“Those guys on stage were really intelligent, and they were very technical, but they have nothing to show” was something I heard a group of three guys says in the hallway during Bitcoin 2022 in Miami as they exited the main stage.
It wasn’t the only time I saw and heard conference attendees express their disappointment in the BTC conference, but it was the most accurate statement that summed up what I saw at Bitcoin 2022.
There are a lot of brilliant minds in the blockchain, digital currency, and digital asset space across all the blockchain networks that exist. There are tons of people who believe their products and services will make the world a better place, but very few blockchain-based companies have launched a product or service with active users or customers.
The exhibition hall at the conference was full of digital currency exchanges, hardware wallet providers, software wallet providers, and companies selling trading algorithm software. However, I don’t count this company in the group of “very few blockchain-based companies with something to show” that I previously mentioned.
Why? Because on the BTC blockchain, it is impossible for enterprises to build their business solution on-chain; so logically, there is nothing for them to show because there is nothing that they can build. This is because the BTC blockchain is technologically limited and does not have the transaction throughput or the ability to transport large amounts of data in each block that a business would need for their daily operations.
Where does BTC get its value?
For this reason, BTC’s primary use case is speculation, and this explains why the exhibitors in the exhibition hall created businesses around BTC rather than on BTC. The exhibition hall was packed with digital currency exchanges, hardware wallet providers, software wallet providers, and trading algorithm software companies because these business models take advantage of BTC’s primary use case by providing the services that allow end-users to speculate and safeguard their speculations (coins and tokens).
But does that create value in the world? I would argue that it doesn’t. This is because there is nothing taking place on BTC that turns investor dollars into revenue-generating goods and services. The only thing being sold to consumers and businesses—besides the ability to speculate—are dreams and narratives.
The Doomberg team explains this phenomenon very well in their article, “Dollars Ex Machina.”
“We distinctly recall drawing two circles on a piece of paper. In the circle on the left, we wrote “real economy,” while in the circle on the right we wrote “crypto universe.” We drew two pipes between the circles – one flowing into the crypto universe and the other flowing back to the real economy – and labeled both pipes with “fiat currencies.” While we understood how fiat currencies from investors could flow in, we failed to grasp what could be occurring within the crypto universe that would create more fiat currency for investors to take out at a later date,” it said.
Rather than creating value in the world, BTC simply takes the money from investors who invest “late” and distributes their wealth to those who invested “early.” Because this has worked so well for the last 12 years, BTC businesses capitalize on these gamblers who dream of hitting it big and becoming rich. As for the businesses that don’t do this? They get on stage, they talk intelligently, they fool you with their technobabble, they take your investment dollars, but they have nothing to show.
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