crypto slang

So you are new to crypto and are hearing all these crazy crypto slang used by your new buddies. Worry not, this article breaks it all down for you, with examples!


HODL is short for “hold on for dear life.” It is a popular crypto meme and misspelling of the word “hold” (some people misinterpreted it as a short form of “hold on for dear life”).

It originated on a Bitcoin forum during a period of market turbulence back in 2013. An unsettled investor ranted about how investors are ill-suited to trading highs and lows. He recommended that they rather simply buy and hold.

The term has since gained a lot of popularity among crypto enthusiasts. It is most commonly used during periods of steep price volatility in which investors often instruct colleagues to HODL.

Example: “The price of Bitcoin is dropping, but I plan to HODL through it!”

2. FUD

FUD is short for “fear, uncertainty, and doubt.” FUD is a psychological method of inspiring negative opinions about a particular asset to prevent further buying or even prompt selling or short-selling.

The intent is to suppress an asset’s price so the FUDer can amass at a lower price, or inflict financial misery onto others that are holding the token for what may be a competing crypto project.

FUD can be caused by; poor fundamentals, stagnant or bearish price movement, questionable project leadership, unclear roadmaps, lack of adoption, low network usage, and inability to be transacted in certain countries.

Example: “She panic sold all her coins because she listened to the FUD.”


FOMO is short for “fear of missing out.” FOMO occurs in all walks of life. In crypto, it’s a typical investor psychological state in which an investor feels a mixture of panic and envy for not having an active position in a strong market move from which others are profiting.

It typically refers to when a sharp bullish breakout happens and nervous investors debate whether or not to buy into an already high-priced market in hopes that they will be along for the remainder of the move. FOMO can occur in any financial market but occurs often occurs in crypto markets which are predominantly comprised of amateur retail investors trying to navigate extremely volatile price action as they attempt to build a well-balanced crypto portfolio.

Example “I bought BTC at an all-time high last week and it’s now down 20%. The FOMO got to me!”

4. Whale

In crypto, a whale is a person (or company) that holds a massive amount of a given cryptocurrency. For example, a Bitcoin whale may be a company that owns 50,000 bitcoins, allowing it to influence the markets with a single trade.

Example: “A whale sold a big portion of his bag this morning, and as a result, the price of Bitcoin is falling.”

5. Pump and Dump

“Pump and dumps” don’t merely occur in cryptocurrency; it happens in stock markets too. It is market manipulation and is illegal in regulated markets. Basically, a crypto pump-and-dump scenario unfolds when investors inflate the price of an asset, like a Bitcoin, and subsequently sell their holdings before the price falls again. They pump it up — and then dump it (sell-off)  before the value falls.

Example: “I was caught up in a pump-and-dump scheme involving a new crypto, and now I’ve lost all my savings.”

6. Bagholder

 A bagholder is somebody who bought into a position at a raised price and thereafter saw the value of their holdings fall.

In the crypto world, you never want to get caught holding the bag!

Example: “I think this coin is going to sell off, and somebody is going to be left as the bagholder.”

7. Shill

Shilling implies promoting any crypto through implicit advertising. The purpose is to spread the buzz about a coin by personally endorsing the product in public forums – usually with the pretense of unpaid promotion, when in fact he/she is being paid for his services.

It usually has a negative connotation and is widely used in pump-and-dump schemes but can be used in other contexts as well. For example, an influencer can be paid to promote a cryptocurrency or service, a crypto project creator can shill their project to help it gain users, or a casual investor might shill an underperforming cryptocurrency in their portfolio to sell it at a higher price.

Example: “It’s often frowned upon when influencers shill coins for their own personal gain.”

8. Rekt

Rekt is actually an intentional misspelling of “wrecked.” It is a crypto slang used to describe an investor’s portfolio or investment getting handily defeated. It is often used on social media to alert overleveraged positions being liquidated causing huge financial losses.

Example: “After the price of Bitcoin fell, my position was rekt.”

9. Sats

Satoshis, commonly abbreviated as “sats,” is the smallest unit of Bitcoin i.e 0.00000001 BTC. One satoshi is equal to 100 millionth of a Bitcoin. It was named after the creator of Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto. As Bitcoin prices rise, the importance of it being divisible cannot be underestimated, people can simply buy a fraction of a BItcoin – HODL a few sats.

A similar popular term, “stacking sats,” refers to an investing strategy in which an investor accumulates satoshis, fractions of a Bitcoin, to increase a Bitcoin position.

Example: “I transferred ten sats to my wallet.”

10. When Lambo?

At one point, Lamborghinis became associated with crypto culture. Crypto millionaires were commonly buying Lambos. As such, the term “when Lambo?” became synonymous with a cryptocurrency’s success. It’s basically asking when the asset in question will gain enough value that its holder can buy a Lambo.

Example: “Admin, I just bought into Webdollar…. When Lambo?”

11. Flippening

“Flippening” refers to the hypothetical moment in which the value of Ethereum overtakes the value of Bitcoin.

Example: “I’m loading my bags with ETH in expectation of the Flippening.”

12. No Coiner

A “no-coiner” is someone who’s pessimistic about crypto and believes that there is no use case for it – like our old buddy Waren. They do not hold any coins or tokens. They are simply a “no-coiner.”

Example: “I just got an earful from some no-coiner about how crypto is going down the tubes.”

13. Vaporware

“Vaporware” is a sexy, cool idea or concept that will, in all likelihood, never exist. It also refers to prospective cryptocurrencies that have no apparent use.

Example: “Your idea sounds great, but it is all vaporware — it will never get off the ground.”

14. Cryptosis

“Cryptosis” refers to when the crypto bug bites somebody, and they simply can’t stop talking about it. The afflicted basically discusses, reads, writes, and consumes information about crypto all day, nonstop.

Example: “I introduced my uncle to Bitcoin, and now he has a serious case of Cryptosis.”


BTD simply stands for “buy the dip.” It is a common phrase in financial markets meaning to enter a long position during a suspected brief decrease in an asset’s price. It is mostly used in bull markets to support the bullish sentiment and rising prices but is also used in crypto bear markets as a call to buy at good historical value for a longer-term investment.

BTFD, short for “Buy the [Expletive] Dip” is an exuberant exclamation of BTD, typically used during manic bullish rallies.

Example: “When the market pulls back, some suggest to BTD.”

16. KYC

KYC is short for “know your customer.“ It is a form of identity verification required by many crypto exchanges since being imposed by government regulatory agencies back in 2017.

17. Mooning

If a cryptocurrency is “mooning,” that means its price is experiencing a spike. It is not uncommon for crypto watchers to often get excited about minor bumps in price and boast that their coin is headed “to the moon.”

Example: “STEPN is mooning!”

18. DYOR

DYOR stands for Do your own research. It is simply encouragement for crypto investors to research their investments before making any financial commitments to avoid falling for scams.

Example: Always DYOR buddy, otherwise, you might end up throwing away your money!

Want to discover more amazing projects? Check out the Reviews and Crypto World category. If you are new to crypto, visit the Education category and get started with your first project.

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