Here at CoinReport, we are always on the lookout for new ways to increase bitcoin awareness and encourage those who are just bit-curious to get involved. However, sometimes we come across those who are aware of bitcoin and who utterly detest everything about it. Buy why? What is it that these people have against bitcoin? Why are they so reluctant to accept any of the potential positives cryptocurrencies could bring to society? We came across one post on Reddit that may shed some light on these questions.
OPTripleOP, an “ex-hater” of bitcoin believes he has a special understanding of why a lot of people don’t like bitcoin. Of his own experience as a bitcoin hater, he admits taking joy in the price drops that have occurred many times, mocking bitcoin users and classifying them as
“neck beards living in their parent’s basement”.
That was until he had a moment of clarity and it clicked. In his own words he says:
“Then it hit me. I didn’t hate Bitcoin, I hated that I didn’t know anything about it. I heard terms like mining, private keys, and cryptography, and became overwhelmed. Hoping that bitcoin would fail was a lot easier than learning about how it actually works. Ignorance was bliss for me.”
So, is it as simple as that age old saying? Is it a simple case of ignorance breeding hate? In this case it seems so. In the past week, since deciding to learn more about bitcoin and understand how it works, OPTripleOP has had a 180 degree change in his opinions of bitcoin, hoping that now he can “contribute to Bitcoin’s ascendance, rather than hope for its downfall.”
As inspiring as this change of heart may be, we wanted to know more about this redditors thoughts on the matter and managed to snag him for a short interview. OPTripleOP , also known as Ryan, has since made his first $50 dollar purchase of bitcoin and is planning to buy more in the coming weeks. I asked him what the turning point was for him and he responded:
“It was probably when I heard about Overstock.com accepting Bitcoin. I realized that if a big corporation was accepting it, then it probably has some legitimacy. “
Since learning more about bitcoin, Ryan feels that it has the potential to replace payment providers like PayPal as well as replacing Western Union as the primary method of transferring money to people around the world. However he also feels the biggest hurdle to this is mainstream acceptance. When I asked what he felt the bitcoin community could do to help make bitcoin more accessible to all; he felt education was key, that more learning tools were needed and that they needed to be simple, including
“layman’s terms and well laid out examples need to be used to help people obtain an understanding of how it really works. “
Ex-Haters Reveal More Complexities Of Bitcoin Adoption
Reading the comments of Ryan’s post revealed yet more layers to this story, revealing unforeseen complexities surrounding bitcoin adoption and their effects. The post itself effectively acted as a bit of a focus group. Some people understand bitcoin but don’t believe it will succeed. One commentor (Old-and-grumpy) shared his thoughts, which it seems, others also share.
“I am short on this entire endeavor not because I don’t get it, but because I do. When I say ‘short’ I meant it as a euphemism for not being a believer. I am a former owner of Bitcoin. I played with it before the hype. I bought nothing very interesting. I made a little money by mistake via the spike. I feel confident that its prospects as a currency are grim.”
Is Bitcoin the coin of the future?
Another commentor (Junkit33) believes that although cryptocurrencies will eventually compete with PayPal et al for online purchases, that cryptocurrency may not be bitcoin, but rather one that provides similar customer protection as the credit card industry.
“more like a decentralized Visa than the decentralized currency that is bitcoin.”
When questioned about the forced 2-3% credit cards fees that bitcoin avoids, he elaborated:
“as a consumer, I genuinely don’t care. For one, almost no merchants offer cash discounts, and they don’t offer ACH discounts (which costs pennies), so it’s not like they’re going to magically decide to offer bitcoin discounts.”
This is a very valid point. Some people just don’t care about the fees, they are sort of forced to pay it. In exchange for the protection these fees offer, some see it as a form of insurance they are willing to pay, even if the choice is not theirs.
An additional issue is a current hot topic for bitcoin. Fair regulation. Fair regulation of bitcoin is a major hurdle for it’s adoption. Regulatory bodies see cryptocurrencies differently. Marrying all three strongpoints of bitcoin (speed, trust, and anonymity) with these regulations is going to be difficult. In the words of Old-and-Grumpy,
“Untangling the anonymity aspects of Bitcoin’s source code to conform to these laws is unlikely and improbable.”
If bitcoin can’t be effectively regulated globally, its adoption will be hampered. The fear of this not happening negatively impacts even those who supported bitcoin initially.
Attack of the Bitcoin Die Hards
More troubling is the attitude of some of the more die hard bitcoin users who have a terrible habit of attacking those who don’t share precisely the same outlook on bitcoin as they do. For some, this makes the bitcoin community at large appear ridiculous, way over-zealous, with a penchant for conspiracy theories. We’re not all nutters, and that needs to be made a lot clearer to the average person. While I do believe there are some shady aspects to our current financial system myself, far be it for me to slate someone who is getting involved in bitcoin, for not believing that. The end result is the same for both, regardless. We are both helping grow the bitcoin economy by getting involved. Is that not far more important?
There are a myriad of issues still to be tackled for more haters to become ex-haters, but it seems the eureka moment causing a 180 degree shift in perspective cannot be the same for all, and may not happen for others. At the end of the day, all we can do is keep educating others with truth and with some sense of understanding that people are individuals and bitcoin may not be for them, yet.
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Image via Reddit