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Author Topic: The Average Joe's Main Concerns About Bitcoin  (Read 93 times)
cryptothief (OP)
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April 13, 2018, 06:09:54 AM
Last edit: April 13, 2018, 06:51:32 AM by cryptothief
Merited by darklus123 (2)

Anyone in this forum has (probably) already weighed up the risks of investing in Bitcoin, but 'we' are still just a drop in the ocean compared to the number of potential investors. So what is putting them off investing? Here are a few of the reasons that investors are either delaying their involvement or (and this - regrettably - applies to many of my friends and family, although I am winning some of them around slowly!) currently have the opinion that they wouldn't touch it with a ten foot barge pole.

1. Media FUD (definition here) - most people only read headlines, and with the number of negative articles about Bitcoin compared to the positive ones, they are being scared away without bothering to look at the whole picture. This article is just one of a flood of negative articles about cryptocurrency.

Until the media changes it's stance on cryptocurrency, they will still be able to steer millions of potential investors away. Only a matter of time.

2. Market Volatility - traditional investors tend to veer to towards steady investments, a yearly return of between 10-20% is a healthy addition to a pension fund without risking losing the lot, especially for those looking to retire in the next 10-15 years. A cryptocurrency investor (at least in the current market) is much more of a risk taker, willing to take a gamble on new technology. The following article states that the volatility is a result of liquidity (specifically lack of), an argument that probably holds a decent amount of water. This is especially paramount for the institutional investors to get involved, but has a knock on effect for the average investor.

3. Fear of legislation (this factor can vary depending on location) and government's knee jerk reaction to cryptocurrency. A majority of people, unfortunately, still blindly trust their government, even though this is proving to be an unwise tactic, proven by the growing number of scandals exposed as the internet removes previous impenetrable  screens that hid multiple dodgy activities by governments around the world. That said, it is inevitable that further regulations and legislation will be implemented; and once there is more clarity in this area, it will open the door for many new investors, as well as bring much needed clarity to current investors. Some governments have already laid out their position, at least for the time being, but many are still on the fence with the details.

4. Ponzi scheme rhetoric is an undeniable factor, painting Bitcoin as a huge bubble, ready to burst at any time and screw over the newest investors. This theory gets publicized every time the market experiences a drastic drop, but then disappears as it rises again with the naysayers muttering away. If you google Bitcoin Ponzi scheme, the first page contains only one positive article stating Bitcoin's case (actually a decent article by Miguel Cuneta - link below), the rest are all shouting as loud as they can about how it has all the tell-tale signs and should be avoided.

5. Is it a real currency? Majority of people still see Bitcoin as an investment, not as an actual currency. Although growing, the number of businesses that accept Bitcoin as payment for their services/products is still tiny. As the number of investors increases, the volume of businesses accepting it as a form of payment should organically rise with them. Here is a worldwide map of businesses that accept cryptocurrency as payment, updated by the community, you can pinpoint businesses in your local area where you can spend your Bitcoin on regular purchases. The latest count on the website is over 12,000 businesses. There are other links available for multinational companies, but I thought this one was more interesting.

6. Difficult to purchase without having some knowledge. It is still daunting for the majority of regular folk out there, with too many hoops to jump through; and when the slightest mistake can cost you money, it is a risk that many are not willing to take. This is definitely an area which has to improve before the era of mass adoption can begin. As purchasing becomes less complicated, the number of people on board the the train will undoubtedly increase. It hasn't been helped by regulations restricting how/where/who can purchase it, but this should improve rapidly over the coming months/years as the process becomes more streamlined. Whether this will mean less verification documents required, or possibly even a new international form of identification aimed specifically at this area, is another question. Either way, it is definitely an area that needs work.

7. Lack of knowledge about the technology behind it. It is common sense, and I guess not really arguable, you shouldn't invest in something you don't understand. Unfortunately this is something that is unlikely to change for many people, as they do not have the inclination to put in the time to research it. As the other concerns are alleviated, this will gradually change, and for the younger population - maybe the under 30's? - the learning process should slot nicely in with the massive advances that technology has made during their lifetime. With babies navigating iPads, and pre-teens hacking government websites, cryptocurrency is a natural progression.

8. Hackers and security in general. This is probably the most relatable concern, as it affects old and new investors alike. Security of investment is an essential element when consumers are deciding where and how to store their assets. Houses and cars have alarms, but still get ransacked or stolen. Stores and banks have security guards, but still get robbed. Basically, there will always be someone out there trying to steal 'our' hard earned money, the key is protecting it as much as humanly possible. Obviously the method of protecting our cryptocurrency investments is completely different to the way we protect our physical assets, but the basic theory behind it is the same. This is where the average Joe gets confused, they don't see it as a direct comparison, but once these fears can be allayed (or at least seen as similar to protecting other assets), it will be another tick in the box. Heavy investment and improvement in cyber security by the industry itself, especially for exchanges and online wallets, will be an ongoing issue that will not be slowing down any time soon.

I'm sure there are more reasons people choose not to invest, but the list above likely covers the majority.


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