As the world’s biggest cryptocurrency, Bitcoin (BTC) is highly volatile, once surging from $1,000 to $20,000 in the span of just over a year. The coin has become the subject of infinite price predictions. Both optimistic and negative, some of these predictions have turned out to be extremely inaccurate.
Vitalik Buterin, the well-known co-creator of the Ethereum network and its native cryptocurrency Ether (ETH), highlighted the two worst Bitcoin price predictions ever made since the digital currency was introduced back in 2009.
In an April 6 tweet, Buterin emphasized that price predictions on crypto markets are “notorious for turning out very wrong” — both on the bull and bear side.
Famous 2020 $1 million prediction
According to the Ethereum co-founder, the worst bullish Bitcoin prediction was made by John McAfee, founder of major software firm McAfee and a former 2020 United States presidential candidate. Specifically, Buterin referred to a McAfee’s famous $1 million Bitcoin proclamation delivered in November 2017, at the time when Bitcoin was approaching its all-time high of $20,000.
The cybersecurity veteran predicted back in 2017:
“When I predicted Bitcoin at $500,000 by the end of 2020, it used a model that predicted $5,000 at the end of 2017. BTC has accelerated much faster than my model assumptions. I now predict Bitcoin at $1 mln by the end of 2020. I will still eat my dick if wrong.”
After holding his prediction for years, McAfee eventually retracted the “legendary” $1 million prediction in January 2020, claiming that the prediction was just a “ruse to onboard new users.” Subsequently, McAfee also argued that Bitcoin is not the future of crypto, ultimately calling the cryptocurrency “worthless” last week.
As the most inaccurate bearish Bitcoin prediction, Buterin picked a forecast from prominent American economist and famous cryptocurrency critic, Nouriel Roubini. Back in February 2018, when Bitcoin was hitting new multi-month lows by collapsing to below $7,000 from $20,000, Roubini argued that Bitcoin was on his way to zero. He tweeted:
“As expected Bitcoin now crashes below $6,000. Now the $5K handle is reached. And the US Congressional Hearing on Crypto-Scams is still a day away. HODL nuts will hold their melting Bitcoins all the way down to ZERO while scammers and whales dump and run…”
In October 2018, Roubini also argued that 99% of cryptocurrencies are worth nothing. The famous Bitcoin critic also apparently still believes that cryptocurrency has “absolutely no basis for success” as a technology.
Buterin bets on decentralization and privacy
By outlining these two failed Bitcoin predictions, Buterin highlighted the question of responsibility among those who have a high degree of influence. The Ethereum co-founder urged people not to forget that everyone makes mistakes and called for social incentives for saying “sane” things. Buterin tweeted:
“This is why I think digging up over-confident predictions people made 2-5 years ago that turned out horribly wrong and laughing at them is a great custom to have. We need at least social incentive to say things that are sane, and we need to be reminded of everyone's fallibility.”
Buterin himself appears to have made no certain crypto price predictions so far. At the same time, the developer is known for his bullish stance toward the future of decentralization. As Cointelegraph reported in March 2020, Buterin is confident that the currency of the future will be decentralized and private, as such money would be more resilient against “centralized chokepoints.”