Bitcoin is just the poster currency for a growing movement of alternative tender
Scott Smith of futures research lab Changeist writes in Quartz about the long history of alternative currencies, and criticizes Bitcoin because “they set too high a bar for the average person”:
“There have been various alternative currencies kicking around developed countries like Britain and the US for years, but the global recession has spurred increased interest in setting up small local systems of payment using money designed around local needs. These range from the gray hairs of local currency such as the Brixton Pound, set up five years ago in the South London neighborhood that gave it its name, to more recent entrants like Bavariaâ€™s Chiemgauer, a currency that started in a school and has spread to wider use, and the Credito, used by the Damanhur eco-community in Northern Italy.”
See also his 2012 article: “The Future of Informal Economies“.