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We are Bitcoin - Boris Filipovac

Guest: Boris Filipovac

The availability of literature in Slovenian language will help people to learn more about the world of Bitcoin. For many years, the content was available almost exclusively in English, which discouraged many people from engaging with the inherently complex subject of money. Fortunately, we have individuals who have decided to bring Bitcoin literature closer to the Slovenian audience. Boris, the founder of the Bitcoin Library, is one of them.

You are a bitcoiner. What does this term mean to you?

Boris: Yes, definitely. It's hard not to be a bitcoiner once you learn what Bitcoin really is. Bitcoin for me is a change from bad to good. All the things in our lives are very much connected, and if you change one thing, it changes another, etc., Bitcoin brings a key change for our society, which in turn will bring changes for the better in many areas.

Why did you start exploring Bitcoin in the first place and what was the moment that made it click in your head?

Boris: I had heard of Bitcoin in its early days, but only from people who presented it as a pyramid scheme. Without checking the facts, I believed them and started going around saying it was a scam. Even when someone tried to explain it to me again, I could not or perhaps did not even want to understand. Until the price hike came along again, which caught my attention to such an extent that I really began to wonder why this was happening, how it was even possible. I read the book Inventing Bitcoin by Yan Pritzker, and the Bitcoin standard by Saifedean Ammous. And that's how it all started to fit together into a bigger picture. Bitcoiners like to help people who are willing to listen and hear. How are you ready to help them?Boris: I always take the time to explain in detail when anyone asks me a question about Bitcoin. I share information openly, because that is what bitcoin promotes. 

People are different, so the content usually has to be tailored to the audience. What experience do you have with this? 

Boris: It's true, I could write a book about the diversity of people and the different conversations I've had about Bitcoin. Everyone has their own views and stands firmly behind them. The challenge is to recognise that and to present bitcoin from their point of view. This is often difficult because people are (initially) closed and even openly against it. But bitcoin is good for all of us and that is something I like a lot about bitcoin. I am also learning about Bitcoin from different sources, and in doing so I am learning about different perspectives that help me to identify and answer a wide range of questions about Bitcoin.

You are the founder of the Bitcoin Library. Please tell us more about the project and the purpose.

Boris: The biggest lesson I have learnt on my Bitcoin journey is that I got a lot of wrong information, spent a lot of time and made a lot of wrong decisions before I got the right picture. I created the Bitcoin library with the intention that people can have access to the right information immediately. Since I believe that information is understood even more when it is given in the native language, I decided to create a collection of the most read books from the Bitcoin world in Slovenian.

How many books have you managed to translate so far?

Boris: We currently have three books in the collection, two of which have been translated and published through the Bitcoin Library.


How long does it take you to translate a book, including printing?

Boris: From the contact with the author about the licence to the final printed version, it took us about half a year for each. It's worth pointing out, however, that the Bitcoin library is run by just a few individuals, all of whom run it in their spare time on top of their regular jobs. 

What are your goals?

Boris: The Bitcoin Library aims to provide a one-stop shop for anyone who wants to find the best answers to all their Bitcoin-related questions. In addition to literature, we would like to add workshops and trainings where individuals could learn how to use this technology with our help. We have already successfully carried out one such project, when we presented the economic and technical aspects of Bitcoin in theory to the students of the High School of Economics in Ljubljana, Roška. We are planning a practical workshop on how to use Bitcoin with them at the beginning of next year.

Are you self-funded or what does it look like to carry out a project of this kind?

Boris: All our projects are self-funded at the moment. But it's definitely worth mentioning that the Bitcoin Association Slovenia and its members have helped us in many steps, for which we are extremely grateful.

What difficulties have you encountered during the project

Boris: The hardest part is finding translators and proofreaders who are at least familiar with economic and financial terms, if not with the Bitcoin world. Many of the terms also had to be reinvented, which is still a challenge today. Once book has been translated and proofreaded, it has to be graphically edited and prepared for print, which means that it has to be carefully revised again afterwards. Nevertheless, we learned from the first translation that even then our work is not over. We sent the carefully proofread texts to the printers, but they had a printing bug which replaced all the 'š' with 'ž' on the cover. Fortunately, this was only on the front cover and the damage was not too big.

Are you active in the Bitcoin community in any other way? 

Boris: Yes, I try to attend the Bitcoin Association Slovenia events as regularly as possible. There is a lot of us there, helping each other and spreading knowledge about Bitcoin through different projects.

In my experience, the financial literacy of Slovenians is poor. The scary thing is that when you present them the facts, at least 90% of people refuse to accept it. They prefer to stick their heads in the sand and get on with their lives. "I haven't heard anything. There is no inflation. Taxes are not going up. Everything is fine and the state will take care of all my financial problems. Money grows on a tree." What is your experience in this area and how to wake up and help such people?

Boris: Given that every individual makes transactions on a daily basis, we are all participating in the economic system. At the same time, everyone would like to create financial independence and freedom as quickly as possible, but few people understand what money is and how it works. When I look around me, almost everyone invests the money they earn with the desire to increase their profits. The current system forces us to work more and more in order to maintain our 'status', but at the same time, to avoid this, we spend our free time reading the news and studying graphs on where to invest our money. And that is exhausting and wrong and just means that we have to earn our money twice in this system. If we would just look a little bit at the history of money and understand what the difference is between hard money and easy money, it would quickly become clear to us that perhaps we are reading and studying the wrong things in our spare time. People may be financially illiterate, but they are certainly not stupid. Understanding Bitcoin is something that will certainly help them become financially literate. Above all, it shows us that it is not some bogeyman that requires advanced knowledge of what is going on in the financial markets.

Why bitcoin? (In one sentence)

Boris: Because it is the most stable money in the history of mankind.

You have one orange pill. Who in Slovenia would you give it to and why?

Boris: It's hard to decide exactly who I would give it to, because I would like to give it to everyone.

Where can people find you?

There are no more excuses that the literature is only written in English. People like Boris and the Bitcoin Library project make it easier to access the knowledge and information, and bring you to the edge of the Bitcoin hole. But it is only up to you if you will jump in. Take the first step.



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