For the audio version, check out my podcast A Boy Named Pseu where you can download it on all podcast platforms. (read starts at 8:54)
Is it, now? Well, haven’t you heard? The 11 year fad of magic internet money is long over. Nobody is buying, trading, selling, or even “HODLing.” This volatile ecosystem of market booms and busts, degenerate gamblers, terrorists and drug dealers has finally bit the dust…at least that’s what the media would want you to think.
According to the Bitcoin Obituaries from 99Bitcoins.com, multiple articles have claimed that bitcoin has “died” 378 times since its genesis, and 40 times in 2019 alone! This fear-mongering narrative has been pushed from the mainstream media, prominent figures in the crypto space, as well as my own friends. Why? Satoshi only knows. Honestly there’s nothing honest about it. Bitcoin is alive and well, and is still very much in its infancy. If you look closely, you might think this infant is gorging itself with one-up mushrooms from Mario Brothers because of the miraculous exponential growth the industry has gone through in 2019.
The goal of this article is to call out the bull against the bitcoin bull market, and use real-world examples of bitcoin’s influential and impactful livelihood.
This will be covered in 7 parts by analyzing the hypotheses that if bitcoin is dead, then
the Mainstream Media isn’t talking about it
everyone abandoned the network
the President didn’t tweet about it
Nigerians aren’t living off it
so is its volatility
it has no value proposition
* (I highly recommend using ctrl/cmd F: “if bitcoin is dead, then <fill in the blank>”) *
The points above will aid in explaining how bitcoin will continue to grow in-spite of regulations and negative rhetoric which plagues the mainstream. The robust, and passionate nature of those who make up the Bitcoin Network are the ones that will carry this sovereign movement from the cradle, and beyond the grave. Bitcoin is here to stay. Let’s debunk some FUD.
If bitcoin is dead, then the Mainstream Media isn’t talking about it
The latest claim of Bitcoin’s demise made my “Today’s News and Views” bar on LinkedIn, where a piece from The Wall Street Journal titled, “If Bitcoin Looks Like It Isn’t Trading, It’s Because It Isn’t” started making the rounds.
The piece claimed that data reported from Flipside Crypto revealed “only 14% of the 18 million bitcoins outstanding exchanged hands during the last week of November, down from more than 50% last year.”
There seemed to be an expectation of increased enthusiasm in BTC. This new interest was to stem from “old money”, seasoned investors, as journalist Flex Yang reports in Bitcoin Magazine. However, Yang claims these investors tend to favor traditional financial products like stocks, bonds or commodities. It seems they just couldn’t stomach the market volatility of BTC.
As we saw in 2019’s “Black Swan” incidents, news stories like Facebook’s launch of Libra, and China considering deploying blockchain-based state policy skyrocketed BTC prices past $10,000. Naturally however, the peak was soon followed by a dip which very well could have been the main motivation for the old-timers to start dumping their BTC, and lowering the price further as we saw in mid-December.
The piece also claimed the majority of the cryptocurrency is controlled by a relatively small group: About 8.5% of wallets hold 99% of all the bitcoin in circulation.
True, but not in the misleading way you might think. Bitcoin isn’t trading because it’s being HODL’d by purest, fan-boy (and girl) HODLers. These are the “true believers” (if you will), or as coined by Trace Mayer, “the HODLers of last resort”. These are the individuals that give bitcoin its true value as a store of value, and believe it will one day replace the current fiat financial system with the hard, sound monetary cure that is bitcoin.
In fact, an analysis from Coin Metrics reported the number of Bitcoin addresses that hold any amount of satoshis reached a new all-time high of 28,393,045 between October and November 2019, from 28,384,557 in January 2018.
Bitcoin Magazine’s Vlad Costea revealed that Coin Metrics co-founder, Jacob Franek, doubted the increase was due to a greater number of individuals withdrawing bitcoin from exchanges, but rather the opposite, “since the overall supply held by exchanges and custodians continues to increase.”
A phrase my mouth keeps running into these days is, “intellectually dishonest.” I’m not entirely sure that’s appropriate in this scenario though. It might be giving the WSJ a bit too much credit by assuming they actually understand how bitcoin works. The WSJ piece fails to take any of the above into consideration. The owners of non-custodial bitcoin wallets are most likely, predominantly HODLers. These HODLers truly understand the value and virtue of bitcoin (which we’ll get into later), and are the ones keeping it from dying.