Crypto Gold Rush | Sheneman – nj.com
If you watched the Super Bowl last weekend, you were no doubt overwhelmed by a relentless torrent of floating QR codes and celebrity-laden big-money ads for cryptocurrency. Public faces like Tom and Giselle, Matt Damon and Larry David (Cue the Curb music) have sometimes extolled the virtues of decentralized digital currencies, but have more often sought to instill a sense of FOMO in audiences who likely have no idea of what crypto is. .
With his “Fortune Favors the Brave” ad, Matt Damon basically calls you a coward if you don’t cash in your 401K and put it in Dogecoin. You may have no idea how it works, but believe me, a recognizable celebrity, you’re missing something!
The best description I’ve ever heard of crypto, and I forget where I heard it, describes the sea of tokens as “a great way for libertarians to get robbed.” Big-budget ads and trusted celebrity endorsements are designed to lend an air of legitimacy to an inherently volatile asset class.
Decentralized currency is just that, decentralized. A guy in tracksuits in Belarus hacked your wallet and hacked all your Bitcoins? Sounds like a “you” problem. Forgot your cold room password? Bummer, try your dog’s birthday. Despite the large sums of money that crypto exchanges pour into media buys, the crypto world continues to swim at your peril.
That’s not to say crypto is just another speculative bubble like Beanie Babies, pogs, or my embarrassing comic book collection. There is real utility in technology around crypto like the open public ledger blockchain and digital smart contracts. But as the market currently exists, the crypto bears a striking resemblance to the other business making big Super Bowl ad buys – sports betting.