Crypto thought leaders - Andreas Antonopoulos
Crypto thought leaders shape narratives of the industry, moving it forward and influencing the actions of crypto traders and enthusiasts. Tech geeks, investors and policy makers come together from all walks of life to push cryptocurrencies towards mass adoption, deliver inspiring speeches and create passionate visions about the industry’s potential.
This is our first blog post in a crypto thought leader profile series, and it will start off with probably the most famous one—Andreas Antonopoulos. We’ll take a look behind the scenes to find out more about his education, his spheres of work and interest, the secret behind his publishing success and the infamous incident with Roger Ver that turned him into a Bitcoin millionaire.
Who is Andreas Antonopoulos?
Andreas M. Antonopoulos is a best-selling author, speaker, educator and highly sought after expert in Bitcoin and blockchain technology.
After obtaining his Computer Science, Data Communications and Distributed Systems degree from University College London, he worked in various roles, from partner at Nemertes Research, where he researched computer security, to freelancer.
In 2012, Antonopoulos completely devoted himself to his Bitcoin-related career. He started participating in conferences dedicated to the crypto industry, consulting startups and writing technical books and articles.
A frequent speaker at technology and security conferences worldwide, he is known for his eloquence and unique, unscripted talks that combine psychology, technology and game theory with current events and personal anecdotes. As an author, he is famous for writing best-selling books that make complex subjects easy to understand and highlight both the positive and negative impacts that cryptocurrencies can have on our global society. As a devoted educator, he is on the mission to educate as many people as possible—in as many places and as many languages as possible—about Bitcoin and blockchain technology.
Antonopoulos’ popularity and expertise was also transferred to his YouTube channel, where he covers various crypto topics and trends, from a Bitcoin beginner’s guide to advanced technical topics. He is also a permanent host on the Let’s Talk Bitcoin podcast with more than 400 episodes recorded to date.
The popularity, influence and massive audience he managed to build over the years led to invitations for prominent interviews and podcasts. Antonopoulos has been interviewed by Bloomberg, CNN, CNBC, CBS, NBC, ABC, BBC, and Financial Times for his industry expertise. He has also been a welcomed guest on The Joe Rogan Experience podcast and London Real.
Antonopoulos has authored and co-authored some of the best-selling and most acknowledged books in the crypto industry. They include:
Mastering Bitcoin (2014)
In this best-selling book, Antonopoulos gives a broad introduction to Bitcoin suitable for non-tech users and simultaneously outlines the technical foundation for developers, engineers and software architects. Mastering Bitcoin is illustrated with user stories, examples and code snippets for better understanding of complex technical concepts.
The Internet of Money
The Internet of Money is a collection of talks given by Antonopoulos on various occasions. The collection consists of Volume 1 (2016), Volume 2 (2017) and Volume 3 (2019). While his other books, Mastering Bitcoin and Mastering Ethereum, explain the how, The Internet of Money represents a collection of Antonopoulos’ talks that delve into the why of Bitcoin. Through a series of essays, he examines the significance and maturation of Bitcoin, showing how it fundamentally changed our approach to solving social, political, and economic problems through decentralised technology.
Mastering Ethereum (2018)
Mastering Ethereum is a thorough guide that leads readers from basics to advanced concepts in smart contract programming. The book is mainly for programmers and technically skilled experts and is filled with technical topics and programming examples.
Mastering Lightning Network
In a YouTube video published on August 28, 2019, Antonopoulos and two co-authors, Olaoluwa Osuntokun and René Pickhardt, announced their new book Mastering Lightning Network. In the video, Antonopoulos explained that the book is aimed for people new to Bitcoin’s scalability solution and it will cover applications designed to run on top of Lightning Network. The book is currently being written.
Quotes and opinions
His opinion, simply stated, is that Bitcoin overcomes borders and changes the landscape of the financial world forever. “Bitcoin is not just money for the internet. Yes, it’s perfect money for the internet. It’s instant, it’s safe, it’s free. Yes, it is money for the internet, but it’s so much more. Bitcoin is the internet of money. Currency is only the first application. If you grasp that, you can look beyond the price, you can look beyond the volatility, you can look beyond the fad. At its core, bitcoin is a revolutionary technology that will change the world forever” (The Internet of Money)
It gives power and control to the people. “Bitcoin represents a fundamental transformation of money. An invention that changes the oldest technology we have in civilization. That changes it radically and disruptively by changing the fundamental architecture into one where every participant is equal… Where your money is yours… No one can tell you what to do or what not to do with your money. It is a system of money that is simultaneously, absolutely transnational and borderless. We’ve never had a system of money like that.” (The Internet of Money)
Bitcoin is a transnational currency for a transnational economy. “This isn’t about nation-states anymore. This isn’t about who adopts bitcoin first or who adopts cryptocurrencies first, because the internet is adopting cryptocurrencies, and the internet is the world’s largest economy. It is the first transnational economy, and it needs a transnational currency.” (The Internet of Money)
Thought leadership status
Andreas Antonopoulos enjoys the status of one of the most prominent and popular crypto thought leaders today. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as he has been involved in the industry from its beginnings and was able to predict the significance of Bitcoin early on. His ability to communicate in layman’s terms has led him to a whopping publishing success and positioned as an expert in the field. This expertise has been confirmed by several invitations to appear as a witness in legal cases and regulatory hearings around the world, including the Australian Senate Banking Committee and the Canadian Senate Commerce, Banking, and Finance Committee.
In 2017, Antonopoulos revealed that all of his Bitcoin-related work was performed free of charge and that he made his living simply from donations. His net worth remains unknown, but what is known is that, in December 2017, the Bitcoin advocate received over 100 Bitcoins from more than a thousand followers of his work after Roger Ver made a post questioning why Antonopoulos hadn’t invested in cryptocurrency earlier.