Q&A

The following are some questions we've been asked, or anticipated. Just click on the questions to see the answers.

General Questions


Digital cash is a digital currency which has cash-like features, such as privacy, anonymity, and freedom from censorship. There are many forms of electronic money, including most of the bank deposits, checking accounts, and credit cards in the world today which rely upon the government-issued or "fiat" currencies that include cash but are, now, mostly computer entries. We have developed a set of Foundational Principles which we believe are important. Among them, we believe that if an online digital payment system isn't just as anonymous as cash, then it's no good. We believe that if wallets can be tied to identities, then they're part of the slave system and should be avoided. Account-based systems always destroy privacy. No privacy, no freedom. We also say that if the circulation system only allows for a single monetary issuer (or mint) without competition, then it's a monopoly and a single point of failure.
Digital cash needs an alliance because it is threatened by those who oppose freedom, privacy, anonymity, and those who wish to impose their will upon others. One of the earliest forms of digital cash, DigiCash, went bankrupt in 1998. Another system intended to provide a digital gold currency, e-gold.com, was forced out of business in 2009. So was the Liberty Dollar. Clearly, for digital cash systems and services to thrive, those who favour their implementation, distribution, and continued development should form an alliance, work together, and avoid the pitfalls that have ended other similar ventures in the past.
We believe that everyone needs digital cash, though, of course, some people won't recognise their need, and others won't admit it. Certainly there has been considerable interest in the idea of digital cash ever since it became possible (roughly in 1982). Digital cash is useful for the same reasons that physical cash is useful. It is "money on hand" and not dependent on the good will of some other person, group, or enterprise. If you exceed your credit limit, your credit card ceases to be available funds. If the banks in your country are having difficulty and the government declares a "bank holiday" as happened recently in Cyprus and more recently in Greece, the funds in your bank account cease to be available to you. If the government declares private ownership of gold to be illegal, as happened in May 1933, then the gold coins you have may be seized by government agents, as happened in the United States for some years thereafter. Ideally, in a free society, you would be free to choose what money you wish to accept, convert that money into other forms that are acceptable to others, and spend your money where, when, and as you please. It is, sadly, the case that we do not presently live in a free society, anywhere on Earth. Digital cash may be able to help change that situation for you.
Totalitarians and others like them who are threatened by the freedom, privacy, and anonymity of digital cash are, of course, against it. One of the more difficult recent episodes in the Bitcoin saga has been the attempt by New York state authorities to create a "bit licence" for users and businesses. Various critiques have evaluated the resulting predictable mess. One good reason to "silence the blockchain" is to avoid the innovation-hampering and privacy-shredding efforts of the New York bit licence. Some people go so far as to believe that all forms of cash are bad. There are also interest groups in favour of less choice in currency exchanges including some academics, and many bureaucrats, interest groups in favour of the status quo such as the central banks and the treasury departments of various governments, those financial institutions that fear change or the loss of their cartel or monopoly preferences, and even some potential users of digital cash who prefer to stick with what they see as safe state-issued currencies. The idea that there are threats to digital cash is strongly supported by the extensive evidence, some of which we link to in this answer.
Encryption and anonymity enable individuals to exercise their rights to freedom of opinion and expression in the digital age and, as such, deserve strong protection, says the UN's Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. These thoughts are not philosophical wanderings, but have concrete, practical application today. For example, the group Wikileaks faced difficulty paying its operating costs "when PayPal and other payment intermediaries caved to pressure to stop processing donations to the controversial journalism group -- an obvious case of payment intermediaries being pressed into the service of government censorship," according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Traditional views of anonymity suggest that it is acceptable under some circumstances but not under others. Anonymous communications have been shown to be vital for rape victims, people with AIDS, whistleblowers exposing government misdeeds, and in a great many other situations where being named exposes the individual to political oppression, violence or other forms of abuse, even death. Even the Supreme Court of the United States, only occasionally known for siding with individual liberty, has written, "Anonymity is a shield from the tyranny of the majority.... It thus exemplifies the purpose behind the Bill of Rights and of the First Amendment in particular: to protect unpopular individuals from retaliation... at the hand of an intolerant society." Since a payment is just a form of economic free speech, if a payment system doesn't provide for anonymity, it isn't good enough. Digital cash should be anonymous.
No. You cannot. Transactions in the Voucher-Safe system are final. If the other party to the transaction does not pick up the payment you send within the time limit you set, the transaction is not completed and your funds become available to you again. However, a completed transaction cannot be reversed. Is that fair? It certainly is fair. If you are in doubt about the party you are paying, you should not rely upon being able to reverse a transaction later in your thinking about whether to pay them. If you are a merchant and you have ever had a charge-back on a credit card purchase, you understand the value of irreversible transactions. Payment processors also understand the risks of credit card reversals, including the substantial risk of fraud and abuse by card holders. The benefits of privacy and irreversibility are well-known to Bitcoin users as well as to bank wire users and users of physical cash. We believe that digital cash must involve irreversible transactions, otherwise it is subject to similar forces of corruption that make the banking system unreliable. If you don't wish to have your transaction be permanent, you should consider using some other payment method. You should also remember the Latin adage, caveat emptor or "buyer beware." Your responsibility for your own choices should remain yours.
The DCA cannot reverse transactions. We have no power over your wallet, nor over the wallets of other users. If you feel that you've been cheated, defrauded, or harmed directly by the action of a Digital Cash Alliance participant, we want to hear from you. We are willing to help you contact the other party to your transaction, find out what happened, and bring you into touch with dispute resolution experts who may be able to help. We are not a dispute resolution service, we are not arbitrators, and we are not mediators. We wish to be helpful to you, but we do not guarantee your behaviour to others, nor do we guarantee their behaviour to you. Digital cash may be used to do extensive good and brings with it considerable benefits. However, it is as much like physical cash as possible (for a great many reasons we've listed elsewhere on this page, on this site, and in essays published elsewhere), and physical cash is different from your cheque book, your credit cards, and from transactions managed on a central server. The benefits you gain from using digital cash come with risks, and you have to be aware of those risks. We continue to believe that you are well served by using digital cash.
No. If there were records on a central server, it wouldn't be digital cash. The problems with account-based systems, such as credit cards, BitGold, and the like, where transactions are stored on a central server, are both numerous and very detrimental to your freedom, privacy, and sovereignty. If a central server records transactions, not only may transactions be reversed, not only may accounts be ordered frozen, but also the entire system is very vulnerable to seizure by a national government. Accordingly, the digital cash systems and services of the Digital Cash Alliance are entirely without central servers that store accounts or their history. None of the transactions your wallet ever makes are recorded on a central server; we cannot know which wallets have how much of which assets; we cannot reverse transactions, freeze accounts, or release transaction records to anyone. Digital cash is better for you because it does not expose your privacy, anonymity, and freedom to government intervention, hacker exploits, nor publication by investigative journalists.
Yes, extensive tutorials have been developed by Voucher-Safe and by SilentVault. Video tutorials are available here. Text and graphic tutorials are available here. If you have further questions, please contact us.
No one is in charge of the economy. The global economy consists of roughly 7.5 billion persons each of whom makes dozens to hundreds of economic choices every day. The world's population includes some cases where people are not free to choose (prisoners, subjects of authoritarian governments, etc.), but the vast majority buy and sell goods and services all the time. Every single person in the economy responds to conditions, both real and perceived, elsewhere in the world, including weather, news, outcomes of sporting events, and an infinity of situations at home, work, and nearby. In short, the economy is subject to all the conditions for a chaotic system: a great many events take place, small changes to initial conditions have vast implications for outcomes, and rules or guidelines for behaviour are discoverable but cannot be imposed. Another way of describing the economy is to say that it is a living system, like the ecosphere of Earth, and, therefore, necessarily chaotic and uncontrollable. We believe that no one is in charge, even though those who set interest rates, such as central bankers, have an observable advantage in predicting some short-term outcomes because the cost of capital dramatically affects a great many other economic activities. Given these facts, we believe that money should be issued by people who provide goods and services. We've developed digital cash with those ideas in mind.
Yes. A recent search on this topic yielded over 22 million results. Dispute resolution through a judicial process using lawyers and a civil court proceeding is possible, but there is an implication of enforcement by violence whenever government-based systems are used. Alternatives include private arbitration, conciliation, mediation, negotiation, lawyer-supported mediation, and many more. We encourage you to examine sites with different perspectives such as Out-law, von Mises Institute, and anonet for further information on this subject. The Digital Cash Alliance is not a dispute resolution service, arbitrator, mediator, conciliator, nor negotiator. If you or a company you represent is capable to provide dispute resolution services, please let us know. We believe that non-violent alternatives to dispute resolution are better, and that in the long-term, violence only suppresses one side or another in a dispute without actually resolving anything.
In our terms of service we say, "We provide the Digital Cash Alliance technology where is, as is, without warranty, without guarantee of its fitness for any purpose." Why isn't there any sort of guarantee associated with the technology offered here? While individual Issuers are free to make representations and offer warranties or guarantees, we do not believe that guaranteed behaviour is consistent with the nature of digital cash. Digital cash should be as much like physical cash as possible. Since we cannot guarantee the behaviour of other participants in the economy, since we don't know how you plan to use your digital cash, since we don't want to know what you do with the contents of your wallet, since we have no way of knowing who is using a particular wallet, since we have no way of knowing whether the other parties to a transaction you choose to make are going to honour their side of the bargain you negotiate with them, since we don't believe anyone controls the economy and since we don't believe any chaotic system can be controlled, we don't think you should be told otherwise. We're not going to beguile you with guarantees because we don't see any way to make good on guarantees. Digital cash involves risk. If you aren't prepared to accept those risks, you might prefer using a credit card or some other reversible and state-involved system of payment.
The Digital Cash Alliance is a membership association. We have team members who develop technology, promote the Alliance, and help participants to the best of our ability. We have advisers who help guide our actions. But we're not in charge here. No one is in charge. No one can command your use of digital cash, nor hamper its use, nor prevent its use. We're not going to pretend to have power over accounts, wallets, transactions, or any other aspect of the economy, because we don't have any such power. Moreover, we don't wish to be in charge. If you are prepared to be in charge of your own destiny, digital cash is for you.
In the wallet creation process, you are asked to create log-in particulars and account recovery particulars. That process is outlined, with graphics, here. When you create your wallet you should keep your log-in details where you can find them. You should also keep them private. One way to handle this function would be to create a text file. Preferably, your files are kept on an encrypted disk computer, or are encrypted with Gnu PG, TrueCrypt, or another encryption tool. Another approach would be to encrypt the log-in details and e-mail the encrypted information to yourself. If you used account recovery details that you can easily recall such as your mother's maiden name, or the model of your first car, you can use the account recovery process to establish a new set of log-in particulars. If that information is available to you, when you visit the first screen for logging into your wallet, choose the button at the bottom of the screen for "Go to lost wallet recovery." However, if either your account recovery particulars or your log-in particulars, and the wallet ID are not available to you, your wallet is unrecoverable.

We cannot stress enough the importance of recording your log-in particulars and your account recovery details where you can find these items of information. Make back-ups. Use encryption to safeguard your privacy.

Questions About Our Products

The Digital Cash Alliance accepts Bitcoin, Silent Bitcoin, Litecoin, Silent Litecoin, physical cash, cheques, money orders, ACH payments, and bank wires. Our order pages contain logic to control which methods are available for which types and amounts of purchases.
There are many payment methodologies available in the world today which are not as effective, anonymous, practical, and powerful as digital cash. However, many of these payment options are both popular and inexpensive. In our effort to promote digital cash we have chosen to accept some of the other types of payment to make things more convenient for our supporters and members. We strongly prefer to accept digital cash, of course, but not everyone has already started using it, so we are working with what is available as we think best. We are eager to convert users of less effective forms of money to the use of digital cash, which means our Alliance, and exchangers working with our team, are willing to accept worse money from you in order to provide you with better money. That's part of the joy of a free market. You are free to choose what currencies and payment methods to use. If you aren't free to make those choices, we think you should be.
Please see the Downloads drop-down in the top menu above. Links to clients, installation instructions, and also source code are provided.
The wallet client source code is found in the "Downloads" menu above. The direct link is here.
Yes. For more information about developing apps for DCSpark/SVSpark, please contact us.
Yes. The merchant payment gateway for the Digital Cash Alliance is called OnionPay and is explained here.
Spark is an implementation of the XMPP chat protocol, widely known as Jabber. DCSpark and SVSpark employ plugins in the Spark application, building on the same platform. In Spark, you can create a username and password, or, on our servers and on some other servers, use an anonymous login. We suggest you select the button for "be anonymous" on the first screen. But, if you wish to use an identity, for example, in the chat rooms under the "conferences" tab, feel free to create your own username and password. (To create a chat login on the server, click on the Accounts button in the lower left of the first screen.) Keep track of these the way you do your other login information. If you use the same username, the same password should work just fine. But, using a username is entirely optional and not necessary to access your wallet.

Questions About RGOLD

RGold is Rebate gold. It is a gold-backed rebate voucher. So, what is a rebate? A rebate is a marketing tool which provides the consumer some amount of a purchase price back to them in some form. Auto dealers have been promoting new car sales for decades with the "Two thousand dollars cash back" rebate offer. Makers of phones and gadgets often offer a "mail-in" rebate. Our RGold rebate is very similar, and meant to give you a good reason to take the plunge and learn to use digital cash. In order to get your RGold, you have to download a wallet (see Downloads in the top menu), create a new wallet, and tell us the wallet ID. (Telling us your wallet ID is best done while placing your order on our site.)

We want to motivate you to buy our products and services, earn RGold rebates, and actually create a wallet and use it. You might enjoy sending some RGold to friends, family, and people you work with, as gifts. The giving of gold has a very long history. RGold is gold, stored in a vault. More details are available here.
The Issuer of RGold is Digital Contract Facilitators, Ltd., the business entity which operates the Digital Cash Alliance. The gold is stored securely in an allocated account at a bonded storage facility.
The purpose of this fee is to make sure that we do not compete with exchange agents. Half of the 10% fee (5% of the transaction value) goes to charity. We sell RGold to exchange agents for a 5% fee, all of which we donate to charity. Thus, exchange agents can motivate Alliance participants to work with their exchange by charging a fee less than 10%. We think digital cash is worth paying for.
RGold is a gold-backed rebate voucher. The gold of RGold is securely stored in bonded, allocated storage. The price of RGold has been set to 125% of the spot price of gold. Since RGold is denominated in grams of gold (GAU), it may also be useful to users to understand that 1.0 GAU == 0.8 RGold-GAU (RGA). This arbitrary pricing choice is made for two important reasons. Since the price applies to both buying and selling, it's really not a mark-up as such. However anyone making an RGOLD spend for, say $19.95, will spend 25% less weight of gold than market spot would indicate, due to this pricing. The two reasons for this pricing choice are: First, to make the point that the spot price of gold, which is determined in futures markets where 1% or less of the "trades" result in delivery of physical metal, is corrupt, arbitrary, artificially suppressed, and thus not reflective of the real market value of gold; second, to make the point that gold which is in anonymous digital circulation is inherently more valuable than gold which is not in circulation. The SVX exchange built into your wallet allows you to offer and accept RGold in exchange at whatever rate you choose, so if you feel that RGold is over-priced, you can offer it or accept it at a discount. If you feel that it is still not reflective of anonymous digital gold's true value, you can offer it or accept it at a premium. These choices are up to you. The choice of how to price it was made by the Issuer. Willing sellers and willing buyers make a market, and a free market always discovers prices. We believe digital cash is better money.

Questions About TGOLD

TGold is a voucher currency denominated in grams of gold representing a claim on future token revenues. Various distributed servers in the Voucher-Safe network earn token revenues for their roles in processing transactions, as described in the terms of service. These tokens are redeemed for currency units of the different issuers in the network. TGold vouchers are not gold stored anywhere. TGold becomes redeemable after profitability is reached for token revenues earned by the servers. TGold may be traded on the SVX exchange built into your wallet, accepted for payments, or spent to other wallets as you see fit. Additional information is available here.
The Issuer of TGold is Digital Contract Facilitators, Ltd., the business entity which operates the Digital Cash Alliance.

Questions About Becoming an Issuer

An Issuer is a Voucher-Safe asset Issuer complying with the requirements of the Voucher-Safe system and issuing assets represented in the Digital Cash Alliance wallet technology. We believe that the digital cash should be issued by parties engaged in trade and commerce, who provide goods, services, or value to other businesses or to consumers. We are happy to introduce the owners of assets and those desiring to operate a future Issuer enterprise to the Voucher Publisher for the Voucher-Safe system. Digital Cash Alliance makes available for payers, receivers, and exchangers the vouchers issued by what we regard as suitable and trustworthy voucher Issuers. So, if you wish to become an Issuer you'll need to convince our team that you have assets that are suited to the issuing of digital cash. More information is available here.

Questions About Becoming a Voucher Publisher

A business or network of enterprises may become a Voucher Publisher provided they are prepared to meet the terms and conditions set by the Digital Cash Alliance. Those terms and conditions include a substantial up-front fee for software licensing, considerable background information, and a negotiated status of trust within the Voucher-Safe system. While it may not be easy to become a voucher publisher, it should be very worthwhile. Issuing and publishing digital cash are rewarding activities. More information is available here.

Questions About Becoming an In-wallet Merchant

In-wallet merchants are Merchant Ally participants in the Digital Cash Alliance who have developed an app integrated into the "Marketplaces" tab in the Digital Cash Alliance wallet. So, when you are logged into your wallet using DCSpark, go to the "Marketplaces" tab along the bottom edge of the wallet screen. You should find a drop down list of qualifying merchants. For each one you will need to create a PIN for logging into their marketplace app. The Digital Cash Alliance works with prospective merchants to ensure that they comply with our terms of service. More information about Merchants is available here.