At our current cultural moment, the desire to Get Rich Quick has been cranked up a notch. Whether that’s through emerging technologies, outright scams, or through a cult-like dedication to cryptocurrency. And despite an ongoing free fall in Bitcoin (the price has fallen about 54 percent over the past year), crypto investors apparently still believe in the currency’s ability to make them rich.
A study conducted in mid-July, by The Harris Poll, found that 44 percent of Americans believe they have “the available tools” at their disposal to become future billionaires. The largest demographic of people within this sample size happened to be crypto investors, with a whopping 71 percent of digital currency holders agreeing with the following statement: “I believe I have the available tools to become a billionaire in the future.”
About 2,000 people were polled in the survey, which focused on general attitudes towards billionaires, namely whether or not such an achievement was desirable, if these people contribute to society, and the way our country handles this kind of wealth accumulation.
Additional stats — Optimism about achieving extreme wealth was heavily concentrated in younger generations, with a majority of participants claiming they could become billionaires, belonging to either Gen Z or millennial age groups.
Perhaps the omnipresence and mainstream acceptance of money-making options, fueled by trends like the rise of mobile sports betting, seems to have altered general perceptions of how wealth is accumulated.
Before we were able to access risky investment-making through the devices in our pockets, investing in anything, let alone gambling, required a number of hoops to jump through. Want to play the stock market? You have to find a stock broker. Have a feeling about the Knicks this year? I’m sure a bookie would be willing to take money off your hands.
Digital downfall — Crypto manages to turn this dream for sudden, life-altering money into a painful feedback loop for a number of its adopters, with new entrants suffering the most. For every success story, there are also a good portion of people that have done worse than expected in the markets. This also excludes the fact that the extraction process is doing a number on the planet.
Despite evidence of crypto’s fallibility, a downturn clearly hasn’t been enough to deter crypto’s biggest evangelists, even if the proverbial rocket ship to unparalleled wealth is actually plummeting towards Earth, not hurdling toward the moon.