An article in the US print edition of the Wall Street Journal, titled, “Bitcoin Investors face The Real IRS“, reports how the IRS will treat Bitcoin and other virtual currencies like property such as stocks.
This means any increase in value will be a taxable event, and treated as capital gains. For Bitcoin specifically this means an increased need for record keeping and some attempt at reduced anonymity.
This IRS news also offers an opportunity for information centric organisations.
For such organisations that understand their information assets need to be valued and managed as assets, using Bitcoin as the valuation method could help add the information value to the balance sheet.
At a stroke, critical information assets can be quantified, insured, and accounted for in Bitcoins. As the value of information assets changes over time, simply account for the gain, or loss, in Bitcoins.
Such a change in how information assets are valued and accounted for will help end-user organizations quantify the value to their business of key information assets officially, publicly, and legally. At the same time, the value of Bitcoin as he medium of account will increase significantly.
Some organisations already accept Bitcoin as a medium of exchange: http://www.nasdaq.com/article/what-companies-accept-bitcoin-cm323438.
This IRS pronouncement will only increase its popularity. Valuing information assets with Bitcoin will only increase its use and value, and finally get the IRS to begin recognizing the importance of information assets.
By Andrew White - Gartner Analyst