the right price, I’ll be sure to keep everyone informed. Images from Shutterstock.

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