Even in the face of last year’s plummeting prices, Bitcoin has become more popular—particularly among a younger, more technologically curious demographic—a new study suggests.
“Despite the bear market,” the study says, “the data shows that Bitcoin awareness, familiarity, perception, conviction, propensity to purchase and ownership all increased/improved significantly — dramatically in many cases.”
The poll—which was conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of the somewhat partial Blockchain Capital, a VC firm set up by Brock Pierce—surveyed 2052 adults during the 2017 bull market and the 2019 bear market. Six categories were explored: awareness, familiarity, perception, conviction, propensity to purchase and ownership.
All categories saw notable increases, with under 35-year-olds leading the way. Spencer Bogart, a Blockchain Capital partner whose firm commissioned the report, concluded that the poll results indicated a “demographic mega-trend,” a generational movement rather than a chiefly economic or technological one.
Bogart, writing to Decrypt, reckoned the popularity surge among younger users came down to several factors: a familiarity among so-called digital natives with online micro-economies, like Fortnite's "Vbucks" and World of Warcraft gold; the ease with which younger generations trust technologies that have "been around half [their] life; and "increased expectations among young people that technology will improve their lives."
Some more takeaways: Only twelve percent of over-65 year olds aren’t “aware” of Bitcoin, which is surprisingly few! But only 20 percent of geriatrics report being at least “somewhat familiar” with the cryptocurrency—they can only vaguely sustain a conversation about it.
Respondents with a “positive” view of the cryptocurrency increased from 34 percent to 43 percent during the past two years. The only outlier was people in the 35-44 bracket, who now like the currency two percent less. But though almost all demographics have a more positive view of bitcoin, 45 year olds and their seniors are still largely arrayed against it.
Respondents also reported a higher “conviction” that Bitcoin would be adopted, and expressed a greater willingness to purchase the cryptocurrency. The percentage of devotees is still marginal—27 percent of would-be purchasers is the high point—but that’s a marked improvement to the measly 17 percent in 2017, when the price was skyrocketing and everyone was getting hilariously rich.
So Decrypt’s takeaway? Most people have heard of Bitcoin, almost half know what it is, a little under half think it’s good, just over a quarter feel optimistic about it, and scant few own it. And the bear market blues didn’t kill the Bitcoin spirit outright.