Cryptocurrency is a digitalized token money that encourages direct peer-to-peer assets exchange (known as Trading) withoutthird-party interference (such as central world bank regulations). This platform transcends any minimum age barrier, geographical distance, currency diversity, or having a saving account (which is a must to have for any financial account to exist, let alone be functional). These trades are protected by a security algorithm - called the Block-chain. Imagine this as a massive spreadsheet that depicts one transaction linked to another in a chronological order creating a 'chain'. This program is not roofed under one umbrella but sophisticatedly distributed among many computers, creating an undecipherable system, which keeps information always sealed and market active for trade 247.
Bitcoin (developed by an asserted alias, named Satoshi Nakamoto) is believed to be the first and dominant cryptocurrency in the market, with a dominance of 66% of the total market followed by other well-known coins such as Ethereum, DOGE, Tether, BNB and USD Coin.
As much as it contributes towards the gain of financial freedom of the masses, it possesses a much greater challenge to draw a precise statistic as to how many users are active and how frequently trades take place. According to Global Cryptocurrency ownership data, India has over 100 million users, while has 3.3 million (that is approx. 6.6% of the total population). There are 79% male and 21% female, globally indulged in the market. By February 2021 the market cap was estimated to touch US $1 Trillion, along with an estimated jump from a value of £175 billion to more than £1.75 trillion previous year, proving it to be the market of 'Queen and Paupesr', meaning it experiences huge fluctuation in it values, more severe than stock market.
With such rapidly growing interest in this market it raised concerned voices, such as: Political leader and South Korean President, Lee Nak-Yoon. He stats his belief that cryptocurrency holds the 'potential to lead some serious distorted or pathological phenomenon'.
With no concert financial value of the cryptocurrency, high risk of short-term profit but long-lasting losses, high volatility, a free platform to all population at any given time, endless open choices and opportunities, easy accessibility from any Internet prone device and having social media and celebrities to constantly romanticize the idea of toxic 'financial stability' via the platform, unfortunately draws close mirror reflection of online gambling addiction. An experiment conducted by the Mills and Nower, reported that gambler who are involved in high- risk stock trading was reported to be attracted to indulge in cryptocurrency trading. The behavioral symptoms of gambling addiction that of 'passionate investments', 'chasing' the losses and frequently monitoring the market in the delusive hopes of a big win were acknowledged by Griffiths. Likewise, Grall-Bronnec et al. was successfully able to prove a high correlation between cryptocurrency addiction being detectable via the issues of depression and anxiety.
Global Cryptocurrency ownership data, suggests, that 58% of crypto user are below the age of 34 with 82% of these people are graduates or have higher level of educational degree. If we closely note, all the research, studies and experiments have been taking place in the time bracket of 5 years on an average, the same time frame that of the pandemic. Which caused a spike in the population suffering from high levels of withdrawal and substance abuse, along with others who found solace in other addictive practices much like the one under discuss- Cryptocurrency Addiction. COVID-19 pandemic effected the people livelihood as unemployment rates increased from 4% to 14% in March 2020 and finances: 2.6% dip in GDP across 210 countries, and education rushed school closure without proper lesson reviews.
Cryptocurrency trading became the perfect platform that brought psychological relief for quick financial stability, without being employed or being notoriously educated (Maslow's hierarchy of financial security). Even so the reason why this reasonably educated population of young adults fell prey to cryptocurrency addiction is an alarming issue that demands warning awareness from, is because Cryptocurrency Addiction is indeed potential form of gambling that must be recognized and studied as a separate addictive behavior.
Cite this Essay
To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below