Learn about crypto

Disclaimer: None of this constitutes financial advice. It is for entertainment and educational purposes only.


Crypto is a challenging topic to learn about. The mainstream media does a poor job of covering it. There are few “official” sources of information because institutions, until very recently, have resisted entering the crypto space.

Crypto is also rich with shills and scammers. Just because they’re shilling doesn’t mean they’re wrong—when market conditions are bullish, copying shills can make you a lot of money. But they cannot be counted on to give an honest assessment when things go south.

For example, I think this guy is hilarious, but would hesitate to blindly follow his advice in uncertain market conditions:

Sometimes, shills will straight up scam investors:

As with anything, the best practice is to do your own research, something you will hear a lot in crypto. The other best practice I hear a lot is not to invest anything you cannot afford to lose. I think that is smart. The ideal is to navigate volatile market conditions with a cool head based on conviction of the intrinsic value of the projects and assets you’ve invested in. It’s difficult to make good decisions when emotional and/or overexposed.

One of the best things I did when I began to learn was to subscribe to a few newsletters. The best of these in my opinion is The Pomp Letter, written by Anthony Pompliano, founder of a blockchain/crypto hedge fund. Most mornings he sends out an email with a main topic and digest of important news. It’s usually a 10-15 minute read. Pompliano is well connected. He has a conservative, informed, big-picture perspective on crypto markets, in contrast to some YouTube and Twitter accounts which can be overly optimistic.

Pomp also has an excellent podcast. Here’s a long-form interview about his experience as a Bitcoin investor over the last several years. Interesting story.

His investment partner, Jason Williams, wrote the best book I’ve found on how we got to today in Bitcoin, starting with the 2008 financial crash and ending with the pandemic. It is a quick read that mixes history, economics, and analysis of crypto culture. I learned a lot.

If I were just getting started with crypto and wanted to understand the space better, I would subscribe to the Pomp letter, listen to a few podcasts, and read this book.


Trusted Twitter accounts of market commentators

Here are a few twitter handles of market commentators I’ve come to rely on. It’s worth noting that they operate on diverse timeframes: some are long-term investor/holders, others are day traders, and some do a little of both. I think it’s best to start by learning from long-time-frame thinkers as a way to avoid getting caught up in every little dip and rise in the market. If you’re expecting Bitcoin to double in five years, it’ll be a pleasant surprise if it does it in two, while even a 20% correction won’t feel too significant in the big picture.

https://twitter.com/cameron (Longest time-frame—investing)

https://twitter.com/tyler

https://twitter.com/APompliano

https://twitter.com/GoingParabolic

https://twitter.com/RaoulGMI

https://twitter.com/davidgokhshtein

https://twitter.com/PeterLBrandt

https://twitter.com/TheCryptoDog

https://twitter.com/Pentosh1

https://twitter.com/KoroushAK (Shortest time-frame—trading)

The penguin might be a bot, but seems to offer balanced market advice anyway.

A few of these guys (unfortunately they’re all guys, though I expect that to change) offer paid services—everything from daily newsletters to trading signals. I’m generally wary of paid services but have dipped my toe in for a month at a time on a few occasions to see the type of advice being given. I do think it’s valuable to listen to a variety of voices in the space. The temptation to follow a single guru and copy everything they do is high.

If there is anything like a consensus among market commentators, it’s to keep the majority of capital in well-researched long-term investments and only day-trade with a very small amount, if any at all. Just watching price movement day-to-day is an education in itself. Bitcoin never sleeps—this is one of the things that makes it wild, it’s literally “on” 24/7/365, a continuous, internet-based mass happening—and crypto markets are extremely volatile compared to most other markets, so it’s easy to get emotionally involved in the ups and downs. Cycles of euphoria and despair happen quickly. As an experience, it’s much more pleasant to develop conviction about a few coins through research, and then commit to sticking with them through volatility.

News aggregators

Big news breaks almost daily in crypto. It’s normal to read the news and think, “This is it! Bitcoin is going to the moon today!” and then be disappointed when it doesn’t. A lot of times news is already “priced in” to coins’ prices because insiders know about it ahead of time and make their market decisions before small retail investors found out. I still think there’s something to be gained from following developments in crypto over time to get a sense of how the space operates. Sometimes good medium- or long-term investment opportunities are suggested by news.

Tbe first two are more “mainstream” crypto news sources, while the last two are more esoteric and focus on niche communities, including “DeFi,” or decentralized finance, which is basically a movement to replace the loan function of brick-and-mortar banks with automated crypto lending protocols. There are plenty of other news sources, these just happen to be the ones I use most frequently.

Personally, I think twitter tends to give me a better picture of what’s going on in the market in any given moment than any of the news aggregators. The most important stories always get posted to Twitter first, and have a way of rising to the top of feeds, while the aggregators don’t always give the whole picture of the market.

https://decrypt.co/

https://dailyhodl.com/

https://boxmining.com/

https://defipulse.com/


I know for sure there are tons of great resources I’m leaving out of this. These are just the ones at the front of my mind now. I’ll come back to this post and update as I remember more.

Disclaimer: None of this constitutes financial advice. It is for entertainment and educational purposes only.