Well. Thanksgiving is about family, turkey and appetizers, Uncle James’s questions, snickers and chuckles, debate, Grandma’s questions, sensitive topics (oops), and… questions. Whether you’re a crypto aficionado or a freshly lockdown-convert, you might be under high risk. Especially knowing the current rise of Bitcoin price and inherent bull market context. In case you will not be able to run from Aunt Sarah’s interrogation, we want you to be ready with the simplest answers to the most complicated blockchain questions!
Quick Fix Survival Kit
This part is about key blockchain notions made easy. Because one thing is certain: during Thanksgiving night, you will not escape from the “What is…?”. Here are our best mainstream explanations of blockchain and crypto to help you feed your audience’s curiosity.
What is blockchain?
Okay [mom], listen carefully. Blockchain is a revolutionary technology that allows anyone to swap value remotely. All in a secure way and without any intermediary. With the Internet as we know it so far, when you want to send a picture to your friend, you actually send a copy of this picture, the original stays on your device. For instance, you couldn’t do it with one dollar because it would mean that the dollar would be duplicated. That is why we use intermediaries like banks and PayPal.
But, blockchain enables a different approach, whether it is money, contracts to sign or information to protect, everything becomes tradable and verifiable in a decentralized person to person system, cutting out the middlemen. It means we, people, are put back at the center of the system. That’s precisely what blockchain aims to do [mom]: giving power back to people like you and me.
Thanks to these unique attributes, blockchain technology has many different uses. And each use case has its own blockchain with its own rules. Think about Carbonara Pasta [mom]. Although there is an original recipe and mandatory ingredients, everyone has their own way of cooking it. As a result, there are countless variations of Carbonara Pasta, all gravitating around the same original idea. In a similar way, you have one original Blockchain recipe with endless variations, according to what people want to achieve with it.
What is Bitcoin?
Well [Uncle Jim], Bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency ever created back in 2008. At a time when the economic crisis was at its peak. It all began when a mysterious and pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto published a white-paper called Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System. In it, Nakamoto shares his vision of a more decentralized world. Where banks, having just proven to be untrustworthy, would be no longer indispensable to carry out transactions. Where people would be given back their freedom and power. This is precisely what Bitcoin is all about: a peer-to-peer means of payment and store of value.
By creating Bitcoin, Nakamoto also created the first blockchain. Carving the path for the whole cryptocurrency ecosystem as well as for blockchain technology as a new way to share peer-to-peer value. Today, Bitcoin is still the most famous and successful cryptocurrency in terms of market share.
What is a cryptocurrency?
It is simple [grandpa]. Cryptocurrency is digital cash money. Like cash, it is an untraceable money that you can freely and directly exchange with your friends, from hand to hand. And like cash – where you have dollars, euros, pesos etc. – you have different cryptocurrencies. But unlike cash, it is not physical nor local, yet online and international. Which means wherever you are in the globe, you can transfer and use the same cryptocurrency, regardless of country borders and exchange rates.
What’s the meaning of all of this, you might wonder [grandpa]. Imagine you are living in Europe, and I want to send you 100$. I would need to do it through a bank, PayPal or Western Union. In other words, middlemen that we would have no choice but to trust. What if they don’t deserve our trust? To send you these 100$ without going through an intermediary, I would need to take the plane and hand deliver them to you in cash. Cryptocurrencies allow you to do the same, but remotely.
What is the difference between blockchain, cryptocurrency and Bitcoin?
Easy [auntie]! Consider this analogy: websites are a well-known Internet application to share peer-to-peer information. Search engines are among the most common ways to use websites by facilitating access to them. Google is one of the most famous and used search engines. To some extent, blockchain, cryptocurrency and Bitcoin share a similar relationship: blockchain is a groundbreaking technology to exchange and store value and information peer-to-peer. Like websites, there are numerous different blockchains serving different purposes. Cryptocurrencies are the most common use case of blockchain technology so far. Bitcoin is one of the many existing cryptocurrencies, with the particularity of being the most famous and the first one ever created.
Ready-Made Answers For The Trickiest Ones
Complex questions call for detailed answers. But we know that shortness and clarity are not always easy to combine. So we have selected some tricky questions that your loved ones might ask you on D-day.
I have a friend who bought Bitcoins recently. Is it worth it?
Well dear [cousin]. This one is a very subjective one. The question we need to ask ourselves is what gives anything value? The elements that make an asset valuable can differ from one person to another, and vary from spiritual importance to utility. However, some economics rules and historical learnings have proven that value has mostly been connected to scarcity. Think about gold, diamonds or silver… Now [cousin], you need to know that Bitcoin is an asset which has been mathematically designed to be a scarce resource. It is produced at a decreasing and predictable rate. Bitcoin’s total supply is capped at 21 million, which is forecasted to be completed by 2140.
The last thing that Bitcoin needs to hold value is trust and adoption. Far more subjective but equally as important. As you might know [cousin], today one Bitcoin is worth about [18,000] USD$ and Bitcoin’s use cases are growing. For instance, major companies and hedge funds are increasingly investing in it. More shops have started accepting it as a method of payment. So the future of Bitcoin’s trust and adoption is looking good. Although nothing is certain when it comes to market predictions.
Where/How do you buy cryptos?
The most common way is to go to specific online platforms called Crypto Exchanges. They allow you to buy coins with euros, pounds, dollars, etc. This can be done via bank transfer, credit card or PayPal. Once bought, you can also sell or trade your crypto assets through exchanges.They often allow you to also store your newly purchased assets on their platform. But be careful [dad], when it comes to storing crypto, exchanges are not the most secure place and could limit your freedom of action. In a sense, it would be like buying a house and entrusting your bank – or another third party – to keep the keys. Would you do that [dad]? To safely store your crypto, it is better to use a secure device called a hardware wallet. Anyway [dad], if you buy some crypto one day, just call me first please. Just in case.
What’s the blockchain for?
Wow [sis], blockchain use cases are limitless! The technology combines a lot of features that make it useful for a lot of things. It is decentralized which allows peer-to-peer exchanges in an immutable, transparent yet anonymous, and very secure manner. All in one tech [sis]! here’s how it could impact our thanksgiving dinner:
- Food industry: Blockchain helps companies like Walmart to foster transparency and traceability of their food supply. Some even used blockchain to track the Thanksgiving turkey origin!
- Transportation: new ride-sharing apps powered by blockchain are emerging. It means you could have come to the dinner using a zero-commission service while providing a fairer income to your driver.
- Music industry: we could use Spotify-like blockchain apps to create and play our Thanksgiving playlist [sis]! While enjoying and building a more direct relationship with our favorite artists, and allowing them to be better rewarded for their work!
Don’t Forget Your Passion
Here are some tips and quick wins to make you Thanksgiving-resilient. But if you believe in crypto, only you can explain why. So take each question as an opportunity to share your knowledge and belief in the best way you see fit. Never forget that blockchain and crypto are about fostering the decentralization of traditional systems to give power back to the people. You also have the power of words. Happy Thanksgiving!