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What is the point of mining the Bitcoin and thus issuing new Bitcoins over the span of some time versus simply issuing all 21 million coins at once?

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    Ask yourself this .... if they were all issued at once, who would they be issued to? – Nick Moore Oct 17 '17 at 9:57
  • Would be great if it was me. – i squared - Keep it Real Oct 17 '17 at 10:02
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    If they were all issued to you, they would be worthless. A currency's value comes from its being useful as a medium for multipe parties. – Pieter Wuille Oct 17 '17 at 14:45
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    That was a bad joke. – i squared - Keep it Real Oct 17 '17 at 14:49
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In a way, all bitcoins were issued with the genesis block: The total number was fixed and the distribution schedule defined with the rules put in place then. However, distributing them over a longer period of time allows for the bitcoins to be spread out more, creates incentives for miners to contribute work to the Bitcoin network and probably also helped fewer of them getting lost during the emergence of Bitcoin when many people just tried it briefly and likely didn't properly store their coins.

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