What Do Cryptozoologists Think About Cryptocurrency?
Ever since the word “crypto” became shorthand for cryptocurrency, NFTs, and Web3 items sold in Super Bowl commercials or discussed in dinner table conversations, it has eclipsed another community living outside the world of the blockchain.
Cryptozoologists use the word “crypto” to refer to their area of expertise: legendary creatures like Sasquatch, the Loch Ness Monster, Mothman, Chupacabra and others. Cryptozoology, the study of hidden or unknown animals, originated in the early 1960s by author Ivan T. Sanderson in his book Abominable snowmen, the legend comes to life.
Although other areas of crypto-prefix study like cryptography have also been around for decades, for some cryptozoologists, crypto is not just disrupting the financial space, but also their online lives.
“I constantly have to spend my precious time making tweets that @CryptoLoren is not talking about cryptocoin. It’s all about cryptozoology,” says Loren Coleman, cryptozoologist and founder of the International Museum of Cryptozoology in Portland, Maine. Coleman is often called the modern popularizer of the word “cryptozoology”, having written dozens of books on the subject over the past 40 years, such as Outer Rim Creatures; Bigfoot! : The True History of Apes in America; and Cryptozoology A to Z: The Encyclopedia of Loch Monsters, Sasquatchs, Chupacabras and Other Authentic Mysteries of Nature.
Coleman says his followers are also realizing the misidentified crypto confusion on Twitter and are starting discussions that crypto stands for cryptozoology, not cryptocurrency. A few cryptozoology podcasters and bloggers say they often get messages and emails about Bitcoin and NFTs and get tagged in threads about other cryptocoins. There are dozens of tweets on the platform which echo the sentiment that “the only ‘crypto’ I care about is cryptozoology.”
However, most of the time the cryptozoological community has used the word “cryptid” instead of “crypto” when talking about unknown creatures, which helps clear up some of that confusion. Cryptocurrency conventions are called CryptoCons, while cryptozoology conventions are now called CryptidCons. (Although there is still sometimes confusion in SEO there.)
Despite this confusion, Web3 crypto enthusiasts continue to try to bring the two communities together. Coleman says he was offered to have his museum sponsor a set of NFT cryptids. “We talked about it several times on the phone and I just backed off,” Coleman said. The edge by telephone. “I said, ‘Is there anything I can get from this as a physical artifact? He said no. I said, “Well, I don’t think we were talking in the same world.”
Coleman does not intend to begin accepting Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies for admission to the Cryptozoology Museum. Although he clarifies that there are no hard feelings against other crypto people. “There seems to be a little battle going on. I do not care. I’m really not antagonistic against the cryptocurrency people. I mean, it’s just a type of ghost money. Then, when you think about it, money in general is all ghost.
“We think we could catch a Bigfoot, but it’s all about the money.”
So, do the two worlds continue to remain separate? Not necessarily. Of course, there are already a series of cryptid NFTs similar to Bored Apes or Cryptokitties, but there are real cryptozoologists investing in cryptocoin. Stephen T. Major, founder and COO of Extreme Expeditions Northwest, an outdoor adventure company specializing in guided Bigfoot “research expeditions,” launched his own cryptocurrency called Cryptid Coin to help fund his research and investigations into Bigfoot. “We think we could catch a Bigfoot, but it’s all about the money,” Major said. The edge. The token promises that people who buy Cryptid Coin could be eligible to join a Bigfoot Expedition or take part in one of Major’s Bigfoot cinematic documentaries.
As for where the Cryptid Coin loot would go, Major says he would focus on advanced technology to capture Sasquatch. “We have drones. We have motion detectors. We have audio recorders. We have all of these readily available within our budget. However, we would like to start raising enough funds to get more advanced devices. Military-grade thermals, things like that,” Major says.
The original plan was to get 5 million cryptid enthusiasts to buy $100 worth of Cryptid Coin each. As of the date of this publication, there are only 19 holders of the coin.
The similarities between Bigfoot and Bitcoin discussions can be surprisingly similar. Bigfoot and Bitcoin proponents have often used the same argument that with a number of parameters they can achieve their ultimate goal. If they have just the right amount of money, they could bring in a Bigfoot body. If they just uncovered the layers of the payment stack, Bitcoin would perform better. Major also noted these similarities. He said that when he talks to people about either subject, he encounters similar reactions. “I’m amazed by Bigfoot all the time. ‘They are not real. It’s a joke. And then, on the other hand, it’s the same thing,” he says. “When I talk to people about Cryptid Coin or cryptocurrency in general, they think it’s a joke. They say it’s fake money and this and that. They’re just as skeptical about it. because they just think it’s a flash in the pan.
A level of comfort in the treatment of liminal spaces
Sharon Hill, a researcher and writer who runs the blog Pop Goes the Cryptid, which examines how popular culture interacts with modern cryptozoology, isn’t surprised that people like Major are heavily invested in both cryptos. “Probably the most interesting similarity of these two crypto communities is the importance, or I might even say comfort level, in dealing with what we would call ‘liminal spaces’: the gap between the real and the unreal,” Hill said. The edge. “For example, you have a cryptid report. Does this report indicate that people are seeing a real animal or is it a hoax or is it supernatural, magical or ethereal, if you will? The characteristics of popular cryptids are symbolic and also manifest complex social concerns. Similarly, you have cryptocurrency. Are these NFTs real even if they are intangible? Or are they fleeting that will disappear when you blink? Perhaps both groups have a rather unusual interest and ease in the unknown and the hidden and what might happen in the future.
Of course, not everyone who believes in one thing believes in the other. Coleman is proof of that; he has no intention of hitting Nessie NFTs. The edge also reached out to a few cryptocurrency enthusiasts on Twitter who use the word “crypto” in their usernames, asking if they’re also interested in cryptozoology, Bigfoot research, or studying unknown animals. No one responded to the survey.
Despite the lack of interest in Cryptid Coin so far, Major still believes in the promise of cryptocurrency and that the technology is here to stay. He says he pitched to many investors but failed to secure additional funds. In the meantime, he continues his expeditions into the wilderness of the northwestern United States and Canada, producing documentaries on Bigfoot.
“If I can get people who are really into cryptocurrency to care about this, I think it would work,” Major says. “We want to make people believers – not only Bigfoot being real, but cryptocurrency being real as well.”
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