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Stuck in the FUD

Posted 24 July 2017 Stuck in the FUD
Written by Jon Gulson
Fear. Uncertainty. Doubt. These things have caused bitcoin to be pronounced dead or dying numerous times since 2010. 

And whilst no-one has ever attended a bitcoin funeral, numerous obituaries have been written about bitcoin’s exaggerated demise.

So let’s take a look at the closer look at the fud and get a better understanding.

Fear

The fear of bitcoin and blockchain is the same fear which initially comes with anything new. An early example can be traced to the Luddite movement: a group of textile workers in nineteenth century England who destroyed weaving machinery in protest against manufacturing advances they felt threatened them.

And ever since, this type of fear can emerge where conservative social groups believe progress or change are about to make them redundant.

This explains the fear where bitcoin is presented as an alternative to the international banking system, by creating new protocols of money outside the management of centralised financial institutions.

Bitcoin FUD

This type of thinking is exhibited where Jamie Dimon (CEO, JP Morgan) cites bitcoin not being allowed to ‘take our lunch’. 

Uncertainty

Life always looks easier in the rear-view in comparison to sailing unchartered waters. Bitcoin and blockchain technology is the biggest disruptor to banking and financial services in the last 100 years.

It is inevitable this will cause uncertainty especially amongst intermediaries, government and media who wouldn’t have this as part of their rote learning and professional development and whose understanding may differ to crypto protagonists and advocates.

Whilst new technologies are often sold on the benefits of disruption, no-one likes disruption where it exists in isolation or without a social context.

And this uncertainty then creates scepticism when it comes to considering issues like bitcoin scaling, mining centralisation and transaction fees: it can be easier to accept the uncertainty than to believe say, bitcoin has enough functionality to succeed.

Which gives in to ….

Doubt

Doubt that a new form of money which is literally out of control (of the banks), a free for all (through a distributed network consensus), that has the power to disintermediate one of the oldest industries around; can actually work?
Literally a new language has been created in the space of seven years that can transform the financial, social and cultural environment. It has grown out of nothing to become worth billions of dollars and still the fud persists.

The tipping point, like all network systems, is where the usefulness and value of bitcoin and blockchain technology culminates in greater numbers; because in time, even the Luddites realise old ways don’t open new doors.
Written by Jon Gulson
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