Unfortunately, I don’t recall a precise moment in time, be it day or month, when I first heard about Bitcoin. It’s only the year that I am certain about: 2013. In that year I had started my first job after finishing my studies the year before. Most likely, it was a headline about the rising price of a virtual currency. I snapped it up somewhere but paid no further attention to it.
What I consciously remember, though, is having a conversation with friends in summer 2013 when someone mentioned that he either should’ve bought or shouldn’t have sold Bitcoin. My memory is foggy here. Anyway, the comment served only for a quick laugh and wasn’t the main focus of discussion but it tells me that at this point I must’ve been at least faintly aware of the topic.
The Bitcoin Entanglement
It wasn’t until the price began to rise further in October 2013 that I looked into Bitcoin more deeply. I read about its features, its open-source origin and learned that there are alternative coins (altcoins) without delving into them, although I liked the “Litecoin is silver to Bitcoin’s gold” narrative. I should’ve spent more hours reading, but I had one problem: the longer I read, the higher the price of Bitcoin rose.
FOMO crept up on me. For those of you who don’t know what FOMO stands for: It’s the fear of missing out, a social anxiety stemming from the belief that others might be having fun (e.g. at a party) while the person experiencing it isn’t there. I wasn’t acquainted with such a feeling before, but it was hard to bear.
To shake it off I needed to join the Bitcoin party immediately. After working for a couple of months I accumulated some €1,000 through saving some % of my paychecks. That money was just waiting to be invested, so why not get some bitcoin. I started looking for places to buy some.
The first hit was a site named Mt. Gox and I signed up for it immediately. However, I couldn’t buy anything as I had to wait for my account to pass verification. But I didn’t want to wait. I wanted to buy bitcoins right now. Going back to the search results, I stumbled upon another site called BTC-e. The verification worked way quicker and they offered funding your account via an online payment service. That was exactly what I was looking for.
The Altcoin Detour
The previously described steps took several days if not weeks to accomplish. In the meantime, Bitcoin’s price had risen from $200 to almost $1,000. Suddenly, it didn’t look like an attractive investment to me anymore. My budget was capped at €1,000. I wanted to buy more than just one lousy bitcoin. My investor psychology was weak back then.
So I looked around what else was being offered on the platform and discovered a Litecoin-Euro trading pair.
Litecoin was an early Bitcoin alternative that was created in October 2011 by copying Bitcoin’s open source code and playing with some…
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