Perhaps you’ll hear it on the subway, or at your family dinner. Maybe you’ll catch it leaving a co-worker’s mouth, or see it in a friend’s enraged Facebook post. You might even feel it yourself. A deeply-rooted suspicion that you can’t seem to shake. It’s the voices of those who are wary of the internet, grumbling “I don’t trust bitcoin.” And they’re not necessarily wrong. Slate released an article revealing how easy it is to be scammed through online payment sites like Paypal and Venmo, and just how often it happens to its users. It’s not just the older generations that have been cheated because of their general unknowingness of cryptocurrency and the internet — it’s the younger generations that, perhaps, trust the internet a bit too much, as well.
So how does bitcoin play into this? Well, bitcoin recently became the fifth most-searched term on Googleseveral weeks ago, along with ether trailing close behind it at eighteenth (another form of digital currency from the ethereum blockchain). The popularity in the mainstream media of these currencies proves that we may be about to enter a new age of money: the age of cryptocurrency.
What does the implementation of cryptocurrency mean in the long run?
Cryptocurrency would completely reinvent the entire economic system as we know it. No longer would a central bank be required to keep track of transactions, withdrawals and interest. In addition, paper money would no longer exist. Along with digital currency, a total dismantling of our current system of revenue would occur. But, people are hesitant to completely invest all of their wealth digitally (even though a single bitcoin’s worth has risen to the equivalent of over two and a half thousand US dollars).
Doubters may have no choice but to get involved in the fun. Companies and businesses such as Microsoft, Lionsgate Films, T-Mobile and Reddit all accept bitcoin as a valid form of payment. Even the Commonwealth of Nations believes that, “Countries should be encouraged to make a positive determination on the legality of virtual currencies in their respective jurisdictions.” Many are still skeptical of digital currency’s legitimacy, both in value and as a threat to the conventional dollar. On the other hand, many are citing Venmo’s popularity as the first inkling of a new digital age. Because of the social media component to Venmo, the app is just as entertaining as it is useful. They are seeing that same entertainment aspect in bitcoin’s future as well. With its spike in popularity both at the dinner table and the stock market, the age of cryptocurrency may be dawning at this very moment.
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