Garry Kasparov, the author of the book, Deep Thinking: Where Machine Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins and the former world chess champion attended the Web Summit and had a few things to say about bitcoin.

Kasparov was in Lisbon attending the Web Summit event as a representative of the cybersecurity firm Avast and was interviewed by the Portuguese based investment web group  “proteste investe”. The website is know for providing financial advice and guidance for people of all levels. The group interviewed Kasparov on this thoughts on the pioneer cryptocurrency bitcoin and altcoins in general.

In the interview Kasparov expressed his statements by starting off with the fact that the growth of bitcoin and increased interest by individuals across the world doesn’t surprise him at all. He then went on to say something that might be considered heresy to many cryptocurrency enthusiasts, he called cryptocurrencies equivalent to fake money that are given by governments in significant quantities.

The Chess legend views bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as false and fake money because he thinks that at least 80% of the bitcoins in existence are moving around in exchanges and financial markets. They are not used in other sectors and industries which means they are only existing within a bubble and solely serve investors.

Garry, who was born in the year of 1963, in the nation of Azerbaijan, which was then a part of the USSR, said that “ given our technological evolution and subsequent increase in online market investments, it’s expected, in the current global age, the rise of virtual money, of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.”

Garry Kasparov, someone who has been critical of the current regime in Russia and of communist policies in general, has stated that he is a fan of the innovator Jobs and believes that bitcoin is a product of the free market.

Garry Kasparov is known as chess legend due to the fact the he took the chess throne at the young age of 22 years. He was highest rated competitive chase player in the world and is currently surpassed by Magnus Carlsen.

Kasparov believes that in a free market environment, people are able to see opportunities and smart people are able to capitalize on it and design tools to capture that opportunity. Kasparov, commented on safety of bitcoin saying that  “whatever’s anonymous can’t be 100% safe.”

The interviewers asked him questions in regards to what he saw about the potential of bitcoin and what it could do improve the lives of people and general global economies. He responded that he doesn’t think that there is that potential saying that,  “a phenomenon as unstable as Bitcoin being attractive nowadays is a sign that the whole economy is in a huge state of stagnation.”

This is an interesting perspective because, in one sense, he is correct but in the other sense, he is wrong. How? Yes, it can be argued that there are various signs that economy is stagnating and bitcoin is propped up by this lack of faith in the various aspects of the current system. But if we were to look at the flip side, bitcoin allows for people to become empowered, take control and engage in different actions to further themselves. These opportunities are provided in various ways, people across the world are able to utilize bitcoin as a store of value, the can use the currency to transact and purchase services and thrive in places like Venezuela where hyperinflation runs rampant and use it for various other use cases. Secondly, bitcoin is one application of the blockchain, the various use cases of the blockchain are still yet to be mined.

As a closing note, the interviewers asked him if he was an investor and he remarked “It’s pure speculation, I’m not an investor, just a former professional chess player and now professional speaker. Investing is very individual, it depends on the character of the people, if they’re available to risk it, if they’re available to speculate.”