Why Laszlo Hanyec’s $300 Million Pizzas Changed the World

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Laszlo Hanyec

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Bitcoin Pizza Day is an annual event that Bitcoiners use to celebrate the first purchase of goods with Bitcoin ever recorded. On Bitcoin Pizza Day, every Bitcoiner eats a Pizza, even carnivores.

The use of bitcoin for routine everyday purchases is gradually expanding nowadays. Though it was 12 years ago on May 22 in 2010 that Laszlo Hanyec, a Floridian, conducted the first-ever real-world transaction using bitcoin to buy two Papa Joe’s pizzas.  At the time, bitcoin was a newfangled currency or rather just a collectible that no one knew about and was worth very little.

Laszlo had no idea that the bitcoin he used to buy dinner for his family would be worth a fortune a decade later. Some may question if the early adopter has ever regretted using bitcoin to purchase something so basic, but the response may surprise them.

Laszlo said: “I don’t regret it. I think that it’s great that I got to be part of the early history of Bitcoin in that way.

“People know about the pizza…everybody can kind of relate to that and be [like] ‘Oh my God, you spent all of that money!’

Since then, the bitcoin landscape has altered dramatically. Strike consumers now have the ability to make simple purchases at any convenience store, thanks to a statement made by Jack Maller (CEO of Strike) in April about his newly created lighting technology that has been integrated into the platform that allows customers to use the app to practically buy anything at almost every convenience store such as CVS, Whole Foods, Target, etc. 

Lasloz’s brave decision on that spring day could very well have changed bitcoin’s destiny forever. He unintentionally demonstrated how a digital money may be more than a fun game and can become a legitimate method of payment.

Laszlo Hanyec had come across bitcoin at the time of his purchase and decided to start mining it as a pastime, which he soon realized had a lot of potential. As a result, he devised a program that enabled people to mine bitcoin using their computer’s graphic cards.

“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.

Some may wonder what happened to the 10,000 bitcoin that were used to purchase the pizza and have since resurfaced in the economic cycle particularly in platforms like Humble Bunble which is a digital video game marketplace.

Laszlo continues to be a strong supporter of bitcoin today. He now owns Goruck, a backpack company that accepts bitcoin.

After 12 years this day remains historic for the Bitcoin community. May 22 is now considered Bitcoin Pizza Day in remembrance of the first-ever real purchase. The hashtag #BitcoinPizzaDay trends every day on this day. What started as a simple experiment is now very significant, as entire nations can utilize bitcoin as a legal form of payment (El Salvador) Something that not even Laszlo could have imagined at the time. 

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