Many have approached Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies with alot of healthy skepticism, with the market providing plenty to give those on the fence reasonable doubt. The rise to the public eye has been a sharp one. Though the poster boy Bitcoin and its fellows have consistently out preformed the any traditional stock almost every year, It has been marred by major hacks or “heists” on exchanges and wallets, loss of access to wallets by losing your private keys, and in general extreme volatility with price. All this without any form of regulation and to put it lightly “shooting from the hip” when trying to police the crimes affecting many getting into the market. It’s hard not to feel like it’s a free-for-all in the market some days. Despite all this, crypto has caught the public’s eye, and even with the doubt and scorn. Everyone wants to punch a ticket for the next ride up in price, making 2019 the year of regulation and adoption.
Signs of the times have been in the news lately, and it comes from one of cryptos biggest set backs. Mt. Gox was a pretty hefty blow to early adopters and crypto advocates back in 2014. Incharge of about 70% of all Bitcoin transactions at the time, the exchange lost 850,000 BTC, worth almost $450 million at the time ($36 billion by todays standards). Mt. Gox would soon fade as its customers lost faith in the exchange. Not to mention as this happened, the exchange seemed to collapse internally further frustrating those trying to access their account. Many thought these funds were lost and nothing could be done about it, but the authorities brought in a man said to be a key figure in the “heist”. Alexander Vinnik was indicted in 2017, and as of 2019, BTC billionaire Brock Pierce has recently released his intentions to reinstate the troubled exchange. He is working with Japanese authorities to clear Mt. Gox, and right what many see as Bitcoins most notably wrong. He will also be giving over 20,000 of Mt. Gox creditors a stake in the company. A great way to gain public favor has always been to right your wrongs.
With Bakkt and ETF rumors still looming on the horizon and various governments across the world looking to implement crypto into their economies. It’s hard not to feel the buzz and shift towards these relatively new financial tools. Even though Facebook has blocked all ads on their platform for BTC and crypto. This has not stopped them from joining the arms race to develope blockchain technology and services for their platform. This can be said for many nay sayers in the market, despite their doubt in the crypto market, they are still scrambling to adopt blockchain as well. The question is no longer “if” but “when” will we see all of these changes start to take effect. Bitcoin may or may not “moon” again and many other cryptocurrencies may die off, but blockchain and its uses are pretty much here to say. So before you count out Bitcoin and its fellow cryptocurrencies, remember “the early bird gets the worm” and they are “early” by about 10 years. They have set roots across the world, they are not restricted to functioning as American, European, or as country for that matter. The various cryptocurrencies have accomplished all this without the help of any of the “big money” contenders in the market today. That in itself is amazing.
We are still in the beginning of 2019, and crypto is lined up for an amazing year. The sky-rocketing prices may not come, but regulation and mainstream adoption are getting closer and closer. Past wrongs are being corrected, and speed bumps that are encountered by the market are looked at as opportunities to improve and restore good faith for its consumers. Instead of taking slaps on the wrist and looking for the next loop hole to jump through like we have seen in the past by others. So if you are looking for alternatives to the your traditional financial services, crypto is looking more and more like a legitimate contender as the year goes on. It’s fun to think of it as order being brought to this wild market, by those who have stuck around to tame it. Now there will be those looking to stake their claim, why shouldn’t you?