The internet has a way of turning hobbies into something more. Just as Instagram turned everyone into a photographer and Twitter turned everyone into a writer, the internet is now in the process of turning us all into finance bros. The rise of online gambling, stock trading, and cryptocurrency has created a new breed of investors who are constantly chasing the next big thing.

Glasp

Hatched by Glasp

Aug 03, 2023

4 min read

0

The internet has a way of turning hobbies into something more. Just as Instagram turned everyone into a photographer and Twitter turned everyone into a writer, the internet is now in the process of turning us all into finance bros. The rise of online gambling, stock trading, and cryptocurrency has created a new breed of investors who are constantly chasing the next big thing.

One of the effects of this new online investment culture is a widening wealth gap. The top 0.01 percent of bitcoin holders control a staggering 27 percent of all the bitcoin in circulation. This disparity is 100 times worse than the wealth gap in the US economy. It raises the question of whether the low barrier to entry into the world of investing is actually a net positive.

Many of these new investors didn't come from wealthy backgrounds. They grew up with little money and developed a desire to save and invest responsibly in stable portfolios like 401ks, Roth IRAs, or index funds. However, the ease of online gambling and investing has changed their approach. They see investing as the only way to achieve the American Dream, as they don't expect to have Social Security or pensions, and retirement seems like a distant dream.

But even with the potential for massive profits, some investors are starting to question whether it's worth it. The world of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) is particularly perplexing. Despite turning a significant profit in just a few weeks, some investors are left feeling queasy about the whole concept. They struggle to see the value in these digital assets and wonder if it's all just a fad.

In the midst of this investment frenzy, it's important to understand how advertising plays a role. Ads don't work by persuading us with rational arguments. Instead, they prey on our emotions and create positive associations between the advertised product and feelings like love, happiness, and sexual confidence. These associations deepen over time and make us more likely to buy the product.

One mechanism used by ads is brand image. Brands make promises, either explicitly or implicitly, and consumers respond by buying more of the product. The promise creates an incentive for the brand to fulfill it. Another mechanism is cultural imprinting, where ads change the landscape of cultural meanings. What a product "says" about you becomes important when there's social or cultural signaling involved.

The power of cultural imprinting lies in common knowledge. For an ad to work through cultural imprinting, it needs to be seen publicly by a large audience. It's not enough for individuals to see it; everyone needs to know that everyone else has seen it. This creates a sense of peer pressure and can influence our behavior.

However, ads that rely on emotional inception, or creating arbitrary associations, are less effective. Cultural imprinting has a far larger impact than emotional inception. Ads that imprint themselves on the cultural landscape change the optimal means of pursuing our goals, rather than changing our goals themselves.

So, what can we do to counter the effects of ads and make informed decisions? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Be critical of your emotional responses: Ads prey on our emotions, so it's important to be aware of how they're manipulating us. Take a step back and think critically about the message the ad is trying to convey and whether it aligns with your values and goals.
  • 2. Don't block out ads completely: Blocking ads may seem like a way to avoid manipulation, but it also means missing out on valuable cultural information. Ads are part of the cultural landscape, and by blocking them, we alienate ourselves from the zeitgeist. Instead, be selective about the ads you engage with and use them as a source of information rather than blindly following their messages.
  • 3. Understand the power of peer pressure: Cultural imprinting works through the principle of common knowledge and peer pressure. Be aware of the influence that others' perceptions can have on your behavior. Make sure your decisions are driven by your own values and goals, rather than the desire to fit in or be perceived a certain way.

In conclusion, the internet has transformed the way we approach finance and investing, turning us all into finance bros. Ads play a crucial role in this new investment culture, relying on emotional manipulation and cultural imprinting to influence our behavior. It's important to be aware of these tactics and make informed decisions that align with our own values and goals. By understanding the power of ads and peer pressure, we can navigate this new investment landscape more effectively.

Hatch New Ideas with Glasp AI 🐣

Glasp AI allows you to hatch new ideas based on your curated content. Let's curate and create with Glasp AI :)