May 22 is a big day in Bitcoin history. In 2010, Florida programmer and BitcoinTalk user Laszlo Hanyecz offered to pay 10,000 Bitcoins for pizza. This transaction is famously known throughout the cryptocommunity as the first real world transaction/purchase used with Bitcoin. It is now known as Bitcoin Pizza Day.
This was his post on BitcoinTalk on that day:
I’ll pay 10,000 bitcoins for a couple of pizzas.. like maybe 2 large ones so I have some left over for the next day. I like having left over 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!
If you’re interested please let me know and we can work out a deal
[dropcap size=small]L[/dropcap]aszlo sent the 10k BTC to a willing volunteer in the UK who would pay $25 for two pizzas from Papa Johns in Laszlo’s area. While the 10k BTC would actually have been worth roughly $40, the premium that Laszlo paid has been well worth the price said Laszlo to the New York Times.
It wasn’t like Bitcoins had any value back then, so the idea of trading them for a pizza was incredibly cool. No one knew it was going to get so big. I’d say I ended up on top.
At that time in Bitcoin’s early stage, Bitcoin was worth about 0.003 cents each. The community was basically wrapped around mining and discussing potential for the technology. No one knew quite yet how Bitcoin would change the game. Buying two pizzas from a Papa Johns in Jacksonville was a major step, not only for Bitcoin, but for all cryptocurrencies made since.
What has happened since the original Bitcoin Pizza Day is a technological wonder. Bitcoins are being mined, traded, purchased and exchanged every day around the world. They are helping Argentinians escape the crushing inflation and financial insecurity, they are helping people send money back to family in places like Vietnam and Uganda by going around the intolerable fees and unreliability of banks, exchanges, and other money services like Western Union, they are helping farmers and small businesses connect with their customers, and they are paving the way to an international market, not one dictated by borders and governments.
So on this Thursday, May 22, four years after the first Bitcoin Pizza, I invite all users of cryptocurrencies to go out and have a pizza. I went on CoinMap.org, where stores can list themselves on the map of all Bitcoin/Litecoin accepting establishments. Be sure to figure out if your local store is simply powered by a web host that accepts Bitcoin. Menufy is one of the site hosts for restaurants that accept Bitcoin on behalf of stores – thankfully, I called ahead and found that the local pizzeria doesn’t accept Bitcoin in the store; only via the website powered by Menufy.
Special note: eGifter, an online retailer specializing in electronic gift cards, is celebrating Bitcoin Pizza Day by giving an extra point per dollar spent on pizza-related gift card purchases on May 22 made with Bitcoin, Litecoin, and even Dogecoin.