While the whole world is going bonkers, in panic mode, lockdown, or pretending the real world doesn’t exist, there’s a ecosystem of currencies that have been slowly introduced over the years that are actually the perfect way to mitigate some of the financial effects of this unique crisis unfolding before our very eyes.
Virtual economies are already here.
The new world order
The future as we know it is currently up in the air. Who’s to say what will happen when it all shakes out. All we know right now is that things are as they have never been before.
With more people working online and from home than ever in our history, Netflix getting slammed and switching to standard definition across the globe to keep up with demand, and people communicating via Messenger, Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp, Discord (and on and on…), the internet and country infrastructure is being put through its paces.
We are now living online. For many of us, we can’t go outside. For some of us, that’s almost life as usual, but for others, it’s a big change to make in day to day lives. The internet right now is what is bringing us all together and being the savior of humanity, sanity, work, and being the social creatures that we were ultimately born to be.
The original Bitcoin whitepaper, published by Satoshi Nakamoto, still an anonymous figure after all these years, was put out in 2008. In tech years, that is about a century ago. Those who saw the potential of this borderless, digital, instant currency jumped on the bandwagon over the next few years. Based on blockchain, Bitcoin (and other virtual currencies), this new type of currency provided anonymous proof of transaction, verified by other computers around the world.
Some years later came others like Ripple, for financial institutions, and Ethereum, a currency plus ecosystem to build other blockchain applications. Now, there are more digital currencies than Satoshi could have ever imagined (or maybe he could). Some are more useful than others, and some ICOs are just ways for pie in the sky startups to try and raise some money before ultimately failing.
The recent history of digital currencies
In recent years, there has been an explosion of digital currencies, as well as plenty of new laws brought in to manage them. There was a literal goldrush of crypto bros who usually didn’t end up making that much money due to not understanding the tech or value of what they were buying into.
Bitcoin soared and crashed, and soared and crashed…
While it generally (approximately) follows the USD, due to market interest, there is also volatility within the coin itself.
However, since now the markets that we have relied on for so many years are crashing, from the AUD to the USD, virtual currencies are seeing more trade, as a global currency – much like gold is a global currency.
And if you consider yourself a digital citizen, you’ll roll your eyes that gold is still a valuable asset, while crypto is still not considered a safe haven – as yet.
With everyone online for the time being…
Who knows what various FIAT currencies will do over this very strange period in time? What we do know is that virtual economies are thriving. In these virtual economies, entertainment will be at the forefront. We are already seeing people engaging in activities such as banking, online gaming, virtual gambling and socializing.
Twitch is going mental, with gamers and DJ live streams, people are playing slots on their phone to while the hours away, everyone on the planet is making TikTok videos because it’s fun and they have the time to…
With FIAT in flux, people are flocking to crypto as an alternative. You can already pay for your Microsoft products in Bitcoin, and the list of platform providers accepting crypto is likely to grow, considering FIAT values can now crash in an instant.
This may not be how the virtual economy revolution was supposed to start, but it is
We’re heading into uncharted territories. While plenty of us have lived online for a majority of our lives, and even worked remotely, and traded and paid for things in crypto, this is an entirely new way of life for the rest of the world.
While everyone is adjusting and making things work, there are trends occurring that will help the virtual economy revolution blossom into full bloom and remain as a big part of our lives even after all this is over.
For those who have tech-phobic or basic-skilled friends and family, now is the time to help them to learn these new ways of living online. Introduce them to Second Life. Show them how to set up a crypto wallet. Do a conference video with all your friends. We got this, world.