Back in 2017, when cryptos broke all highs and saw unprecedented growth, I was one of the millions of people who sought opportunity to grow along with the industry.
However, unlike others who went for crypto trading and investing, for me, it was a little different. I wanted to write about cryptocurrencies and the underlying technology — blockchain.
And I knew, being the nascent technology it is, there’s got to be a lot of content writing opportunities out there.
I was right.
There were. There are.
Soon, I had my first small-scale breakthrough into this niche. Writing blockchain and crypto seemed fun. Until 2 months of this, I was getting paid in the usual fiat currency — through a bank transfer.
Somewhere down the line, I was able to catch a big fish. The problem was, she wanted to pay me in Ethereum.
And for this… I felt the same way your nanny would if you go and tell her to use internet banking.
It was a new thing to me. And the fact that it was a money matter made me all the more cautious. I was obviously nervous, however, I had to take a risk. Had no other options in hand.
I could have either walked away poor or taken up my chances at being not-so-broke.
You probably already figured out what I did. Didn’t you?
Turns out, the client was a legit one. Once the work was done, I sent across my ETH address to receive the payment.
For people who don’t know, ETH address is an unique set of alphabets and numbers combined together that represent your Ethereum wallet just like there is an unique account number for your bank account. There are different wallet addresses for different cryptocurrencies.
A minute later, a message popped up on Telegram: “Sent you the ETH, please check.”
My heart skipped a beat. My wallet was still as empty as an upside-down water bottle without a lid.
As quick as I could, I Googled, “how long does it take for ETH transactions to complete.” Different sources cited different answers. They varied between 30 seconds to as much as 5 minutes.
I had to wait until the upper limit was breached.
Thankfully, I didn’t have to. The payment was received. There it was, my Ethereum wallet reflecting some value.
But what next? I couldn’t let the volatile market take away even a single penny of what I’ve earned through hard work. I didn’t even consider taking chances to see it rise. I knew it won’t.
The day I received ETH, it was trading somewhere close to $600. Today, it’s just $120 something. See.
The first thing I did was to sell them in the market and see it convert in ₹ (Indian Rupee).
It was all still there. In my application’s wallet. Not in my bank account. And I was still a little anxious if I would really get to use this in real life or would it be for me just as it is named. Virtual.
Had to try my luck. I clicked on withdraw. And left my phone there. Not to look back at it for the next few hours.
When I came back and unlocked it. Tadaaaa… Notification light blinking… my heart beating fast… I unlocked the phone to the message, “your account xxxxxx has been credited with ₹₹₹₹₹₹.”
I felt victorious. I didn’t succumb to the complexities of the digital world. I am meant to live in this generation. Yeahhh.
Okay, that was too much.
So, that was my first experience at receiving payments in Ethereum
There’s some ban now, and more is on the way
Well, soon after I received my first ETH payment, the Government of India cursed me and the rest of Indian crypto community by banning financial institutions from dealing with crypto-trading firms.
The Indian financial watchdog, RBI, has been consistently trying to impose a blanket ban on cryptocurrencies, however, it is still unclear as to what comes next for the Indian crypto community.
Koinex, the wallet I use to receive my payment, was quick to realize the adversities the market would face due to the ban. So, it built a peer-to-peer system for helping traders deposit and withdraw money from their wallets without directly indulging the bank in the process.
Do I still receive my payment in ETH
Yes. I do.
The ban has made the transaction process a bit time-taking by adding in a few more manual steps but I’ve got used to it.
Also, I mostly work with foreign clients and getting paid in ETH and receiving my payment instantly in my wallet is better than waiting 3 to 5 days for my payments to show up in my bank account (and wondering all the while if the client did really send across the payment or was I fooled — the cons of freelancing).
Let’s talk pros and cons
The transfer process is simple and the payment shows up in your wallet within a few minutes.It gives you a little experience of what is promised to be the future of money.If you trade (which I’m thinking of learning), you have it all in one place.
The markets are volatile which may result in some loss (or maybe even benefits) if you don’t convert from crypto to fiat at the same time.The conversion process is a little longer if your wallet provider doesn’t have a bank partnership.
So, here it is. How it feels like to be paid in Ethereum. Sometimes, when I tell people I get paid in cryptos for my blockchain projects, they react as if I’m living the future. And it feels great. And maybe, I am actually living the future before it becomes present.
This blog was originally published on Medium