Since their advent, cryptocurrencies have had a complex relationship with the media or news outlets that cover them. Even though there are plenty of opportunities for both to prosper, major news outlets and the crypto community have from time to time found themselves betting against each other. After all the rise of Bitcoin from a visionary experiment to the most popular cryptocurrency was fueled by media. Nowadays as new cryptocurrencies are vying to gain the attention of investors around the world on a daily basis, news and media coverage can make or break a cryptocurrency’s reputation. They can also prove to be a driving factor to make the difference between the rise of a cryptocurrency and its irrelevance. Crypto related content is like the golden goose for reporters, since no other area can offer so many compelling characters and rags to riches stories.
According to a recent study presented by Clover, which is a research firm that works on crypto related areas, found that media coverage of cryptocurrency followed a trend where it spiked whenever the crypto market fell. The study tracked the interdependence between media coverage of crypto values, measured over the past five years, and the opinions of the published materials.
Clover included in its report a survey of 48 established U.S. based and international media outlets to gather pieces that covered cryptocurrency between the period January 1, 2013 to July 31, 2018. The gathered articles were assessed using three analysis tool that analyze sentiments. The softwares go by the names of Valence Aware Dictionary and sEntiment Reasoner (VADER) and the Natural Language Toolkit (NLTK) library in Python. The analysis of the articles included the complete text of all 7,527 online news articles.
The last weeks of 2017 demonstrated the trend when the crypto coverage by various media outlets dramatically increased after a sharp decline in cryptocurrency, which was a result of convergence of various factors such as the performance of altcoins, and the holders of Bitcoin (BTC) trading off their coins to pay for holiday purchases. The same was observed in May and June during this year, when another fall in value of cryptocurrencies was followed by a short lived spike in articles.
When it comes to differentiating positive material from the negative ones Clover noted that Forbes and Business Insider, which are news websites that cover digital currency and assets regularly, were the ones which alone had a combined 1,335 articles which were more positive than the overall median sentiment estimated from the sample articles gathered, whereas only 413 of article from the two news outlets were recorded as having negative sentiments.
Almost one thousand crypto related news articles were released by CNBC during the assessed period and 52.9 percent of these articles were recorded as having positive sentiments and 47 percent had negative sentiments.
On the other hand American news website and organization named Brietbart News and Raw Story collectively published 91 articles which were negative and only one article which was positive. The average positive sentiment of articles released by Reuters, USA Today, and Gizmodo showed a substantial decrease over time, according to reports.
Bitcoin coverage has been volatile just like its value. The tone used in crypto related reports and their volume have shown a substantial rise and fall, both with time and with various outlets. Keeping aside one’s own biases, the influence press reports and articles have on our financial decisions, when it comes to investing in crypto or cashing out, is difficult to ignore. In the traditional areas of finance, it has been considered as a fact that media is a key entity that can make or break the market. But for an industry that is till budding, the press can also prove to have a very powerful and positive influence.