[TBI Headline Note: Just testing your corporate spam filters.]
The self-congratulations and lack of awareness is without a doubt the worst part of crypto. It sure would be refreshing to see a team write a post-mortem of their acquihire with humility, or watch a rookie fund manager discuss investment performance with grains of truth.
Something like this for the acquihires:
"We had a smart team, an exciting vision, and great financial backers, but we underestimated [x] market headwinds, we screwed up [y] deployment, and our decision to steer resources to [z] proved too costly to overcome and remain a going concern. But we believe our experience is valuable to [ABCco], which has found product-market fit, and we’re excited to be able to join their team and return some capital to shareholders. Onward."
Or this for investment managers:
“We’ve been lucky to deploy capital during one of the greatest bull runs in financial history, and we’re working hard to find alpha in a fully correlated market so that we can justify our fees over passive alternatives."
But people don’t like to admit that they pivoted, or that they’re underperforming the bull market, or that they just simply said something stupid.
It’s inconvenient socially to reverse oneself, and that’s not going to change any time soon.
Fortunately, there’s twitter!
At their worst, twitter critics can sound like nocoiner losers or envious haters. At their best, they keep everyone in check.
I love twitter.
It’s a great place to mix it up and stress test ideas, and as a forum to call people out and get called out. The more aggressive, the better. Truth to power!
You just need to develop a filter so that the mean and stupid tweets don’t get to you, and the mean and smart ones help you retrace your steps after you said something stupid.
It takes practice to tell the difference, but it’s a cure all for the self-congratulations and total lack of self-awareness in crypto because people will pounce on you when you are wrong or tweeting like a jerk.
Fortunately, I’m an expert in twitter wrath given my inauspicious start as an anonymous troll. (I’m still blocked by @jimcramer
, I think.)
That’s why I can appreciate a good Saturday night beef, genuinely like both parties involved, and still actually learn something. Meltem went on a tear on Saturday. Here was my favorite with Nick Tomaino:
Great snark. The original tweet reads like a bad Silicon Valley
Ahhh, but there’s a trick. This was only half of Nick's original point. He elaborated.
Nick: "The “everything is a security” approach to regulation would have the (perhaps unintended) negative consequence of preventing the masses from participating in wealth creation, making our industry once again a rich person game."
Makes the original tweet seem innocuous, but still:
Meltem: "how many token sales have you invested in at a significant “pre-sale” discount? speaking for myself, a good number. it’s still a rich / privileged person’s game. ultimately, the end goal is your statement. for now, the system persists.”
Nick: "Our fund has made 9 investments in total. We haven't made 1 pre-sale investment where a group of exclusive investors gets a better deal than the crowd right before a public sale without taking more risk, and we won't. You can follow along here:" https://thecontrol.co/1confirmation-portfolio-product-update-q1-2018-c7dad10ed59e
We all learned something!
Granted there were four qualifiers in that final tweet ("exclusive investors”, “better deal than the crowd”, “right before a public sale”, “without taking more risk”), but 1confirmation has now publicly confirmed they won’t pump and dump.
In the Wild West of crypto, it seems like a good thing to box people into a corner like that when it’s in the name of transparency and fairness. To call bullshit when you see it.
The alternative is that the insiders will still whisper about the bad behavior, but the outsiders will remain unaware. Consider the alternative from my DMs re Coinbase’s Earn.com acquisition:
“A $120m acqui-hire. I guess a16z co’s are like banks after all…too big to fail and get bailouts! The amount of Silicon Valley self-fellatio on this deal will be off the charts!”
“Revisionist bullshit. 21 pivoted multiple times when Balaji was at the helm."
Is it in the public interest to have these conversations publicly, or should we let the acquihired save face and craft their own narrative?
How about calling out the preferential prices that venture funds get? Should we stop asking pointed questions like "do you think your portfolio token derisked itself by 90% in the three months you had pre-sale access"?
Where do we draw the line on call-outs, and for whom?
My bias is to always call BS publicly. And it's why I follow people who call me out in return. Because twitter is a pretty low-impact service for boosting your self-awareness.
And ensuring that you never get accused of...ummm...the latter part of my headline.