In a nutshell, this is what I tell people when they ask me if they should buy some bitcoins:
- Bitcoin is a huge thing that can transform many things in society.
- No one knows what will actually happen, there were no historical precedents.
- Do not put more money than you can afford to lose tomorrow. Do not borrow anything, do not put more than 50% of your savings, do not touch money you already have made plans for. It’s tempting, but just don’t.
- Before putting in more than $100, learn about Bitcoin, how it works, why it works, its weaknesses, popular myths, how past problems were solved etc.
- Be aware of viruses, lost passwords, lost backups, bugs, human mistakes, panics on exchanges, DoS attacks etc.
- Check and double-check and triple-check before doing anything. Play with small sums when trying a piece of software, or a service. Then wait a week and play with a bigger amount if nothing is lost or broken.
- Never blame anybody except yourself.
- You most probably will be disappointed at some point in time. You will be scammed, your money will be stolen or lost. Prepare for it.
- Never trust anyone (including me). No person has authority in Bitcoin. Even core developers are more like explorers as they didn’t write the original code and did not make a lot of decisions. And Satoshi has disappeared a long time ago.
I cannot stress it enough: even if Bitcoin becomes huge, you may still lose everything for many reasons. Be careful.
It’s a great journey ahead of us, but it’s bumpy. Don’t dive in without proper training.