Did you hear about the next bitcoin? There’s this little-known cryptocurrency that experts are tipping to be bigger than bitcoin. This is your chance to get in on the ground floor and join the next great wealth creation event. You might have missed bitcoin and ethereum, but you haven’t missed the boat, because the next bitcoin is right here. But quick! You’ll need to get in fast before the masses find out.
X is the New Bitcoin
Depending on what publications you read, and how desperate they are for hits, you might have read that any one of the following is set to be the next bitcoin: EOS, Verge, Zcash, and NEO. Today it was Stellar. Next week it will probably be IOTA or Tron or some other shitcoin. In Forbes, Ripple is the next bitcoin every single day of the year. The site has a peculiar obsession with the notion that XRP could take bitcoin’s throne, leading the more conspiratorially minded to muse whether Forbes could have been a benefactor of Ripple’s bottomless warchest.
To understand why Ripple/EOS/Some Other Altcoin will not be the new bitcoin, it is necessary to understand what the mainstream media means by such statements, aside from the obvious clickbait. When the MSM or James Altucher (remember him?) promises that X will be the next bitcoin, they aren’t referring to their anointed altcoin’s censorship-resistance, decentralization, or versatility as a store of value and medium of exchange. What they’re referring to is its ability to moon in record time, making its holders stupidly rich.
Beware the Conflation Fallacy
Even if we overlook the flaws in the likelihood of another cryptocurrency replicating bitcoin’s characteristics and focus solely on price, the ‘X is the next bitcoin’ argument is still invalid. That’s because of something known as the conflation fallacy aka comparing apples to oranges. Here are a few examples:
“My sports team beat Rovers 1-0 last time, who beat City 2-0 at the weekend. Therefore, when we play City next week, we should beat them 3-0.”
“Binance launched an exchange via an ICO last year and now makes $1 billion a year. If my project does the same, it’s sure to become a unicorn.”
“Ripple is trading for under $1 today, just as bitcoin once was. Ergo, if ripple adoption keeps growing, it could one day be worth as much as bitcoin.”
Regular readers of this site will already be aware of this, and are unlikely to fall for the “next bitcoin” meme. But ordinary members of the public, who are more gullible and less knowledgeable, are easy prey for journalists shilling shitcoins out of ignorance, greed, or a desire to fuel FOMO. Cryptocurrency investing is risky enough without irresponsible publications convincing the vulnerable to throw their life savings at electroneum.
Searching for the next bitcoin is like searching for the next wheel. There won’t be and can’t be one because bitcoin was that wheel. There might be cryptocurrencies that are faster, flashier, and more feature-rich than bitcoin. One day there might even be some that are more expensive or more widely used than bitcoin. But they are unlikely to replace bitcoin, and are even unlikelier to yield the same exponential gains as BTC/BCH. Besides, even if there was a new altcoin with 1000x potential, by the time Forbes or the Express start shilling it, you’ve already missed the boat.
Stop looking for the next bitcoin. There’s no such thing.
Do you think mainstream media are guilty of promoting certain cryptocurrencies as “the next bitcoin”? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.
This is an Op-ed article. The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own. Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support views, opinions or conclusions drawn in this post. Bitcoin.com is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy or quality within the Op-ed article. Readers should do their own due diligence before taking any actions related to the content. Bitcoin.com is not responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any information in this Op-ed article.