It has long been argued that the financial and tech sectors of our globe were built by men FOR men, and when one looks at bitcoin, it's hard to disagree. As it stands, the majority of bitcoin users and advocates (about 95 percent) are of the male persuasion, and the time has come for women to become more involved.
Women hold great spending power, and their financial prowess is greater than one might think. According to a number of publications and reports, women not only outspend males in almost every capacity, but they dominate the small-business world and should their enthusiasm for digital currency broaden, cryptocurrencies could move up the ranks in the financial world.
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The idea that we live in a "Man's World" is an outdated notion these days. From the increase in the number of working mothers and dual-income households to high-level executives on Wall Street like Blythe Masters, women have clearly demonstrated their importance in every aspect of society and made major strides toward leveling the gender playing field. The fact is that, in all but a few places in the world, women are as responsible as their male counterparts for maintaining healthy economies and social structures. Despite that fact, there remains work to be done.
In her December 2013 post on motherboard.com, UK-based editor Victoria Turk talks about her travels to the London Bitcoin Expo and her shock at the lack of women in attendance. Once the event was over, Turk began visiting bitcoin forums and discovered that about 95 percent of bitcoin and digital currency advocates were male. Turk blames the huge difference in participation on the fact that the financial and tech sectors of our global economy consist of predominantly male workers. As Turk suggests, women tend to be underrepresented in these arenas, and don’t quite have the say that they should.
However, she also mentions that women appear to be less willing to accept financial risk. One of the largest arguments against bitcoin in recent years has been its lack of security and financial insurance, and despite the creation of the BitLicense and similar regulation forms, women are still wary of the risks.
But this is a huge mistake. As evidence shows, it’s really women that control the world’s purse-strings in comparison to men. For example, according to Pua Pyland, who promotes bitcoin usage among women on her website, females “constitute the fastest growing segment of the small-business owner community.” She mentions that women are more likely to be self-employed, and they bring a level of diversity to the tech space, thereby boosting innovation and creativity. Just think what they can do for digital currency!
Things don’t stop there. According to Forbes, women control “some $20 trillion in annual consumer spending,” and this number is likely to increase by $8 trillion in the next five years. A Nielsen report also shows that women outspend men pretty much everywhere except at convenience stores and gas stations.
Several sites and organizations, such as cryptomoms.com are now evolving to promote cryptocurrency usage among women. The spending and financial power is obviously there, and if cryptocurrency gained recognition and acceptance amongst female enthusiasts, it could become a truly powerful currency indeed. Yet as it presently stands, the lack of interest amongst female spenders and business owners may prove limiting.