It's Bitcoin Pizza Day

May 22 marks the anniversary of the first time cryptocurrency was used for real-world purchase
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2024 5:41 AM CDT
Happy Bitcoin Pizza Day
Stock photo.   (Getty Images / C. Militello)

Happy Bitcoin Pizza Day to all who celebrate. Celebrate what, you might ask? Wednesday's "holiday" marks the anniversary of the day when, in 2010, Laszlo Hanyecz got two pizzas delivered to his house from Papa John's, which he paid for using Bitcoin, Quartz reports. (How exactly he did so is a bit confusing; you can see his original post offering to trade Bitcoin for pizza on the Bitcoin Forum.) It was the first documented purchase made using the then-nascent cryptocurrency. Hanyecz paid 10,000 Bitcoin for the pizzas—that amount would be worth $700 million today. At the time, it had no real-world value since it hadn't yet been used to buy anything, but Quartz puts its worth at approximately $41 (which is what Hanyecz likely could have sold it for at the time), while the cost of the pizzas was about $25.

Hanyecz has said in interviews since that fateful day that he has no regrets, the Sun reports. "I wanted to do the pizza thing because to me it was free pizza," he once explained, noting that he wrote a program allowing him to mine Bitcoin using a computer graphics card. "I mean, I coded this thing and mined Bitcoin and I felt like I was winning the internet that day. I got pizza for contributing to an open-source project. Usually hobbies are a time sink and money sink, and in this case, my hobby bought me dinner." He also once said, "I think if it wasn't me, somebody else would have come along. And maybe it wouldn't have been pizza." (More bitcoin stories.)

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