The advancement of crypto asset ecosystem in Mexico has been slow but sure because the actors have joined in a common effort
Manuel Flores, a researcher on crypto assets since 2014, is an organizer of Bitcoinday Mexico, the founder of Bitcoin Monterrey Community, and representative Member Node of the Mexican Spanish-American Blockchain Alliance. This article summarizes the situation of crypto assets in Mexico and it highlights the main challenges of adopting this technology in the country.
As the crypto asset ecosystem quickly advances worldwide, the question arises of what the situation of Mexico is with respect to other countries.
Venue of Important Events
The growth of the ecosystem in Mexico has been slow, but steady since the creation of the first group on April 30th, 2013 and an informal meeting on October 31st, 2013 in Mexico City.
After the first committed physical Bitcoin community in Monterrey in 2014, the number of communities has grown in different cities. Currently, regular events are held in Monterrey, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Cancun, Puebla, Tabasco and Nuevo Laredo, among others. There have also been international events such as Labitconf, Coinfest, Devcon, Anarcapulco and Bitcoinday.
Since 2016, with the raise in the price of cryptocurrencies and the distribution of accounting technology projects around the world, we can find speakers talking about the subject in technology and entrepreneurship events, such as INCmty, The week of the entrepreneur, Campus Party, and Talent Land.
Entrepreneurs in the Ecosystem
The environment of entrepreneurs, which started with two crypto bags of renown and seniority, now concentrates the most robust projects and there are more than eight Mexican crypto bags, with some foreigners working in the region, probably due to the increase in the price in 2017.
Additionally, the number of ATMs is higher, but there is a shortage of payment platforms, integrations and implementations for large businesses. In 2017 some companies stopped using bitcoins as a means of payment, and the options for directly spending them declined. Some universities could be reached with the arrival of groups more focused on trading and cryptocurrencies.
In the same vein, most higher education institutions are reluctant, but exceptions such as the University of Nayarit, UNAM or Monterrey Technological College have internal research projects and plans that include the subject in the educational area.
Media Coverage on Crypto Assets
Traditional media still do not provide training in the area of crypto assets, despite several reports on “Mexican Projects”, price fluctuations and wonder projects, being are cited and recycled by sources outside the ecosystem.
Regretfully, they publish wonders about any project, without prior criteria or research, provided that the representatives of the project pay the corresponding fee. They may be recognized as publishers for their constancy, but their articles lack enough reliability.
Although scams, pyramid schemes and junk tokens have been around since cryptocurrencies were made public in Mexico, now they rely on the work of small inexperienced communities, on the media and on the raise of prices, in addition to the people’s lack of knowledge about them.
There are also unfounded projects by pseudoexperts that sell tokens which usually have no other use than raising capital or gaining renown. Gradually, projects that have the word “blockchain” in their name are shown at companies, customs offices and governmental entities by developers who can hardly make an intelligent contract.
These unfounded projects reaffirm the importance of education in cryptocurrencies beyond price analysis. Interestingly, most of these projects come from small states, where the population receives little or no education. However, they can also be seen in important cities such as Monterrey, Guadalajara or Mexico City.
Effort towards a Common Objective
Although some members of the Mexican community still do not see the innovation and the social and political paradigm shift that crypto asset technology can bring, it is going slowly but surely.
Only by joining efforts and leaving aside protagonism, egotism, classism and selfishness, advantage can be taken of others’ weaknesses to make profit. The impact of crypto assets will be greater and, consequently, more interesting projects will be accomplished.
Even though English is the language of education, more talented people have access to it. Besides, experts and professionals such as economists, technicians, lawyers, futurists, developers, among others, have joined the ecosystem.
The landscape of crypto assets in Mexico has evolved and, despite the long way that still remains to go and the many projects to accomplish, the international community has a lot of faith and interest in the country.
By Willmen Blanco