In the cryptocurrency and blockchain community, the term "degen" is a shorthand for "degenerate gambler". It refers to individuals who are willing to take high risks for the potential of high rewards, often engaging in speculative investments without thorough research or a clear understanding of the technology or project fundamentals. The behavior and mindset of a degen are characterized by:

  1. High-Risk Investments: Degens are known for putting their money into extremely volatile and speculative crypto assets or projects, including new and untested tokens, often based on hype or the promise of quick returns.
  2. Yield Farming and Liquidity Mining: Participating in yield farming and liquidity mining with high levels of leverage or in pools with significant impermanent loss potential, chasing high annual percentage yields (APYs) without fully understanding the risks.
  3. NFT Flipping: Buying and selling non-fungible tokens (NFTs) based on trends or speculation rather than intrinsic value or personal appreciation of the art or utility, hoping to "flip" them for a quick profit.
  4. Meme Coins and Pump-and-Dump Schemes: Investing in meme coins or participating in pump-and-dump schemes where the value of a cryptocurrency is artificially inflated through hype and coordinated buying, only to be sold off for profit, often leaving latecomers with significant losses.
  5. Frequent Trading Based on FOMO: Making trading decisions based on the fear of missing out (FOMO) rather than rational analysis or strategy, leading to frequent buying and selling as they chase the next big thing.
  6. Lack of Due Diligence: Entering into investments without doing proper due diligence on the project's team, technology, use case, or market potential. Decisions are often based on social media buzz, influencer recommendations, or the desire not to miss out on perceived opportunities.

The term "degen" can be used both self-referentially among individuals in the crypto community with a sense of humor about their high-risk tolerance and by others as a critique of the speculative excesses and irrational behavior that can sometimes pervade the cryptocurrency market. While being a degen can lead to substantial profits, it's fraught with risks, and many individuals suffer significant losses due to the volatile and unpredictable nature of the crypto markets.