Celebrities have huge fanbases that follow their lifestyles religiously. If Kylie Jenner can get an entire generation of women to buy lip fillers, you know that social media endorsements are legit. It makes perfect sense for brand new blockchain-based startups and new crypto-business players would want to harness that raw marketing energy. It’s the perfect collaboration since celebrities hardly ask questions about the kind of products they’re being asked to promote and new crypto-businesses don’t really want the general populace to be converted into customers, they just want the maximum amount of hype they can get.
Celebrities aren’t always the smartest when it comes to promoting tech and that often brings some strange, and sometimes funny stories to the limelight.
Centra Tech – DJ Khaled & Floyd Mayweather:
One story found the United States Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) had charged record producer DJ Khaled and professional boxer Floyd Joy Mayweather Jr. with cryptocurrency fraud. The pair were fined for failing to disclose that they were paid to promote a cryptocurrency. The infamous company they were paid by, called Centra Tech, previously sold $32 million of cryptocurrency in an initial coin offering and told the world that they had entered in a partnership with VISA to issue debit cards for cryptocurrencies. For their publicity, they had paid DJ Khaled and Floyd Mayweather, neither of whom had the slightest notion of what they had gotten into, and ended up having to pay hefty fines for their involvement.
LydianCoin – Paris Hilton:
Shortly after tweeting that she was looking forward to the upcoming LydianCoin ICO, Paris Hilton decided it was better to distance herself from the venture entirely. The company, Lydian, aimed to raise $100 million by selling 20 million coins at $5. However, the CEO of Lydian’s parent company pleaded guilty to domestic violence and was given jail time. Initially, Hilton’s endorsement had stirred some buzz but she soon withdrew support.
ParagonCoins – The Game:
American rapper, Jayceon Terrell Taylor, better known by his stage name The Game was sued over his involvement in a crypto business named Paragon. The company aimed to change the cannabis industry by streamlining the “seed-to-sale” process. The Game was a part of the company’s advisory board and he used his celebrity status to promote the company. However, the lawsuit claims Paragon used the capital raised to purchase real estate instead of transforming the marijuana industry, which was a clear violation of investor trust. The investors are seeking damages.
These are just three celebrities who have tried to dabble in the blockchain arts and failed miserably but rest assured that there are, and there will be, many more as long as there are new blockchain-based businesses popping up everywhere. Let’s hope that celebs start becoming a little bit smarter about their endorsements though.