For many investors who have spent the last six months of their life proclaiming loudly that Bitcoin is the way of the future, the current price fluctuations that have led to the lowest price points for the currency since 2013 may be causing cold sweats, nightmares and vigorous bouts of rage/denial. That being said, taking to the time to breathe deeply and think about the history of Bitcoin may provide a more realistic and, hopefully, optimistic feeling of where this currency may be headed.
When Bitcoin first arrived on the internet, early adopters proclaimed that this currency would rattle the foundations of the current marketplace and, to be honest, it did. With values absolutely skyrocketing prior to the Mt. Gox catastrophe, many investors were swept into thinking that Bitcoin truly had revolutionized currency. That assumption, really, isn’t too far off the mark. Regardless of what the future of Bitcoin as a single cryptocurrency may be, the technology powering it and the ideas it has generated will live on long past this particular payment vehicle.
That being said, for those who are committed to gaining the most clear picture of the coin itself, the news is going to feel demoralizing. For a currency as young and volatile as Bitcoin, “first” impressions are everything. Given the absolute plunge of the currency in recent months, there’s virtually no way that an experienced investor looking to tuck away millions in a promising opportunity will give Bitcoin a second thought. The less transactions that occur, the fewer opportunities that Bitcoin has to reach new segments of the population who may find it a valuable tool. The fewer people who find the currency useful, the less credibility it is able to hold on to. And this, of course, is how the currency could die.
The idea of Bitcoin, however, will likely stay alive for decades to come, due in large part to the revolutionary nature of the blockchain, a system of reinforced anonymity and security which, due to its inherent flexibility, will likely become a ubiquitous element of the online arena.
Therefore, Bitcoin enthusiasts really have two choices when it comes to thinking about their favorite currency. They can acknowledge that the coin itself was bound to face a turbulent period of growth and change that may lead to its demise, or they can think of the bigger picture, i.e. the blockchain, and revel in the fact that Bitcoin truly is just the beginning of something much larger and more revolutionary than they could have ever imagined.