A bit crypto
I’ve always believed that a large part of why Freemasons have the long history of secret passwords, etc., was because we (as a group) tend to be charitable, and when approached by people asking for some kind of charity, especially as Freemasons, we give what we can. Naturally, we give to other causes, but when you think that you are giving to a particular group – any group – you like to know that your gift, be it time or money, isn’t being diverted to other uses.
With that in mind, I’d like to mention something that has come up in the online Masonic world: GCoin.
First, I will freely admit that I don’t know enough about cryptocurrency to even hazard a bad explanation, so if you’re interested enough to research on your own, then by all means, start with Wiki and go on from there. Disclosure: I have some Dogecoin amounting to about 33 cents, and I haven’t done anything with it yet.
Earlier this year, someone posted to the Reddit subgroup /r/freemasonry, announcing an alternative to Bitcoin, calling it GCoin. He announced it as having been developed by Masons, and for the purpose of making charitable giving easier. Naturally, we joked that it was hard enough to get a lot of our brothers to use Facebook or email, so good luck in trying to explain how it was supposed to work. Unfortunately, requests for more specific information from them was vague, when it was forthcoming at all. More to the point, the person refused to give any actual proof that he was a Mason, or that other Masons were actually involved in the development. We eventually forgot about it, as new cryptocurrencies are being introduced all the time.
This week, the same user posted another announcement that it was going to be officially released. That recalled the original discussion threads, and again, the user was just as vague with the details. He claimed that anyone, not just Masons could use GCoin, and that coin users could vote for small percentages to go for various charities. Unfortunately, he again failed to specify which charities, or how the voting worked. For that matter, it appears that even if some Masons decide to allow some percentage of the interest to go to a charity, they might be outvoted by other users.
Again, I don’t know enough about cryptocurrency to understand how it works, or what differentiates this from others, such as Bitcoin or Dogecoin. Since the link between GCoin and Freemasonry is so tenuous, however, I think that anyone – Freemasons or not – should approach this with caution.
That said, maybe it would be an interesting project for some of our brothers to develop a cryptocurrency (MasoniCoin, perhaps?) specifically for Masonic purposes.