There’s a New Vision for Crypto, and It’s Wildly Different From Bitcoin

It’s kind of weird to say this, but after more than a decade of Bitcoin’s existence, there’s finally some consensus about what it is.

Hardcore Bitcoiners liken it to “digital gold” — a safe-haven asset whose primary use case is holding. And even people who aren’t so into it more or less accept that narrative. Barely a day goes by where we don’t hear from some legendary investor opining on TV, saying something like, “We believe Bitcoin is an emerging store of value, which, like gold, can play an important role in a diversified portfolio.”

Nobody even talks about how it’s not used in day-to-day transactions. Or how it’s too slow or too volatile to be a useful currency. That all may be true, but those are old talking points. By and large, the HODLer narrative has won.

Of course, people still scoff at the idea that something so volatile could possibly be considered a haven. After all, it’s had numerous drawdowns of 50% or more, including quite recently.

But on the other hand, you have to give it some credit. A nearly $1 trillion asset has been memed into existence, despite being backed by nothing.

(This is where someone jumps in and says I’m wrong, and that Bitcoin is backed by electricity and math! But that is wrong. The Bitcoin network is secured by electricity and math. Being secured is not the same as being backed. You’re not entitled to redeem your Bitcoin for anything.)

The fact of the matter is that there’s nothing fundamentally underpinning the value of Bitcoin other than the belief among some people that space on the network is valuable. (The blockchain can be likened in some sense to a big, decentralized spreadsheet and a “coin” could be said to represent some space on it.)

I mentioned above that Bitcoin’s value has been memed into existence. And of course, when it comes to memes and coins, people think about Dogecoin. But Bitcoin is also a memecoin. It’s just that digital gold is probably one of the best memes out there.

Bitcoin also has plenty of absurd memes, like the Magic Internet Money wizard.