In a recent global survey, Consensys interviewed 15,000 people aged 18-65 across 15 countries. The results revealed that 92% of the respondents had heard of crypto. While the actual numbers on the ground may differ, it’s not a stretch to say that at this point, much of the world has heard about digital currencies.
But today, cryptocurrencies and Web3 technologies have yet to achieve mass adoption. The space has definitely gotten bigger and better. But 14 years on, it is still largely a niche– a sector that only a small portion of the population participates in. Part of the reason for this is, perhaps, that while many people have heard about crypto, few actually know how to use it.
The Knowledge Gap in Crypto
At the height of the 2021 bull market, a shocking statistic emerged; 98% of people didn’t understand basic crypto concepts like Bitcoin, NFTs, and stablecoins. The number has certainly improved since then. However, it’s pretty shocking that at a time when public opinion on crypto was at an all-time high, few people actually understood the technology.
This absence of knowledge might explain why mass adoption remains an elusive goal in crypto. When people don’t know enough about something, they tend to be pretty hesitant about embracing it, a situation that is amplified in a space as risky and technical as the crypto industry.
So, for mainstream adoption of crypto to take place, a lot of effort will have to go toward public education.
How Education Will Boost Crypto Adoption
Good education carries key benefits that will significantly boost crypto adoption. For one, it will help eliminate two of the biggest barriers to entry, the overwhelming technicalities and the myths and misconceptions. It will also help make the market a safer space.
Many people fear entering the crypto space because they think it’s too technical. Things like opening self-custodial wallets, safeguarding private keys, and interacting with decentralized protocols intimidate them.
This is understandable. The current user experience in crypto is far from welcoming to beginners. It immediately throws a newcomer into the deep end, drowning them in a sea of technical jargon and processes.
If there were resources, that wouldn’t be the case. A complete beginner would be able to learn everything they need to safely get started with crypto, which would do a lot for adoption.
The mystery of cryptocurrency has left a hole in people’s views of the technology. In many, this hole has been filled with myths and misconceptions, which have, in turn, discouraged them from embracing digital currencies.
Some common myths are that crypto is a scam, it is only used by criminals, and it’s not secure. The best way to combat these misconceptions is through education. People need to learn about the positive side of crypto and its potential to change the world. Once they do, they will be more open to adopting the technology.
Promoting Best Practices
On top of creating awareness of what cryptocurrencies are and how they work, sufficient education has the added benefit of promoting best practices.
Many people joining the crypto space don’t observe certain best practices, like doing adequate research, avoiding scams, and holding on to their private keys, probably because they don’t know that’s what they’re supposed to do.
The end result is that many users end up losing their crypto. This can be due to bad investments, falling prey to scammers, or as a result of trusting other parties with their private keys.
These losses do more than make victims wary of cryptocurrencies. They fuel constant headlines on scams and hacks, creating FUD that scares off new users.
Adequate education will mean people enter the space knowing what to do to stay safe. It will promote good practices, creating a safer market that encourages adoption.
The Crypto Education Train is Garnering Speed
Fortunately, efforts at crypto education have been ramping up in recent times. Programs like Binance Academy have emerged as useful resources for users to learn about crypto. While many of these are geared toward an audience with a trading mindset, they can still be a useful learning tool.
There is also Dypto Crypto, a crypto educational resource designed for absolute beginners. It addresses the more immediate need for crypto education at a fundamental level. It is designed from the ground up to spread awareness to the average person by breaking down crypto concepts into simple, easy-to-understand bits.
Crypto is also finding its way into the formal education curriculum, with some universities offering cryptocurrency courses. These include Harvard University, Oxford University, the National University of Singapore, Cornell University, the University of Nicosia, the University of California Berkeley, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Thanks to these efforts, the 2020s may just be the decade that crypto goes mainstream.