On Aug 23, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) posted a video explaining the basics of cryptocurrencies, and the responses on social media were less than positive.
Originally published in June 2018, the two-minute video features a woman breezily explaining how cryptocurrency is the “next step in the evolution of money.”
The video highlights how cryptocurrencies can cut out the middle man, make things cheaper, and can include more people in the global economy.
— IMF (@IMFNews) August 23, 2020
The video, which has racked up almost 330k views, is accompanied by a link to a post that does get into more details. However, it is also dated by over two years, and none of this stopped crypto Twitter from unleashing criticism on the video.
Well-known figures like Kraken strategist Pierre Rochard even weighed in saying, “Provable scarcity is what makes Bitcoin interesting, you forgot to mention that.”
Another user echoed some of Rochard’s sentiment, “Bitcoin is provably scarce because of its widely distributed and easily fully validated ledger. Whatever garbage the IMF tries to push through won’t be, Buy Bitcoin.” The video also fails to discuss mining or coin supply.
In the middle of the clip, the IMF presenter mentions the pseudo-anonymous nature of cryptocurrency saying, “This can make it easier for the bad guys to make payments.” Artist Crypto Graffiti responded to this statement by tweeting:
who decides what constitutes a bad guy? pic.twitter.com/pR9shVBy5f
— cryptograffiti (@cryptograffiti) August 23, 2020
While the responses were mostly negative, Reddit user fd01 struck a more neutral tone:
Jokes aside, this is quite a progressive video from the IMF, trying to explain the concept and goals while also outlaying the risks without bashing the concept as such. Yes, it is basic, and from a purist point of view, many corners are cut, but this is as balanced as can be without losing the low entry-level of the video
The video may be a sign that the IMF wants to start normalizing cryptocurrency as plans for central bank digital currencies pick up steam around the world. Despite the apparent conflicts of interest, the IMF’s stance toward cryptocurrency is not set in stone.
The educational video was posted just days after former IMF chief economist Raghuram Rajan, compared Bitcoin favorably to gold, and predicted that digital assets would transform the global financial system.