@Wolf480pl According to Google Translate, utility is “the state of being useful, profitable, or beneficial”.
@KrzysiekJ and you didn't mean anything more specific by it in this context?
Ok, so let's say that the person who said about proof-of-work sells electricity, and their earnings depend on the amount of electricity sold. Surely for them it is profitable and beneficial that people mine a proof-of-work currency, because this increases the profits from selling electricity to those miners.
@Wolf480pl Well, in that sense if I turn a light bulb on, but close it in a black box, then it is profitable to electricity sellers. However it is neither profitable nor beneficial to me, hence from my point of view there is no utility in turning the bulb on. What utility does proof of work provide to cryptocurrency users (unless it is used to obtain security, as in Bitcoin)?
@KrzysiekJ oh, so it's not about creating _any_ utility, and increasint the total amount of utility in the world, but it's about creating utility for the person that performs the action?
@KrzysiekJ So eg. if I host a file upload service that anybody on the internet can use for free, and I don't have any profits from it, I'm doing something pointless because _I_ don't get any utility from it?
@Wolf480pl If you host a file upload service for free, then it may have utility for your users and for you the utility may be that you help spreading some files and make your users happy.
@KrzysiekJ I'd call the latter "psychological value". But yeah, the utility for the users is real, and probably greater than the hosting costs, so it should be a net gain.
@Wolf480pl Giving money doesn’t sound like creating previously non-existent utility; it’s just changing ownership of resources. And clearly some resources (energy) which have utility are destroyed in proof of work. Refer to Bastiat’s parable of the broken window: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parable_of_the_broken_window
@KrzysiekJ hm... yeah, you're right.
Wasting electricity isn't a net gain in utility, because the amount of utility lost by the one wasting is at least as big as the amount gained by the electricity seller.
@Wolf480pl Let’s say that we both have some electricity to sell. I then pay you, say, $150 to burn 1000 kWh. You then also pay me $150 to burn 1000 kWh. Money outcome of transactions is 0… but we both now have 1000 kWh less of electricity, so this is a clear loss.
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