Bitcoin had a bad week — like a really bad one. And if you’re out of the know or don’t understand that world, you’re not alone, we don’t really get it either. In fact, the timing of this release feels a little uncanny as headlines are hitting on the topic (and we still don’t understand it all!) We recorded this episode with Brit a few months ago (to help prep for our producer’s maternity leave!) and so while the Bitcoin world is experiencing interruptions, the content inside of this show helps dissect what this world is and if it’s something you might want to explore.
Cryptocurrency. What’s your first thought when you hear that word? Maybe you’re already an investor and you know the potential in this growing space. Maybe you have a healthy curiosity but reasonable skepticism about it? Or maybe you’ve seen the memes poking fun at the overwhelmingly male demographic participating in cryptocurrency and feel like it’s just not for you, regardless of whatever potential might be there.
For a time, I definitely felt like the world of crypto and NFTs and Web3 was rife with gatekeepers wanting to keep women and non-binary people on the outside… But leave it to serial entrepreneur Brit Morin to bust down those gates and wave in a community of people to learn all about how to invest and benefit from an industry that will reach an estimated value of $10 trillion in the next five years.
You might know Brit Morin from her lifestyle and education company Brit + Co, but in this conversation, we’re talking about her endeavors in the Web3 and cryptocurrency arena. She will demystify the terms and concepts you need to know to get started, why it’s not too late to dive into the space, how people are making money with crypto, and some advice as you get started or grow your portfolio in the world of Web3. I’m so excited for this. Here is Brit Morin.
Her crypto origin story
We have actually never discussed cryptocurrency in depth on Gold Digger, so I wanted to start off by asking Brit about how she got into crypto. Brit tells me, “I first heard about crypto in 2012. It was really early, and so I learned about it but it was really just about Bitcoin. And then fast forward to 2017, and there was another big moment in crypto. And all that I was focused on was the fact that only 4% of cryptocurrency holders were women, and I was watching all these dudes in Silicon Valley make a lot of money because they had put in in 2012 or even put in in 2017.
And so actually Brit and Co., home of teaching women to do courageous things that scare them and don’t make sense, put on a giant cryptocurrency summit in January of 2018. 20,000 women attended. We taught them all about what crypto was, and that was great. But you know, then a few more years came by. It was 2021 and I looked at the stats and it was like 15% of cryptocurrency holders were women, and I was just like, what is going on? Why aren’t women getting into this game? Do they not understand maybe that there’s real wealth potential, that this is the future of the internet, that this could change your business if you’re a small business owner or an entrepreneur?”
Brit continues, “And the answer to all those questions was yes, they really just didn’t understand. So with that I was like, alright, it’s not just like a summit. I’m gonna host, I’m gonna start a whole company around this. I’m gonna help onboard women and non-binary people into Web3, which is like this new era of the internet that includes everything about cryptocurrency and blockchain. And I’m gonna help women understand it, get access to all the people that are doing cool things to it, and ultimately teach them about how to potentially generate their own wealth and power in this new ecosystem.”
An introduction to key terms
I often feel intimidated by the cryptocurrency space and all the definitions, but thankfully, Brit is exceptionally gifted in explaining all of it. You can listen to the full episode to hear more detailed explanations of these terms, but I wanted to share a few snippets to help lay the groundwork for this conversation.
“Let me start with Web3, because I think that’s like the umbrella term that encapsulates all of these things that are happening and all these buzzwords you’re hearing. Web 1.0 is kind of that period between like 1995 or so into like 2005. At that point, the internet was really about read only. Like you could log online, you could kind of consume information, but there wasn’t a lot of transactional opportunity. Web 2.0 was really about this idea of pushing content, right? So as with ‘read,’ ‘write’ is how we describe it in the Silicon Valley terms, which means there were social networks, you were exchanging back and forth with people. Web3 is the idea that we have ‘read’ and ‘write,’ just like before, but now there’s this third word that a lot of people are using, which is ‘own.’
And own is really important because with Web 1.0 and Web 2.0, as you were publishing your content on Instagram or you were purchasing tickets for a concert on Ticketmaster, all of those transactions were owned by someone else. And you as an internet user really don’t have any say in what you own on the internet. You published something on Medium, Medium owns that blog post, and you can’t monetize it really. You can maybe put up ads against it, but other people own your content and can sell against it, and I don’t think that’s created a very healthy internet.”
“The difference now in Web3 is that we have this tool called the blockchain. The blockchain, imagine just like a giant accounting book of every single type of transaction. And that doesn’t mean a financial transaction, it means a post. It means I published a song, it means I purchased something, it means I did anything on the internet. That’s all public information, and anyone can now go and see who owns what, who published what, who did what at any time, forever. And what that means is the difference is like now you have full ownership of all of these things, and that’s where NFTs come in.”
“NFTs stand for non fungible tokens. And so what this means is, it’s something that’s really unique. If I have a dollar and you have a dollar, but your dollar is signed by Beyonce, inherently your dollar is the most unique dollar I’ve ever seen. Your dollar’s probably worth more than a dollar. So it’s non fungible. You can’t just exchange it for another dollar. And so that’s kind of the point of what NFTs are. Each one is unique in their own way. A lot of artists and creators are first to the punch here, but there are many other use cases for NFTs. And when you own it, everyone on the blockchain knows that you own it. It’s in a wallet, a digital wallet that is yours. If you ever decide to sell it, you can sell it at any time for whatever the market will pay for it. And because of that, a lot of this ownership has taken off.
People are owning, like they’re publishing literally blog posts that are NFTs and saying, ‘this is mine, it’s worth this much, if anyone wants to buy this from me and now own this, they can.’ And so, this is creating a whole market of people that want to buy and transact, but verify that they own something.”
How to get started in the crypto space
I asked Brit if she has a roadmap or step-by-step recommendation for someone to get started as a beginner and start making money. She tells me, “First of all, I just have to disclose that everyone should do their own research. As a creator, you can put your art, maybe that’s something visual, music, text-based, a ticket to something, even a membership pass. A lot of businesses that have subscriptions or memberships could be NFTs. So as a creator, you can make money in those ways where you’re selling these things, and in perpetuity you’re making royalties on them every time anyone resells them, right? So that’s one.
Secondly, as just like an everyday consumer, it’s sort of like the stock market, I would say. There’s this kind of market of demand for some of these projects and NFTs, and the consensus is that if you find like a really good one early, where the price is low and you buy into it, then the demand will go up over time, just like a stock might go up over time as a company gets bigger and performs better.”
More from Brit Morin
This was just an introduction to Brit’s easy-to-understand breakdown of cryptocurrency, to hear the rest of our conversation you can listen to the full episode. If you want to learn more about crypto, you can check out her company’s website at mybff.com and follow them on Instagram and Twitter @mybff. To learn more about her venture fund project, visit Offline Ventures. To hear more from Brit Morin, you can find her on Instagram @brit and listen to her new podcast called First in Line wherever you get your podcasts.