Is there some standard term to describe all Bitcoin-like internet currencies, like Solidcoin, Namecoin and so forth? Like "currency" is to dollar, euro, yen, etc?


distributed digital currency, or distributed digital crypto-currency. the "distributed" bit is a key issue - anyone can make a centralized digital currency, even with crypto thrown in.

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    We need some shorter name for that. – ThePiachu Oct 17 '11 at 7:00
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    The "digital" part is probably unnecessary, as there is few uses for non-digital crypto-currencies. – ThePiachu Oct 17 '11 at 15:13
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    indeed probably digital can be dropped... that said, what's the goal here? "the shortest name" or "the most accurate name" ? – nanotube Oct 18 '11 at 3:08
  • Probably the shortest of the names which are accurate, that is cover all the -coins without using a qualifier that doesn't add any information. – ThePiachu Oct 18 '11 at 6:47
  • Distributed != decentralized. Mintchip, for instance, is close as it is distributed (multiple issuers), but it is not in the same league as bitcoin because the rules on it are centrally controlled. – Stephen Gornick Jul 7 '12 at 1:38

It's called crypto-currency, Wikipedia article.

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    As there are no crypto-currencies that are not decentralized, this is probably the shortest of the proper terms we can use so far, but that might change in the future to "distributed crypto-currency", as pointer out by nanotube. – ThePiachu Oct 17 '11 at 15:10
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    "As there are no crypto-currencies that are not decentralized" <- this is false. see, e.g., loom.cc. – nanotube Oct 18 '11 at 3:09

I use "chain currencies". There are precedents for crypto currencies. OT currencies are also crypto-currencies. Ripple IOUs use cryptoGraphy in the distributed protocol too. The uniqueness is definitely in the block chain. I often refer to them as just "coins" since most of them are called SomethingCoin.


I think crypto-currency is the good term.

But personnally I tend to use digital currency because crypto can scare some users.

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