Bitcoin, being decentralized and addressing privacy, succeeded to erase the image of a typical user. It has even created a wall between the peers exchanging transactions. A recent research allowed determining the vague shape of virtual currency enthusiast, calling him or her an average user. I am sure that there is no one, who would be pleased to receive this title, but let us speak the statistical and scientific language, keeping in mind our individualities and peculiarities.
The Principles of the Survey
The questions on Bitcoin and related habits were united in a survey and populated among numerous online users. The first 1000 valid filled in applications were used to perform the analysis.
The opportunity was opened in February of 2013 and it did not take much time to reach the required number. Further work of researchers allowed answering many questions that bothered users, unable to find something out about his peer.
The Average User
Briefly summing up the answers, the dear reader has to imagine the following person mirroring the average user:
The average user is a 32.1 year old libertarian male.
Top motivators for new users are curiosity, profit, and politics.
Bitcointalk.org is the dominant community platform.
Far more people have used Bitcoin for donations than for illegal transactions.
36.7% of users do not drink, smoke, gamble, or take drugs.
Going in the details shows us that 95,2% of users are male, who keep the dominance since the launch of Bitcoin. 44,3% of all respondents are anarcho-capitalists. In addition – non-religious (61,8%), working full-time (44,7%) and having responsibilities, as they are in a relationship (55,6%).
In comparison with the gender classification, other aspects are not univocal. 20,6% are Christian, but 38,8% are single. The political views are tending to be from the center to the left. The community of rather radical anarchists is diluted by liberals and environmentalists. All together occupy 38,5%.
Another point of scientific curiosity was the reason and term of engaging in Bitcoin. The timeline of events in Bitcoin history closely relates and resembles the statistics of installation of new clients. Motivations were following - curiosity (4.3/5), profit (3.7/5), politics (3.6/5), practical concerns (3.1/5), challenge (2.8/5), and community (2.7/5).
The age distribution has two peaks – at 26 and 30 years. Normally the form of the curve is a bell, but Bitcoin seems to be alternative everywhere it is possible.
The participating in mining was separated in a secondary research as only half of the respondents have tried to extract the coins, most of them being members of a pool. The average hash rate is equal to 399 MH/s, but the median value is 200 MH/s. The expenditure varies very powerful. The average user-miner invested 3013 dollars. The median spend sum is 300 dollars. 8% succeeded to provide from 10 000 dollars and more, as long as 37% were able to do it free of charge. Just 8,5% have mentioned the use of hardware that was not belonging to them.
As all information on Bitcoin is broadcasted online, the users have to follow some news resources or even take part in the discussions. The most or 54,1% have chosen Bitcointalk.com, instead of Reddit – popular among 38,5%. Facebook with 25,5% succeeded to outplay Twitter, Google+, Bitcoin.it, who landed below 10%.
The survey asked the respondents to speak on their fears. 31,2% are worried on “regulatory/legal intervention”, but 17,6% see danger in “reputation problems”. As this question was not only multiple-choice, but allowed to write something in addition, many repliers voiced the opinion that the digital asset is too complicated for regular and everyday usage.
The social delusion proves to be such, as the most users are not smoking, drinking, gambling and using narcotics. Just 10,6% have exchanged illegal substances for Bitcoins. However, the most popular use is for making presents or donations – 35%. The acquisition of computer services was only second with 25,6%.
Finally, the 1000 people have though on what kind of reward presented Bitcoin to them. 67,8% see intellectual and educational benefits, but only 18,9% gained social profit or simply found new friends.