What is crypto? A Grid No Dumb Questions Video

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‘No Dumb Questions’: What is crypto?

What is crypto? Some experts and aficionados might say that this actually should be considered a “dumb question.” Which would of course disqualify it from our weekly series.

But how many true “aficionados” are there, when it comes to this form of currency that has existed for only a little over a decade, and which has made some people spectacularly rich and others left licking their wounds and wishing they’d never heard the word “crypto”? The fact is that after the initial one-line answer (“It’s a digital currency that can be exchanged in a peer-to-peer way,” as our Technology Reporter Benjamin Powers puts it), the what-is-crypto question is pretty complicated.

We’re happy to have Powers on hand to help with the complexity and all the secondary questions — about what has also come to be known as “imaginary internet money” and evolved from the trailblazer Bitcoin to include hundreds of what you might call its crypto-cousins. Because whether you’re thinking of investing in cryptocurrency, trying to talk a friend or relative out of investing, or just want to get clued in on a term and a form of currency exchange that may be with us for a long time, it’s probably good to know the basics. Here, then, is Powers with the latest in our “No Dumb Questions” series. He’ll help with everything other than advice on whether to invest. For that, you’ll have to go elsewhere.

We’d love to hear from you with other ideas for the series. We like to think there are no “dumb questions”; or, put differently, that there’s almost nothing out there in the world of news and information that couldn’t use a little more clarity and context in terms of the answers. We also know that we have really smart readers, and that even the smartest among them can’t be expected to have every shred of important context or background on all the events that are roiling the world at any given moment. Send your ideas and questions to tips@grid.news.

More “No Dumb Questions” videos

Thanks to Lillian Barkley for copy editing this article.

  • Benjamin Powers
    Benjamin Powers

    Technology Reporter

    Benjamin Powers is a technology reporter for Grid where he explores the interconnection of technology and privacy within major stories.

  • Jake Garcia
    Jake Garcia

    Associate Producer, Multimedia

    Jake Garcia is a documentary filmmaker and multimedia producer for Grid.

  • Tom Nagorski
    Tom Nagorski

    Global Editor

    Tom Nagorski is the global editor at Grid, where he oversees our coverage of global security, U.S.-China relations, migration trends, global economics and U.S. foreign policy.