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Behind the crypto hype is an ideology of social change

  For some, promoting cryptocurrencies is political activism. Vasil Dimitrov/E+ via Getty Images Rick Wash , Michigan State University Ads for blockchain, NFTs and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin seem to be everywhere. Crypto technologies are being promoted as a replacement for banks ; a new way to buy art ; the next big investment opportunity , and an essential part of the metaverse . To many, these technologies are confusing or risky . But enthusiasts ardently promote them . As a cybersecurity and social media researcher , I’ve found that behind the hype is an ideology about social change: Hardcore enthusiasts argue that crypto will get people to trust in technology rather than government , which they see as inherently untrustworthy. This ideology leads people to encourage its use while downplaying its risks. The true believers My colleagues and I studied almost three months of discussions on Reddit forums about cryptocurrencies to try to