Patrick Byrne is the founder and CEO of popular deal site Overstock.com. He also has a doctorate in philosophy and a survivalist ranch where he could ride out a hypothetical zombie invasion. And he has always had ambitions bigger than retail. For years, Byrne used his position to rail against corruption on Wall Street. Then, he discovered bitcoin, and with it, a new way to dismantle what he sees as dismantle what he sees as dangerous institutions.
In 2015, Overstock.com became the first company to accept the cryptocurrency as payment. Byrne still runs the retail site, but he’s poured his time and profits into financing blockchain-based start-ups, including a alternative stock exchange. And he’s attracted a following of crypto fans who share his vision for a future fueled by blockchain.
VICE News spent time with Byrne at a party in Miami, at Overstock headquarters in Utah, and at his secretive ski chalet to find out why he’s betting big on the technology behind bitcoin.
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