The world of crypto grows by the second and so do the people in it. We all know Satoshi Nakamoto for Bitcoin, Changepeng Zhao AKA CZ for Binance, David Schwartz for his amazing tech, and the list goes on. The amazing contribution from the people in the space led to a movement of promoting crypto to every part of the world, but there is one problem. Where are the women of crypto?
Here are the women:
Elizabeth Stark– CEO, and Co-founder of Lightning Labs
Dovey Wan – Co-founder at Primitive Ventures
Juthica Chou– Co-founder of LedgerXand a trader
Cynthia Dwork– Proof of Work
Barbara Liskov– Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance…
But does this list go on and on?
To an extent…. yes
The presence of women in crypto is not a rare sight, but it is considered “rare” when you are looking at a flood of men during conferences or other crypto events and find fewer women, in comparison.
When you do spot a woman in a crypto conference, what is your first reaction? Does she belong there? Is she an expert? Is she eye-candy? What does she do?
These questions reflect the stereotype that women have to overcome – Is there room for women in the tech space? Does society think she belongs there?
This article attempts to rationalize the experiences of the women in the crypto-space to address the assumption that crypto-domain has indeed provided a free-er and more decentralized space.
So in this credit-hungry world, where does the power reside? With a select few or everyone?
The woman perceived as the assistant as opposed to the CEO
Dovey Wan, the co-founder of Primitive Ventures, spoke about the hidden and open prejudice in the space:
“So many times when I attend board meetings or conference, I will be considered as either assistant or secretary to “someone else”.
However, according to Wan, her experience with the crypto community has been a different one and she calls it “better than the general tech community.” Since the community itself is so new, there are changes that could be brought in crypto and rule out the authoritarian behavior possessed by many. Wan added:
“Crypto is a relatively new space, and by nature is against all sorts of authority and authoritarian belief, so I see it’s a great area to start with gender equality with a community holding the same belief. Tho many “real figures” in the crypto industry are actually extremely authoritarian and acting with full misogyny so we still have long way to go”
There is indeed a long way to go, but it wouldn’t be any different should we fail to acknowledge the women in the space and disregard them due to a double chromosome. There are women traders keeping their identity anonymous so that they wouldn’t be dismissed at first glance. Are we back in the Elizabethan era, where women writers wrote under male pseudonyms?
Since Crypto has been branching out into a new system of payments, it has the space to be more accommodating. However, due to the domain being largely dominated by men, cryptocurrency as an industry more appeals to men, notes Wan.
So are we late to the party?
Shalini, more popularly known as Indian CryptoGirl said:
“It’s no secret that women are late to the party when it comes to new technology. Because there are fewer women investing and trading Cryptocurrency, there are fewer influencers as well. However, over the past 2 years, I’ve seen a lot of young girls starting to put out really good content.
We may be late, but it’ll be a big mistake to right us off just yet.”
Numbers Don’t Lie
Bizzabo conducted research where they analyzed speakers and registrants at 100 cryptocurrency events over 15 countries, found that more than three-quarters, 79%, of attendees were male and 21% were female. According to research conducted by LongHash that studied the gender divide in blockchain startups, it was found that just 14.5% of blockchain startup team members were women. Apart from the workforce, women held fewer executive and advisory positions as compared to men.
According to Alon Alroy of Bizzabo, who spoke about gender diversity:
“The lack of gender diversity in attendees speaks to the industries most of the registrants come from. The financial services and technology sectors have all struggled with inclusion and that has a cascading impact on the gender mix at these events.”
This article is an attempt at getting to know the women in this space. It’s the first of many that will chronicle their journeys and stories.
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