“Most people hear about crypto only during periods of rapid growth of Bitcoin”

Founder of TTM Academy, the largest EdTech crypto platform in CIS countries, Vladislav Utushkin explains what common mistakes newcomers to the crypto world face, what misconceptions they most often get infected with, and why a bear market is the right time to launch an educational startup about cryptocurrencies.

What is your estimate of the level of awareness of middle class people about cryptocurrencies?

In general, the middle class doesn’t know much about cryptocurrencies. Speaking more precisely, everyone has heard about them, but this knowledge is limited to common clichés like it is easy to make money on crypto, or transactions cannot be tracked, or crypto is a big Ponzi scheme with no real value behind it, and in general all this knowledge is wrong.

Most people hear about crypto only during periods of rapid growth of Bitcoin, and therefore they perceive it exclusively as an investment tool, ignoring the practical value and technological component. Nevertheless, in terms of investment, most ordinary people prefer the traditional stock market – it is more understandable to the average person. Investor buying shares of real companies feels more secure, but this is just an illusion – just remember the story of Virgin Galactic.

As an educational platform founder, what were the biggest misconceptions you have encountered concerning crypto?

The biggest misconception about cryptocurrency is to perceive it as a get-rich-quick tool. This is a very young industry that large institutional players and mass investors are just starting to enter. And this fuels the value of some coins by thousandfold. In search of easy money, people begin to invest in stillborn and hype projects, losing money on it.

NFTs are a perfect example. In general, this technology allows you to obtain digital copyright for an image, music or video with the possibility of their further sale, and it was originally created for artists. NFTs gained their popularity after several collections demonstrated a thousandfold growth in price. People far from the industry massively began to buy non-fungible tokens. Only lazy did not mint NFTs. When the excitement subsided, it turned out that these NFTs had no real value and the industry gradually returned to its original trading metrics. Buyers began to focus on the real value of the asset, and not speculative expectations. It is important to remember that working with crypto is about perseverance, expertise and the ability to analyze.

The network is full of information about cryptocurrencies, blockchain. Everything is free and open source. Why is the level of understanding of cryptocurrencies still low? And why are educational courses in demand? In other words, can anyone educate himself?

Of course, you can find all the information about cryptocurrencies and blockchain in the open web. In this sense, we have not come up with anything new. However, as part of our courses, students study three times a week for several hours with homework within three months. Furthermore, the information has already been selected and prepared for the most native understanding of it. With self-study, you may simply not know that you missed some essential blocks of knowledge or encounter conflicting information. Sometimes there is simply no experienced person nearby who could explain what is not clear. Self-learning can take several years and you will lose either interest or money, making classic beginner mistakes when trading. In this regard, crypto courses are not only convenient, but also profitable.

You launched an educational platform in 2018, at the height of the crypto winter. Currently, the crypto market also suffers a decline. During such periods, what happens to the interest in cryptocurrency? Does it grow, fall, or stagnate?

We witness different types of students in different market cycles. In the bear market, those who already have experience in the field of cryptocurrencies prefer to study, but would like to strengthen their expertise in this area, to find new ways to multiply their capital. There are more beginners on bull cycles. However, in any case, these are people who are not subject to hype, they weigh the risks and minimize their losses.

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