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What is the Meaning of Hopium and Copium?
Author: Catherine
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Netizens accuse each other of being on hopium not just in response to saying the current situation can someday improve. The recent Bitcoin halving was described as a hopium fuel. Nothing wrong with being optimistic but when does it become hopium? What’s the difference between hopium and copium? Check out our explanation of these slang words.

Key Takeaways

Definitions: What do Copium and Hopium mean?

Let’s get this out of the way: what’s the meaning of these slang words? Both of these terms describe a metaphorical substance someone can “do” or be “on”. These are portmanteau words with the latter half referencing opium, an addictive substance with narcotic properties or more commonly, a drug and ingredient of morphine and heroin.

opium poppy
Opium poppy

Copium is made up with “cope” as the center, so it means coping or dealing with something difficult via false rationale. If you are accused of “doing copium” or “(being) on copium”, it means you are suspected of using the wrong reasons or making them up to deal with the situation.

The second slang term is closely related to the first one, with hopium meaning dealing with a situation via false hopes. The nuance that differentiates these terms is that hopium can fuel a more global situation and refer to more than concrete reasoning: wishful thinking, false hope, etc. Interestingly enough, “hopium” came before “copium” and has been used to talk about politics, sports, and, of course, trading.

hopium vs copium

Why even make up these words? What’s wrong with expressing optimism or hope? Some might argue that it helps set apart reasonable expectations for the better from baseless delusions that can cloud one’s judgment.

Briefly speaking, “copium” is a more specific instance of “hopium”. Let’s see some examples so you too can grasp this difference in meaning.

Examples: What Constitutes Copium and Hopium?

An example that makes it very easy to understand the hopium meaning is a headline change in this The Block article: “As NFT sales dwindle, Art Blocks resists pinning hopes on a renewed crypto bull run”. Compare it to The Block’s Telegram feed, where the same headline reads: “Art Blocks resists crypto bull run hopium as NFT sales slide”. Since the article is from 2023 and talks about the woes of the NFT market, bearish sentiment makes up a big part of this word’s usage.

Another example can be found in this headline from Cointelegraph: “Bitcoin halving hopium: Study reveals 84% of investors expect new all-time highs”. It means that these investors are pinning a lot of optimism on the halving event but it is also implied to be a little overblown. As you can see, there is a place for talks about hopium even in a bull market!

And here is an example of “copium” used when talking about crypto trading. X user Gun says “I won’t sell the copium”, meaning they would not try to convince their followers that BTC is going to recover any day now. Rather, they point at the price history and mention that it has happened before and how it was resolved.


The crypto community culture is inseparable from the larger internet culture, which seems natural considering almost all of it takes place online. Memes and internet slang are common in these circles, so we hope our article helped you fill any gaps your crypto vocabulary had.

Would you describe optimism about the halving as hopium? Get insights from our blog and join the conversation on X, Facebook, Telegram, or the subreddit!

People Also Ask

What is the meaning of Hopium? What does Hopium mean in trading?

Hopium is a slang word used in trading to describe an overly optimistic or hopeful attitude toward market conditions or a particular investment. It refers to the belief that things will improve despite evidence suggesting otherwise. Traders who indulge in hopium may ignore risks and rely on wishful thinking rather than sound analysis.

How do you use Hopium in a sentence?

An example of the use of the word “hopium” in a sentence: “After the stock market took a sharp downturn, some investors were still holding onto hopium, convinced that the prices would bounce back quickly.”

What does copium mean in slang?

“Copium” is a slang term that combines “cope” and “opium” to describe a state of denial or self-delusion to cope with a difficult situation. It is often used humorously to poke fun at people who refuse to accept reality and instead cling to false hope or unrealistic expectations. The term implies that the person is relying on this coping mechanism like a drug to avoid facing the harsh truth.

What is an example of copium?

In crypto, copium can look like this: “The price of my favorite cryptocurrency dropped significantly today, but I’m not worried at all. It’s just a temporary dip and it will definitely bounce back soon. HODLing strong!” For it to be copium, the evidence has to suggest otherwise.