Inbar Preiss About Women in Blockchain Industry


Ever since the inception of Bitcoin, women have been underrepresented in blockchain and crypto. Our guest for this interview has for a long time been a voice for women in blockchain.

We have talked to Inbar Preiss, an Israeli crypto-journalist and the co-founder of SalamTalk, about the unique challenges women face in tech-oriented fields, specifically the blockchain industry, and her overall views on the state of the industry as an early adopter.

ForkLog: You call yourself a digital nomad. Could you explain what this means to you?

Inbar: For me, it means that I work with just me and my laptop. And my laptop and I can be anywhere in the world. I like that I can have the freedom to move wherever I want, whenever I want, and it’s actually a lot harder than it sounds. But yeah, every few months I kind of find a new place to stay.

ForkLog: Then I wonder how cryptocurrency might make life easier for digital nomads?

Inbar: Well, it means that currency isn’t an issue. It doesn’t matter where I am, I’m earning the same currency.

ForkLog: Are people ready to appreciate such innovations as Bitcoin, or are we to expect increasing resistance against new technologies from citizens and government alike?

Inbar: I think both will happen. So, there are those who are willing already to adopt new technologies, perhaps they see the freedom that is possible with it, while others will be more conservative and take more time perhaps to realize if they need it at all. I think the important point is to have the alternative available for people who seek it.

And I don’t believe that Bitcoin mass adoption is the most important aspect. I think that it’s important in a way that those who need it can find it.

ForkLog: What is the biggest obstacle for Bitcoin to become more widely adopted?

Inbar: On the one hand, it’s the whole user experience, which might be difficult for people to adapt to. And on the other hand, it’s just the lack of ways to use it, other than selling or trading. It becomes a bit more complicated to just use cryptocurrency or Bitcoin specifically, even harder to use it on a daily basis.

It doesn’t meet the requirements that people need on a daily basis in terms of money. And on the other hand, there’s the illegality of it in some countries or the difficulty of paying taxes and so on. This makes it all very difficult in a governmental and bureaucratic way.

ForkLog: Recent research shows that we already have a sort of elite in the crypto industry. And earlier adopters or holders accumulated a huge amount of money in a few hands. Don’t you think that we already have the same situation in the traditional financial system, and could this situation prevent Bitcoin’s mass adoption?

Inbar: Yeah, the Bitcoin “whalesб,” and so on and so forth. I think it shows that human nature has a way of carrying out certain things, and these things are inevitable. Even if you have a fully decentralized system, some kind of elite will always form.

I think it’s a shame that this has to manipulate the market so much, but, on the other hand, it’s inevitable. I think there will be a financial elite anywhere where there is a certain amount of freedom, because, on the other hand, we don’t want to introduce a communist dictatorship that will make sure that everything is completely equally distributed. We’ve seen that hasn’t worked out very well in the past.

ForkLog: What is the most interesting part for you about Bitcoin? What attracts you the most?

Inbar: To see a different spectrum of people that it attracts and for different reasons. For example, here we see the most original crypto-anarchist cypherpunk approach to cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin, while on the other end of the spectrum there’s a very corporate side of it. I find the different political movements, philosophical movements, social movements attached to this very innovative currency, very fascinating.

ForkLog: Bitcoin was born from the efforts of cypherpunks, and now it becomes a store of value. Is it a problem, or we just see that people come to appreciate Bitcoin from different routes?

Inbar: Yes, I think it’s inevitable that there’ll be different approaches, and I do hope that some of the cypherpunk ideals can penetrate through time and also be accessible to people to realize that there is, perhaps, more to Bitcoin than just store of value. There is also a stereotype that women are less knowledgeable when it comes to technological skills.

ForkLog: If there are more women among developers, how might Bitcoin benefit from that?

Inbar: I think that’s a very important question. I think to have women involved is very important in development, because we’re really in the midst of creating the future, in a way.

It’s very important to have all sides represented in that, and not just have the dominant white male kind of perspective, but also have different perspectives and have different influences.

ForkLog: Do you personally feel that cryptocurrency industries are male-dominated?

Inbar: Yes, of course.

ForkLog: In which way, could you explain?

Inbar: You can look around conferences and you’ll see: usually, most often women are a minority. As speakers or on stages, also in the crowd and in the audience. But since the time that I entered into this whole niche, I have seen some changes and more women involved, and more women speaking out and participating.

ForkLog: How can we encourage more women to become familiar with decentralized technologies?

Inbar: I know there’s a lot of women in blockchain events, I see them quite often. So, kind of women-oriented events, but I think it’s just important to make an inclusive space that everyone feels welcome at. And make sure that there’s at least some representation of women in events, to show an example that it is completely possible.

Watch the full interview on the ForkLog LIVE YouTube channel.

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