Cryptocurrency

‘Crypto’ Means Cryptocurrency. We Lost the War, and It’s OK – VICE

Summary

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Hacking. Disinformation. Surveillance. CYBER is Motherboard’s podcast and reporting on the dark underbelly of the internet.

The iconic Staples Center, home to the Los Angeles Lakers and their cousin the Clippers, will soon be known as the Crypto.com Arena in a deal reportedly worth $700 million. 

Four years ago, I wrote a passionate hot take, arguing that the word “crypto” should not be used to refer to “cryptocurrency,” but to ref…….

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Image: FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Hacking. Disinformation. Surveillance. CYBER is Motherboard’s podcast and reporting on the dark underbelly of the internet.

The iconic Staples Center, home to the Los Angeles Lakers and their cousin the Clippers, will soon be known as the Crypto.com Arena in a deal reportedly worth $700 million. 

Four years ago, I wrote a passionate hot take, arguing that the word “crypto” should not be used to refer to “cryptocurrency,” but to refer to “cryptography,” as it’s been the case in computer science and cybersecurity for more than 20 years. 

The Merriam-Webster dictionary is not relenting yet. But for the rest of us, it’s time to raise a white flag and admit we lost this war. Perhaps, I would even go as far as saying this war was not worth fighting. As Metallica sang many years ago: “For a hill, men would kill, why? They do not know.” 

“Crypto” is now widely used to refer to cryptocurrency in news media, as well as within the cryptocurrency, blockchain, and decentralized finance—or DeFi—industry. Most importantly, everyday, non techie people also use and understand “crypto” to mean cryptocurrency. Even this very website, which published my defense of crypto meaning cryptography, has started to use the term to refer to cryptocurrency.

And it’s OK. 

I come from a culture where language is prescriptive. I grew up in Spain, where there is an official government-run body, the Real Academia Española, whose sole mission is to preserve the correct use of the Spanish language. As part of its mission, the academy establishes and sanctions the supposedly correct meaning of words. 

I now see that as the wrong approach. Languages are living things shaped by the people who use them. This approach, antithetical to the “prescriptivism” discussed earlier, is known as “descriptivism.”

This is the school of thought that accepts the fact that people now use “crypto” to mean “cryptocurrency.” This is now the widespread, common use of the word, and, again, that’s OK. 

Not everyone is giving up though. Amie Stepanovich, the executive director of the University of Colorado’s Silicon Flatirons center, made t-shirts that say “Crypto. It Means Cryptography.” 

The t-shirt made …….

Source: https://www.vice.com/en/article/k7w8bv/crypto-means-cryptocurrency-we-lost-the-war-and-its-ok