– How’s it going today guys? Welcome back to the channel. So I’m here in New York City with Ivan, Ivan on Tech on YouTube. He is a blockchain and cryptocurrency expert and so that’s what we’re gonna be talking about in this video is some of these beginner questions that you guys have about cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, blockchain, and I actually did a poll or a questionnaire over on Instagram and I got a list of questions from you guys for Ivan, so we’re gonna be asking those throughout this interview, but why don’t we start off by maybe talking about your background a little bit? – Absolutely.
– And a little bit more about yourself. – Yes, so my background is actually in programming, in technology. I’m a software developer, I’ve been programming since I was nine years old and Bitcoin is something I discovered in high school and it really excited me, mainly as an engineer because my friend only told me that Bitcoin is a currency, it only exists on the internet, nobody controls it, there’s no central bank, there’s no central server, no central institution that controls and runs this currency. Anyone in the world can use it and it’s free to use.
If you have an internet device, you can connect to the internet, you can use Bitcoin. So as an engineer, I got very interested in how can it work? How can you have a currency on the internet without anyone making sure that nobody cheats?
Because what is stopping me from copy pasting my Bitcoin? So this is how my interest started. And this really started as something I did during the evenings, during my holidays, it was not something that I worked with professionally but as the time went by, I got more and more into it and the great thing with cryptocurrencies is that once you get into it, you actually learn about so many different topics.
So I get in as an engineer, but naturally, you start learning about central banking, about economy, what is currency? What is money? What is fiat money? How does a central bank work? What does a bank do, what does a central bank do?
So naturally you get interested in so many other things. Still I just had it as an interest. I was hanging around in the forums, in the community, I went to different Bitcoin meet ups. And back then it was only like three people. This was in 2013, 14.
– Okay, what was the price of Bitcoin back then? – Well I actually joined when there was a lot of hype because that is how my friend learned about it when he told me. So I actually joined when Bitcoin was going to $1,000 and as many people, I FOMO’d in, fear of missing out, you’re like “I gotta buy Bitcoin” so I was very interested in technology but also it was going up a lot. So I bought at the very top, it crashed at 200. – So you bought at 1000 initially and it crashed at 200? – Yes, exactly.
It crashed at 200 but I was so interested in this and I was so inspired by the community that I was still in the game. Most people that get into during a hype and then they lose all their money, they just leave. For me it was so interesting and for me it was way beyond the hype and also you have to understand that in high school I didn’t have a lot of money to invest so it wasn’t that I lost a lot of money but still, it was very painful to go down that much. – Yeah, for sure. – And it actually taught me a lot about cycles and psychology of people because when I got into crypto at $1000 in 2013, people were so excited. You know, Bitcoin’s going to replace central banks, it’s gonna replace currency.
Then we went into bear market and this bearish cycle started. People were extremely negative. Everyone was telling me Bitcoin is a failed experiment, this will never work. How could we ever thought that this could be possible? How stupid was you and I who bought Bitcoin?
Obviously this will never work. So it actually taught me a lot about the psychology because in a few years we had another hype which was 2017. – Right, which is I think where a lot of people really started to learn about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency and it got everyone on their radar. – The story repeats.
Now we’re in a bearish cycle again and people are negative. But my journey was that, I got into Bitcoin, it was very high, it crashed. I had it as an interest and then I actually started working at Ericsson which is a big telecom company in Sweden and it’s also well-known worldwide. Maybe you’ve had Sony Ericsson phones. – Yes, yes, Sony products, yeah.
– And so at that time I wanted to excel my career as an engineer. I was having this interest in mind that is cryptocurrencies and during that time, it was during 2016-17, it was not only Bitcoin anymore. We had Ethereum, we had many other coins and they did different things and they actually offered new ways to build software, to build software that is not running on a central server but running on these centralized networks.
So just like Bitcoin is a currency running on the centralized network, cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum now allowed developers to program their own applications that would also run in this decentralized way. So you and I, we can build, for example, Facebook. We can build a social network that is running across the entire network and not owned by one company, by one entity.
– So not on one central server either, just being across a larger network? – Yes, so just like Bitcoin is a decentralized network of computers, you can connect your computer to the Bitcoin network and participate. And you can think of Bitcoin as an app on your iPhone. Think of this network as a platform and Bitcoin is a currency app. So what Ethereum allowed to do which is the second biggest cryptocurrency today is for developers to build whatever they want and the developers could build applications that would run in this decentralized way.
They would also run on this decentralized network but instead of a currency, maybe we’ll build a social network. Or we build some other application. And so for me, YouTube was really a way of educating people at Ericsson because people at Ericsson, my executives, my boss, they had no clue about crypto, they had no clue about blockchain but I wanted to show them that you know, I have this knowledge. I have my YouTube channel you can go and watch so for me it was just a way to excel my career but I started in 2017 and the whole hype started and the YouTube channel just exploded. – I can remember when we had first talked in December of 2017, your channel was growing like crazy and I was like, “Oh my god,” it was amazing.
It was just ’cause it was going parabolic and everybody was finding out about it. – It was insane. And naturally also now I found my own niche in crypto. And so currently I no longer work as a software engineer, I work as an educator.
So we have a very big online academy with 11,000 people. We’re teaching them about programming on blockchain, about how blockchain crypto works and I speak, I educate, I do consulting for big companies. We even had a consulting gig with the Swedish government so really my job now is full time crypto and it all has to do with the fact that I’ve gotten so much attention from YouTube and we’ve been, my team and I have been really good at capitalizing and building this brand further. And so this is what I do nowadays. I’m full-time crypto. I analyze crypto, I invest in crypto myself and one of my biggest passions right now is still YouTube.
That is how I am still trying to get more attention, trying to get more people into crypto, trying to get more people to educate themselves about crypto because there are so many misunderstandings, people don’t really understand what they’re talking about when they criticize cryptocurrencies and maybe we can cover these topics today as well. – Yeah definitely, so I think it’s a good time to jump into the questions here. I basically I have a mixture of questions. Some of these are more basic, some of them are maybe a little bit funny here that I wanted to share but number one, I think one of the most common questions about cryptocurrency is where is the value derived for cryptocurrency? What is it that gives these digital currencies value? – You know, very good question, very good question.
And if you live in the US or you live in Europe, it might be hard to understand, what is the value of Bitcoin? Because you have your credit card, you have your bank account. It’s very easy to transfer money worldwide, inflation is predictable, 2-3 percent, not an issue. But now imagine you live in Venezuela, imagine your currency inflates by the second.
I mean, just look at how much inflation there is in Venezuela and what a human tragedy that is. So of course, if you live in such a country, suddenly Bitcoin is very lucrative to you because you understand that your government cannot mess with Bitcoin. Nobody can create more Bitcoin out of thin air from nowhere. There’s only a planned inflation up to 21 million Bitcoin and after that, no more Bitcoin will be created.
So that is number one. – So basically with inflation, these countries, they are holding onto money, it’s a losing game because the buying power deteriorates very quickly, right? – Yeah because their government mismanages the economy.
And in many cases, the only way for the government to keep running is to print new money. Inflation is a hidden tax that is used by governments to fund many government projects, to fund wars, to fund a lot of spending, so when the government loses control of their monetary system, they try to save it by printing more money. This is not something that you want to experience. I myself, I am from Belarus.
And in Belarus, we experienced this firsthand in the ’90s with the whole Russia crisis and when I was a small kid, I noticed that my grandparents and my parents, they don’t have Belarussian rubles. They only have dollars and euros. So I was very curious, why do we have euros? And if you buy an apartment in Belarus, you don’t pay with Belarussian rubles. You pay with dollars and euros because people understand that fiat currency in Belarus isn’t worth much.
Tomorrow it can be worth zero. So from that point, I really understood that currency is not something you can trust. You need to be very careful about what currency you hold. And currencies in many cases is not even worth the paper it’s printed on. So what I’m trying to tell you is that if you live in a stable country such as the US, relatively stable western Europe, you might not understand this issue but most people in this world live in countries where the economical situation is very unstable.
This is only one reason. So for those people, obviously when you have a currency that is not connected to the state, only that is a lot of value. To them, it is valuable.
To them, it is a way to preserve their capital. So that is number one. And actually in the future, it might be the case that state and currency is not connected. In the past a few centuries ago, if you told someone that religion and state should be disconnected, you would be called crazy and with the human tragedies we see all over the world when governments mismanage their economy and need to print money inflating their currency, maybe in the future we will also be looking back at today’s times when people have currency governed by the state and think, “Guys, you were crazy.” – Yeah, having those two tied together because of all the problems? – Yes, but anyway that is only one reason, hyperinflation.
The second very, very big reason is financial exclusion because you realize that most people in this world do not have bank accounts. If you actually count people who have bank accounts and who can do international transfers, we are a minority in this world, meaning that you have a lot less possibilities. If you live in Africa, in many countries, there are no banks there. You cannot have a bank account and you cannot have a credit card, why? Because it’s not worth to expanding to Africa for many banks. People are poor in many places of the continent and therefore when a bank is looking at such a country and seeing why would we go there, there’s not a lot of money to be made there so they don’t go there.
And obviously if you have a brilliant idea, you live in some kind of poor country in Africa, it doesn’t matter if you are Elon Musk, you have the best team, you have best product, you will not get funding. You will not be able to accept international transfers, you will not be able to accept international investments. So financial exclusion is one of the biggest reasons for poverty in this world and the only thing you need to accept and send money internationally today with cryptocurrencies is just a phone and internet connection.
And most people in this world actually have internet connection. – Even in these countries like Africa, they do? Okay sure.
– Yes, they have skipped laptops, they have skipped computers. They go from no internet, no computers, directly to smartphones, very, very cheap Androids and an internet connection. So internet is actually something that most countries and most people in this world have and soon will have. But access to the global monetary system was not possible before cryptocurrencies. So what I’m trying to tell you is that you live in the western world, it’s very easy for you to say that Bitcoin has no value, it’s not backed by anything. But that is not the point.
The point is just having the natural properties of Bitcoin which are anyone can use it, anyone in the world can send and receive Bitcoin as long as you have an internet connection. Nobody can inflate it, nobody can change how Bitcoin works. It will only be 21 million Bitcoin.
And those were the two topics we discussed. And finally, something that I think will be very, very influential is just the transparency and openness. Bitcoin is an open ledger. You and I, we can take a look in the ledger and see exactly where the money is going.
So I think corruption will be eliminated in many places due to blockchain technology and due to cryptocurrencies. And this is one of the misconceptions because many people say that Bitcoin is used by criminals, Bitcoin is used by money launderers. – Sure, and the silk road or the things that I’ve heard before, yeah.
– All of that, but actually Bitcoin is a very bad way to do criminal activity because you have a decentralized ledger. This ledger with all transactions is saved on all computers in the network because Bitcoin is a network of computers. All of them have a copy of that. That is stored forever in this decentralized ledger and your transactions will be there forever. There’s no way for you to hide your tracks and so in that sense, I think there’s a very, very good comparison between internet and Bitcoin because if you look at the early days of internet, what did people say? Why do you need the internet?
Why do you want to be anonymous? Internet is only for criminals. And if you told anyone that you would be going on a date with someone you met on the internet in the ’90s, you would be called crazy, like are you insane? There are so many weird people on the internet. – Or even like putting your credit card on the internet would’ve been just insane. – Yes, yes, yes, exactly, exactly.
And similar thing is with Bitcoin that when a new technology arrives that is really, really revolutionary and groundbreaking, criminals start using it first. So you have a small percentage of criminals start using internet first because obviously there was a lot of scams, there was a lot of shady people using the internet in the beginning. But as the technology gets more and more adopted because the technology is wonderful, internet is wonderful, so it’s natural that more and more people learn about it and starts using it, so as this technology gets more and more adopted, the average use case for the internet reflects the average human being, and the average human being uses the internet for email, work, YouTube videos, and that’s it. Yes, there are still criminals on the internet, no question about that. So the same will be with Bitcoin. Criminals always use the latest technology because they need to be one step ahead of the law enforcement.
I mean, look at cars. Who used the first cars? Criminals. Even fire, when people find out you can actually light a fire, probably criminals were the first ones who used that as well. And so as the technology gets more and more adopted, normal people starts using it and criminals are still here, but it’s also a very small percent.
– Mm-hmm, gotcha. Yeah, very interesting, a lot of perspectives I’ve never considered before. Okay the second question that I got from people is, obviously we’ve been in a bear market with cryptocurrency for the last, what, 14 months or so? Is there any way to make money when the crypto prices fall or can you only make money when the prices are rising?
– Of course you can make money by shorting Bitcoin and if you’re interested, you can go to BitMax. BitMax is a platform that offers that and basically you will be trading derivatives on BitMax. So there are ways to make money in a downward trend. You can even use leverage. That is the biggest difference between when I entered crypto and today. The community and the ecosystem is so well-developed and it’s only getting more and more.
It’s only accelerating in its development. When I joined you could only buy Bitcoin and that’s it and if you wanted to short Bitcoin, you would do it the classic way. You would lend from someone, sell it, but now you can just go to BitMax, sign up, you can add leverage if you want if you want to be in that risk category, absolutely. – Yeah, I think that was a common misconception from people is that you only had to be bullish on Bitcoin with your bet. Okay question number three that I had here is what are the current biggest weaknesses of cryptocurrency and then the one other thing too I want to talk about quick is blockchain versus cryptocurrency.
– Actually that’s a good question, let’s take that first because it connects to the last point about the criminals using the internet in the ’90s. So if you look at the big companies such as Microsoft, when they started seeing the growth of internet, they said the following, we like the idea of the internet, I mean it’s amazing but too much pornography, too many scammers and also it is too slow. So instead of using the internet which we think is not truly that useful to us, let’s build an intranet so we will take this idea of networks, we will create our own network that we police.
We make sure that it’s clean, we make sure that nothing strange happens, and we will try to grow it, we will try to invite other companies and we will try to create basically a competitor to the open internet but it is controlled by us. They spent millions if not billions building this intranet. Obviously what is the most interesting? A closed garden intranet or an open internet? Open internet is the most interesting. And although internet was very slow in the beginning, I mean to send an email you had to wait a few minutes, to watch a picture you had to wait a few minutes.
So their Microsoft intranet was actually faster, a lot faster but at the end of the day, it is the open network that is the most interesting. And it’s funny that you see exactly the same thing in crypto, people say we like cryptocurrencies, we like Bitcoin but we don’t truly like, we like the technology behind it which is blockchain. So by the way, let’s define blockchain. Blockchain is this decentralized network we were talking about.
Blockchain is this essentially a network of computers where you have each computer storing its own copy of everything that has happened. So in Bitcoin, each computer stores the copy of all the transactions. And by doing that, you can check so that nobody cheats.
So if I have a copy, you have a copy and suddenly you see that I have a million Bitcoin, I will just take a look in the transactions and see there is no way you could have received that. And so this is how we check so that nobody cheats. People say that we like this idea of a decentralized distributed ledger, we just don’t like cryptocurrencies.
And you realize that when you take blockchain and you make it in a walled garden, you remove many of the features. You remove the openness because anybody can use Bitcoin, not everyone can use a corporate blockchain that IBM has built or someone else has built. It also loses the transparency because in many cases you have the fact that we’re not really even talking about blockchains.
In many cases you look at the companies that advertise blockchain such as IBM, you look under the hood and you realize it’s not transparent, it’s not decentralized, it has nothing to do with the blockchain that is actually used in Bitcoin. So in many cases you need to be thinking about this as a marketing trick. In many cases, it’s more like- – It’s a buzzword and it kinda gets people’s attention. – Technically it is just a database that is kind of like a blockchain, it has some features of a blockchain that maybe resemble blockchain in some way, but at the end of the day it’s just a database.
– It’s not a truly transparent network? – No. And in that sense I think it’s just a question of time because the arguments are the same. Why does IBM build their own blockchains and try to sell people on their own blockchains?
Well because they say basically it’s for scammers, it’s for money launderers, it’s too slow, let’s build our own. – So it’s like the intranet, the protected version of the intranet? – The protected version. So I think the parallels are very, very good and I think people will make millions if not billions selling private blockchains. I think there are some use cases.
I mean, you have Meyers, the Danish logistics company using blockchain technology but in my view, they’re not using blockchain. They’re just using a version of a database that is more decentralized, it has some more decentralization features, it is more open than a normal database but at the core, it’s just a database. At the core, someone can shut it down. At the core, someone has access and can change things and can remove things. That is not a blockchain. It’s a database that has blockchain-like features.
– All right, so circling back now then, what would you say are the biggest current weaknesses of cryptocurrency? – Yes, so user experience may be the biggest issue right now. I cannot make my mom use Bitcoin. It’s just too complicated.
That is number one. Number two is education. People are still not understanding the value, people are still not understanding why Bitcoin exists. There is still a lot of misinformation about Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies which, in my view is just a question of time before that changes but still, it doesn’t allow us to move as quickly as we would like to and so that is number two.
And number three, it is just this responsibility that people need to have. When you have Bitcoin, you are actually storing your own money. If you lose your password, you lose your Bitcoin.
There is no customer support, nobody can help you. So in that sense I think this is something that we will have to see if it will ever be used by everyone because I’m not sure the average Joe would like to store one million dollars in Bitcoin and have- – Especially if they’re responsible for the password. – They’re responsible for the password but at the same time, I’m not sure how this is going to play out. Remember we are talking about a new technology, cryptocurrencies. It’s like we’re here talking about the internet in the ’70s.
Who knows how it’s going to play out and how exactly it is going to be used? But there are pros and cons. For example, it might seem that who would like to use Bitcoin for storing a lot of money?
But at the same time, if you have a lot of money, Bitcoin is the only way you can store your money in such a way that it’s unconfiscatable. Imagine rich people having a lot of money in their bank account. Who knows if you can move it?
How many questions do you have to answer to your bank before you can move it? What if you live in a corrupt state that suddenly confiscates your money for whatever reason? So there is actually a very, very compelling reason for rich people to store a lot of money in crypto but for the average Joe we will have to see exactly how it plays out but there are many pros, definitely and there are some cons that we still need to iron out and see how we develop but it comes down to user experience. How can we make it easy for people to store crypto? And it’s a question that is still unanswered.
– Yeah ’cause I have a very small amount of cryptocurrency and even like setting up a hardware wallet and it’s definitely for a very small amount of people. I couldn’t imagine showing my mom or my grandmother how to do this just because it was complicated just for me to do that, so I definitely understand where you’re coming from on that one. Okay, the next question I had here, somebody asked what is a dog coin? – Doge coin. – Doge coin, well they said dog coin so I wanted to ask the question specifically as it was.
– Well doge is an internet meme. You might know the dog and it’s kind of looking strange. So doge was an internet meme and then Jackson Palmer, which is a friend of mine and he also has a YouTube channel. By the way you should all follow Jackson Palmer if you want to learn about crypto. He has a very, very good crypto education channel.
So Jackson Palmer thought, “Hey, what a fun idea to create a coin that is doge coin.” From the beginning it was a joke. It was only for LOLs.
It was not something serious. So for example you have many strange parameters such as random inflation. It was just for joke. It was not something, but then the community was so excited and the community really liked this dog and it’s really one of the beauties of the internet, you have so many crazy people that are very into memes and now they start using doge coin and they start spreading the word about doge coin because it’s so funny. People like dogs, people like memes, people like crypto and it’s so easy to spread and also you had a tipping bot that you could use on reddit that really gave it a lot of options so you can actually tip doge coin on reddit so I think that was a very important step but at the end of the day if you look at doge coin today, it’s not even in the top 10 I think in the crypto coin. – In the market cap?
– Yes, yes, yes, but still, why is it even in top 50? I don’t know. – It shouldn’t be ’cause it was a joke or kind of something for novelty? – But still, people have doge coin.
People use doge coin and it’s mostly for fun but when you have people still transacting, it has a market value, it has a market cap so that is doge coin. – Very interesting, yeah, okay. So the next question here is, unlike stocks and real estate, crypto seems to have no underlying asset, and I think that’s what a lot of people are, that’s what’s holding them back from investing in cryptocurrency. What do you think about that? Is there really no underlying asset here with these cryptocurrencies other than just this technology? – It depends.
It depends on which crypto. So for example, and also we don’t know how Bitcoin is going to develop. And we might get a bit technical but let’s look at the internet. So internet is a set of protocols, you have TCP/IP, you have HTTP. So internet as we use it today is a set of protocols but this protocol level doesn’t capture any of the value created by the internet. The people who capture the value are the applications on top such as Facebook, such as Google, they’re all building on top of these protocols that are at the core of the internet but the guy that created TCP/IP doesn’t make all the billions that the Facebook founders do.
So this is how internet was created. You have technology stack, the technology could stack and then on top you have applications and applications capture all the value. – Okay. – Now with Ethereum, you have a protocol that is the Ethereum blockchain and the idea is that the Ethereum blockchain should capture most of the value created by the technology because you need the Ethereum cryptocurrency to run the applications that are built on top. So if you have Ethereum and some kind of app on top of Ethereum succeeds, let’s say some kind of decentralized social network succeeds, that will put a lot of demand on Ethereum so you’re actually investing in the base protocol so it all depends on do you believe that this base protocol that is Ethereum, that you can compare it to TCP/IP, HTTP, will succeed in the future? Because if it does, well then it is a tangible asset because you need this Ethereum token, this Ethereum coin, to run applications on top of Ethereum.
Imagine that you could invest in internet in the beginning. And from the beginning people will say, “I mean, what are you buying? What are you investing in? Who will use this TCP/IP? It’s so hard to send an email, who would send emails? Who would watch videos on the internet?
You have television.” So from the beginning it would also be very, very strange to invest in the internet but now that we’re 30 years, 40 years into the age of the internet, we can see that hey, internet created so much value. And it is tangible, people use Facebook, people use Google.
Now imagine you would invest in internet in the early days and your investment would actually grow with each application that is successful that is built on top of the internet. – So capitalizing on the Facebook and the applications? – Yes, yes, yes. If you somehow invested in the early days in the internet but that wasn’t possible, you could not do that. With Ethereum you can do that so that is the whole pitch for the future of Ethereum and decentralized network. Now is Bitcoin the same?
Not at the moment. Not at the moment because it is not that people are building on top, that you have applications building on top but that could change because people now want to make Bitcoin kind of like Ethereum so you can build applications on top. So different cryptocurrencies have different intrinsic values. I definitely do not agree with people who say that crypto has no intrinsic value because as we discussed with Bitcoin, just the fact that you can transfer it wherever you are. I mean if you are in some strange place in the world in South America, Africa, Indonesia, they have no bank accounts, I can transfer it to you.
I mean, that is intrinsic value. The same thing with inflation. And with Ethereum, it is all these things with Bitcoin but also you could potentially capitalize on the future applications that are on top of Ethereum. – Very interesting, yeah. I think that’s a great explanation there for that argument of it having no value.
– But at the same time, I also feel that there is so much negativity in the crypto community towards gold, towards real estate. And I personally don’t really like it because I like crypto, I like gold, I like real estate. They all are different. It’s not that Bitcoin is going to replace gold.
Many people say that Bitcoin is digital gold and it has some values, some properties that resemble gold but still, it is not gold. It is not gold. And so in that sense, I think many people are very, very maximalistic in the Bitcoin space, it’s like only Bitcoin, nothing else, gold is trash, stocks are trash, Wall Street is trash, real estate is trash.
– I’ve seen a lot of comments like that, like the fanboy comments of everything else sucks, this is the only solution. – Real estate is in the bubble, everything’s going to crash, only crypto. There are those people but I’m not one of those.
I think that Bitcoin is amazing. It has a great, great future but I also like real estate because I want to get income every month. You could in the future also get income with Ethereum and others because- – I was going to ask you that, is there anything equivalent to like a dividend stock with cryptocurrency? – Yes, yes. So what you can do is so-called staking.
It is not possible in Bitcoin and it will probably never be possible with Bitcoin but with Ethereum, now they’re working on this staking model where basically you can lock up Ether and you get dividends from inflation. Basically you get a bit of the Ethereum inflation. Why? Because when you lock up your Ethereum, you are part of consensus. Now it’s also a bit technical but it all comes down to how do we ensure that nobody cheats in the network? And Ethereum wants to make it in such a way that you lock up your Ether and then you’re part of the people that checks so that nobody cheats.
And if you misbehave, you will lose your stake. So, but if you do your job properly, you will get a bit of inflation. So by locking up your Ether, you will be part of validaters that make sure that everything is according to the rules. If you cheat, you lose your Ether. That is why nobody cheats. And the more Ether you have, the more stake you have in the network, the more you have to lose, the more trustworthy you are because you have more to lose, and also you will get more of the inflation so this is how in the future it might be possible to stake Ethereum.
And you can stake smaller coins. You can stake currently a lot of small coins but you cannot compare staking some kind of small coin to real estate yet, but in the future maybe you could. – Yeah, depends on how it all plays out. Very interesting, yeah.
Now this I know ’cause I get this question all the time on my channel about the stock market. I know cryptocurrency is the same, you can’t time the market but do you have any prediction when we might see a turnaround here or a change with the cryptocurrency market? – I mean in my view, it will take years. Just like 2013 was when we reached the peak of 1000 and then we have ’14, ’15, ’16 and only in ’17 did we see another cycle. And also to me it feels like the cycles are getting longer because before 1000, Bitcoin also had another cycle that went up and down and before that there was also another cycle. And it feels like if you just look at the charts, those cycles are getting longer.
Why? Because I think the economy gets more and more mature. In the traditional economy, you have cycles that are 10 years. In the crypto economy, I mean before you had like one month up and down. And even with new coins, you have these pump and dumpers.
They do pump and dump over a few hours. So the more an economy grows, the harder it is to pump and dump, the harder it is to manipulate and the longer the cycles become so it might even be the case that it will be longer. – So five years even maybe? Three to five years?
Something like that? – That is what I think. I think it will take years.
Five, six, seven, I don’t know, nobody knows. But it’s all about the long term. That’s why for me it is so, in a way, it’s also a bit uninteresting to see when it will come back but people are talking about 1000, $800 floor, that we will go down that far and it makes sense. If you do some basic technical analysis, we could go that far. But really this is not my expertise, I really don’t know what I’m talking about here compared to my technical knowledge.
– Yeah, you’re more technology. – I’m just shooting from my hip and I think it will take five, six. – Sure, yeah. I think that’s a good analysis there. Okay so the next question I really liked as well from somebody from my audience here and I think you’ll be able to answer this really well because of your first experience with investing, how do you manage your emotions? As a speculator or somebody investing in something cutting edge or brand new like cryptocurrencies?
– I think it’s all about experience because obviously when Bitcoin went to 1000 when I entered and it went to 200 I sold them on the way down. I was one of these people that made the worst possible timing. – Oh so you ended up selling?
Okay. – I was in high school. I had zero experience in trading and bull. I was like basically it’s dead. But still my interest was so high in the actual technology that I still learned and started to be more and more interested in the space although we were in the bear market. But now of course with this knowledge in mind and I actually think this was one of the greatest lessons I’ve ever had because I learned this in high school first hand.
It’s one thing that you’ll read about cycles, it’s one thing that you hear someone speak about cycles, and the whole other thing that you actually put your own money, although it was not a lot of money, at the time for me it was a lot of money in high school. And you actually experience it first hand. You go from top to bottom and you live through the bear market and it goes up again and you see the exact same motions, exact same slogans that people are saying, Bitcoin is dead, this was a scam, Ponzi scheme, all of that. And it’s very similar. So it’s all about the fundamentals and how much you believe in the actual technology and the actual finance proposition, financial proposition that Bitcoin is suggesting to the world and saying, “Hey this is a new paradigm.” And there are many ways that this can develop.
So some people say that Bitcoin will replace central banks. That might happen but it will take a long time in my view. It will not be easy because nobody will give up their powers and just say, “Hey, now we’re shutting down the central bank, we will use Bitcoin.” There’s really no incentive for any government to do that.
But what I think what will happen is that Bitcoin will get more and more adopted, people will learn about Bitcoin more and more, and the central banks will just have a lot of pressure and they will feel that now people know how Bitcoin works, they can easily buy it, they can easily sell it because the ecosystem is so large. I mean you can even short it, you can long it, 10x, 100 days, there’s so many instruments you can invest in, financial instruments and you can speculate Bitcoin in so many ways so I think central banks will just feel a lot of pressure that we cannot mess up because if we do, people have an alternative. Right now people don’t have any alternative. And this is also why I think it’s so interesting that people are blaming the US for the huge debt, you have the fed doing all these crazy things but at the end of the day, and what I really dislike is that people blame capitalism. They say capitalism failed, look at the US with this huge debt. But at the end of the day, is it truly capitalism when you have a few people deciding the interest rate?
I mean it is central planning at its best, at its worst, at its highest peak. So in that sense, what I really, really like about Bitcoin is that we actually can have real capitalism maybe for the first time ever where you don’t have five people deciding how the economy will look like for the next year, for the next few months because then they will change the interest rates again. And this is very, very exciting to me personally. And also from an ideological standpoint, I want capitalism to succeed.
I don’t think that people are really understanding what they’re talking about when they say that US has this huge debt, therefore capitalism is bad. It’s not due to capitalism when you have a few people controlling the economy. – Yeah definitely.
I’ll move on here, see what the next question was from my audience. Okay so the next question is definitely more towards your area of expertise and that is, what are the potential jobs involved in blockchain or cryptocurrency, or career paths maybe? – Yes, and this is actually one of the topics that I’m really passionate about. We have an online academy with 11,000 students. They learn all about how blockchain works, how crypto works, how to program from scratch, how to do programming from scratch on blockchain but also just normal programming and the reason why I’m so passionate about this is because I think many people can definitely go from zero to a very, very successful career very quickly. Why?
Because it is a new industry. It is a new technology, a new paradigm and so just like I was working at Ericsson, I realized that I’m not even 20 years old. I can teach my executives who are 50, they have worked in this company for 30-40 years and I can teach them something that they didn’t know. I can be a valuable asset to them which means that my career will skyrocket.
And this is something that we’ve seen with many of our students. And so if you really want to be in a place that is evolving very rapidly, you see a lot of people from Goldman Sachs, executives from Goldman Sachs leaving their well-paid jobs, moving to crypto because they see a lot of opportunity. I mean, this can potentially be one of the biggest financial changes in the history of mankind. For me, this is so important to educate people about.
And definitely I think you can number one, be a developer. The people who made the most money, if you take the average person that invested in crypto last year, the average person lost money because the average person, just like when I was new to crypto, the average person invests in the worst time and they sell at the worst time. So the average person lost money but the average developer in crypto made money. The average salary for a crypto developer is 200,000 per year. So there is a lot of demand and if there’s any programming you should learn, I think it’s crypto programming, it is if you’re interested in the technology. – I was gonna mention that too, so these career paths or jobs, what should you be naturally interested in for this to be a good fit for you?
Programming? – So I will come to that. So if you’re a programmer, do that. We have an academy for that. Number two, maybe you’re not a programmer.
Maybe you just want to develop the business use case. Well there’s a lot of just consulting work to be done, education to be done. A lot of education about economy, about how money works, about how central banks work. If you just explain it to companies, to corporations, even to banks because many of them have no clue what is going on. They’re still in this field where they think that blockchain is gonna disappear, Bitcoin is gonna disappear, it’s just a scam. But Bitcoin never goes away.
It only grows bigger and bigger and bigger. So I think there’s a lot of education to be done and that is why I love blockchain so much and crypto so much because if you’re a technical person, you will find something. If you’re more of an educator, if you’re more of a person that works with business, you will find something. And also I think it has a lot to do with policies as well. Just the regulation of cryptocurrencies and also a lot to do with law. Crypto lawyers are the best paid lawyers in the world.
– What is a crypto lawyer involved with? – For example, let’s say I want to do an ICO, I want to launch in a cryptocurrency. Which country should I go to? Which country is the best one? Who can set up my foundation? Who can really tell me what it means to create a cryptocurrency?
Is it a product I’m selling? Is it a share, a stock? It’s nothing of that. So in that sense, law will be changed forever as well because now if I have Bitcoin, you cannot take it away from me. We have a lot of funny stories with divorce that you know, someone, the husband has all of the holdings in crypto, how do you take it away from me? Very difficult.
– And it’s not like wages, you can’t garnish wages or anything like that. – Sure, sure. – So yeah, there’s going to be a lot of interesting legal- – Yes and also when we’re talking about Ethereum, you can program applications on top of Ethereum that hold money, so for example, I can create a so-called smart contract.
A smart contract is an application on top of Ethereum and it can hold money and you program how it should work and so once you deploy it, you cannot change it. And so people can send money to this smart contracts. The smart contracts will do something with the money so you can basically program a lot of financial applications so you can program a lottery and you can have a 100 percent transparent lottery because everyone can view the code, everyone can see that the smart contract has received money and now it just selects a random number but at the same time, how do you resolve conflicts when you have software that owns money?
For the first time, your software actually has a bank account. It’s not a bank account, it’s a crypto account but your software can actually own- your car will, in the future, own its own wallet, it will maybe even pay for parking on its own, maybe it will get payments from other cars maybe because you’re driving your car and there’s another car in that says, “Hey, let me go before you, I will send you some” – Then they go faster than you, I’ll pay you to move or something like that? – For example, I mean this is so early on. We don’t know how the machine to machine economy will look like. – This is like, again, trying to predict the internet in the ’80s, ’70s, something like that. – But it’s just so exciting that you have no restrictions when it comes to monetary transactions.
I mean, your fridge can have a bank account, crypto account. It can receive payments, it can send payments. And how do you take money from the fridge? You basically have a lot of questions that you never had before when it comes to law. And so I’m just illustrating a few different areas where there is a lot of demand and a lot of people need them. And if you are a crypto expert and you go into law, you’re a crypto expert, you go into software, you’re a crypto expert, you go into business, you will rise very quickly through the ranks.
This is what I’ve learned. I mean, I’m 22. I’ve worked with very high executives in the Swedish industry. I worked with banks, I worked even with the Swedish government. How would that be possible in any other industry? It would not be possible because everyone has a lot of experts already.
There is a lot of establishment already in all different industries, except for crypto. There is no establishment, there is no one guru, there are no big four corporations that all governments and all corporations go to. You have the playing field open and you can really, really make yourself very successful in this industry. – Very interesting. All right so the next question I have for you, Ivan, is related to a news story that I saw. I was reading it on my way here on the train.
This Canadian exchange where the only person who had the password to the wallet died and now close to $200 million worth of cryptocurrency is unaccessible. So first of all I want your take on that. But also, that is a potential problem area we talked about with maybe user experience or not having redundancy in place? – Sure, sure.
So that is an issue, absolutely. So the exchange was run in such a way that one person had all of the money in a cold wallet, which means that it’s not connected to the internet. They have a USB-like device like a hardware wallet and you need the password for that. And if you lose your password, nobody can help you. There’s no customer support, there is no way to retrieve Bitcoin that you have in that hardware wallet if you lost your private key or your password.
And so this is an issue we see in crypto, absolutely. When it comes to innovation is not serious exchanges. If I want to exchange money with you, for example I have Bitcoin, you have Litecoin, and we want to exchange, currently we do it on the exchange. So for example this Canadian exchange or we do it on coin base or tracking or some other exchange.
And because this industry has been developing so fast, there is no regulation in place, there are many people that are just starting exchanges because they see an opportunity. They’re not really professionals in IT, they’re not really professionals in finance, they’re not really professionals in anything, they just think, “Let’s do an exchange.” And therefore we’ve seen this issue. And it is really the wild, wild west of crypto right now.
I think it’s just natural with any technology. And so this is very unfortunate but at the same time, we also see a lot of regulatory attention. People are now in the regulatory space are paying attention to this. We have crypto regulation coming out. We see exchanges facing more and more scrutiny from regulators. So in my view this is only temporary.
And this is also something that you as a user need to be thinking about in these early days that we’re still in the wild, wild west. You need to be thinking about do I trust this exchange? Do they have the measures they need to have in place? So having one person having the only password is definitely not a good measure.
And this is the first point I want to make, that the regulators are coming, it’s only temporary and unfortunately you as a user need to do your homework. This is not something that is ideal, we do understand that. My grandma will not do the research when she stores her money on the exchange. But at the same time you also see people who had their money in Cypress, when they just lost a lot of money during the crisis so I wouldn’t say that your money is 100 percent safe somewhere else, but this is a huge problem in crypto nonetheless.
But the point number two, which I think is the most exciting is that in the future, you will not have to use an exchange at all. So currently in crypto, if you and I want to exchange crypto we need to use a centralized exchange. We need to use the exchange, we need to use their servers, we need to upload our crypto to them and that is how we exchange. But in the future and already today you have exchanges that are decentralized so actually the actual exchange is not owned by any company, it is not run by anyone. It is only on the blockchain and if you want to trade something with me, you want to exchange money with me, we do it through a smart contract which is an application on top of Ethereum for example. And there is no way that can just steal your money or that can just shut down.
So in that sense, I think we see a lot of technological innovation happening where in the near future, you don’t even have to trust anyone. – You won’t need the exchange, you won’t have to worry about – The actual exchange is part of the network. The exchange is built into the network.
That is what we’re looking at in the next one to two years. That inside of the Bitcoin application that you have on your computer, you will be able to go to exchange tab, you will be able to exchange any crypto for any other crypto. Of course someone needs to take this trade on the other side and the liquidity will be an issue from the beginning but as the economy grows, as the crypto economy grows, it will be less and less of an issue. So that is where I think we’re heading but unfortunately during the past year we’ve seen so many exchanges that have no address, they have no founders, they are owned by some kind of a trust.
There is really no way to trace who is behind this exchange. Suddenly the exchange disappears and the Canadian exchange is one of the examples where the founder died, but now there are allegations that the founder didn’t truly die because he was accused of identity fraud in the past so who knows what really happened but it is an issue and my vision is that in the near future you will not even have centralized exchanges in the way they are today. But still, people will need customer support, people will need people who help them, so there is still room for centralized exchanges but the future is about decentralized exchanges where the actual exchange is not a company, it’s no server, it is part of the blockchain. – Sure yeah, that makes a lot of sense. All right now the final question I have for you here to wrap up, do you have any crypto currency or blockchain predictions for late 2019 into 2020?
I know we already talked about the pricing thing, you think it’s gonna be three to five years. – I think we’re looking at a few boring years. The price will flatline or go slightly down, that is how I think it will happen and the only reason I think so is because that is my experience from the past, a bear market but at the same time, we see a lot of developments when it comes to actual technology, when it comes to fundamentals, when it comes to ecosystem. The people that are still here are serious, they are serious about blockchain, serious about crypto. The people that were here a year ago when we were in the hype and everyone was so excited, it was hard to tell who is here for real and who is here only for a quick profit.
Now it’s very easy to tell. Everyone who is still here is here for real. So in that sense I think the community is a lot more healthy, you can really see what is a good project, what is a bad project, we have learned from our mistakes. Because when everything is pumping, all the coins are going up, it’s very hard to tell what is good and what is bad.
And you see a bad coin going up 500 percent in two days, you’re thinking, “Am I misunderstanding something? Have I missed something?” But in a bear market, it’s way easier to see you know, this is the actual value, here is where fundamentals are, and this is just an error, this is nothing, this is vapor ware.
– It’s the same thing with the stock market. During a bull market you see more and more companies doing IPOs. You’re gonna see a lot less companies going public in a bear market so it’s easier to thin them out through the weeds there. Do you think we’re still gonna see a lot of these pump and dump ICOs? Or is that kind of trend dying off hopefully?
– For all you who don’t know, ICO is where you create your own cryptocurrency and many people say that we have this idea, we’re gonna build on top of Ethereum and we have our own coin for this and this purpose so buy our coin, you will invest in our idea because just like when you have Ether, you basically invest indirectly invest in everything that is built on top of Ether and then you can also buy a coin that is used in an app on top of Ether. So you can kind of think that you have a use case and you have a specific coin for that and people will say, “You will need our coin because of this and this and this. If we reach this amount of users the coin will be worth approximately this.” They try to calculate and model how the price will develop and then people buy. This was very common during 2017. Most of the ICOs have failed.
Most of the ICOs have not reached any goal really that they wanted to reach. Just like during the dot com bubble it was so easy to launch a company and you will have so much money you can just say, “Hey, we’re gonna do voice over IP communication” but voice over IP isn’t even possible in 2000, in the early 2000s. The infrastructure is not there.
So the same happened in crypto that people said we’re gonna do this and this and this and all of these amazing use cases are gonna be true and you as an investor, you kind of see that maybe in the future it will be true, just like in the dot com bubble, you could kind of see you know, voice over IP maybe it will be true but at that time it’s not possible. I mean, do it however you want, the infrastructure is not there. You do not have 4G, you cannot even do a video call and so in that sense if we saw a lot of people selling their coins that may be possible in the future, they’re not possible today with the current technology. And investors have learned, investors have learned so much. That’s why I’m telling you that the community is healthier.
People know what is real, what is not real, what is just garbage and what is actually something that can succeed in the future. So investors are very skeptical now, it’s very hard to do an ICO. You will not get any money basically. – That’s good that it seems like the scam side of it, the people that are just trying to use it as a method to make money, it’s going away. – And this is common for all new technology. Whenever you have a new technology, there will be a bubble.
– Well you saw the same thing with the dot com bubble and these companies simply adding dot com to their names and then seeing immediate inflation of their price. – You use some buzz words, you try to paint this picture and for people who are new, most people are new because you have a new technology, people don’t know what it is, they believe it. And so the same is with, I usually take the example from Great Britain a few hundred years ago when trains were a new invention, people thought, “Hey, trains are gonna change travel, manufacturing, all of these industries.” We had the British railway mania. People invested in rails so much that it wasn’t even needed and we had the crash. So trains changed the world.
It was a new technology, people were amazed. Created the bubble, but still it did change the world. Internet created the bubble, it did change the world and the same with crypto.
It created a bubble but it is changing the world. – Sure, absolutely, yeah. Well anyways Ivan thanks so much for coming on the channel. I really appreciate that. I’m gonna link up Ivan’s channel as well as his Instagram and everything down in the description below and I’m also going to link up to Blockchain Academy which is your private training group.
– Yes, Ivan on Tech Academy. – Ivan on Tech Academy and then Blockchain Academy is a part of that? – Ivan on Tech Academy is the blockchain academy.
You can learn about blockchain fundamentals, Bitcoin fundamentals, how it works, how it works under the hood, how it works within continuity theorem, you can learn programming. I mean really if you’re interested in anything related to crypto, Ivan on Tech Academy is where you go. – Sure yeah, so do you want to talk a little bit about that, kind of what you have in there and who that might be a good fit for? – It’s a good fit for everyone who is interested.
Maybe you are a software-related person, you like software. We will teach you programming from scratch, we will teach you programming on Ethereum, EOS and NEM which are different networks, from scratch. You will be able to create applications, you will be able to work in crypto after you have completed our academy. If you’re not a crypto person, we have a blockchain business master course which is all about how big companies are using crypto and blockchain, what is the business use case?
And also this year, we’re listing one course per month so we’re really going all in on the academy and we’re listing one course per month. So our latest course was about game programming because now you see game developers actually integrating crypto into their game. So for example in World of Warcraft, imagine when you collect the coins, those coins are actually on the blockchain, you can trade them on the crypto exchange, maybe you can even buy food with your game coins. You actually own your items, that is the issue with many games, you don’t really own your item. Your item can be inflated at any moment and you’ve spent thousands of hours in a game.
I know that because I was a Ruin Escape addict back in the days. I played a lot of Ruin Escape. And you have an item that is worth a lot and suddenly it’s not because it’s been inflated because there’s some kind of game mechanic change and so some games it doesn’t make sense at all to involve crypto but some games are realizing that this is very, very powerful. So we teach you that. I mean really anything that has to do with crypto, it is in the academy.
Now we’re working very, very hard to bring one course per month. – Very good, yeah. And how long are these courses usually? – They’re very, very deep.
It is 10 hour plus video content. Then you have quizzes, you have exams. So you have a community, you have forums. If you have any questions, we will help you. And it is really a movement that we’re building. Today we have 11,000 people in the course, in the academy and doing different courses.
And we really want to help them achieve their goals. That is what I’m all about. I want to make people go from some kind of job they don’t like, they don’t really enjoy, to working in crypto because this is where I think you have most possibilities today.
– Sure, absolutely. And because you’re continuing to add content, it’s structured as a membership site? – Yes, yes, exactly. – And then we’re doing I think Ivan said he’s going to extend a discount here for my viewers here for the first month for a dollar?
– Yes, exactly. So you can join, you can try it, you can look at it. You can try all the courses. You can try the fundamentals course, you can try a programming course, you can try a game course and see if this is for you. – Okay, sure absolutely. All right well I think that’s gonna wrap this up.
Ivan, thanks for coming on. All those links are gonna be down in the description below and I’d like to hear what you guys think about this, whether you’d like to see Ivan come back on the channel and also what questions you might have as well if we do that in the future but thanks so much for watching and I will see you guys in the next video.