The Emergence of Cryptocurrency
Given the vital role money plays in any post-barter economy, questions of what form it should take, how it should be supplied, and who should make decisions about it are naturally a subject of debate. Yet since at latest the bronze age, people have taken for granted that what money they use would always depend on where they live, and its supply would be centrally issued by a state or central bank. To the extent they had any say in the matter, it would be through petitioning or voting. However, with the proliferation and advancement of digital technology, the last decade has seen the skyrocketing of cryptocurrencies, enabling each person to exchange their fiat money for a digital currency not issued through a central agency.
Many people have exchanged some of their fiat money for cryptocurrency due to various attributes, such as the lack of a need for a mediator for transfers between owners, the lower cost of transactions across national borders, and the combination of no centralized provider and the prevalence of supply caps reducing the chance that a sudden increase in supply will devalue their cryptocurrency savings. According to Alex Laughton-Scott and James Butterfill, the most first and most popular cryptocurrency, BitCoin, has seen adoption increase at a rate of 113% a year, more than that of the internet in the 90s. They predict BitCoin will have 1 billion users worldwide by 2024.
Sergeenkov, A. 2021. What is Cryptocurrency. CoinDesk. https://www.coindesk.com/learn/what-is-cryptocurrency/
Laughton-Scott, A. Butterfill, J. Institutional Crypto Adoption: Three Factors to Watch, CoinShares, https://coinshares.com/research/institutional-crypto-adoption-three-factors-watch