5 Macro Dynamics Driving Bitcoin Adoption Into the 21st Century
Bitcoin could, one day, die off. Or it might stay steady as an alternative currency. Or, as crypto’s bulls hope, BTC might boon and see eventual worldwide adoption. Whatever happens, it’s clear there’s a handful of macro dynamics that will likely continue driving new users toward bitcoin, even if steadily, for the foreseeable future.
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Clear But Powerful Dynamics
If bitcoin ever does hit the mainstream, it will be for a combination of many reasons, but the macro dynamics below will have been, and already are, significantly contributive trends.
Nothing is certain in life, but with potential hyperbitcoinization in mind, these trends are ones to watch in the here and now and in the decades ahead.
The promises of the Digital Age have only just begun to be whispered. More digital innovation is coming all the while, and it’s a tide that can’t be stopped. In the last 20 years alone, information technology has affected every industry, every walk of life, every community across the globe.
As the pace of innovation continues to hasten, it’s sometimes easy to forget the first digital computer was created less than a century ago.
As such, in the grand scheme of things, we’re only in the very first throes of epoch-shifting, technologically-driven changes. Digital is king these days, and it’s safe to say that 100 years from now that dynamic will only have become that much more entrenched.
Hyperbitcoinization, then, would seem to be a possible subgenre within the wider creep of hyperdigitalization. Because bitcoin is the first, and still-standing, decentralized digital money, and its first-mover status has led to a steadily accruing network effect.
Of course, non-crypto digital cash is moved around the world everyday by services like PayPal and its ilk. But bitcoin, under the banner of permissionless commerce, sees its fighting cue in the onward march of all things digital.
First there was the Industrial Revolution. And now there’s the Digital Revolution. And bitcoin’s supporters are trying to position the OG cryptocurrency to be the currency of this new era.
2. Monetary Crises
In contemporary times, Venezuela’s bolívar has been Exhibit A in where unhinged hyperinflation is concerned.
Moreover, people in Argentina, Chile, and Peru — all nations where memories of hyperinflation are relatively fresh — have been using trading service LocalBitcoin in increasing numbers.
And, when the value of the Turkish lira recently began to plummet, Bitcoin information website bitcoin.org saw an acute spike of visitors from Turkey’s largest city, Instanbul.
Bitcoin is still growing itself, but as the 21st century sees further monetary crises, more citizens may turn to the cryptocurrency to go beyond fiat.
3. Governmental Pain Points
President Nicolás Maduro recently enacted new banking restrictions in Venezuela — in particular, the new protocol will force Venezuelans abroad to log their remittances to their families and friends with the authorities.
To be certain, the new measure won’t be used for societal good.
Alas, where such corruption and abuse creeps up, bitcoin is now an alternative. Public Choice theorists argue corruption is inevitable in governments and bureaucracies. And, following from that, the next few decades presumably won’t see a dissipation of that dynamic.
So bitcoin is poised to continue being an alternative, as long as it stands.
And, short of corruption, there’s just there’s good ol’ fashioned bureaucratic logjams, like was seen recently when President Donald Trump chided the Federal Reserve, with the value of the U.S. dollar acutely sinking in response.
In Bitcoin, there’s no Fed. No President. No temporary administrations. It exists of its own accord. And that reality might become more appealing to global citizens in places where those in power cause friction.
4. Millennial Open-Mindedness
“When in April the sweet showers fall,” Geoffrey Chaucer wrote to start The Cantebury Tales. Or, less poetically, what is young overtakes what is old.
The seasons change. Birth follows death. What’s new gets its shot. And the whole cycle repeats.
The same will be true regarding Millennials superseding Baby Boomers, and those younger yet that follow us. Since the whippersnappers think about the world differently, naturally that dynamic means the world will increasingly be approached differently.
The leap to digital cash won’t be drastic for us. Our values will become pronounced. Our tastes will come into vogue. And that might mean bitcoin’s got a fighting chance yet for hitting the mainstream. A recent survey of Millennials found that 40 percent of respondents had previously held crypto before. We’ll simply be far more open to the possibilities of bitcoin than traditionalists like, say, Charlie Munger.
Bitcoin is, of course, pseudoanonymous at best right now.
But the OG cryptocurrency has a whole slew of privacy updates in the wings, like Mimble Wimble, Bulletproofs, and Confidential Transactions. Accordingly, it’s privacy may soon be considerably steeled.
The work comes in a post-Snowden, Facebook-Moloch world where privacy has become not only an increasingly hot topic but an increasingly desired feature. As debates around encryption, marginalized communities, and human liberty continue to swirl, a more private bitcoin could become more and more attractive to many communities.
What’s your take? Are there any macro trends I missed? Let me know in the comments section below.
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