Crypto Slang: Need to Know Cryptocurrency Terms

The crypto space is full of jargon like "HODL", "FUD", "FOMO", etc. Here are the top crypto slang and terminology new investors should know.

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The cryptocurrency world has a large lexicon of its own lingo. New investors and builders might feel left out if they aren’t familiar with all of the jargon, with terms like rekt, HODL, FUD, and sats being used on a daily basis.

This article aims to educate on some of the basic and most common cryptocurrency vernacular that every beginner should know. 

 Crypto Slang Terms 


FOMO stands for the "Fear of Missing Out." This term is used in traditional financial markets, not just cryptocurrency circles, and it describes the feeling of anxiety or regret that comes with not investing in an asset whose value is typically rapidly appreciating. 

In crypto, FOMO usually refers to scenarios where a coin or token rapidly increases in value, causing investors to fear that they will miss out on the opportunity if they don't buy in soon. 



HODL is a slang term derived from an internet forum rant in the early years of Bitcoin where a user accidentally misspelled “hold” in a post about not selling BTC despite a sudden price decline and being ill-suited to trading highs and lows. Now the iconic neologism refers to holding on to digital assets even when the market is crashing; in other words, having a long-term approach to crypto investing. 



FUD stands for "Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt" and indicates the intentional negative or misleading statements made about an asset. This term also exists in traditional markets, but it is used much more frequently among cryptocurrency investors who view certain information or online content as actions taken to cause investors to doubt an asset’s worth and prevent further buying or cause selling.  

So-called “FUDsters,” or those who spread FUD, usually aim to suppress the price of an asset to accumulate it for themselves at lower prices. As a psychological tool, FUD can take the form of proclaiming poor fundamentals, questionable project leadership, perceived lack of adoption, low network usage, or a network’s inability to process transactions. 



"Rekt" is a phonetic respelling of “wrecked,” which cryptocurrency users use in online social contexts to describe financial loss or ruin. The term is often used to describe someone who has lost a lot of money in the market, and it’s usually used on social media to signal the massive financial losses resulting from the liquidation of overleveraged assets. The term can be used genuinely or ironically even if real losses have not been suffered. 



Sats is an abbreviation of "satoshis," the smallest unit of bitcoin. One satoshi (or “sat”) is 0.00000001 BTC, or one hundred millionth of a bitcoin. The unit is named after Bitcoin’s pseudonymous creator, Satoshi Nakamoto. 

As bitcoin’s price appreciates, some investors prefer to switch to smaller denominations of bitcoin for gauging prices for goods or services and tracking their portfolio. Being able to denominate any fraction of a bitcoin is critical since it is readily divisible and frequently traded in fractional amounts. This is especially significant as bitcoin's price has skyrocketed in recent years, making it increasingly costly for new investors to acquire one complete bitcoin. 



Shill is a term used for someone who publicly recommends or advertises a product or asset. Typically the term is applied to someone who pretends to give an unbiased endorsement of something they have vested interest in or someone trying to manipulate the market.  

Shilling, as the act is called, is the act of excessive promotion, usually through propaganda or false narratives, to increase the value of whatever product or asset is being shilled.



A "whale" is a term used to describe an investor who holds a large amount of a digital asset and usually someone who has a lot of power in determining the direction of prices in the market. 



"Bagholder" is a label that refers to someone who continues to hold a position in a digital asset investment despite it losing value or someone who is stuck in a losing investment. 


No Coiner 

A "no coiner" is someone who does not own any digital assets. This term is often used to describe a person who has not invested in the cryptocurrency market or is generally pessimistic about the cryptocurrency industry. 


When Lambo? 

This term is used to ask when a digital asset will reach a certain high value. Lamborghinis have been associated with cryptocurrency wealth for many years because of the car manufacturer’s popularity among high-earning cryptocurrency investors. A variation of this lingo is “When Moon,” which refers to rapid price appreciation for an asset’s value that metaphorically reaches the moon.


Pump and Dump 

A "pump and dump" is a scheme where an investor artificially inflates the price of a digital asset then sells their holdings once the price has increased. Pump and dump schemes are not exclusive to the cryptocurrency market. They are also common in traditional equities and commodities markets.



Vaporware is a term used to describe digital assets or services announced but never released or released in an unusable condition. The term is often associated with projects that seem interesting and promising in theory or based on appealing marketing materials, but which are not likely to succeed for every launch. This term can also refer to a digital asset with a lot of hype but no real-world use case. 


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