The Difference Between Bitcoin and Gold

Published on
July 18th, 2019
8 minutes

The Difference Between Bitcoin and Gold

Gold ·
Featuring Roy Sebag

Published on: July 18th, 2019 • Duration: 8 minutes

Roy Sebag, CEO of GoldMoney, talks with Stephan Spears of McEwen Mining about the difference between gold exploration and bitcoin mining. He explains why the differences between the two processes are important for users and investors alike. This clip is excerpted from a video published on Real Vision on July 3, 2019 entitled "No, Don't 'Drop Gold.'"



  • KT
    Kai T.
    17 February 2020 @ 02:02
    Even though I don't agree with his argument, it was about as strong as I could make it if I was to steelman it. Well done. It occurs to me there needs to be two sets of thumbs - one for 'do I agree or not', and another of 'this was done well'.
  • FR
    Frank R.
    22 October 2019 @ 06:42
    I'm glad you agree that we are not going to get into non-sequiturs, suspension of laws of physics debate, so with that being said the difference between Bitcoin and Gold is that in the current state of affairs Bitcoin is simply better Gold than Gold. All this talk about miners perpetuating the existence of the network to the future is irrelevant. Gold virtually has one purpose, it's used for economic calculation that's why the majority, about 90%, is stored in vaults. It facilitates the economic coordination between parties that otherwise would not cooperate. It allows society to function, therefore the cost of mining, moving, and storing gold is well worth it because of the security it provides in the global economy. That's why we spend all that money and time to dig it out of the ground. It was the best asset to perform this task because it is the most scare asset we had until Bitcoin. Bitcoin is now the most scare asset we have. Economic stability is the most valuable thing we can spend our energy on because, without it, our societies would break down. Bitcoin is better suited to perform this economic calculation becuase its more scarce than Gold. So regarding energy, it's not taking away from society's resources, society would not function if we did not have a scare resource like gold and the better gold, bitcoin. Therefore nothing could be more important than securing the stability of our economy. So the cost of mining, securing the Bitcoin network, and transaction fees are well worth it and more important than any other function in society. Bitcoin does not waste energy, it provides us with the most important foundation for our society, economic stability. Read Bitcoin Does Not Waste Energy on Unchained Capital for a complete better break down on this.
  • RH
    Robert H.
    9 August 2019 @ 13:27
    I fully appreciate the energy system comparison, entropy, Mr. Sebag uses. It is undeniable. For governments to relinquish power to uncontrollable currencies at a time they seek control is doubt-able. The most important global take away, in another interview, he used "Lego" within his analogy in the plural "Lego's". If there is anything that makes a die-hard fan of Lego cringe, it is the use of the word "Lego's". Please correct. Without getting into the grammatical correctness, which I'm sure most understand, this is truly the most important issue of today. If not corrected, the next world war will be fought for those who truly run the world, we, our sons and daughters and future generations that build with "Lego."
  • CB
    Curt B.
    1 August 2019 @ 01:39
    The interviewer did most of the talking here
  • ls
    lucas s.
    22 July 2019 @ 12:00
    it doesn't have to be mutually exclusive, own both.
  • AL
    Alain L.
    20 July 2019 @ 19:13
    kind of silly. None of that matters! We are talking about VHS vs betaMAX. You can talk about betaMAX (or VHS) all you want. But it just doesn't matter. You can talk until you are blue in the face. It does NOT matter!! Bitcoin has already proved to be a viable alternative. By "viable alternative", I mean something that objectively does the job (store/transfer value -though admittedly hyper volatile and risky) AND people are willing to put billions of dollars into it. People see the value proposition of BTC. Silk road doesn't happen with gold!! Bitcoin offers value (ie silk road and more) beyond what can be achieved with Gold. We can sit here and talk philosophy and economics all we want. I know plenty. Rationally speaking, Bitcoin is already beyond academic talk. Meaning, whatever theory you think exists that necessarily dictates the death of Bitcoin needs to sleep with the fishes! From the Austrian viewpoint/perspective, none exist (at least that I'm aware of). All that is left is for the market to decide on VHS vs betaMAX. on Crypto vs Gold. I tend to think both will survive. In fact, I think eventually, after the legacy system is brought down, Gold will grow beyond the 8T market cap it has today. But the legacy system (government's control of money) needs to be dismantled first. Gold can't do that. Crypto can (I hope)! At the end of the day, all that needs to be recognized is that Crypto is not a fad. It is not Beenie babies. Crypto does the job! Now the market will decide! Mind boggling how some Austrian econs (ie p.Schiff) cannot grasp this. Let it go. Its been ten years. Crypto is here to stay. It will have Trillion+ market cap.
  • GF
    Gordon F.
    19 July 2019 @ 00:11
    Both gold and bitcoin can be considered as insurance against a fiat-currency system. Arguing that one or the other is better is really kind of pointless, in my opinion. Future events may reveal one as better than the other but it's wide open for debate at this moment. Gold and bitcoin have different strengths and weaknesses, and I hold some of both, although the gold currently outweighs the bitcoin. The really HARD question, in either case, is deciding when to sell, as either can become way overpriced, but I'm pretty sure that's a lot higher than current prices.

Mark Yusko

Morgan Creek Capital Management, Co- Founder, CEO, & CIO

Mark Yuskois the Founder, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Morgan Creek Capital Management. He is also the Managing Partner of Morgan Creek Digital Assets. Morgan Creek Capital Management was founded in 2004 and currently manages close to $2 billion in discretionary and non-discretionary assets. Prior to founding Morgan Creek, Mr. Yusko was CIO and Founder of UNC Management Company (UNCMC), the Endowment investment office for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Before that, he was Senior Investment Director for the University of Notre Dame Investment Office.Mr. Yusko has been at the forefront of institutional investing throughout his career. An early investor in alternative asset classes at Notre Dame, he brought the Endowment Model of investing to UNC, which contributed to significant performance gains for the Endowment. The Endowment Model is the cornerstone philosophy of Morgan Creek, as is the mandate to Invest in Innovation. Mr. Yusko is again at the forefront of investing through Morgan Creek Digital Assets, which was formed in 2018. Morgan Creek Digital is an early stage investor in blockchain technology, digital currency and digital assets through the firm’s Venture Capital and Digital Asset Index Fund.Mr. Yusko received a BA with Honors from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA in Accounting and Finance from the University of Chicago.

Anthony Scaramucci

SkyBridge Capital, Founder & Co-Managing Partner

Prior to founding SkyBridge in 2005, Scaramucci co-founded investment partnership Oscar Capital Management, which was sold to Neuberger Berman, LLC in 2001. Earlier, he was a vice president in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs & Co. In 2016, Scaramucci was ranked #85 in Worth Magazine’sPower 100: The 100 Most Powerful People in Global Finance. In 2011, he received Ernst & Young’s “Entrepreneur of the Year –New York” Award in the Financial Services category. Anthony is amember of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), vice chair of the Kennedy Center Corporate Fund Board, a board member of both The Brain Tumor Foundation and Business Executives for National Security (BENS), and a Trustee of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Foundation. He was a member of the New York City Financial Services Advisory Committee from 2007 to 2012. In November 2016, he was named to President-Elect Trump’s 16-person Presidential Transition Team Executive Committee. In June 2017, he wasnamed the Chief Strategy Officer of the EXIM Bank. He served as the White House Communications Director for a period in July 2017. Scaramucci, a native of Long Island, New York, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Tufts University and a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.

Michael Saylor

MicroStrategy, Co-Founder

Mr. Saylor is a technologist, entrepreneur, business executive, philanthropist, and best-selling author. He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Office of MicroStrategy, Inc. (MSTR). Since co-founding the company at the age of 24, Mr. Saylor has built MicroStrategy into a global leader in business intelligence, mobile software, and cloud-based services. In 2012, he authoredThe Mobile Wave: How Mobile Intelligence Will Change Everything, which earned a spot onThe NewYork TimesBest Sellers list. Mr. Saylor attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, receiving an S.B. in Aeronautics and Astronautics and an S.B. in Science, Technology, and Society.

Alex Saunders

Nugget's News, Founder & CEO

Alex Saunders is the founder and CEO of Nugget’s News, a digital media company focused on all things crypto. Alex has been captivated by cryptocurrency since 2012 and in 2017 he began educating globally on the benefits of cryptocurrency and how to safely acquireit. Nugget’s News has been listed as a top-20 podcast by Business Insider, ShapeShift and Lifehacker and has over 120k YouTube subscribers with 9 million total views.Alex is also heavily focused on his cryptocurrency education platform Collective Shift which currently serves over 4,500 members. provides his unique perspectives by utilising his expertise in fundamental analysis, technical analysis and market sentiment. He is working towards his mission of making it easier for everyone to understand the financial world.

James Putra

TradeStation Crypto, Inc., Sr. Director of Product Strategy

James helped launch TradeStation Crypto’s offeringwhichutilizesa true online brokerage model that self-directed investors and traders have come to expect for equities, futures,and foreign currency markets. He is a reputed crypto asset specialist and blockchain thought leader focused on helping people find innovativeways to participate in this space. He is active in the blockchain community with speaking engagements, TV appearances and mentoring.James has over 15 years of experience in the Fintech industry.

Raoul Pal

Real Vision, Co-Founder & CEO

Raoul Pal is the Co-Founder and CEO of Real Vision, the world’s pre-eminent financial media platform, which helps members understand the complex world of finance, business, and the global economy. Real Vision members also have access to Real Vision Crypto, a cryptocurrency and digital assets video channelwatched by over 80,000 people.In addition, Raoul has been publishing Global Macro Investor since January 2005 to provide original, high quality, quantifiable and easily readable research for the global macro investment community hedge funds, family offices, pension funds and sovereign wealth funds. It draws on his considerable 31 years of experience in advising hedge funds and managing a global macro hedge fund. Global Macro Investor has one of the very best, proven track records of any newsletter in the industry, producing extremely positive returns in eight out of the last twelve years. He retired from managing client money at the age of 36 in 2004 and now lives in the tiny Caribbean island of Little Cayman in the Cayman Islands. Previously he co-managed the GLG Global Macro Fund in London for GLG Partners, one of the largest hedge fund groups in the world. Raoul moved to GLG from Goldman Sachs where he co-managed the hedge fund sales business in Equities and Equity Derivatives in Europe. In this role, Raoul established strong relationships with many of the world’s pre-eminent hedge funds, learning from their styles and experiences. Other stop-off points on the way were NatWest Markets and HSBC, although hebegan his career by training traders in technical analysis.

Peter McCormack

What Bitcoin Did, Journalist

Peter McCormack is a full timejournalist/podcaster covering topics such as Freedom, Human Rights, Censorship and Bitcoin. Peter created and hosts the What Bitcoin Did Podcast, a twice-weekly Bitcoin podcast where he interviews experts in the world of Bitcoin development, privacy, investment and adoption. Launched in November of 2017, the podcast has grown to over 100 episodes with a guest list that is a testament to the diversity of knowledge and opinions that represent the broader Bitcoin community. Expanding his growing list of humaninterest recordings, documentaries and films Peter has recently launched theDefiancepodcast andDefianceTV.

Caitlin Long

Avanti Financial Group, Founder & CEO

22-year Wall Street veteran who has been active in bitcoin and blockchain since 2012. In 2018-20 she led the charge to make her native state of Wyoming an oasis for blockchain companies in the US, where she helped Wyoming enact 20 blockchain-enabling laws. From 2016-18 she jointly spearheaded a blockchain project for delivering market index data to Vanguard as chairman and president of Symbiont, an enterprise blockchain start-up. Caitlin ran Morgan Stanley’s pension solutions business (2007-2016), heldsenior roles at Credit Suisse (1997-2007) and began her career at Salomon Brothers (1994-1997). She is a graduate of Harvard Law School (JD, 1994), the Kennedy School of Government (MPP, 1994) and the University of Wyoming (BA, 1990).

Hunter Horsley

Bitwise Asset Management, CEO

Hunter Horsley is Chief Executive Officer of Bitwise Asset Management. Prior to Bitwise, he was a product manager at Facebook, working on advertiser products including the multibillion-dollar sponsored content ecosystem and ad breaks in videos. Before Facebook, Horlsey was a product manager at Instagram, responsible for multiple advertising products generating several hundred million dollars of revenue. He is a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, with a B.S. in economics. Recently, Horsley was named a member of Forbes’ 2019 “30 Under 30” list.

Luke Gromen

Forest For The Trees, Founder & President

Luke Gromen has 25 years of experience in equity research, equity research sales, and as a macro/thematic analyst.He is the founder and president of macro/thematic research firm FFTT, LLC, which he founded in early 2014 to address and leverage the opportunity he saw created by applying what clientsand former colleagues consistently described as a “unique ability to connect the dots” during a time when he saw an increasing “silo-ing” of perspectives occurring on Wall Street and in corporate America.FFTT caters to institutions and sophisticated individuals by aggregating a wide variety of macroeconomic, thematic and sector trends in an unconventional manner to identify investable developing economic bottlenecks for his clients.Prior to founding FFTT, Luke was a founding partner of Cleveland Research Company, where he worked from 2006-14.At CRC, Luke worked in sales and edited CRC’s flagship weekly thematic research summary piece (“Straight from the Source”)for the firm’s clients.Prior to that,Luke was a partner at Midwest Research, where he worked in equity research and sales from 1996-2006.While in sales, Luke was a founding editor of Midwest’s widely-read weekly thematic summary (“Heard in the Midwest”) for the firm’s clients, in whichhe aggregated and combined proprietary research from Midwest with inputs from other sources.Luke Gromen holds a BBA in Finance and Accounting from the University of Cincinnati and received his MBA from Case Western Reserve University.He earned the CFA designation in 2003.

Meltem Demirors

CoinShares, Chief Strategy Officer

Meltem Demirors is Chief Strategy Officer of CoinShares, an investment firm that manages billions in assets on behalf of a global investor base, and is a trusted partner to investors and entrepreneurs navigating the digital asset ecosystem. Meltemoversees the firm’s managed strategies group and its New York office and leads corporate development. Previously, she was part of the founding team of Digital Currency Group. As a veteran investor in the digital currency space, she has invested in over 250 companies in the ecosystem. Meltem is passionate about education and advocacy, and teaches the Oxford Blockchain Strategy Programme and co-chairs the WEF Cryptocurrency Council.