Over the course of this bear market, I have encountered my share of crypto naysayers, and truth be told, some of the events of the past 24 months have certainly given them reasons to be skeptical. That there are grifters in this space shouldn’t come as a surprise though, and as I continue to tell them: drugs, hookers, and international arms deals continue to be facilitated in dollars, so perhaps the possibility of illegal activity shouldn’t be the basis for how we judge a technology.
One of the principal reasons why people in the United States continue to struggle with the concepts of crypto utility, is because we tend to think things are working just fine as is. The closest we come to thinking our system is broken is when the gas pump has issues and can’t accept a credit card, forcing us to actually go into the store, interacting with a human, and possibly having to guess at the amount the clerk should swipe the card for in order to fill up the tank.
Because of the above reality, crypto adoption from a transactional standpoint is likely to come from the developing world. In the developed world, crypto is likely to be viewed almost entirely as an asset class, more about potential ETFs and institutional adoption than about use cases that necessity demands.
If you are part of the developed world, and you are a crypto advocate, I implore you to begin exploring how you could advocate adoption, not just via investment vehicles like Vellum Capital, but through the lens of how crypto adoption could benefit you personally, or perhaps your business. Within this business framework, crypto adoption demands one primary piece of knowledge that you must grasp: the “network” and the “currency” are one and the same when it comes to crypto. This is truly massive, and gets missed quite regularly.
To better understand this reality, think about PayPal or Venmo. These platforms are quite powerful, millions use them, but the network doesn’t use “Paytokens” or “Vendollars.” They use fiat denominated US dollars. In other words, the network is different from the currency, meaning it really just acts as a middle layer, and network users have no real use for the network besides moving the currency. No one uses PayPal to do anything other than to make a payment of some sort.
In crypto land, because the network and the currency used within that network are intertwined, an incredible amount of creativity can be unleashed within that network. Anyone who has ever run a business, or been accountable for running payroll can easily see the benefits because even with the most current HR software platforms, payroll still has to be processed by someone. While crypto-based “smart” contracts still have a long way to go, the concept is simple within something like payroll: create the parameters around which employees get paid, and let the system run. Yes, this demands work on the front end to actually get correct, but what you would be creating is a payroll system that is your bank, as opposed to a payroll system that “speaks” to your bank, or is “linked” to your bank. The time savings alone in such a system are staggering.
So crypto believer, while this crypto market may be weighing you down, just know that adoption hasn’t stopped, and that your being early to this space means you just may have a role in how individuals and organizations ultimately end up interacting with this technology.