Updated: August 4, 2023

Running Business on Bitcoin and Lightning

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Key Takeaways

Thanks to Stakwork for helping us transcribe our Twitter Spaces.

Voltage – 00:00:06:

To kick this off, maybe share just a little bit about your background since you’ve never really been interviewed, to my knowledge, and tell people a little bit about your past and what got you to this point.

Kevin Rooke – 00:00:17:

Sure. It’s interesting to be on the other side of the microphone here. I learned about bitcoin in 2017. I quickly fell down the rabbit hole because I was lucky that the first person that introduced it to me was far smarter than I was. And I could just recognize right away that they knew what they were talking about. I was on board, and I began studying it all through spring and summer of 2017. I got a job in bitcoin shortly after that, have been working in marketing and growth and product rules with a number of companies in Canada and across the world since then. And then most of the last three or four years has been dedicated to that. And then about 2021, I think I want to say April. Yeah, I was in the Bitcoin 2021 Conference. I can’t remember if it was April or May when Jack Mallers got up and gave that speech about El Salvador and the bitcoin law. That was the first moment that I recognized there was a real catalyst on the horizon for Lightning adoption. And at the same time, I had been looking at the Lightning Network public capacity. I had seen numbers slowly start to tick upwards approaching all time highs. At this point, it must have been, I don’t know, just over 1000 bitcoin public capacity. And I started to see there was momentum, and that got me interested. And so I set up a node. I started going down the rabbit hole on Lightning, and what I discovered was this flourishing of activity. And it seems like a lot of the most interesting new applications being built on bitcoin are in fact being built on Lightning. And so that sent me straight down the rabbit hole, and I’ve been digging through it ever since. And, yeah, so that’s kind of a high level background of my experience, getting into bitcoin and then finding and discovering the Lightning Network and exploring all the things that it can do.

Voltage – 00:02:36:

Awesome and kind of diving a bit deeper into, I guess, discovering a bitcoin. What was your relationship with either just money investing or saving before bitcoin, and how did it just maybe reshape or rewire your mind to make you be so all in at the level you are now?

Kevin Rooke – 00:02:58:

I think I was into investing beforehand. So that was helpful that I had that angle that I could look at bitcoin and I could see it as an investor, and I wasn’t approaching it from the side of, like, a gambler. So that was very helpful. I was always very frugal and very aware of my expenditures and things like that. So I think the biggest thing was that bitcoin didn’t really necessarily change the way I spent money in day to day life because I already have a bit of that mindset. But I think what it did was it gave me confidence that I wasn’t crazy by taking that approach. Because at the same time, in the fiat world, we see a lot of the activity online, a lot of the viral posts you see on Instagram, and a lot of the stuff you see all over social media. It’s about people spending money. It’s about, oh, here, look at me and my $400,000 car, and here, look at this Rolex I got. And there’s all sorts of the culture I think of the last ten years is skewing towards spending. And I didn’t really resonate with it, but I also thought I was kind of weird for not resonating with it. So bitcoin kind of gave you the confidence to recognize, okay, this is the right approach, and there could be a rough road ahead for people who don’t recognize that this new monetary technology is going to change the way the world works.

Voltage – 00:04:37:

Awesome. And then obviously, you’ve dove deep into Lightning and started the podcast, content creation, everything, maybe give us a breakdown of what made you so excited about Lightning and why you chose to really just build your entire business around it and to use it.

Kevin Rooke – 00:05:01:

Yeah, so, I mean, I started off thinking it was going to be a very simple strategy and I would test out Lightning podcasting a few months prior to me starting my show. I had invested in Fountain. So I want to try out the product, I want to see if this would work. And I figured it’d be a cool way to try and earn a bit of bitcoin. But I figured the path would be listeners listen to the show and they send bitcoin to me. And that was it. I thought it was kind of like a one directional thing. I create content, I send it to listeners, and listeners send bitcoin back in appreciation. I quickly learned that is not the case. And it’s starting to dawn on me that there’s this massive interconnected network of payments flowing between hundreds of participants every single time I create a podcast now. And this is money that is flowing between listeners and myself. It’s also flowing to guests, it’s also flowing to the Human Rights Foundation, it’s also flowing to people who transcribe the audio recordings of my episodes. sats are flowing to them through Stakwork. There’s sats flowing through Mash, their sats flowing through Stacker News. When I share clips and stuff, there’s this massive network and I’m now seeing it’s a web of payments. So really in the last six months or so, I’ve just been watching this payment flow grow from what I thought was just going to be like person A to person B to now, like, hundreds of participants. And this is all related to the podcast, right? This is what I center a lot of my content around, and one way or another, all these payments are related to it. And now I start to think, like, what’s the next phase look like when it’s not just me having a podcast, it’s anyone can monetize any content on their website or anything on the Internet. We start to broaden the scope of what’s possible. And all of a sudden, I think instead of hundreds of payments there’s, the sky’s the limit to how big this interconnected web of payments could become.

Voltage – 00:07:22:

Yeah. Seeing you execute on this, like we kind of talked about before, this is I think people need to see the use case and they need to see how it can practically impact their life. And Jeff Booth dropped his article a week ago talking about the hardest thing to understand our protocols. And people are impacted, and they understand value when there’s something they can use. So that’s why I’m really excited for what you’re doing and other people who are living and breathing it and actually leveraging it. And I think sharing that story and clarifying that and just bringing visibility to that, I think is really going to be transformative, especially with the younger generation who they learn online, they teach themselves, and they want to not work a W2 or have a standard job. They’re actively seeking passive income, and they’re leveraging every corner of the Internet and ways to do that. So I think you’re onto something here that is going to be very popular long term. Now, as far as how Lightning has been thus far for you, I know it starts slow. It’s not something where you just are rewarded the day you start. Tell us a little bit about how the sats flow and just things have ramped up and like, what you’ve learned on the journey of operating on a Lightning standard.

Kevin Rooke – 00:08:43:

Yeah, so I think one of my first episodes, I had Sergey from Bit Refill on, and he actually asked me a question. He’s like, how many sats are you getting? How far away are you from turning this into purely value for value, full time income? And at the time, I think I said it was about 100 x away, may have been a little more. I was earning tens of dollars per month. This is back in January or something, when the podcast was just kind of starting out. Now I think the number is in the hundreds per month, and it’s in the low hundred. So now instead of saying, like, a full time income is 100x away from value for value stuff, it’s maybe a 10x away. So that’s really good progress. And I think that this is still something that 99.9% of people don’t even know what it is and never used a Lightning product before. We’re still at such an early stage in Lightning. I mean, there’s a lot of Bitcoiners that have never used Lightning before. So I think that it’s a great sign to see that I’m within one order of magnitude of being able to run a business entirely on sats flowing from audience members or participants or someone in the process of building a podcast. And that to me is like a really good indicator because I’m going to show people that this can be done and then someone is going to come out of the woodwork and just take this to a whole new level. There’s going to be, I imagine, over the next five to ten years as kids who are just getting their first phones build on like a native Lightning or bitcoin standard and realize what this stuff can do. They’re going to take this to a whole new level. Someone’s going to come along in like 10x or 100x anything that I or any other bitcoin creator today has done and really take this to a mainstream level. And you get to the point where, hey, someone’s earning 10,000 plus dollars a month from sats flowing around from their millions of subscribers or listeners, that starts to raise people’s attention, it gets people excited and then you get this whole ecosystem built around it. You start to see money flowing into the system. I think we can look at some of the progressions of past technologies like YouTube to kind of like figure out how long this might take. I think it’s reasonable to think that in the next decade we have a really big community of people earning a real amount of money, like a full time income on this stuff.

Voltage – 00:11:43:

Yeah, I agree. In a prior space we were talking about just the endorphins someone would have just seeing money stream in and just like the positive encouragement and what it does and how it transforms your mind and it tells you in real time, like, what is good, what is not good, or not valued by your audience. And it’s super encouraging, I think, for people. And it really is a good mechanism to create a feedback loop of what needs to be done versus getting paid. Like in music, you might cash out at a certain dollar amount or, you know, getting a paycheck every two weeks, you know, whenever you do something well and you’re just incentivized to keep doing that, that’s really exciting. Now, as far as the last year, what’s been the most exciting advancement or just the thing that’s on your radar? Maybe that you hear that just not everyone else hears, but what’s been the most exciting thing you’ve known is going to be coming or has happened over the last year.

Kevin Rooke – 00:12:46:

I mean, to me, one of the things that I’m really focused on now is helping people earn bitcoin on Lightning. I think this is a massively underrated opportunity. We’re starting to see some companies in the space figure out how to bootstrap networks around their product, helping people earn bitcoin. So one of the products I mentioned a while ago Fountain. They have the listen to earn thing where if you’re listening to a show now, you can start earning bitcoin. You don’t have to have bitcoin, you don’t have to have bought it. You don’t have to do anything. You just have to show up and participate and do something useful within the context of the app. Stacker News has a similar feature. You can kind of set up an account and right away you can just earn bitcoin for posting something. I think it costs that to post something, but you can earn right away hundreds or thousands of sats, maybe more, for posting something that you would otherwise post on Reddit. It doesn’t even have your link. You’re participating, you’re adding value to this platform, and you can earn for that. Vida is another great example where you can just start earning for responding to messages or taking calls. LN CAL is another one I’ve been trying out. There’s so many products that are now taking the approach of helping people earn bitcoin on Lightning from the get go, and that, I think, is going to be an unlock. That I think that’s what the next iteration of the internet is about. It’s not like, oh, you need this token gated, you need this token to get through to this website, or you need to buy a stake in some other project in order to participate in the site. It’s like, I just want to use the internet as it was meant to be used. I want to have a seamless experience on the internet, and while I’m at it, sure, I’d like to earn some money for the value I provide to the platforms. So I think that’s to me, like, the ability to earn bitcoin, really doing a lot of the things you already do is going to be, what is that’s what I have my eyes on. I don’t think we realize how much value we’ve given away, whether we know it or not, to a lot of the ad funded platforms like Facebook and Google. These are trillion dollar businesses, and they’re more or less built on the fact that they don’t reward the people that make their platform useful with money. If I go to Facebook or to Instagram and I put $100 behind an ad, well, the money gets stuck at Facebook, right? I send it to Facebook and it stops. But Facebook is not the reason, I’m not paying Facebook, because Facebook is great. It’s because Facebook has all these users, and there’s going to come a time where users realize that they are the ones that are the value adding part of the equation, and that they should be rewarded for that value. And we have the tools to do it now. Now we have this payment system that can scale down to zero. You can send payments in any amount at any time to anyone in the world. I mean, the only reason that this isn’t integrated into products like Facebook and Google today, I think, is that they don’t have the incentive to. They’ve been built on this system of not rewarding users and of keeping and extracting as much value as they can. I don’t suspect they’ll change their minds on that anytime soon. I think they’ve got a pretty good thing going for now. But it’s clear to me that there’s a new opportunity to disrupt these platforms and these business models by paying users and giving them the value that they’re bringing to your platform.

Voltage – 00:16:56:

Yeah, I think you’re spot on that analysis. So tell us a little bit. Obviously, group like Facebook, some of these platforms, they have a user experience people are used to, and they clearly enjoy it. It’s fairly addicting, I think it’s fair to say, using social media. What’s the user experience been like leveraging Lightning, from your perspective, and maybe what improvements do you think need to happen?

Kevin Rooke – 00:17:25:

I mean, there’s definitely been some challenges. I don’t think I’ve seen any products today that are perfect or that are yet on par with what Facebook and Google have and any of the other kind of web to internet businesses or any of the apps you have on your phone. We’re at a very early stage, and I think people have to remember the teams that are building in Lightning right now, especially the last wave of them that have come online the last three or six months. A lot of them are just like a handful of people still sometimes only one or two. We have a few businesses that are now established, Lightning businesses, but a majority of the new ones are really just getting going. So I think anyone wanting to start earning bitcoin on Lightning today has to be okay with having a couple of UX issues here and there and recognize that the space is growing really quickly and I’m trying to figure out how to communicate. Earning bitcoin. How to display this stuff in app for someone. What are the words we should be using to communicate. What a payment is. What is a boost. What is a tip. What’s a donation? All these different things have like a new set of words and a new set of interactions and a new set of just features that are going to be required in apps. And I don’t think we have a standardized process for that. Like if we look at a lot of the features in Web Two, let’s say we have hashtags, which are pretty well understood across the board, no matter what platform you’re on, we have notifications, which again, pretty well understood, like these concepts. We’ve now had enough apps over a long enough period of time using these tools that they become second nature. I think we still have to do the same with Lightning products, and we’re working on it. We’re not there yet, but I think one of the most challenging things right now is that as I’ve started to realize I’m earning through a bunch of different apps. It also means I’m earning a balance in a bunch of different places. And some products let me connect directly to a node, some don’t. Some are custodial, some are noncustodial. There’s just a mixture of product offerings today, and what it leaves me with is, like, ten different balances on ten different apps. And so that’s one of the things I have to manage right now and figure out. Where is this all headed? I think this is a massive opportunity for anyone who wants to build. This is like, what’s going to be the one stop hub for me to manage. All of the sats flowing in and flowing out. And that may be tied directly to my Node. It may just be like a node interface. It may be something that ties together a bunch of the custodial apps. I don’t quite know what the end game looks like, but there’s this, like, if you imagine these money tubes, we’re in this big room of all these different tubes flowing all over the place, and we just need to figure out where is the water in this plumbing system flowing to and from a simple dashboard. To do just that is going to be really important once people start scaling up their sats flow businesses.

Voltage – 00:20:52:

Yeah, I love that. It’s good. All right, now let’s dive in a little bit. Tell us about the growth that you’ve been experiencing. I know you mentioned going from $10, sounds like monthly, to the hundreds. What have you noticed about the growth of Lightning and the growth of your business? If we wanted to just dive into that a little bit more, if there’s anything else to share, that would be insightful.

Kevin Rooke – 00:21:20:

Yeah, I think initially when I started out, I was really concerned that a lot of people wouldn’t know how to get set up on Lightning or wouldn’t know how to send the payment through. Like, if I said on a podcast, hey, you can send a boost to let me know you appreciate the show. I wasn’t sure that anyone would even know what a boost was. I felt like I had to define the term. I had to, like, walk people through a bit. And I was noticing the first handful of episodes, it was a lot of the handful of people. It was really like five or ten people that I consistently saw were sending in boosts, and it was hard to get a new wave of participants somewhere around March or April, maybe. It was around the bitcoin conference this year. I started to notice that change a bit, and I started to see more new names, adding sats and boosts and comments to my show. I’ve seen more activity on platforms like Stacker News too, watching more people participate, and I can see the sats flowing faster and faster. And so that’s a really good sign that we’re now at the point where it feels like there’s a critical mass of people, where now we recognize that there’s people can earn tens of dollars a day participating on these Lightning platforms. And I think at that point, we’re starting to get to the point where people realize, hey, this could actually start to supplement income. This is real money. It’s not the $0.02 we were sending back and forth last November. It’s now. Oh, instead of my post, I got two cent on Saturday news. It’s $2. Next is going to be $20. And maybe down the road we get some viral content and people start creating great content on Lightning. Maybe these posts start to get $200, $2,000. We’re on that track, and every single month it seems to be trending upwards. I think I’ll be trying to publish more content around exactly how much I’m earning and spending through the show and the content that I’m creating. But yeah, the numbers are definitely headed in the right direction.

Voltage – 00:23:50:

Awesome. All right, he’s here’s a unique one as far as people understanding or underestimating using Lightning. Obviously, if some big content creator, like, let’s say Mr. Beast did it, I think a lot of people would just naturally copycat him and follow in his footsteps and want to win bitcoin and all these different things. But he probably won’t do that. He’s a little large, I think, to make that leap. But smaller content creators, I feel like people might be very hesitant to do this because they assume maybe 5% of people use bitcoin. It’s not going to immediately reward them, and there’s no real incentive to maybe make Lightning a core part of their business. But do you think there is any upside to being early to using Lightning in the future? Bitcoin is believe it’s going to be the money of the Internet. It’s kind of standard. So maybe there’s not like this, I guess, like rapport building or additional value you get for being first. But do you think there is, or do you think that matters, like in the grand scheme, like, as it becomes standardized to just use and accept bitcoin?

Kevin Rooke – 00:25:02:

Yeah, I think there’s definitely value being first. I mean, it’s just like, let’s use TikTok as an example because they’re one of the recent social networks to kind of hit mainstream adoption. Like, it was a lot easier to grow a tick tock audience two years ago than it is today. It’s going to be a lot harder to grow a Lightning audience or a sats flow stream of sats in five years than it is today. I think building up, you know, an audience and building up, like, the connections in the network. It’s kind of just like running a node to some degree. You want this, like, central point in the network. You want to be there when things take off. And I think there’s going to be a moment where we really see a lot of activity because one of the things that’s kind of like underappreciated in Lightning right now is that we’re building out infrastructure and the ability to send and receive payments on a far greater scale than we have users today. So one example I use is like the number of people with access to Lightning wallet or the ability to pay over Lightning directly on your phone. There’s about 100 million people in the world that can do that right now. 99% of them don’t know it or have never tried it or have no need to try it today. Right. And a big portion of this is Cash App users, about 70, I think it was about a year ago, they mentioned they had about 70 million users. So that number may even be higher now. It’s maybe 80 million. Kraken. You can now make Lightning payments through. You have packed full. Robin Hood announced they would be integrating Lightning at Bitcoin 2022. You start to add these up and there’s at least 100 million people in the world that are going to have access to Lightning payments. I just think it’s only a matter of time before someone comes along with the killer app. And maybe it’s like a consumer social app. Maybe it is another social media product. I think it’s going to be some way that people can earn Bitcoin and kind of like seamless onboarding flow. Someone’s going to come up with it. And overnight we’ll go from like I don’t know what the number of people actively using Lightning today is, but if we just say as an estimate, we’re at about 100,000 or so, I don’t know, maybe a million active users on a daily or weekly basis. We can just go take it to 50 million, 100 million. There’s no reason that we have all these devices that can now accept and send Lightning payments. It’s just about getting people to the point where they have a need to do it right. Directly in your Cash App, you can swap into Bitcoin and send over light, but why would you do it today? We still don’t have that killer use case yet, but I believe it’s coming.

Voltage – 00:28:14:

Yeah, absolutely. What would you tell a young entrepreneur or maybe someone who’s an influencer content creator, what type of knowledge or what would you share with them?

Kevin Rooke – 00:28:29:

So if someone’s trying to I actually think yeah, the most interesting, I think creating content on Lightning and trying to earn a flow of sats today is probably most interesting to people living in developing countries or young kids who don’t have a full time job or something like that. I have a hard time making a case today for telling an adult who’s working a nine to five and has a good income to drop everything and try and earn $2 a day or something on Lightning. It’s a much harder case to make. But for the kids that are willing to experiment and learn and try new things, I think this is a great opportunity to get your foot in the door. You don’t ever have to buy bitcoin. You can earn a stream of sats from day one. You can get acquainted with bitcoin as an asset. And so I would just say start experimenting. I’m almost shocked that there’s like no stories today of people in El Salvador who have decided, I’m going to try and build a business on Lightning and earn my full income from earning on Lightning and various lightning apps. Because it’s definitely possible you can earn, I believe anyone with a decent amount of conviction and consistency can earn multiple dollars a day today online. It’s not rocket science. It doesn’t require a big audience. There are services that let you basically monetize any business. It doesn’t have to be a Lightning business, right? Like talking about like Vida and Ellen Cal and things like that. These are going to be used by consultants, people running hair salons, people running all sorts of businesses where someone charges for their time. That’s going to be a killer use case and it’s going to apply to anyone. So it doesn’t have to be someone who’s I guess the advice would be, it doesn’t have to be someone focused on specifically creating Lightning content. It can be. And probably in the short run, that’s going to be one of the bigger draws for getting an audience of people who have sats that they’re willing to spend. But over time, this is going to spread out to encompass everything. And so there’s just going to be a lot of activity. And anyone who is interested should start playing around with these tools now, get acquainted with them. And then when this really takes off and when we get a lot more people on board, they’ll be ready and they’ll understand they won’t get left behind.

Voltage – 00:31:23:

So I want to bring this up if you’re open to sharing a little bit. 1 second. I know you mentioned you’re going to start kind of a new content series, and you briefly mentioned it earlier that you want to help people begin earning in bitcoin and Lightning. Do you want to share and maybe debut that idea a little bit and kind of break the ice on what that’s going to look like?

Kevin Rooke – 00:31:49:

Yeah, sure. So something I’m rolling out in the next little while is a content series called Stacking sats. And it’s going to be essentially product reviews and teaching people like, step by step, here’s how you actually stack sats on Lightning. Here’s all the different ways you can do it. Here’s how much I’ve been able to earn. Here’s how much other people have been able to earn. Really trying to hammer home this point that a lot of the internet apps that we use today have extracted a lot of value that belongs to users. And now we have the tools to take some of that value back. And people are taking that value back. And they’re earning it themselves. And so really just highlighting all the different ways people can earn, because I think that’s going to be what that’s what resonates with everyone. Like, if you tell someone they can earn money using their favorite apps, their ears perk up right away. If you tell them, then you need to make sure you set up all these channels and you need to know that Bitcoin is the soundest money ever made, and you need to read the Bitcoin standard and you need to do all these other things. You start to lose some of the people. And so it’s appealing to a certain group of people to maybe be technical and hands on and want to be a hobbyist and learn about this new technology. It’s appealing to another set of people to want to understand the economic principles, and it’s going to be appealing to another set of people to want to earn money. And I think that, to me, is where a big opportunity exists because I don’t hear this talked about enough. Granted, it is still pretty small, but it’s growing quickly enough that I think over time it’s going to be pretty obvious that people can earn money. And I want to help them learn how to do it. Awesome.

Voltage – 00:33:48:

All right, on. I know I’ve been dancing quite a bit. Nate, do you have any questions? And we can probably open it up a little bit. I’m sure there’s a lot of thoughts down there.

Kevin Rooke – 00:33:58:


Nate – 00:33:58:

Yeah, no, I’ve really enjoyed this so far. I think it’s really cool because I think Kevin and I are sort of tackling this issue of sort of like actual using Bitcoin from a couple of different angles. A lot of my focus has been, like, grassroots, trying to get Bitcoin into things like coffee shops and farmers markets and things that are sort of traditional. Like, that where Kevin is focusing on these emerging ways to monetize that just hasn’t been possible until Lightning a bitcoin.

Kevin Rooke – 00:34:28:


Nate – 00:34:28:

With streaming, like, all this cool stuff. And I really like that angle and I think it’s going to keep going. And I really like the idea of I can think of a couple of ideas, but I was just thinking of someone who’s like an expert on a topic, any topic, and they’re like independent consultant or something, right? They likely have a blog. They likely have content that they could put up Lightning Network paywalls, or they can do stream sats for audio feeds or sell files for Lightning and all this stuff. And it’s like a global thing too, right? Because bitcoin doesn’t have any borders. So it’s just I love the idea of having sats come in from multiple angles. That’s just really cool.

Kevin Rooke – 00:35:12:

Yeah, I think we’re just at the tip of the iceberg here. There’s going to be a lot of different ways to earn again. It’s going to touch a lot of people’s lives because anyone who’s earning money can participate. And the addressable market of people that earn money is like billions. And the addressable market of people that could earn money and maybe you don’t have the opportunities to earn money today or are earning under what they could be paid is also billions. And so this is going to not only open up opportunities for people to earn money in ways they never could before, but also an opportunity for people to start to get paid what they’re worth and start to actually more leverage now because there’s this global marketplace for sats and anyone that has valuable ideas or contributions can participate. And it doesn’t matter that you’re in a developing country, it doesn’t matter how old you are, it doesn’t matter any of this stuff. It doesn’t matter. I think people are going to start to get paid more for the work they already do and then find new ways to get paid that were never before possible.

Nate – 00:36:28:

Yeah, I love it. Kids these days, right? Very few kids are learning how to paint, like actual paint. Maybe some are, and that’s fine. What kids are doing is they’re going into like video games, sandbox games and creating their own levels and stuff. And you could sell these levels or something. I don’t know. I’ve got all these ideas now, but it’s just super cool because these things are really popular and I think it’s like hard for a 14 year old to monetize these cool video game levels they’re making or something, or skins or mods or whatever. And I think that’d be a cool use case for kids too, to get in.

Kevin Rooke – 00:37:10:

Yeah, I think there was a story a little while ago I want to say he was a twelve year old kid. I saw it on Stacker News and I think the kid had created a version of the game, like the video game Snake where you had the snake running around the screen and trying to pick up the apples or whatever, but they did it with Lightning. So there’s definitely going to be this next generation of builders that are going to be Lightning native. The people who are ten years old today just learning about how to use a phone, how to manage money, they’re going to be the ones that take these tools and run with it and really take this to a whole new.

Nate – 00:37:50:

Level and it’s going to be easy for them.

Voltage – 00:37:52:


Nate – 00:37:52:

I remember years ago, Andreas Antonopoulos had this thing where it’s like our kids are going to be growing up with bitcoin until they reach a point where they, quote, unquote, need to open a bank account.

Kevin Rooke – 00:38:02:

They’re going to be like, what the.

Nate – 00:38:03:

Heck is this crap?

Kevin Rooke – 00:38:04:

You’re close on the weekends. What the hell is this?

Nate – 00:38:07:

So I’m totally on board with all that. I think it’s something else. I love it.

Kevin Rooke – 00:38:14:

Exactly. Yeah. This is going to be the same for I think it’s going to do something similar to the job market right now. We had a bit of a shift with COVID and changing the way that people worked. We now have a bit more of an emphasis on remote work, but there’s still a lot of people that go into an office nine to five. They think those are their only working hours. Sometimes you can do bigger gigs if you’re doing an airbnb thing or an Uber thing, but you can’t monetize the four minutes of time that you spend sitting on the toilet in the morning. It’s just not possible today. But on Lightning it is. I mentioned earlier the example of using Stakwork for transcripts and things like that. They have a network of thousands of workers all over the world who are being fed these little tiny snippets of tasks. They actually don’t even know what the full task is. Like, if I have an hour and a half long podcast, they’ll get like a three second snippet of it and it will be a word that the AI system couldn’t detect. And we need a human to make sure. Did Kevin say this word or that word? And so one of those thousands of workers will pick up this job, listen to the three second audio clip and go, oh, of course he said this word, and they’ll have made money in 3 seconds and it’ll be settled. It’s like just totally it unlocks a whole new set of possibilities. Being able to scale. You can not only scale payments down to zero, which is what the Lightning Network gives us, but now you can scale jobs down to zero too. And I imagine there’s just a ton of lost productivity in the economy today, or productivity that is not yet unlocked. I guess that’s a better way to phrase it.

Voltage – 00:40:19:


Nate – 00:40:20:

Just to boil it all down, I firmly believe now that the internet has its own money, right. Like this idea that we are currently like, putting in credit cards into the Internet, typing in your address and your name and these numbers and stuff. This is going to be a blip that is going to be seen in history as an intermediate step to the actual native internet economy that people are going to be using 30, 20 years from now. And it’s going to be like, I remember when those weirdos remember when grandpa, you had a plastic card and typed in numbers into the computer? That was weird. I really think people that think that plastic cards are going to be like, there forever ain’t happening.

Kevin Rooke – 00:41:08:

Yeah, exactly. Getting on boarded to Lightning still is a challenge for a lot of people. But once you get on board, it is a fun experience. Once you start sending and receiving payments and you know what you’re doing and the payments are just flowing, it’s like you start to question why you ever did it any other way. And I think that’s something still a lot of bitcoiners haven’t had the joy of experiencing watching sats flow into their node or into their custodial wallet or whatever it is. That’s something that I hope a lot of other people get to experience because it’s a really cool feeling.

Nate – 00:41:54:

All right, okay.

Kevin Rooke – 00:41:57:

But I’m done. Go ahead, Bob.

Voltage – 00:41:59:

Yeah, we got Chad. He raised his hand. We can start doing questions from the crowd. If anybody wants to raise your hand, feel free, but what’s going on? Chad?

Chad D. Wagner – 00:42:06:

Got it. I love the episode. A couple of things real quick. I was wondering a suggestion on the best Lightning wallet, if anyone has that. And then I think someone mentioned like a YouTube course or something, if you could remind us of that. Again, I want to dive into your courses again and learn more about this.

Kevin Rooke – 00:42:30:

Sure. So on the topic of the YouTube course, this is a series that I’m working on. I think the one I was mentioning, the stacking sats, this is going to be released shortly, so that’s not up yet. But the content that I’ve been creating so far is just under the Kevin Rook show, and that’s dozens of episodes with builders in the Lightning Network space. In terms of the best wallet, I have a hard time picking one because there’s a lot of different solutions for a lot of people with different technical competencies and different risk profiles. And whether or not you want one that’s custodial or non custodial, whether or not you’re familiar with how to use a Lightning wallet, whether or not you’re making a lot of on chain transactions as well, these all play a role. I will say that one of the first wallets I got set up with on Lightning was wallet of Satoshi. And I think their slogan is, like, the world’s simplest bitcoin wallet or the world’s simplest Lightning wallet. So that’s one of many. I think there’s a good list of Lightning wallet that support Lightning addresses, which is kind of becoming a more common payment standard. It’s kind of like an email address for your bitcoin and that is available on lightningaddress.com. You can see all the wallets and apps that support Lightning addresses. So that’s kind of cool. There’s a good chunk of wallets there you can kind of explore and play around with. Yeah.

Nate – 00:44:27:

So as far as mobile Lightning apps and stuff, if you want convenience, your wallet, satoshi is probably the best. The trade off is custodial, so don’t put any money on there that you can’t afford to lose kind of thing. There are some non custodial Lightning wallet apps. One really good one, in my opinion, is Bitfinex by Async, and the other one is Muun wallet. M-U-U-N. Those are both non custodial that you could try out.

Chad D. Wagner – 00:45:04:

Awesome. Thank you. Since I got two more seconds with you guys, I’ll mention I’ve been using the ocean platform, selling my coffee beans online using sats. So that’s working out pretty cool. They’re still working on it, but it’s going well.

Kevin Rooke – 00:45:25:

Love to hear it.

Voltage – 00:45:31:

Awesome. Well, yeah, we’ll give another minute in case anyone wants to raise their hand and ask a question. But is there anything maybe anything else you’d want to share, Kevin, that maybe we haven’t talked through that would just be valuable? Before we wrap up here in a few.

Kevin Rooke – 00:45:48:

I think if you’re a bitcoin or listening to this and you haven’t tried Lightning, I would just say take half an hour right after this call and play around some of the apps in the space. You’ll start to quickly learn how it works, to start to have a better understanding of the way Lightning is different from Bitcoin and the way the transactions move and the way you pay and what you receive. I think these tools are going to be very important. It’s kind of like learning how to use Bitcoin for the first time. It’s a different set of tools. It’s a different technology. There is a learning curve. So I just recommend anyone who’s interested in Lightning who hasn’t tried it yet just start playing around with it. One of the benefits of it is that right now, a lot of the amounts flowing through Lightning are pretty small. There are faucets where you can get, like, 100 sats. There are apps you can use and quickly earn 100 sats, and you can play around with it in a relatively risk free way, knowing that the amount of money you have up for up in your Lightning walls is like pennies or dollars. And so that could give you a bit more confidence to get started and to not be too worried about all of the technical requirements before you even get going. Of course, as you start to put more money on, you start to play around, and if you’re setting up a node and you’re trying to route payments and things like that, you got to be a little more aware of money and risk management and knowing what you’re doing then. But as an onboarding step, I think the easiest way for anyone to get involved is just start trying the apps and start earning a bit of Bitcoin.

Voltage – 00:47:42:

All right, there we have it. Well, Kevin, we appreciate it, man. We appreciate everything you’re doing for Bitcoin and Lightning, and we’ll have to do this again and check in maybe in six months and hear how things have moved along for you.

Kevin Rooke – 00:47:54:

Yeah, absolutely. Thank you for having me on today. This has been awesome, and I’m excited to see the Lightning space evolve wonderful.

Voltage – 00:48:03:

All right, guys, we’ll see everyone next week. Thanks again.

Kevin Rooke – 00:48:07:


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