It’s a cryptocurrency world, and we should all get used to living in it.
At least that’s what the man who describes himself as “like the grandfather” of “the world of digital currency” believes.
The “grandfather” is 40-year-old Brock Pierce, a child film actor-turned-video and gaming entrepreneur, whom Forbes estimated to be worth between $700 million and $1 billion in a 2018 piece, “The Richest People in Cryptocurrency.”
Pierce, a free spirit who often wears cowboy hat, sport shirt and shorts, is sitting in the Hamodia office, his long blond hair nearly reaching the top of his smartly pressed blue suit jacket, talking about his life, cryptocurrencies, and the political career he is seeking to embark on.
To some, cryptocurrency is a house of cards, a figment of imagination with no real value; it fluctuates wildly and could crash at any time. But Crypto Grandpa argues that the value of currency, like any product, comes only from “a shared belief system. And the more people believe something has value, the more real that value is, and then markets, or supply and demand, is what prices that value at the most, like, basic level. What do we trust? What do we have faith in? Historically, we just had to take what was given to us, what we’re told we had to use, versus we the people choosing what we believe in.”
His industry may be nascent, but it will “most likely affect everyone, whether they want it to or not,” says the crypto pioneer, when asked whether cryptocurrencies will ultimately affect everyone’s lives, including technophobes.
“The world is changing more and more rapidly. The future is going to happen to you or it’s going to happen with you. I think that choosing to be part of that change — because the future is built, being co-created by us collectively — I think you’re better off choosing the future you want to live in, rather than being forced into living one that was chosen by others.”
Pierce cautions that he is not encouraging anyone to invest in cryptocurrencies “or anything else,” because “in general, I’ve learned it’s best not to give financial advice to people.”
But the crypto pioneer, who can speak esoterically, lyrically and at length and drop a flowery slogan a minute, says he does encourage people “to invest in themselves, in their own knowing. Go buy $10, $50, $100, something you can afford to lose. It’s not about a financial investment; what you’re doing is you’re taking the time to use it, to understand it, so that you can begin your own journey of knowing. And then through that knowing to be able to make informed decisions for yourself.”
Brock Pierce grew up in Minnesota, then spent much of his adolescence in California as a successful actor. An early adopter of technologies, as a teenager Pierce was involved in a dot-com startup that created online videos, among other technological ventures.
It was only natural that Pierce, who had money from his film career and business ventures, would also become an early participant in the new world of cryptocurrencies.
“I’m one of the internet 1.0 entrepreneurs, the youngest old guy in the business,” he likes to say, “because I started at 16, before most 16-year-olds were able to start companies and raise money.”
Being an early entrant to the cryptocurrency world does have its perils, like (wince alert) throwing $3 billion in the trash (not a misprint). Back around 2011 (the first year Bitcoin reached $1), Pierce had moved to Ukraine, and his then-fiancée was unhappy that their garage was so stuffed with junk that it didn’t even have room for a car. So Pierce, a self-described “hoarder,” began discarding things — including a computer that he had forgotten contained some 50,000 Bitcoins. As…