I started this project (newblockcrypto) a year ago with a simple premise: I wanted to document my journey as I explored and learned more about cryptoassets and blockchain.
Before this project, I had been reading and writing about blockchain for some time. In 2014, I was working as a journalist and writing a big piece about cryptocurrencies. This was on the heels of the FBI’s seizure of the underground, dark web marketplace Silk Road, which in some ways really made bitcoin famous.
I was also reporting right around the time that the Japan-based Mt. Gox bitcoin exchange collapsed, putting a major dent in the crypto economy at the time and kicking off a recovery.
So I already had a lot of exposure to the topic. But covering something for an assignment and trying to really become deeply immersed in something are two different things. Usually, for an assignment, I spend some time on one idea and then move on to the next.
That’s what happened with crypto too. I moved on.
And to be honest, in 2014, with interest of the authorities and the uncertain regulatory environment, I still wasn’t sure that crypto was going to succeed. It seemed like there was a lot of resistance and that bitcoin might just fail.
The tech was interesting and useful, but it was still early. And with crypto, adoption is key, because adoption drives the network.
But, as we have seen, crypto did not die.
Instead, the crypto space continued to evolve, to move, and to attract users. Ethereum launched, and other projects were gaining traction. New companies and exchanges and communities were forming around ideas like privacy, sovereignty, and permissionless finance.
I watched all of this from the side.
But then, in late 2016, I decided that crypto provides an alternative to a lot of the issues we are facing. In particular, I think that things like mass media, mass politics, mass consumerism, are not really working. And I think that crypto and blockchain offer a way for people to engage in a way that is more reflective and authentic to individual identity.
So, despite some reservations about trying to learn in public, I jumped in and launched this project.
It turns out, that a lot of other people were jumping in too — 2017 turned out to be a crazy year in crypto.
A cryptocurrency and blockchain project
The goal of newblockcrypto continues to be the creation of useful information and resources to improve my own understanding about cryptoassets and to also help other people understand the space and how they can get involved.
I’ve learned a lot during the first year, not only about the crypto and community, but also about how to create and operate a digital project like this one.
The biggest challenge for me is figuring out the format. I have the most experience going out and talking to people, and weaving other people’s thoughts, ideas, and opinions into some kind of story. But this project is different. Despite the complexity of the tech and the pace of the evolving economics, each post, and each idea feels more personal.
So what am I missing, where else should I be, what else should I be looking at and writing about?
Thanks for your reading and for your support.
Also published on Medium.