Spotting the Real from the Hype: Understanding the Failures of Blockchain Platforms in 2022

When I was a kid, a tiny corner of the daily newspaper featured a “Spot the Differences” cartoon … maybe, it’s time to play that game again.

Spot the differences between these two headlines:
“5 Blockchain Platforms That Failed in 2022”
“Enterprise Blockchain Platforms Fail in 2022”

Here’s a clue. The first is accurate. The second is not.

If we delve into global collapses – from FTX and Terra/Luna to and TradeLens – that made headlines in 2022, some patterns emerge.

Although to an untrained eye, blockchain appears to be the common thread tying these stories together, a slightly more trained eye will notice the diversity of protocols and how they were used in these projects.

These project failures also further showcase that decentralized ledger technology is not to blame, rather, the shoddy implementation of a highly useful technology often is the culprit. There’s no substitute for hard, smart, and experienced work. And in the case of the FTX Exchange, failure can be attributed to greed and hubris, which caused CEO Sam Bankman-Fried to embrace questionable practices, steal investors’ money and lie to customers and regulators alike.

Then there’s the network-building aspect of it. Many of these blockchain-based solutions struggled due to the reluctance of people and businesses to adopt an inferior technology despite highly aggressive marketing campaigns that promised extraordinary results. But hype does not equal success.

As we step into 2023, it’s time to recognize the difference between companies that focus on blockchain technologies to make money and those that deploy blockchain and distributed ledger technologies to solve the complex challenges so many entreprises face.