""It didn't crash, it got hacked." Either way, it dropped from around $30 to ONE CENT. Crashed/hacked--money gone. It is worth $5 today."
What if someone hacks apmex.com and sets the price for all their gold coins to $1/oz? What if someone manages to buy a couple coins at that $1/oz price and the company ships before discovering the mistake? Did the value of gold crash? Was gold hacked? Of course not.
That's pretty much what happened to MtGox, one of many exchanges that deals with bitcoins. Other exchanges that deal with bitcoins continued trading at a reasonable price, with only a small dip because of panic sellers and arbitrage attempts. The actual bitcoin network was not hacked. If you held bitcoins in a wallet in your own possession, you weren't directly affected, just like holding gold.
Yes, the market value of bitcoin (vs FRN's) over the next few months did drop further down to $2 and now back up to $5. $2.00/BTC was real. $0.01/BTC was just one hacked website. In 1980, the market value of gold (vs FRN's) got as high as ~$850 and then "crashed".