Learn about the Bitcoin Pizza Day history, promotions, and activities
Today the crypto community celebrates the 10th anniversary of the first-ever exchange of cryptocurrency for real-world physical products. It’s hard to imagine today that ordering two pizzas cost someone 10,000 BTC and a few days of looking for volunteers crazy enough to agree to the deal.
Throughout the last decade, pizzerias and crypto exchanges around the world have been paying tribute to the incredible extravagance of the pioneer buyer who could have become a billionaire had he waited to spend his digital assets.
It all started on 22 May 2010 when Laszlo Hanyecz, a programmer from Florida, received his two Papa John’s pizzas from the man called Jeremy Sturdivant in exchange for his 10,000 hard-earned BTC. Well, in reality, it started a few days before when Laslo started the historical forum thread:
I’ll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas… like maybe two large ones so I have some leftover for the next day. I like having leftover pizza to nibble on later. You can make the pizza yourself and bring it to my house, or order it for me from a delivery place, but what I’m aiming for is getting food delivered in exchange for bitcoins, where I don’t have to order or prepare it myself, kind of like ordering a ‘breakfast platter’ at a hotel or something, they just bring you something to eat and you’re happy!
Not only was the BTC cost too low at the moment (10,000 BTC equaled to $41), but also few rare enthusiasts believed in the currency potential enough to exchange it for something real. Hanyecz got lucky to have his post seen by a like-minded person, Sturdivant, who paid for those pizzas from his own wallet. The sum he spent would be around $94M today. Quite an expensive slice of pizza, isn’t it?
Bitcoin Pizza Day Promotions and Ways to Celebrate
- In 2018, the Pizza Day event in Tokyo was organized by the Bitcoin Cash Meetup group with the owner of the host venue Mike Verweyst offering a 50% discount for BCH (Bitcoin Cash) purchases. The event illustrated the need for a proper POS which would support cryptocurrencies.
- Simultaneously, in Kyiv, Ukraine, a national record was set for the largest number of participants who made payments using cryptocurrencies. Over 200 people attended the Bitcoin Pizza Day event. 167 of them participated in the record-setting and conducted 202 transactions to buy pizzas at the Mister Cat restaurant. The payment was made with a QR code printed on the receipt. Fiat money was transferred to the restaurant’s bank account through crypto exchanges.
- In 2019, Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange, Huobi celebrated the remarkable date with the launch of the Reserve Protocol’s Reserve Rights Token through their premium coin launch platform Huobi Prime. They also offered up to 50% discount for $1.5 million USDT-worth of Bitcoin to users in two special trading rounds for the PrimeBTC event. 8 winners who retweeted announcement with comments got a local pizza as a gift. Its total cost including delivery was in a range of $15–20 (approximately what Jeremy Sturdivant paid for the historic pizza).
- This year, Russian crypto & blockchain info resource Forklog.com has decided to announce a contest for its readers. The task was to guess the BTC price as of 22 May 2020. The answers were accepted until May, 1. Those whose predictions are the most accurate are going to receive a free pizza from the editorial board.
Interesting Bitcoin facts and stories
- In 2013, the British IT worker and ex-BTC miner, James Howells, accidentally threw away his old hard drive, and with it, 7500 Bitcoin. It didn’t bother him much until 2017 when it became $127M worth. The unlucky owner petitioned to dig up his local council’s garbage dump to try and find it, but the authorities wouldn’t allow it. They were concerned that digging up, storing, and treating around 350,000 tons of waste could cause a “huge environmental impact on the surrounding area.”
- In mid-2011, under pressure from the Obama administration, major American banks and payment services imposed a financial ban on WikiLeaks. People supporting the organization used Bitcoin to get around the ban encouraging WikiLeaks to invest in Bitcoin. In 2017, Julian Assange thanked the blockade for getting a 50000% return on his investment.
- Just like a cent is the smallest unit of USD, a satoshi is the smallest unit of bitcoin as a reference to Satoshi Nakamoto, the originator(s) of Bitcoin. Up to this day, the mystery of Bitcoin’s creation remains unsolved giving rise to a few conspiracy theories. 1 satoshi equals 0.00000001. However, Bitcoin’s value may eventually rise so high that 1 satoshi becomes too valuable for the smallest possible transaction. In this scenario, Bitcoin’s code will likely be altered to add more decimal numbers, allowing for smaller units. On the Lightning Network layer, for instance, milli-satoshis are already in use. Yet you can’t redeem them directly as officially they aren’t a unit of transaction.
- Self-proclaimed Satoshi Nakamoto Craig Wright has reportedly mined 1.1 million bitcoin from 2009 to 2011 in partnership with the late Dave Kleiman. The family of the latter has sued Wright for illegally appropriating their relative’s possible BTC holdings and ideas. The court proceedings have been going on for over two years now. Taking into account the previous rulings of Judge Reinhart, Wright’s testimonies and evidence have not convinced the court of his sole ownership. Due to the coronavirus lock-down, the defendant has got some extra time to support his claims. However, the greater cryptocurrency community has not believed his story from the very beginning. Now, the legendary dispute is finally going to be resolved. At least, Judge Bloom, who is presiding over the case, has issued a court order for the trial to begin on July 6.
- In Iran, you don’t have to wait for May 22 to buy pizza with crypto or get a discount. A crypto-enthusiast Reza Abdollahi is allowing you to do both all year long. The owner of Mashhad restaurant, 1001 Nights Cinema Pizza, is offering his customers an opportunity to cover their tabs in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Moreover, they get a 50% discount if they choose these forms of payment over traditional fiat currencies.