Please click the link below to listen to the 58th episode of my weekly crypto podcast ‘Two Minute Crypto.’ These are intended to be short, single-topic ramblings on some aspect of the cryptosphere. Consider dropping a like and or a review on iTunes or Podbean if you enjoy the podcast. Comments and critiques welcome.
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Key Concepts 12 -What is Bitcoin Maximalism?
Welcome to Two Minute Crypto. Today’s instalment seeks to shed some light on Bitcoin Maximalism. What follows is neither an endorsement nor a repudiation but simply a description.
The term ‘Bitcoin Maximalism’ dates to December 2014 and was originally used as a pejorative term by Vitalik Buterin, one of the co-founders of Ethereum to describe Michael Goldstein, President of the Satoshi Nakamoto Institute. Vitalik’s intent was to highlight what he viewed as an unreasonably blinkered view of Bitcoin as the only true implementation of crypto with all other projects essentially being scams.
Over time, hardcore BTC adherents have taken on the term as a badge of honour – proudly and loudly declaring themselves BTC Maximalists. In essence, this viewpoint states that: Bitcoin and only Bitcoin is a true expression of a decentralized cryptocurrency – all other chains being doomed to eventual failure and irrelevance. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, Bitcoin Maximalists believe that BTC is destined to overturn and replace the current legacy financial system. This goes far beyond simply a store of value and ultimately sees BTC as the sole global reserve currency.
Bitcoin Maximalists, in general, see it as a duty to seek-out and call-out other blockchain projects, labelling them either as outright scams or as wasted efforts. They decry any development time poured into other chains and posit that BTC, in time, will simply absorb and implement each and every short-term advantage a competing crypto may seem to offer.
Some noted BTC Maximalists are Saifedean Ammous author of the Bitcoin Standard, Tone Vays a former vice president of JP Morgan Chase, and Max Kaiser another former Wall Streeter and early BTC evangelist. Murad Mahmudov, Jimmy Song, Trace Meyer, Michael Goldstein, Francis Pouliot, and Stephen Livera round-out the list of high-profile and profoundly unapologetic BTC Maximalists.
As I outlined in episode 23, I personally don’t adhere to a there can be only one perspective – however, I do believe that Bitcoin is leaps and bounds ahead of the competition in terms of decentralization, brand awareness, market penetration, and future potential investment return.
In any case, BTC Maximalism remains a highly significant narrative in the current crypto landscape. To date, it has shown no evidence of abating helped no doubt by the underwhelming performance of its peers over the last 18 months or so.
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