What is Bitcoin Pizza Day?

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• Published: March 28th, 2020
• Updated: September 2nd, 2020

If you’ve spent much time at all in the cryptocurrency space, you’ve probably heard about the famous Bitcoin Pizza.

We know what you’re thinking…

No this was not an actual Pizza covered in Bitcoin.

But instead, 2 Large Papa Johns pizzas purchased for 10,000 Bitcoins!

Here’s how it went down:

In 2010, Flordia man Laszlo Hanyecz did a deal involving 10,000 Bitcoins he mined himself, in exchange for 2 large pizzas. The introduction from the first time the “Bitcoin Pizza Day” topic made Forbes in 2013 when BTC exchange rates reached over $100, is just about as timeless as internet content gets.

laszlo

Since then, every year in early March, media outlets begin running the same ‘how mad are you that you could have been rich?’ story about the programmer who “talked someone into accepting” Bitcoins for pizza.

At the time, there was no exchange rate for BTC.

There was no Mt. Gox, no Binance, no Coinbase.

There were less than 300 active Bitcoin wallets in existence.

Uber Cabs had just launched their beta services that month.

Since the internet boom of the early 2000’s the value of the USD dollar had plummeted. The 2008 financial crisis brought about the lowest U.S. Dollar Index Value of all time. In May 2010, it was dropping right back down again, and with this slide came the beginning of a global currency war.

But tucked away in a little corner of the internet in May of 2010, Laszlo posted his fabled request for pizza to the 7-month-old BitcoinTalk community of no more than 200 total members. He offered what was roughly $40 worth of BTC for two large pizzas, maybe loaded up, maybe not.

bitcoin pizza form post

No matter the interview, it’s clear the guy isn’t mad about the past. He was just having fun with the possibilities of new technology and its infant community. Not only was he trying to give a deal, but he was also accounting for tipping the delivery driver.

Bitcoin Pizza Form thoughts

In fact, he was getting flack for his imbalanced pizza to BTC exchange rate just two months after he proposed the open-ended trade by other users on the BitcoinTalk forum thread when the value of a Bitcoin grew from less than pennies to a few whole pennies.

By the end of 2010, the price had reached over nickles, over dimes, to two whole quarters per BTC. The market as a whole, all of Bitcoin, reached a $1 million USD value on November 6th 2010, and by the end of the year, there were over 1,000 active Bitcoin wallets. 837 new members joined the BitcoinTalk forum in the month of January 2011 alone.

Network Effects

Just as countries around the world were bailing out governments, corporations, and pouring stimulus money into the economy, Laszlo started the same with his extra Bitcoin.

Instead of hoarding them or storing them on a hard drive to forget about, he looked for an opportunity in the present. And It’s important to note that Laszlo thanked “everyone” who bought him pizzas, for two reasons.

  1. How many users did buy him pizza? Did anyone specifically decide to mine Bitcoin to make $40? Remember that with less than 300 active Bitcoin wallets at the time, just one person making that decision affected the whole.
  2. This was a gift exchange between Bitcoin community members. Laszlo didn’t just purchase two Papa John’s pizzas for 10,000 Bitcoin. He gifted another user the BTC, in exchange for the service of ordering two pizzas and paying for them with USD.

Today, there are millions of BitcoinTalk forum members, the active wallet number is more like 600,000, the total market cap value for Bitcoin is over $120 million, and the total after taxes but before a delivery fee to order a couple of sausage, pepperoni, banana pepper, and onion, large pizzas from Papa John’s are $45.45.

So while Little Caesars Hot-N-Ready Pizzas have been $5 since 1997, focusing on the efficiency in pick-up service, Papa John’s seems to be working a different angle to continue their growth, including a pivot from a pizza place to… papadias? A niche combination of “Part Pizza. Part Sandwich.”

Bitcoin Pizza Day

However, neither Papa John’s, Little Caesars or any other of the major pizza chains accept direct cryptocurrency payments. Many food delivery services have followed Grubhub’s growth to a $3 billion-dollar company. There are several around the world which offer delivery that accepts cryptocurrency payments,

You might ask, why a Papadia?

Why not just get a pizza?

Why not just get a calzone?

Why not just get a warm italian sandwich?

But in the same light, one might ask, why Bitcoin?

Why not just use cash?

Why not just use Paypal?

Why not just a credit card?

Why buy pizza with Bitcoin? Because you just never know.

Austin Tuwiner Administrator
Austin is the owner of Bitpremier, and got involved in Bitcoin in 2012. After working as a cryptocurrency journalist and and at several blockchain startups, he decided to start Bitpremier and educate the world on Bitcoin.
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