The world of crypto bitcoin has faced some criticism over recent times due to the fact that there seems to be an overwhelmingly large majority of white men in the space, with very few women or people of colour seemingly involved in this area of technology and finance. This can cause a great deal of concern among those who want to see this tech go mainstream, because if only one type of person benefits from it then the whole thing could very well be derailed by accusations of racism or sexism. Is there really an issue with diversity in crypto bitcoin? And if so, what can be done about it?
Do we need to talk about race in cryptocurrencies?
It’s no secret that the world of cryptocurrency is largely dominated by white men. In a recent study, it was found that nearly 95% of Bitcoin users are male, and 67% are from North America. But does this mean that race is a factor in the world of crypto? Does it have an impact on whether or not people feel like they can participate in the movement? What role do people of color play in a community that seems to be almost entirely made up of white men? One thing is for sure, we need to talk about these issues before they can be resolved. If you think you’re underrepresented in your chosen field, then speak up. Make your voice heard so that others know they’re not alone. The more people of color who step into leadership roles in crypto, the less racial bias will exist. At its core, blockchain technology isn’t really about making new money – it’s a tool that could give power back to those who don’t currently have access to financial resources. When I first read Satoshi Nakamoto’s whitepaper on Bitcoin back in 2008, I couldn’t help but wonder if there were others out there who felt just as powerless as I did at the time.
Bitcoin was born white. It’s staying that way.
While the early adopters of Bitcoin were primarily white, the cryptocurrency has failed to attract people of color in its ten-year existence. In fact, a recent study showed that 96% of Bitcoin users are white. This isn’t surprising when you consider that the vast majority of cryptocurrency exchanges are located in countries with high levels of racial inequality. For example, in the United States, African Americans are twice as likely as whites to be unbanked or underbanked. This means that they don’t have access to traditional financial institutions like banks or credit unions. And even if they did, they would be less likely to have the disposable income to invest in Bitcoin. So what does this all mean? It means that Bitcoin is perpetuating the cycle of wealth inequality. The more Bitcoin becomes tied to the traditional financial system, the more marginalized groups will be left out. It also means that those who already had an advantage will continue to benefit from it, while those who are already disadvantaged will suffer from it.
Is Bitcoin a fair system for everyone, including people of color?
Some say that Bitcoin is the new way to bank, free from the corrupt systems that have plagued traditional banking for years. But does this new system come with its own set of problems? One worry is that Bitcoin could end up being just as exclusive as the current banking system. For example, what happens if people of color are left out of the Bitcoin mining process? What if they can’t afford to buy Bitcoin in the first place? If Bitcoin becomes the only way to bank, then people of color could be left behind yet again. However, blockchain technology offers an alternative to traditional banking; it’s decentralized, so there’s no one person or group that controls it. In other words, when you use Bitcoin or any other type of cryptocurrency based on blockchain technology, you’re not going through a bank or any middleman at all – which means less overhead costs for you!
Why do certain groups have more faith in cryptocurrencies than others?
Some have argued that the reason has to do with trust, or lack thereof, in traditional financial institutions. After all, cryptocurrencies are decentralized, which means they’re not subject to the whims of governments or central banks. For people who have been oppressed by corrupt regimes or taken advantage of by predatory lenders, this can be a appealing quality. Furthermore, cryptocurrencies are often seen as being more anonymous than traditional fiat currencies, which can be appealing for those who wish to keep their financial activity private. Finally, many people in developing countries believe that cryptocurrencies will help them leapfrog over traditional banking infrastructure altogether. Whether or not this last point is true remains to be seen. But it’s clear that for some groups of people, cryptocurrencies hold a lot of appeal. So what’s up with black folks? The answer might come down to culture. Black Americans don’t seem to share the same enthusiasm for cryptocurrency that other demographics do, even though we’re disproportionately poor and underbanked. A 2017 study found that only 2% of black respondents knew about Bitcoin; 5% had invested in it; and 4% owned one or more bitcoins. In contrast, 7% of white respondents knew about Bitcoin; 11% had invested in it; and 14% owned one or more bitcoins.
Cryptocurrencies don’t mix well with identity politics
It’s no secret that the world of cryptocurrency is overwhelmingly dominated by white men. In fact, a recent study showed that nearly 86% of Bitcoin users are male, and only 5% are black or Latino. This lack of diversity has led some to believe that cryptocurrencies are inherently racist. So, what’s the connection between crypto and race? Let’s take a closer look. First, many people cite Satoshi Nakamoto’s identity as a reason for why crypto is racist. However, many experts have been unable to definitively identify Satoshi’s true identity. Furthermore, even if it was found out who Satoshi really was- he or she could be any race at all! Additionally, black people have made their own contributions to the space like Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin.
Black folk are already screwed by the traditional financial system – how can they afford cryptos?
In the United States, the average black household has just $13 in liquid assets, compared to $142,000 for the average white household. That disparity is only increasing: since the 2008 financial crisis, black wealth has decreased by 33 percent, while white wealth has increased by 4 percent. So when people talk about how crypto can help those who are unbanked or underbanked, it’s important to remember that black Americans are disproportionately affected by these issues. More than one-third of black households have no bank account at all, which means they’re also unable to get access to affordable credit. Meanwhile, more than two-thirds of black households are unbanked or underbanked. The affordability of cryptocurrencies may seem appealing on the surface – but without any capital, how does one even buy them?