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PayPal's Support Is the Best Thing That Could Happen to Bitcoin

• http://www.wired.com, By Marcus Wohlsen
For every VC who extols the innovative power of the digital currency, pop culture still sees it as a way for the paranoid cyber-libertarian to shop for black-tar heroin on the Silk Road. All the more reason, then, that bitcoin fans should rejoice that, in a move announced Monday at Techcrunch's Disrupt conference, PayPal is supporting the crypto-currency on its Braintree payments platform. When the internet's most mainstream brand for moving money embraces a technology, it's hard to see that system as a fringe operation.

Not that you'll be buying Beanie Babies on eBay with bitcoin just yet. For non-financial tech nerds, Braintree is a startup bought by PayPal last year that creates tools for software developers to easily integrate payments into apps and websites. Instead of being shuttled off-site or out-of-app in the manner of the traditional PayPal payment flow, everything happens in-app, in exactly the way individual developers want.

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