hen you don't have a product, business, technology or anything in fact, other than an idea, a whitepaper (within the Blockchain industry) is a way of showing what you could have. Ok best example would be, have you seen bullseye? It was a show in the 80's about darts. Well not about darts, it was a quiz where you answered questions and then played darts for the points. Really simple. Anyway, so when you lost a guy, he was called Jim, would wheel out amazing prizes like a speed boat for Jan from a council estate in Sheffield - 'Here's what you could have won!' in one of the sickest catchphrases known to man. The mental health issues in the UK have been at unprecedented levels ever since, but Jim died a national hero. Sick. You have to check it out before we continue.
So what I'm getting at here is a whitepaper in Blockchain, and particularly those who held an ICO, was a kind of 'Here's what you could have' once you have invested, we've raised the made up total we need that we've coined from IPO's (excuse the pun) as a 'hard cap' and spent untold years trying to make such a concept viable before realising no one in the world wants or needs it. Like Jan and her speed boat, or lack of speed boat. Think Cardano.