Jun 12, 2024

Litecoin Creator Charlie Lee joins CoinDesk Live at Consensus 2024 to discuss the growth and adoption of Litecoin over the past six years.

Video transcript

We're coming to you from the Coin Desk podcast studio presented by Bito, founded in 2013 with the first institutional grade Bitcoin Wallet. Bit Go is the gold standard in custody staking and settlement today. Bit Go supports over 800 coins and processes 20% of all Bitcoin trans actions by value. Check them out at bito.com now. Like I said, we're gonna be here all day. We are joined by a ton of heavy hitters and one of them joins us now, like coin creator Charlie Lee Charlie. Welcome to the show. Thanks for having me. Of course. Thanks for being here. Now, I'm gonna ask you the same thing I asked Danny, what are you excited about for, for this consensus? What's different about this consensus when you think about the other ones that you've attended? Uh to be honest, I mean, every consensus is, is pretty crazy. Um I mean, I've been to a few and they're kind of about the same craziness. Um It's been a while since I've been to a consensus. I think the last one was like five or six years ago. Well, define crazy when you say consensuses are pretty crazy. It, it gets bigger and bigger every year. Like the first one is, is kind of a decent size, but now it's like it's a huge event. It's a, it's, it's pretty impressive now, five or six years ago, where was Light Corn compared to today? Um Litecoin over the past 56 years has gained a lot of adoption, a lot of usage. Um for example, on bitpay, one of the largest crypto payment processors, Litecoin is actually overtaken Bitcoin as the number one used Cryptocurrency uh for people paying with crypto. So that's kind of a surprising turn of event but very, very promising. It's been five years since you've been in the consensus, but you've been in this industry for a long time. I know that you spoke on one of the OG talks here at consensus. Curious to just hear some of your war stories. You know, not everyone has been in this industry as long as you any particular story that you think folks who are watching can learn from especially builders in this space. Um The I think the the biggest pitfall with, with this space is people get in when the price is at the at the peak. It's because there's just so much news, everyone's talking about it and people hear about Bitcoin, they buy in at the top. And then as you know, Bitcoin is very volatile, it could drop like 80 90% in the in the year or even half a year and when that happens, um, those people get wiped out so they get in at a high and they sell, at the low end, they're kind of like wiped out from the space. So, what I've learned over the years is you just have to have, um, strong hands and you have to have conviction and basically buy and buy and buy in slowly and be able to hold and not be able to not be wiped out by the, by the volatility. We're gonna call you Diamond Hands, Charlie. Yeah. Now Charlie, I'm curious to hear your perspective on uh the ETF S, right? We, we have a bit coin ETF, it looks like there's going to be an, a few ETF sometime soon is a light corn ETF, something that you're hopeful for. And what would it take to get there in terms of regulatory concerns? I think Litecoin ETF is, is, is easy to get past because it's commodity just like Bitcoin. Um It's more about demand uh when there's more demand on people wanting to um invest in Lico ETF, it will happen. I believe it's a matter of time. Not, not if I'm curious what your thoughts are on the ETF. We, we uh we spoke to some other Ogs uh on the set yesterday and the Ogs are all about decentralization, right? That's what attracts people to the space. ETF S are attracting a new type of person to the space, but they really bring a centralized element curious since you've been in the space for so long. Uh where you see the pros and cons with the recent ETF that everyone is talking about this year. I honestly don't see any, any cons with it. I think um Bitcoin is, is a new asset class. It's one of the best performing or the best performing asset class um ever. Um So an ETF just gives the ability for, for anyone to, to invest in Bitcoin. I think that's good for the space. Um in terms of decentralization. The best thing about Bitcoin is you always have an option to um sell custody, move it um on chain and take total control of your money. And that's always going to be the case, which is why Bitcoin is so powerful. Now, Charlie in walking around consensus this year, I'm seeing a lot of people that, you know, I look at things like gaming companies and other things and I don't always think these people are in it for the tech. Sometimes you, you hear these, they call them token generation events, these airdrops and it's, it might be a little bit less about the technology of the decentralization and more about the money making opportunities. Uh What's your perspective on the state of the industry right now? I think it's always been the case. Most people are here for the money and not for the tech and, and I think that's fine. Right. That's what, that's what attracts people into this space. Um But the underlying kind of core strength of Bitcoin is the tech and that's not going to go anywhere. Um, but the, the money aspect is what attracts people to the space. And unfortunately, it's also what attracts uh, scammers to the space. Well, it's interesting you say the money aspect attracts people to, to the space. Do you think that the people who are attracted by the money are those fickle people, the people who we don't see coming back to consensus year after year uh coming through the Bear markets, they're, they're here for a good time but maybe not a long time. Yeah, I would say that's true. Like every, every time I come to come to these big events come to consensus, there are a lot of new people that are, that are new to the space that are just here because um because of the money aspect and then a few years later they, they disappear. So how do we get people to stay, Charlie? Um I mean, we don't, we don't need to try to get people to stay. I mean, they, they will stay if they believe in the space and the, the the community is growing exponentially. So, um I'm not concerned about that and how will you make sure that the, the Light Coin community continues to grow? We're, we're here so much about the Bitcoin layer twos these days and other ways of using this core technology in ways we just had not thought we could. Is that something that you hope for it to see in light coin for, for light coin we're focused on uh like as a payment method and that adoption of like when as a payment has grown um significantly over the past few years. And that's a really good sign. Um and kind of, that's, that's the core, the main focus in terms of the community growing. The commu most people using Litecoin don't even know who I am. And that's a good thing. You don't need to know the creator of Litecoin to actually use it because it's a very useful currency and they use it because it's fast, the fees are low and it's accepted everywhere. And that's the best thing about Litecoin. Where are you seeing the biggest adoption of Litecoin? What regions are using it as a payment more than others? Um I think more like third world countries are using Cryptocurrency more as because it's useful right? In the, in the US, people are adopting Bitcoin Light coin more for speculation than actually using it. And it's because it's not um it's not really needed, but in a country where um their, their local currency is hyper inflating, storing their value into Cryptocurrency um is, is, is a lifesaver for them. So that's, that's where I see the most adoption. Do you think we're going to see more countries go the way of El Salvador and accepting or addressing Bitcoin and maybe even, I don't know, like coin as something more than just a Cryptocurrency that exists outside of the state control. Yeah. I think the, the next big thing with crypto would be nation state adoption in terms of holding in the treasury, um, accepting it actually, um, legalizing it as a, um, as a, as a currency for the country, right? And we're seeing that in El Salvador, we'll, we'll start to see more and more of that in other countries, I believe. And what's next for like, I mean, you haven't been to a consensus in many years. What are you building? What are you looking forward to on your road map? Yeah. Currently we're working hard on a feature we launched recently recently as in the last two years, it's called M web. It's a privacy and Fung il feature. It's kind of a layer on top of coin where you can send transactions where no one else can see how much money you're sending. Only you and the recipient will know. And I think that's one kind of one feature that's missing from Bitcoin, um which is a layer of fil and privacy that really helps um protect you from um from spying eyes, right? When you spend money, you don't want anyone to know how much money you have in your bank account. Charlie. Thank you so much for joining us this morning. It's great to see you here at Consensus and we hope you enjoy. Yeah. Thanks for having me. Awesome. That was Light Coin Foundation Director Charlie Lee.

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