After last weeks FBI takedown of SilkRoad - the underground web service that provided illicit goods - many analyst were surprised to see that the Bitcoin; the crypto-currency that was used to buy products on the site, was not nearly affected as much as they felt it should have been. This is one of the first signs of resiliency that shows that Bitcoin is becoming a legitimate alternative currency to more heavily taxed state run currencies.
The Bitcoin was one of the first crypto-currencies around; first introduced to the world as early as 2005. Today there are as many as 20-30 legit to borderline legit crypto-currencies, but Bitcoin has lead the way in this new frontier of a 'post paper' currency. Of course, black market sites like Silk Road certainly helped Bitcoin gain a foothold on the market, but it was the European debt crisis, most notably the one in Cypress that really legitimized Bitcoin onto the world stage.
For years the value of the Bitcoin toiled against the dollar from anywhere around .7 cents to somewhere around $5.00 against the dollar. But in 2012, as the debt crisis in Europe began to worsen, the value of the coin began to rise. Signals of uncertainty and bankruptcy continued to threaten the European Union and with each and every failed meeting, the threat of a freeze on banks became more and more real. By the end of 2012 the value rose to just over $13 dollars, by mid March, while many Europeans were under constant threats of a freeze on bank accounts the Bitcoin's value rose to $47. Then on April 1st as the situation in Cyprus began to escalate the price jumped to $102, by April 9th the price reached an astounding $234 for 1 Bitcoin.
After that, the value settled around $120 per coin, but never was it threatened to plummet to pre Euro-Crisis levels. Perhaps there were many out there who thought last weeks FBI raid of SilkRoad may have put Bitcoin's value back into a 'novelty' status, but it seems that there are too many people who have been exposed to a legitimate currency option, at least one that is an alternative to the impractical anti-logic of fiat currency.