The worst mistakes you can make with any new technology start with understanding. Following the crowd. Not knowing what you’ve gotten yourself into before it’s too late.

Just look at all the phony news stories that people share on social media without halfway vetting them. They end up making themselves look ignorant and uninformed, and that can cause damage to their reputations.

Similarly, Bitcoin and, more specifically, other virtual currencies, have gone from the hip new thing in entrepreneur circles to speculator-driven “investments” that can lose the unknowledgeable user thousands of dollars in the time it takes to go to the bathroom.

As a result of this volatility, many people have shied away from using the underlying technology known as blockchain.

Blockchain Itself Isn’t Scary

At the heart of any blockchain is transparency. The users assign value to whatever the “currency” or commodity supported by the blockchain actually is.

Blockchain has positive transformative uses to consider in the fields of transportation, logistics, journalism, government, banking, healthcare, and a variety of other fields.

Imagine paying half what you do now for health insurance because blockchain has cut the costs of doing business and providing services thanks to newly discovered efficiencies. While something like that may be a long-term benefit, we’re heading in the right direction.

That said, blockchain isn’t without areas of concern. Here are some of the worst mistakes you can make with it.

  • Getting started too early: no plan, no purpose, no partners
  • Initial coin offerings: going after ICOs that aren’t tied to any tangible benefit other than the coin itself
  • Poor technological infrastructure: this would include a poorly developed platform, as well as a blockchain with too few users on the peer-to-peer network
  • Not staying abreast of regulatory change: much is still to be decided stateside, federally, and in courtrooms across the US; if you’re not staying up-to-date on the trends, then you’re setting yourself up for disaster.

Look to the Law to Avoid These Blockchain Mistakes

As you delve into this technology, make sure you have someone in your corner ensuring that you can avoid the blockchain mistakes of others. John Teakell, a former special trial counsel for the US Securities and Exchange Commission, has his fingers on the pulse of this developing field of law as well as other “white collar” areas. If you have any questions about using blockchain in your business, reach out online or visit his Dallas-based office.