Five reasons I got hooked on crypto

Wednesday 09 March 2016

I fell into the crypto world two years ago, and was immediately hooked. Here are just a few of the reasons why.

1) Participating means you’re changing the world. Literally: if you use bitcoin to buy goods, if you are paid in crypto or purchase services yourself, if you use this new technology as a means of payment in any form, you are helping to create a completely new economy - something radically different with the power to change the way we think about and use money forever. That kind of opportunity doesn’t come along every day.

2) It is the purest meritocracy I’ve ever seen. Crypto is the free market, turbocharged and on steroids. (I don’t pretend that capitalism is free of problems, but the system we currently have - more accurately described as extortion, or of privatising gains and socialising losses - could use a little tweaking.) Whilst more and more ‘traditional’ companies are taking an interest in blockchain tech, the grassroots, ad hoc community-driven approach is still where a lot of the work gets done. Here, you trade on your skills and reputation alone; it’s fast-paced, exciting, and those with the motivation and ability make things happen. If you do good work, word gets around.

London

The crypto world makes the financial sector look like capitalism-lite

3) You get all sorts. The developer who speaks code but not human. The trader who lives in exchanges and thinks in chart patterns. The guy who inhaled most of his stash of bitcoins back in the days of the Silk Road. The businesspeople who see the potential in a new technology, put their money where their mouths are and run with it. The ideologues and amateur economists. The trolls who try undermine everyone and everything because they didn’t get enough hugs as a child. Ok, maybe we could live without them.

4) The pace of innovation is incredible. Without the bureaucracy that holds back regular companies, new ideas can be realised in a blindingly fast timescale. A single developer might code an alpha for a new platform in a week. And a lot of these guys are doing it in their spare time, too.

5) I won’t lie to you, I like the idea of a commodity that might increase in value by tenfold in a year. The bit where it can crash by 90%, well, I can take or leave that.


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