Transcripts

Brad Michelson – Crypto Marketing & eToro Transcript

Brad Michelson - Crypto Marketing & eToro

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Hey folks Rob McNealy here. And today we’re talking to Brad Michelson. He is a crypto marketing guru based in New York. And today we’re going to learn all about the ins and outs of marketing in the crypto space. And I think you see this a lot with a lot of developer led projects out there that marketing seems to be the thing that developers hate a lot. But I want to get a Brad’s kind of input and his take on things. So Brad, welcome to the show. How are you today?

Brad Michelson – eToro
Doing great. Thanks for having me.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I appreciate you taking the time to come on and talk with us. Marketing is something that it’s near and dear to my heart. And I think that in really for there to be crypto mass adoption, I think marketing, at least from the crypto side of things really needs to ramp up his game. And I want to kind of explore that a little bit with you today if possible, but but before we dive into kind of all this, you know, marketing stuff. Let’s talk a little bit about you. What’s your background and how did you get into crypto marketing?

Brad Michelson – eToro
So I originally started out in e commerce marketing, so I was at an agency for a few years and learn the ins and outs of paid media over there. ended up leaving as the director of strategy at the agency went in house to an e commerce brand and didn’t have the best time and then I when I was looking for a job from there, I found my first crypto company so I jumped into that. Two feet forward, which was pretty fun. I was at helped launch dex which was really cool and obviously a big learning experience. It was after, you know, the Ico boom, it to a degree like the the place I had worked had already completed their Ico so it was fully funded and they’re building out the platform. And it was also right around the time when Facebook and all the social platforms started banning crypto ads. So that’s one of the biggest differentiators between traditional marketing and crypto marketing is that you don’t have a lot of the same levers as you might elsewhere.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what do you do about that? You say your crypto project, how do you get your brand out there? How do you market a crypto project effectively?

Brad Michelson – eToro
You know, a lot of it relies on social media and it’s really community building and not in the way that Ico projects would create a telegram group and just like get as many people in there as possible and use it as as like a pumping mechanism. It’s not really like that at all, at least anymore. It’s a lot more reliant on word of mouth and just general community sentiment, being able to go on Twitter, having your brand post something, you know, you’re not necessarily being like, outrageous, but you can just post it in an Oculus. bullish tweet and you’ll get hundreds of likes out of it just because of the goodwill that you’ve, you’ve grown in the community. So a lot of it is just sharing and echoing the sentiment of your target audience. But on top of that, you still have to make gestures that deer, the brands to the community. So with some people it’s being you know, a really approachable brand with very easy to understand. messaging that maybe is like a really easy onboarding to the ecosystem, for example, lolly they do a fantastic job with that. Other times It’s, you know, something like what we do at etoro. Or we’ll work with, you know, a famous celebrity or something like that. And we’ll do a commercial with them. And that way we’re, you know, bringing in more average consumers into the the ecosystem. But I think every brand has their own different approach. And it’s sort of the key really is just finding what makes the most sense for the people that want to use your product and expanding that as much as you can.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So I was around when the Ico craze was going nuts. We started two and a half years ago with Tosca, and it was interesting because we could never even get an ad, you know, placed with any of the social media platforms out there primarily, you know, Facebook and stuff. But that seems to still be kind of the problem. And in the last two and a half years, I mean, the Ico world is largely dead, at least in the United States right now. The the scam pump and dump groups are mostly You know, quiet at least right now, though they’ll probably return when you know, the next Bull Run kind of jumps up. So the question I would have with you is, why is there such a still a blanket, you know, community standards problem with crypto related stuff on the major platforms? Why are they still banning it? The space is so much different and more mature now than it was a two and a half years ago. You got any insight of my why that might be?

Brad Michelson – eToro
I think it’s a risk thing. I think that that there were a bunch of lawsuits around the time of the Ico boom, both to the ad platforms and you know, not necessarily just Facebook and Twitter, but predominantly them, as well as other platforms where people are saying, I saw this advertisement on your platform. I assumed it was legit. And it turns out it was a huge scam. I think that everyone by now has noticed the the increase in attention on not just content across these social platforms, but the you know, whether they’re offensive or whatever else or they’re predatory, there’s rules on tons and tons of different industries. And obviously, finances is a big part of that. And that extends into things like predatory loans. And payday lenders can’t necessarily advertise on Facebook or I think even Google, you can’t advertise those products anymore. So unfortunately, crypto is still in one of those categories. But we have seen a little bit of movement that hopefully over the next little while this will start loosening up a bit. There have been rumors for the last little while.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, it was interesting. I saw today on my social media that there was a couple social media content people that said they got locked out of their Twitter accounts, which I thought that was interesting. Then and then most of the stuff they post is not what I would call spammy or shilling by any stretch of the imagination. than anything, and it seems like it’s pretty alive and well. And I’ve seen this where a URL will, you know, be banned from, you know, Facebook or Instagram and there’s like, zero, you can’t even appeal. There’s not even a process. There’s not a button to push. And so it’s interesting. I, you know, there’s a lot of rumors out there, especially among the conspiracy theorists that, you know, they’re they’re trying to, you know, head off any competition, you know, at least on the Facebook side would like a Libra out there, for instance. So they don’t like the competition from other crypto projects. I mean, do you think there’s any merit to something like that? It seems it seems a little out there for me, but I was just wondering if you’ve heard anything along those lines.

Brad Michelson – eToro
I really doubt it. You know, Libra, especially at that time was so far away from even launching, and it’s even far away now from launching, and it’s just not really, it’s not really also what that business models competing with. So I just don’t think that they’re related personally.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So over the last last couple years, it’s been interesting, you know, watching crypto marketing from the inside as a project. You know, we, you know, there’s so many stories that I’ve heard about at least experienced myself, where during the Ico boom, you know, just to get an interview on a podcast like this might cost $10,000 or more depending on what it is. Is that changing? Now is that Yeah, easier,

Brad Michelson – eToro
way easier. I don’t think I’ve seen a podcast that charges to interview in a while now, which is a really good change. You know, that it was extremely hard to get on, you know, any of those big YouTube channels or, or whatever it was in 2017. And then it moved into podcasts a couple years later. Obviously, the space for sponsoring all these shows has expanded significantly. There’s a ton of money that goes into that. And, you know, I’ve been sponsoring podcasts and influencers for a few years now and I just think it’s going more legit. There was a time where it was like wild west amateurism, and it’s finally matured into like a legit marketing marketplace kind of for sponsorships.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You know, it’s really kind of funny because when we started Originally, I couldn’t get on an interview. Because we didn’t do an Ico we had no cash to spend, you know, lots of money to get on, though, actually, it’s kind of funny, because one of the reasons I started this podcast, because I said, I’m not gonna charge and I never have I’ve never even taken a sponsor. I don’t do this to monetize. I do this because I genuinely like the industry. And I like to talk to cool and smart people that are doing cool things because I learned from people like you coming on the show. So I always thought it was funny because this whole podcast was a response to that. And originally, when I started this, I didn’t really want to do this. But I do like talking to really cool people. And so it’s just interesting, you know, kind of seeing it, but When I’m trying to get interviewed, I’m seeing it. It’s a lot different now than it was two and a half years ago. And I think that’s a good thing for the industry that the advertising the marketing piece is starting to become more formal, I guess, and a little more legitimate and honest. And I think that’s good.

Brad Michelson – eToro
I think there’s a reason for that, too. I think that with a lot of crypto companies, like when I started at my first crypto company, most of the opportunities that were available were companies, Ico companies that were gonna pay you in their tokens. And this was before the Icos. So they were like pre mining tokens to give their employees and in the hopes that the token will pump at the Ico and you’ll get paid off by that, but then we’re going to pay you otherwise. Now, you it’s you’re going to be really hard pressed to find that that’s not really you’re not going to really find that anywhere. A lot of crypto companies now are at least reasonably well funded. So They can pay you normal salaries, some more than others. You know, these things come with benefits. And there’s HR along with it. And these are real companies as opposed to in that 2017 2018 range where it was very bootstrapped, and like semi real company and people were really leaning into the whole decentralized company thing, which I don’t know necessarily if it materialized in the way that they originally presented it. But the way that it’s become now is his own unique thing, which is really exciting. But it’s nice to see that it’s formalized in that way and with those budgets for the businesses come budgets to to hire legit professionals. So you know, most of the people at most of the projects you’re aware of the big ones at least, they didn’t come from crypto, a lot of those people aren’t crypto native. Even my team there’s half of us probably aren’t crypto people I’m lucky enough to have been in since 2012 is when I discovered it. So there’s, you know, this whole back catalogue of knowledge that I can pass down to my team and to other teams. But it’s a double edged sword, right? Because people come in with traditional marketing experience or traditional finance experience, whatever it is, and then they got to catch up on the the finer points, and especially in marketing, you know, the audience is so sensitive to certain signals or values, that there aren’t a lot of opportunities to screw up and figure it out afterwards. So at first, it’s a bit of a learning curve, but it ends up being huge for the the attracting talent in our industry in the long run.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So you said earlier and I know this to be true as well is that there’s a lot you know, the the tools that you have for growing are a lot more limited, because, you know, you just can’t go say, Oh, we need 10,000 users. To download our app that’s, you know, between five and 10 bucks a user, whatever it is, just go buy the ads and boom, you know, we build it out. You know, that’s not really something you can do with crypto very easily. So when you have an when you’re hiring, you know, marketing professionals and you bring them on your own team that, you know, maybe aren’t, you know, crypto natives, but they come from a more traditional marketing background. Have you found that they see that as a challenge? Or do you think they get more frustrated that they don’t have as many tools in their toolbox?

Brad Michelson – eToro
Depends on their background, if if they had like a pure paid marketing background like I did when I was younger, then it would be a little head spinning because you’re used to having a fashion brand that you just run ads on Instagram on. And you can test you know, a million different iterations of copy and creatives. And there’s a whole universe within within that realm of marketing, but it really forces you outside your comfort zone. It’s not that paid media disappears necessarily, right. There’s ad networks. outside of just Google and Facebook, and the obvious people, you know, buy sell ads is one that you see relatively often. There’s a few others. And you can also do, you know, native placements within a bunch of different websites, like you can buy native placements on Yahoo or, you know, CNBC or TechCrunch, even. But they don’t necessarily come with the performance metrics, or the performance history that Google or Facebook might. So someone in that scenario, initially, in theory would be a little shocked. And there’s a bit of a learning curve, but you’d hope that that person would be able to, you know, dive in and come up with some new best practices for themselves.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So that’d be things like, you know, programmatic and those kind of ad buys that you’re talking about there that which are not the normal Google AdWords kind of thing, but, you know, dedicated ad networks that are already placed on specific websites.

Brad Michelson – eToro
Right, exactly. And then the The whole universe of app advertising, which is a whole other thing,

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
That’s interesting, tell me about that.

Brad Michelson – eToro
So in the same way that there are display ad networks on whatever website you’re on, there are also those really annoying ads that show up in apps, like when you’re playing like a puzzle game or something and you lose, and then you have to watch an ad for like 15 seconds, those kind of ad ad networks where they’re gonna get placed in games or news, news apps, or whatever it else, whatever else it is. And they’re not necessarily run through Google. So they might have less strict rules in order to attract people like crypto companies or other smaller industries that are not as easily accessible through Google.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what have you found to be the most effective, you know, tool out there for getting out to as far as normal advertising? Would it be the app advertising? Would it be the programmatic? Which one Have you found has the best, which one of those has the best audience that are receptive to the crypto messaging?

Brad Michelson – eToro
It really depends on what your objective is and what kind of marketing you’re doing. So if it’s brand marketing or performance at etoro, we’re lucky enough to actually be able to run ads on Facebook and Twitter in the main platforms, because globally were more widely recognized as a broker. So that’s what most people know us for overseas, but in the US for crypto only right now. So we’re able to take advantage of that relationship with those publishers. Outside of that, you know, it’s it’s the typical stuff, when you’re marketing to a niche industry like we are. It’s thinking about where are these people most often? So you go to Twitter, okay, well, we can’t necessarily run ads on Twitter. You know, you can post organically as much as you can. But what’s next so what’s next is podcasts, advertising or YouTube advertising. natively within the videos with the publishers. But there’s also the influencer sponsorships. And you’re seeing that get more and more popular now, whether they’re through networks, like what block works group is doing or whether the brand reaches out individually to individual influencers, which is my preference and what we do. So that’s one of the easiest and arguably most affordable ways to get wider reach within your niche.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So say, a community project. Now how what would you say is the best thing for a community project that may not have that Ico backing that big bankroll that we had with a lot of these products? You know, two, three years ago? It was interesting. I mean, you saw people throw money, like really big amounts of money at ridiculousness. As far as marketing goes, I saw and it seems like ROI to me has always been an important thing. I was just you know, curious. What would you recommend? For like, you know, these community projects that don’t have that, how would you deal with those kind of projects instead of something that was really had a big bankroll? And, you know, maybe VC funding, for example? Sure.

Brad Michelson – eToro
Well, I think that you got to think about it in some degree, similar to a brand selling a product. So who is where is your product for sale? Okay, so we’re thinking about crypto exchanges, right? So, you might want to spend a lot of your time getting more familiar with the marketing and PR teams of those exchanges so that you have better like co branding opportunities and relationships with those people. You can have them add your brand and your token into more marketing materials and therefore, expose the token brand to more people that way. And, you know, marketing is really just a game of eyeballs at the end of the day, whether it’s consciously or subconsciously The more people see things, the more they’re aware of a brand, the more opportunity there is for them to purchase or participate within the brand. So that’s probably a place that I would start with first because, you know, when people see people shilling, like non top 10 assets now, people just assume it’s some sort of, whether it’s a bot network or whatever else it is. I see this in my replies all the time. But if you can integrate organically with a provider of your services, it makes it a lot easier for you.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So one of the things that I’ve seen and it was interesting, as someone whose US based your US based is that crypto is like a global thing from day one. You know, and so the exchanges are global, the projects are global. The, the basis for many of these projects are global in nature. How do deal with that as a project, like for instance, marketing. You know, a lot of times, you know, US base industry might be just mostly focused on that, you know, the the US, for instance. But how do you deal with the global niss and the messaging globally for any kind of crypto project?

Brad Michelson – eToro
This is a challenge that I think most crypto companies discovered really early on and when you look at when we keep going in 2017 2018, but it really was a craze, you know, people are not for people that are relatively new in this space. It’s not that people are playing up what it was like during the the boom, it was as exaggerated as it sounds when people talk about it. So there are all these projects that you know, started out us base or started out UK base and then suddenly they had to hire like a community team in multiple regions of Asia because suddenly that catches on and one of their exchanges over there. And then all of a sudden, maybe a market dries up. And they have to ditch those and only really focus on two regions. I recently had a call with someone who’s a part of a fairly large defy project. And they were saying that over the last year, they’ve cut teams in certain regions of the world. And they’re really just focusing in the US and a couple other places right now, because that’s where their customers are at the moment. And really, that’s what it comes down to. It’s where the majority of your users in the case of a token project, where’s the majority of your volume? And what can you do with those people to increase the brand awareness or your volume if that’s what your KPI Your goal is there?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, it’s been interesting as a project right, and you know, I’m not here to shill #TUSC all day, you know, I love #TUSC but it’s interesting because it’s really we’re US based, ee’re not an IC O, so we’re not a legal security. So we’re one of probably a couple dozen projects that eventually be able to legally be traded on us exchanges. The problem is it’s really hard to get on a US exchange. So most of the exchanges we’re on at least right now are in Asia. I mean, there’s just seems like we’re the most of them are right now. But it’s interesting having to go through and negotiate with all these different in that and it’s different by which country in Asia to their the way they interact, the way they negotiate, or in some cases don’t negotiate. And it’s an interesting kind of trying to navigate that, like, I mean, I got a background in business. I got an MBA for whatever that’s worth these days, but, you know, but it’s like International Business one on one day one. Yep. And it’s like, I got to go read a book on you know, negotiating in Asia and because I just never had to do that before. So it’s been pretty fascinating. And it’s actually been really fun too, though, because I’ve met some amazing people. Around the world through my project. And so I think that’s what I really like about doing this. But it’s also sometimes really frustrating is, you know, not understanding some of the, you know, just the more cultural nuances just because there’s so many you have to be worried about something. And you know, it’s interesting, because in a typical American, right, you just kind of think all Asians are the same. Well, they’re not they’re very, very culturally very different from one another. And so, only time ago I did I used to work for a Japanese country company. And back when I was a corporate Guy 20 years ago, and you know, I get how the Japanese work because I work for a Japanese company I worked for an ally Japanese were but they think and act and do business very differently than say people in China do. It’s just totally night and day and, And to me, that’s been very fascinating. But is for you guys even like with etoro? Are you essentially then hiring different marketing people or ground teams in each country that you think you’re going to have a big presence in?

Brad Michelson – eToro
So basically, the way it works with us is that we have regional offices. So, for example, I work in the US office, I run the US marketing team. But there’s a completely different marketing team in the UK, for we have one region that’s most of Europe that there’s one team working on. There is a team in China that only works on China, etc. So we’re a little bit luckier because we’re at the scale now where we can have all these regional teams. But it’s not that easy for everyone else. So it’s kind of a little bit about prioritization based on business goals.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So do you guys all coordinate though, all the different marketing teams around the world to so you still have a similar message or really staying on the consistent? You know, focus when you’re doing the marketing, or is it is it then just regionalised? Like, is there one central brand messaging and then it’s just, you know, regionalised in a certain way, that makes more sense for those places?

Brad Michelson – eToro
Yes, kinda. So basically, there’s like a central brand to etoro That’s managed globally, or at HQ, we just call it globally. There’s like a brand book basically with the way we like to talk about things, the colors, we use the gradient styles that we do in our graphics and things like that. But every region is a little bit different, right? So the coffee is going to differ. You know, the way that the UK talks about crypto would be different than we do. There are things that we’re allowed to do that they’re not allowed to do, for example, we like to throw incentives to customers to have them come in, but in the UK, they’re not allowed to do that legally. So there’s a lot of differences and they really leave it up to us to make it our own, which is a really fun part of the job.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, and your experience, at least, you know, coming from the more traditional side of marketing to the crypto, what would you see what are some of the the horror stories that you’ve seen out there in the marketing of crypto?

Brad Michelson – eToro
Yeah, I think a lot of it goes back back to how there was a lot of like amateurism at the beginning and it wasn’t like, purposeful negligence or anything like that. It was that most of the people, most of the personalities were just people, right? They, they had never taken a sponsorship before, they had never done any of these things. So sometimes you’d like sign a deal with someone for six months. And then two weeks later, they’re like, sorry, I decided I don’t want to do this with you anymore. I signed with your competition. So stuff like that is really annoying, but it happens from time to time. And, you know, you’re not going to burn a bridge. So it’s whatever it is. Other times it’s, you know, you if you think back, you can probably think of at least a couple companies that partnered with a project that ended up being a scam of some sort, right, like whether it’s listing a token or whatever it is. So I think that a lot of the differences between then and now is just maturity and growing into like a respectable industry.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what would you say your best advice would be to new companies say, VC backed project, what would be the best piece of advice you could give them in the beginning?

Brad Michelson – eToro
Invest in your brand and your brand’s voice. So that applies to social media, the way you talk about things, the way you present the values of the company. Because at the end of the day, the way that our community works is that if you don’t follow the simple rules of, of the the basic tenants of centralized currencies and whatever way you want to interpret those things, digital currencies, you’re really never going to take off, right? Because you’re not going to be able to capture the attention of the influencers, who might share your content and bring more attention to your brand. It’s a lot more of an uphill battle. You don’t need necessarily to invest in a paid media. A team or a paid media agency, which is kind of backwards to a lot of people’s experiences. So having a strong brand team, which includes a strong UX asset on board, and then making a product that’s easy to use, I think we’re finally approaching the days of no longer having to deal with apps or daps, or platforms that you need to read like a manual for because the first time there were a lot of exchanges where you kind of had to read steps on a forum or whatever to complete a purchase or a trade. And thankfully, those days are now appeared to be behind us.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Thank goodness.

Brad Michelson – eToro
Yeah, right.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So Brad, where can people find out about more about you?

Brad Michelson – eToro
You can find me on Twitter @BradMichelson.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I appreciate you coming on the show today. And anytime you got something interesting, you want to talk about, you’re more than welcome to come back. Sounds great. appreciate you having me. Thank you. I am Rob McNealy, this is the Rob McNealy program. Check us out on the web at Rob McNealy calm and we will catch you next time.

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Scott Cunningham – Crypto & Things Transcript

Scott Cunningham - Crypto & Things

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Now, welcome to the program. Hey folks, Rob McNealy here and today I am excited. I’m talking to Scott Cunningham. He is the social media influencer host of the crypto things podcast. He’s got a huge following all over the internet. He talks a lot about a lot of different crypto stuff, a lot of the business stuff. So I’d like to welcome to the show. Scott, how are you today?

Scott Cunningham
I’m doing great. Thank you so much for having me on.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I appreciate you coming on. I’ve enjoyed speaking to you in the past and I think our audience will gain a lot of valuable knowledge hearing about you or from you. So before we get started, kind of can you give a little bit of background about how you got into the crypto And how you got into publishing about crypto stuff.

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, absolutely. So I unfortunately got in just before the big crash in at the end of 2017. I invested a bunch, I was just getting into it. And and then the big crash happened. So I realized I wasn’t the greatest that investing. But I was curious to see what other ways blockchain could be used. And as a social media marketer, I thought, you know, how could this be? How could this work for social media, so not long after of, you know, looking around for a while I found steam. And that was kind of the only platform at the time. So I started posting on there figuring what you know what it was all about. And then I realized there was a lack of educational material on like, how to use it, and just like teaching people about the actual different platforms. So from there, I started doing tutorials I started just like learning A lot more. And then maybe about six months after that I started to expand and look for other platforms. And since then I’ve just spent a lot of time exploring new platforms, doing reviews, and interviewing different people from those companies and organizations.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So of all the different platforms that you’ve kind of been looking at, you mentioned that you started off on the social media marketing side. How are the crypto related publishing platforms different than the traditional older school kind of social media publishing platforms?

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, so there is a range I would say of like, how centralized how decentralized, how much are they actually using the blockchain and posting on the blockchain? So there’s definitely a spectrum. So for example, real quick publish yo x is somewhat centralized in that they have like moderators, and they’re not posting to the blockchain, but they are crypto monetize where You can earn cryptocurrency from the platform, not so. So there’s a there’s a big discrepancy where people think that you have to give other people crypto on these platforms where most of the time you’re actually earning it from the platform and you don’t have to rely on like donations from other people. And, and publish Oh x is really good for that. And then if we look at, you know, on the other side of things like something like hive or library, where all the content exists on the blockchain, and it’s completely decentralized, and so, so that’s kind of like the two sides of the spectrum. And, you know, there’s many in between but the the big difference between most blockchain platforms is the sort of values that go into why they were created, and a lot of that is transparency, open source, free speech. As I mentioned before, decentralized Which is just taking a look getting some of the control away from the platforms and dispersing more of the control. And the way that the platform is used amongst all of the people. So that, like, for example, again, hive and steam, don’t have moderators, a lot of the moderation is done by the community. So that’s another example of decentralization. And kind of the big thing is that, I mean, another thing is censorship to that’s one of the biggest motivations right now why people are switching over to new platforms, because they are very free speech. I mean, I will say this, right? Not every blockchain platform is, you know, free speech focus. And it’s not like they’re always going to be all of these things. But that’s generally why a lot of them are created, and a lot of them do follow that, you know, those values. The rule is not, you know, there obviously are exceptions to the rule. But but that’s kind of the The main reason why a lot of these platforms exist and, and what makes them extremely different from legacy platforms and and then aside from that monetization, it’s very, very challenging for people to monetize on regular platforms. I’ve been posting on YouTube for almost three years, and I haven’t made anything I still can’t even start to monetize yet. And if we look at a platform like library, for example, the very first day as a viewer or a creator, you could start earning from the very first day. So I think there is there’s a lot of people who are empowered by that. And when you see that you can start earning from day one, you actually have value that you can extract and provide and actually get, like both sides get the value. That’s the best part, right? If you’re watching or creating, you’re going to earn something and you kind of get that value back for your own time that you’ve invested and the attendance That you’ve put to those platforms.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So you’d say there’s like kind of two categories of interest. One would be the censorship that a lot of these legacy platforms are obviously exerting over the content from the publishers. But the other side is the monetization side, which cryptocurrency seems to make that a lot easier. Let’s back up a little bit. Why are the legacy platforms doing those two things? Do you have any insights on the monetization piece or the censorship piece?

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, so I mean, I mean, quite simply, we can we could say with monetization, they want more money, right? So if advertisers are advertising on your content, regardless, if you have higher restrictions to actually be an advertiser, like to have those advertisements and get paid from them, then YouTube is going to keep more of the money at the end of the day. The second reason is, YouTube has become like, I’m just going to use YouTube usually as an example, because it’s most well known for censorship. But they they want. They’re beholden to their advertisers. So if advertisers say, you know, we don’t want our videos showing up on this or on this, they continually keep making those changes, and they make the allowed spectrum of content narrower and narrower. Every single year, just in the past year, we saw changes with commercial viability where essentially YouTube said, if we deem that your channel is not commercially viable, which almost any channel could be said to be that if you’re talking about something that they don’t want you to talk about, or you’re not even able to monetize yet, like myself, technically, I’m not commercially viable. So they could terminate my channel at any time just under those grounds. And then in January, we saw the changes with the compact which essentially made it so that You can’t make video content that is directed towards children. And it was further advertising. It was all around their advertising. But the consequences of that are all of the younger youtubers can’t make money anymore because obviously their their audience is is other young people as well. So people doing gaming videos, kids who do reviews, there’s like five year olds who do reviews of toys, and they had big channels, because obviously they’re doing it with their, their parents are their family. But not all of those are being demonetised child celebrities can’t make money anymore. Lots of things have changed. And what we’ve seen because of that, is a lot of content has aged up on YouTube. So people who previously made content for kids are now making more adult content and and it’s very, very weird. The the range of what is allowed, right because YouTube’s basically saying with these changes that we want you to make your content more adult because if it could be directed to a younger audience, then it might not be allowed to be monetized. So now everyone is like, introducing like, like trying to make their stuff more adult casually swearing more and stuff like that. But then on the other side, you might hit the point of not being commercially viable because you’re too adult. So they keep making that that spectrum more and more challenging to fit within. And, and when they do, you know, strikes or terminate channels. It’s very, you don’t really have much time to react and it’s kind of just like it’s done. And you can try to email with them, but usually, not a lot happens there. So we saw a lot of that happen with the crypto purge, but luckily, a lot of them, a lot of the channels and things were restored. But you know, there’s a lot of people who still have like two strikes now and They’re really concerned that they might get kicked off at any time from like YouTube.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You know, I don’t like to go down necessarily like the conspiracy theorist route and you know, as well as I do that there’s a lot of people in this space that automatically go down to like the it’s a big conspiracy. And I’m not saying that conspiracies don’t exist, right. But I don’t necessarily believe there is diabolical as people want them to believe they are. But it definitely seems to me that I look at these the censorship and the D monetization. It’s almost like a typical lifestyle or lifecycle of like a large corporation, right? The bigger these you know, these players get, the more rigid they become the more antiquated, the lower the slower they move, the slower they adapt, and ultimately, it opens up opportunities for startups. And you know, because they’ve created like this vacuum now I have a friend of mine that runs Do you are you familiar with Utah Gun Exchange or UGETube.com?

Scott Cunningham
No I’m not.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
It’s a it’s a it’s a gun related video streaming site I’m friends with the owner of it. And we have a lot of conversations about all this kind of stuff because he’s a big believer in free speech and and things and and it’s interesting to me it’s at it’s it’s like this is creating these openings now for these startups that even three years ago you couldn’t consider it there was no chance to these big channels would even consider you know, these big YouTubers or what have you wouldn’t consider moving platforms because they had a really good thing going three years ago. I myself also I can’t monetize on YouTube at all. It just doesn’t even make sense. And I’ve had my YouTube channel for like a decade. And you know, I’m just for all the same reasons you’re struggling with. They’re just wanting to consider it. Whereas platforms like library you know, like Day one, you can start making money. And and I think ultimately that’s going to drive a big chunk of the market to these new platforms. And I wonder if the corporations understand that’s what they’re going through. This is like a pretty common like, lifecycle problem that a lot of big companies have you think they worried about it? Do you think they understand this is happening? Or do you think they’re just so blinded by their own little missions that they’re not even paying attention?

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, I mean, here’s the thing, like, I think they know, but then it comes down to, okay, how much of our money would we really be willing or our revenue or income? How much of that would we be willing to then sacrifice and put into, you know, making a cryptocurrency or, or even just making monetization easier again, how much would they really be willing to cut? And do they think in the long run that that will work? I mean, from our side, we think No, we think they’re going to go out of business because of this, but they might look at it like, okay, like these other platforms have a million users, 2 million users, this isn’t a problem. This isn’t a problem. That’s probably what like blockbuster was thinking at at the beginning. But you know, as they get further and further down the rabbit hole, or or, you know, too far into wherever they’re going, I think they’re going to maybe notice in hindsight, but I don’t know if it’ll be too late. By that time. You know, an interesting conspiracy theory that I thought, like, I find it interesting is that YouTube was trying to get rid of all the crypto youtubers so that they could then come out with YouTube coin or something like that. And then it’d be no one who would be critically able to like, analyze it or have an opinion on it. I thought that was pretty funny and interesting if that did happen. But yeah, I mean, the problem is then they get to this point where it’s like It just doesn’t seem it’s not even in there. I don’t even think they’re looking at blockchain. I don’t think there’s a lot of people in there who understand it or value it. And, you know, even if people from YouTube or twitch decide to make a blockchain while they already have a, for example, like I don’t want to knock a specific blockchain on your podcast, but I’ll say this, a co founder from YouTube and a co founder from twitch left and made a new blockchain, but there’s a lot of problems with it that are similar to the problems with YouTube. So I don’t think if they did make a cryptocurrency or blockchain, that it would actually be what people are looking for. And I think it would still be just as centralized, you know, all the same issues that they’re having, you know, they would still censor and they wouldn’t pay the cryptocurrency to specific people based on you know, political views or whatever it might be. I think they would still have all of these same problems. So they wouldn’t be able to effectively implement the blockchain or cryptocurrency in the way that other platforms are doing in the way that would make sense. Because they would be kind of skirting all the values and the reasons to even have it where they could just continue doing monetization in a database. And maybe that’s what they’re thinking now, but I’m not totally sure, obviously.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, it’s pretty interesting. Like, Gab is another social media platform that forked a couple of their platforms. And they kind of cater more to the kind of alt right kind of world. And for those that are not all right, but on Gab, I’m not trying to December from under the bus. But it’s interesting, though, that the founder of Gab is also very, and one hand he’s very pro free speech. But on the other hand, he’s got his own very strange look at different things and how he wants to have people on this platform which is kind of funny.

Scott Cunningham
When you get into like the the Gab and anti porn kind of debacle.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
It’s just like really? You know, you can talk about all the Jews and the Zionists and all the other stuff and but but porns No, no, it’s like, Man people got priorities issues. But that’s I do.

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, yeah, no, sir I do have I do have an interesting opinion on on on that because I do fully respect free speech, but I don’t know if I would consider pornography free speech and, you know, I’m no I totally understand the argument from both sides though. But the way that I would look at it, or the way that I’ve sort of approached this is free speech is anything that you can say or do in a public square that is legal Can you have sex or be nude and do all that kind of stuff in a public square? I’m not sure could you legally put a pornographic in image on a town bulletin board? I don’t think so. You know that that’s the way that I look at it. And I think it makes sense sort of what he’s doing. But he’s making a religious argument. That’s the problem. I think it was his like premise. That was the problem. He wasn’t saying, Oh, I don’t actually think this is free speech. So I don’t think this is like a problem for social media. He was saying, This is like, immoral or so like, I get that. I think that’s that’s kind of the issue that he went about it. But my personal view, is that like, I would say that it’s not necessarily the same thing, but I can understand why people would feel that it is. And I fully respect to the free speech argument that all speech is is free speech.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Oh, absolutely. And I’m not giving an opinion one way or the other on it. I just think it’s kind of ironic, but the but the whole need I think it’s there’s a little bit of hypocrisy when you form a whole network. That’s supposed to be anti censorship. Then you have censorship, you know, for whatever reason, you know, and I think that’s that’s the interesting part of this. There’s a big spectrum out there, I guess, with some of the stuff what people are willing to tolerate and what they want don’t want with these different platforms. I have to say that, you know, even with the big social media outlets out there, like Facebook and the Twitter’s of the world, you know, it’s interesting, like they have a real issue with crypto. And I understand, you know, two and a half years ago, when there was so many, arguably illegal Icos and there were so many scams, I can understand why you may not want that on your platform as far as advertising, right, I can see the argument but things have changed a lot. The whole market has matured a lot. There’s a lot more clarity, even you know, from a year ago, there’s a lot more clarity in the market right now than there was you know, a couple years ago, but it’s interesting, like there’s no rhyme or Reason, or it seems like there’s a lot of arbitrary kind of decision making on what’s good and what’s bad when it comes to these platforms. So for instance, on Facebook, not too long ago, I posted something to a regular URL. It was an update for a project for a crypto project. It wasn’t spam, it wasn’t selling anything. It was just a straight up announcement. And somebody in one of the groups post, you know, obviously, they reported it for whatever reason. And now that URL to that update, like the whole domain is completely banned from both Instagram and Facebook. And there’s no way to appeal. There’s there’s no way to email anybody to appeal it. It just says this violates the our code or community standards, and that’s it, you can’t even respond. And it’s like, that’s devastating. That could be devastating economically to a lot of different projects, a lot of different things. And so it’s like, I think that’s where a lot of people get frustrated is that they don’t know what the rules were. Are Yeah, there’s Yeah, the guidance is just so generic and so arbitrary. And you got some, you know, sensor in some room in some warehouse somewhere going, nope, nope, nope, nope, nope. And and you don’t have any control over it. And I’m not a big fan of, you know, making these platforms, you know, utilities, you know, there’s a lot of call for that, right? Where they want to make it so the government can regulate it. And, you know, individuals don’t have, you know, control over their businesses anymore. But on the other end, I think from a customer service standpoint, I think they’re gonna hurt themselves long term. And I do think that’s where these other publishing platforms are going to thrive.

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. And to that point, minds.com if you ever used the URL in any way, even to the point where I had a YouTube video that said mines.com in the title that I couldn’t post to Facebook. So if and this was for a good year and a half, I believe, where if you tried to post anything to Facebook, it would say, this is a I can’t remember exactly what it said. But it said like you need to type in a CAPTCHA for this to actually post. And then if anyone would tried to share it or do anything comment, you had to type in a CAPTCHA type in a CAPTCHA. So no one’s doing that. And, and even if you did, I got it was to the point where I would send myself sometimes I would send myself a message on Facebook just so I can get it on my phone. I send myself a message to one of my own posts on mines. And then I look at my phone and it’s like message removed from your messages for violating the guidelines. And I’m like, I can’t even send myself a private message that includes a mines URL, but you know, now they just allow it. So for all I know, one person reported it a year ago. That’s all it took for a full year of completely blocking out this, this one site. And, yeah, it’s crazy. It really just seems like on legacy platforms. It’s not about the rules anymore. It’s about who’s offended. How many reports are there on that thing? Because a lot of times, it’s like, Where’s the actual violation? It’s like, Well, a lot of people were upset about this and it’s like, okay, and I reviewed the community guidelines on Facebook about like a year ago. And I remember there was this huge outcry when Facebook changed part of their community guidelines to say something along the lines of if someone is determined to be I can’t remember exactly what it was but it was just like a something individual maybe like a dangerous or or something. But but it was by the news, not by like law or anything like that. They would excuse any kind of like illegal thing on Facebook so like if if someone was claimed to be such and such people on Facebook were allowed to give death threats and all this stuff that is otherwise illegal, but they were accepted for you know all this stuff and I think it was actually around the time of the Covington kids and I think that’s why cuz there was a lot of celebrities saying things like openly calling further death like like very popular blue check verified million follower Twitter users were saying things like put them all back into school and burn the whole school down and those tweets were allowed to stay whereas tweets that say things like I don’t know. Like Laura Loomer, I think was the one who said but but is he a man or is she a man though or something like that? But are you a man though it was something about gender and and her whole count was like deleted instantly where someone can make open death threats, and then they get their stuff can stay up. So it’s very bias and it’s very, it’s very ad hoc, there’s no real baseline of rules or standards that people can refer to. And that’s why a lot of people want these new solutions because the rules are more clear cut, or it’s kind of just like open free speech, everyone kind of free for all because either of those are better than at any point you can have all of your progress in all of your money investment, everything taken away, because I’m sure those people who have tons of followers have probably done ads on Twitter. If you’ve done ads on Facebook, you know, people have invested money into these on top of, you know, years and years of time. And then that could all just be taken away. Really like just just like that and and there’s like barely any appeal process or anything to try to get that back. So yeah, it’s a it’s it’s pretty crazy what they’re doing online. Legacy platforms.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You know, it seems to me like, there’s just a lot of political virtue signaling coming from these corporations. And I know it’s kind of controversial, but the gun issue, right, like there’s a big chain called Dick’s Sporting Goods down here in the States. And they pulled all their guns out of the stores, you know, and they lost like their quarterly filings last year have been like they’ve lost hundreds of millions of dollars. And it’s interesting to me is that I tell people, I really missed the days when I didn’t know the politics of the companies that I bought things from. Like, I like that, you know, because I just want good service. Like if I want to buy something, give me good service, but it seems like in the last couple of years, and I think it’s probably in the last three years, especially but really the last two years is that it seems like there’s all these like left leaning companies that I didn’t know they’re left leaning until recently have just come out of the woodwork to like start basically, I hate the But virtue signaling they’re, you know, they’re like all of them. It’s like the gun you know? It’s like sales force comm fired all their gun dealers Shopify the shopping cart sell software fired all the gun related kind of dealers off their site I mean I don’t understand why like a sales you know CRM tool company cares if a gun related sporting goods company uses their software or not like that to me is just insane and you know the the business guy and he’s, you know starts asking questions like is this good for shareholders kind of thing but I also look at it from the business standpoint that there’s opportunities now because of that and I just don’t understand like, you know, you hear with jack right with Twitter everybody in the crypto space loves jack for some reason and I don’t know why. Because of cash app but but you look at how jack treats krypto on Twitter, you know, in Twitter ads and things like that. And it’s like he is not a friend of decentralization at all. You know, and in fact, if you look at most of these legacy platforms, decentralization destroys them, in many respects, it kills their business models. So it’s gonna be interesting to see long term, how this plays out. Do you think that they’ll shift gears back to being, you know, with the advent of this, all these additional platforms and competition? Do you think that’ll push them back toward being a little more objective? Or do you think they’re just gonna ride this to the bottom?

Scott Cunningham
I, I’m 99% sure. I’m not sure but I’m 99% betting on the fact that they’re going to ride this to the bottom. I don’t think they’re going to pull back. A large reason of why they’ve done a lot of that Like massive changes is to appeal to Chinese advertisers. And I only think that’s going to be more and more evident. So I don’t think that they’re going to, it wouldn’t be beneficial for them to turn back now, because they’ve already cut off so many people, and they’re going to continue doing that. They’re basically just like trading one audience for another audience. But because the other audience is bigger, they’re happy to do that, because that just means more money. And, and that’s all there. That’s all they’re really going off of now. So I think naturally, there’ll be a massive opening for all these new platforms to fill the void of that, that they’re that they’re creating, by doing all these things. And, you know, it’s it’s challenging for them to turn around and kind of be like, Okay, nevermind, we’ll cut off all these advertisers. And then we’ll just completely switch back to what we were doing before. Because there’s so many people who have a sour taste in their mouth, where they’re like, Yeah, but are you really going to stay this way, like for all we know, this is just for now. And a lot of people still want those new things anyways. And it’s, you still wouldn’t know if in six months from now they completely switch back to what they’re doing now, then you’re screwed, because you trusted them again, even though we really have no reason to trust them. That’s the thing. We have no real reason to trust them anymore. And that’s why blockchain solutions are so important because a lot of them are trust lists. Because we don’t have to rely on a specific person or entity. A lot of them are just, you know, they exist as is. And I think that’s one of the biggest the biggest things that attracts people to the technology because I don’t have to rely on anyone. I don’t have to put my faith in someone to do something for me. I can just rely on the math and then the code.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, you know, just since the last time you and I spoke, I actually opened up my own library channel and I am in the process of moving all my YouTube videos or at least synching on my YouTube videos. And now I’m starting to re embed those videos into my site from the library instead of YouTube. Because I just expect long term is that I just don’t trust that YouTube is gonna keep my channel up and I just don’t want to have to go through the mess after they’ve already deleted everything. So I want to thank you for helping me with that. But if you want to check it out at Rob McNealy on library now, that’s where we’re going to be focusing more of our energy just from the fact that maybe it’s not 100% decentralized, but it’s pretty close. And I think the team over there really supports free speech. And so I’m excited about like, just, you know, I’d rather give someone that cares about, you know, the liberties and freedoms that I do. I’d rather give them some business and support their project rather than YouTube because YouTube’s given me nothing. YouTube’s make money off me, but you’ve never given me anything. And it just why am I bothering and I’ve almost given to the, I’ve almost said why don’t I just delete the YouTube channel, but it’s still one of the biggest search engines out there. So I still have to kind of deal with it. But it’s just not going to be where I focus my energy anymore after, you know, after like last week, I’m just done less worrying about it. Because I just think that it’s a legacy dinosaur. So I hope the folks over library win. But I mean, how I mean, you you really track what they’re doing? How is the library’s growth?

Scott Cunningham
Really good. You should see you should see from when they hit a million users in March, and then from March to April, they went to 2.5 million users. So right now their growth is seemingly exponential. If you go over to library nomics, lbr, why and o m ICS, calm. You can see the top hundred or the top 200 channels. But more importantly, if you tab over to the next tab they have it’s all the channels that have ever been called. created all the publications that have ever been posted. It’s all graphed. And they even have specific events like the beginning of the crypto purge the launch of library TVs browser, because they only got the browser, you know, maybe six or seven months ago. So before you could only access it with a downloaded application, then when they got it on to the actual browser, they just took off. And yeah, you can go and see that you can see that it’s like it’s exponential right now. And I wouldn’t be surprised if, you know, by the end of this month, they are at 5 million users. And by the end of the year, 20 million plus, they really seem to just be destroying these milestones. Like you’ve got to consider steam it, I believe I have, after four years had about maybe 2 million, a little over 2 million users and libraries already passed that so you know, and that was the biggest Previously, so So now library is already essentially from what I can tell is the biggest blockchain dap. And yeah, I think it’s just going to keep on going. And, and one of the really good things about library is, you know you’re earning from day one, even the viewers earn I like I just made a post yesterday talking about the unique differences of library compared to other platforms. And one of the biggest most important thing for people is that you get paid via the views. So if I post a link to any other blockchain platform, you need to register and you need to go on and you need to upvote my posts for me to make money. If you watch my library video, regardless, if you register, you could just be on the website and you watch my video, I’m going to make money from that. So when I post it to Twitter, and people go on to hive or steam or anywhere else publish Oh x They’re not likely to sign up and do all this stuff unless they actually are a part of that platform. For the most part, it’s just someone clicking the link and then going to it, they might just read it or look at it or whatever. Like, you don’t have to sign up to medium to view articles on medium. But with library, even if they have or haven’t signed up, you’re still going to make that get that you’re going to get the view count. So you actually know that it’s happening to begin with, because again, with the other ones, you wouldn’t have even known that someone had clicked through and looked at your video or watched it because again, it’s it’s only really tracking like likes and stuff like that. So you can see everything that’s happening, and you’re gonna get paid for everything. So that’s one of the biggest things. I mean, there’s a million other things that I could dive into. But that’s why I’m really passionate about library because they have so much available to the creators and the viewers that is just really beneficial and they just make they have a really good ecosystem.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So how do they make money? How does They get the money to pay out all this. Is there an ad revenue model in there somewhere?

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, so they just started having an ad model. But the good thing is that currently, the way that it’s set up is that only people who aren’t registered will see ads on the browser. So if you’re logged in, and you’re using it, you shouldn’t see any ads. But if you go on via clicking a link or whatever, like I just sort of outlined, you might see an ad in the newsfeed as you’re scrolling through, but you would never see intrusive like in stream, video ads, skippable ads, anything like that you wouldn’t see, it would just be like you’re scrolling through the newsfeed and there might be like an ad in place of where one of the things might been on the newsfeed so it’s not super intrusive, and it’s only for people who haven’t signed up. So if you you’re annoyed by that, you can always just sign in and then or sign up and then there’s no issue. I don’t know how they’re going To expand that out, but I know that they’re trying to do it in the least intrusive way possible. They obviously know a lot of people are here because they don’t like the way that YouTube does things. So they’re obviously trying to build on that and create something that is sustainable, because obviously, there’ll be a point where, you know, like, where’s the money coming from? And obviously, they have to keep up with that as well.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what blockchain did they fork to build it? You know?

Scott Cunningham
I don’t know, for a lot I, from my understanding, I actually think they just like built their blockchain, but I haven’t looked too much into their actual blockchain to know to be like well versed in that.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
One of the other success platforms that I’m seeing out there where there’s crypto monetization, I think is then the brave browser with bat tokens. Yeah. And I you know, I wasn’t sold at first that you know, it’s great. I’m like are great another browser to download but it’s Like I started looking in over the last couple months, I think I got like 50 bucks or something in my brave browser, like wallet and I’m like, yeah, yeah. You know, and it’s like, it’s like, yeah, it’s not a lot. But I mean, if it’s 100 bucks a year or something just from surfing.

Scott Cunningham
And I think that’s interesting. And I think that that model, one, I think is a winner. I think paying people for advertising to them, gives people like, empowers people again, right.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
But I think, but I think it’s an amazing way to get people into crypto. I think it’s slow. But it’s happening and and as a library, it’s like, you know, yeah, YouTube might have paid me if I would have been monetizable in dollars, right. That’s always great. But the fact is, I’m getting you know, I’ve already made like, 30 cents or something on library and I’m all excited. Yeah. I mean, it was like the first revenue ever made for a video. So like, wow, that’s that’s really really kind of cool. And so I think this is how we get adoption. That’s why I tell people make a really good platform, and then add crypto or blockchain to it. But don’t make crypto or blockchain does a thing. It make a real app like, and I say this about game. Like, I think there’s a lot of people out there that in the crypto world, especially like games and stuff like this, and some are good, some are not, but they’re trying to make it all about the crypto instead of making it a really good game, or making it a really good web browser or, you know, make a really good application or that really solves a problem. And focus on that and gaming focus on the game, the ability of it, and I think and just add some monetization to it. And people don’t care about databases and blockchains I mean, they don’t and and so I think those are two winners and so far looking at library and bat and the brave browser. I think those are probably two of the biggest success stories that I’m seeing in crypto right now.

Scott Cunningham
Yeah, I would agree. Yeah. And they do so much to just make your experience better. Like for me on brave browser, I’ve said it so that I only get crypto and technology based ads. So I don’t get all the random pointless ads that I would normally get. You can even like, curate even further by liking the ads that you liked. And then they’ll give you more of that. So I actually have seen like some interesting crypto projects as ads. And you know, not only that they’re very unintrusive. And you can set how many you get at a time, you could just have none. And then there’s also brave creator to where creators can sign up for brave, and then people can tip you on Twitter or YouTube. It’s a sort of a way to integrate crypto into the legacy platforms that are already out there. And I think they’re doing an amazing job of doing that. And kind of getting people on to the brave browser with their onboarding process. And like you said, I think the most important thing is when people start earning crypto, it completely flips their perspective. At first it might have been, oh, I don’t understand this. I don’t trust this. I’m like, they’re gonna take my money. Now it’s, oh my, oh, you’re giving me money? How do I get this money? Oh, I have to create a wallet. Okay, one sec, let me go create a wallet, let me get this money. They’ll do they’ll, if you’re giving them money, they’ll find out how to get that money. And then all these people are going to come in and then they’re going to keep earning money. And they’re like, Why wasn’t I doing this before? So I think that’s how we’ll reach mass adoption. I’ve been saying this for many years that I think social media is the route to mass adoption for blockchain. Because that’s where all the awareness will be. If people are making money for posting a selfie. I think that’s a pretty easy way to realize the potential of cryptocurrency and what blockchain can do for monetizing tension. monetizing content. Pretty much a lot, almost any application in blockchain just improves upon something that we already have, and gives a little more power to the user. Or at least the good projects give a little more power to the user and more control more access more everything, right. They’re trying to remove middlemen and, and just empower the user more. And I think that’s, those are the projects that are going to come on top and stay on top. And projects that get away from that are going to fail. Perfect example of that right now is you know, steam has been kind of going on like it’s been it’s been going down because ever since Justin acquired it, he’s been centralizing it he’s been making it really not what it was meant to be. And they’ve been losing a lot of people and people have been switching over to hive because they are still embodying the original values of steam and people will make Do whatever works best for them. I forgot to mention this earlier. It was either today or yesterday that Joe Rogan, announced he was leaving YouTube. Huge, biggest podcast in the world is leaving YouTube. He’s moving exclusively to Spotify. It would have been amazing if it was like library or something. But that alone is showing people that these platforms are not going to last, if all of the big influencers and creators start to leave. They have nothing to offer their their advertising isn’t useful if there’s no one there. And obviously, you know, it’s it’s going to be slow at first. But with these big people leaving, you know, other people are going to say, Oh, where are they going? I’ll go there. Joe Rogan is on mines.com, for example. So that’s good. He actually had the CEO of Minds on his podcast and we need more of that I mean he probably only knows about mine so if he learned about library maybe he would be on Lbry so you know, as these things grow and get more awareness I think we’ll see a lot more big influencers joining and there already are a lot of really really big influencers on there. And I think it’s only gonna it’s only going to keep growing.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Perfect Scott Cunningham, where can people find out more about you?

Scott Cunningham
You can find me pretty much anywhere at Scott seed business. Seo TTC be you si n e s s. And I have a podcast called crypto and things you can find that on any podcast platform like apple, podcasts, Spotify, all that good stuff. And yeah, you can find all the rest of my links at my website, Scott see business.com

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Thank you so much Scott and Rob McNealy and check us out at RobMcNealy.com. We appreciate you listening.

Scott Cunningham
Thanks for having me.

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Rick Ector – Detroit CCW Transcript

Rick Ector - Detroit CCW

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Hey folks Rob McNealy here and we’re gonna have a really good show for you today. I have a personal friend of mine who I’ve wanted to be on the show for some time, and I can say that I’ve been derelict in my duties with getting him on the show. But he is a gentleman I met over a year ago at the gun rights policy conference, and he is a gun rights activist from the city of Detroit named Rick, Hector. Rick, how are you today and welcome to the show.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
I am doing great man and glad to be on the show. Hopefully we’ll have some fun

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
We always have fun when we talk. Right?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Like the last time I talked to you is last night, man and it was just kickin it. And we were on the phone for at least two hours, man.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
We should have like, recorded that. But I think we can capture some of that today too. So just just so the audience knows where you’re coming from, give us a little bit of background about yourself. How did you get into becoming a gun rights advocate?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
How did I get into being a gun rights advocate? Wow, how far down the rabbit hole need to go? A long time ago, man, maybe 13 or 14 years ago. I’m going to just hit the highlights 1314 years ago, a relatively brand new homeowner. Only firearm I own was a 12 gauge shotgun just in case some criminal was brave enough to breach my front door. Lo and behold one day I got robbed in my driveway and that changed my life. I went on the Silk Road. called classic hero’s journey that formulaic process that is used to tell movies and basic storytelling. I went on this quest to learn more about personal protection and firearms instruction. I took all the classes I could get and then I felt I needed to learn more and I became a firearms instructor. And then I became a training counselor to train people to be firearms instructors. And then I was still I still had much to do man and I wanted to do more. And I started doing research and my path, cross that with a gentleman by the name of Ken Blanchard, out in Upper Marlboro, Maryland black man with the gun and then I found out he was going to be at the gun rights policy conference one year so then I drove to, you know, what was at Fort Mitchell, Kentucky I met him befriended him and my life hasn’t been the same man and progress gun rights advocate I advocate for lawful carry, whether it’s open carry or concealed carry I advocate for law abiding citizens being armed and making the world a less safe place for bad guys.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
And I know one of the things that you one of your claims to fame is that you’ve helped a lot of the ladies in the inner city of Detroit get trained and certified and safe handling of firearms that correct. That is correct, man. I saw a story nine years ago, man and it was very chilling. It was a story about a woman whose body was discarded in the street as if it was trash. And I felt that someone should do something about that. And I watched the media and I didn’t see anyone addressing it. And so I had a bit of inspiration. I thought that I would leverage some friendships that I have with fellow trainers in the area and we put together a training program for women. all they had to do is show up at a gun range and we would take care of their range fees, their ammunition costs, give them a gun to use and give them a rain safety briefing to have them shoot a gun. And that first year man, I had such lofty goals. I was going to train a million people that day, but only 50 showed up so I trained 50 people, and I continued to grow this program and last year in the last iteration of this program, we trained 114 women with the rain safety briefing and a free shooting lesson. Now I am boldly making plans to train 1000 women in one day give them a rain safety briefing and a free shooting list.

Now this is all done of course with other range safety officers in a very safe and you know very safe environment, right?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Oh yeah, man. Definitely. I had literal army of volunteer firearms instructors and range safety officers. There’s a huge gun range in Metro Detroit that has blessed us with the full use of their modern gun range. I will have no less than 100 fellow firearms instructors so as you can tell, I have some really good relationships with a lot of people who believe in this program and what we’re doing. And they literally This is for many of them the highlight of their year and they do it all for the sake of doing the job well done and feeling really good about what they’ve done when they leave the gun race.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
What time of year do you normally do this training?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Usually I do it exactly one week after Mother’s Day but with all of the lockdowns that we’ve had associated with the corona virus, and I gov, you know, I’m going to be nice today. some very interesting things about public safety and things that need to be done that I just pulled the plug on it and I say, Well, I need to move this event further down the road. And currently now I’m making plans to geared up on Sunday, August 9 to do the latest iteration. And hopefully, I won’t run into any unforeseen roadblocks to deter me from making good on that day.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, you know, keep me in the loop on that. And if the pandemic makes it permissible, I would love to come be a volunteer with you.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Man, I’ll tell you I turn nobody away. Absolutely. No one, you know, I have, you know, safety is the primary consideration, you know, and the way I make that happen is I make sure that there’s one on one instruction between the student and the instructor and we swap out instructors every so often so that we have in instructors who aren’t daydreaming, wondering if they left the stove on or if they lock their front door or trying to remember where they parked. I want everyone to be fresh, alert and safety conscious. And you know what, in all the years that I’ve done this event and all the thousands of women that I gave a free shooting less than two, we’ve had actually zero injuries.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
But that’s really good. So what’s been the response to this training? Typically, you’re coming at it from the inner city, Detroit, and which is as we know, a very governed by the left in trying to be very politically correct here. But the city Detroit is very left leaning typically and politically and from the city council on down. Generally in inner cities, they tend to be politically very anti gun. What is your response from the community in general, with your gun safety program?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
You know, I’ve we’ve had some very interesting interactions with people in the political, public space, you know, through the the length of this project, man. And, you know, there were some people who had some very nice things to say about it, you know, some things such as, you know, it’s the wrong message and we should, you know, not be in a rush to gravitate towards firearms for personal protection. But, you know, I’ve always felt that when you look at the annual crime stats, and going back to when this program first initiated, you know, we were perennially leading the country in the number of murders that were happening across the country, and in particular concern of two women. You know, we were having a neighborhood of anywhere from 800 to 1000 reported rapes. In the city of Detroit, you know, this is not the metro area, this is within the city. And anytime you talk to anyone who talks to you about rape, well, the number of reported rapes is significantly less than how many actually occur because you have the embarrassment, modesty, wanting to be anonymous factor. You know, there’s various multipliers that you can apply towards the reported rape counts to try to get a handle on how many are actually occurring. So really, this is my annual tribute to women. I have women who are in my family, I have, you know, daughters, I have arts you know, I have women who are friends and this is this is the one thing that I typically in any given year can put my hand on and say, I did a really good thing and this is the sentiment that is experienced by a A lot of people who are participating in this program, it’s like a really great thing to do. And it It feels great to make a contribution to do something that empowers people, man and make them more secure in their life, you know, as a Detroiter, and as a Michigander.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So with the it sounds like the women in the area support it, but the government folks are less supportive of it. That’s kind of interesting, isn’t it?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, it’s interesting thing, man, but you know, and, you know, when you talk about the days in which we find ourselves, it’s, it’s really an interesting contrast. But see, typically in years prior to now, you know, there’s always this concern that, well, maybe I’m you know, contributing to the problem. And I’m like, No, I’m empowering women and I’m actually making the community safer because With the more hand with the more people who carry guns lawfully and get concealed carry permits, it actually acts as a buffer to people who hate guns and don’t carry guns. So just the mere fact that there’s a proliferation of people carrying guns, you can be anti gun and be safe. Well, one of the interesting things that we’re finding out now in this now New World, we find ourselves with the corona virus. we’re discovering that yes, law enforcement officers are human too, and they sometimes find themselves subject to be infected with the corona virus in their ability to stay virus free has had a significant impact on their ability to feel their departments and actually patrol and enforce the law. So it’s actually a selling factor, if you will, to get more people to take part in this program for the simple fact that you know what, anything could happen and at at the worst case, You are your own first responder, and you can do, the best thing you can do to make you and your family safe is to be prepared to defend yourself in the life of your family. So, you know, over the years this program as grown by leaps and bounds, you know, get good feet back from people that participate in testimonials, positive news stories. And, you know, there’s very few people who can come out publicly and say that they’re against the program. I mean, because, after all, if it wasn’t for their failures and safeguarding women, then this program wouldn’t have a need to exist.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So you brought up an interesting point about the police department and in Detroit specifically getting infected with COVID. Now, I was following that for a while because as you and I have talked, I’m actually originally from Metro Detroit. I actually grew up two miles from the city limits of Detroit and how many cups have been out because of Corona Now that you’re aware of in the city tried

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Ah, man, I wish I had that that data handy. But there was one point a very short time ago, maybe a few weeks back when there was a real concern that there were so many police officers who either had it and were suffering with it or who were under quarantine for the simple fact that they had contact with people who had confirmed cases of Coronavirus that they were seriously entertaining the idea of totally restructuring their department and working with other law enforcement agencies in the Regency in the region to make sure that we had adequate coverage. And of course, if you’ve been following the news media, our very own police chief chief Craig actually came down with the Coronavirus and took himself off the playing field so that he could heal. Fortunately for us and for him, you know, he was able to make a full recovery and he’s back on the job but That just merely highlights the fact that this Coronavirus, you know, we’re just now learning more and more about it. We’re learning that it’s not as dire as what we once thought it was that many that as many people are not as susceptible to it as we thought. But it’s still out there, and it could still have an impact and an effect on public safety. So, you know, in the end, I’m all about empowering people and empowering their communities. The more people who are trained in firearms, the more people that carry, the more guns that we have in the homes, the better off and the safer, we are going to be. And I stand on that man and every time I do this program, I feel like I’ve done a really good thing. You know, if by the time I eventually leave this world, if someone has the job of putting an epitaph on my headstone, they could put something on there that that’s a testament to how many women that are I help safeguard and train over the years. I think that that would be a fitting tribute.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what is the number so far? How many people have how many women have you actually trained and exposed to firearms in the Detroit area?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, just with regards to just this program, and we’re very close to 4000 women that I’ve trained through this free program, and you know, it’s a one day event one day a year, you know, thing. So, you know, it’s kind of skewed because I only do this program one day a year, but man, we train so many people in one day, it’s just, it’s just mind blowing, that, that we actually do it and we make it happen. And I’m surprised it’s not national news, man, but the local news media come out and they cover it. And you know, and I’ll post the clippings, the digital clippings on my YouTube channel and all that other stuff, man, but it’s a big deal, man. I think if I hit 1000, I think The national networks wouldn’t wouldn’t be able to ignore me then not credibly anyway. But you talk about a guy and his gang of volunteers actually training 1000 women how to use a fire. I don’t think even the news media can ignore that.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Do you do this at an outdoor event? Or do you do this at VIP more than one range at a time, logistically speaking?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, you know, I’m at a point where I’m going to have to start thinking about branching out maybe to more ranges on the same day, but as of right now, it’s all at one range. A few years back, or shall I say, several years back, I started running into a capacity problem. And while anytime you do things and it you experience rapid growth, you’re going to have to take a step back and look at how you do things. And so one of the innovations I came up with, was splitting the day up into into various shifts. So instead of having say a thousand women all show up at a gun range at eight o’clock in the morning, I decided to break the day up into several shifts, like maybe seven or eight shifts. And through the registration process, they would sign up for a specific shift in a time period. And so that model has carried me all the way through now. And it might get me through maybe another iteration. But at some point in time, if this program continues to grow, I am definitely going to have to use more gun ranges or make it more days. I haven’t figured out yet how I’m going to proceed. But one way or another is going to grow by the number of days or the number of locations.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So did the women actually get a CCW from this or is this just like an intro exposure kind of seminar?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
No, it’s not a class where they’re going to get a carry permit. You know, that’s an eight hour class and you start are multiplying that by 1000. Man. Now we’re talking about some serious training that physically and through the sheer laws of physics couldn’t be done in a day. But you know what, maybe I just don’t have the resources. But right now this is pretty much a introductory kind of class, bring them in, you give them the fundamentals of firearm safety, you run them through the basic safety rules and give them demonstrations in terms of gun handling and shooting stances. And then their one on one with a firearms instructor in the booth. You know, we do a big informational session where they get all this information up front, and then we line them up and we marched them through the gun stalls with one on one with a firearms trainer. And then we shove them out the door and we welcome the next wave of students.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Nice. How many do you know how many of those actually do decide to go on to get further training and get their CCW do follow those those stats around. No, there’s

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Hasn’t been a really good way to track that man. But I’ll tell you, every time I do this event, there’s a number of women who’ve gone through it at some point before. And maybe there’s a few that took a few years off, or they’ll go every other year. And then Believe it or not, there’s always a legion of women who come every single year and never miss a year. But that’s primarily high gross, you know, social media has been a, a big publicity engine. You know, like I said, I don’t get any national coverage about this program. But I’ll tell you, when you have literally hundreds of women all on the same day, posting pictures of their targets, their silhouettes and the pretty holes they put on them. You know, it’s almost like I’m breaking the internet, at least locally here in southeastern Michigan. And you can’t go on social media without seeing a picture and all these great smiles at people Having about all the fun that they had. And believe it or not, there’s always some people who never heard of the program, believe it or not. And they happen to hear about it during that, let that last iteration. And now they now they’re here and they do it. And then I tell you, you know, they all to a person, they’re happy that they were part of the program. And they tell their family and friends about it. And so we’ve grown organically, you know, from 50 to 814, man. So, onward to 1000.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I think you’re gonna get there. And I think you’re taking the right approach. I know whenever I’ve taken just one on one friends of mine that are no gunners that are interested, especially people that are liberal, which is the best part is that once they go through the safety, and the basics of a gun and get over that initial kind of, you know, fear that they might have, they almost always get hooked almost every time and and I think what the part of the problem is out there is that I’ve seen at least to so many people who have zero experience of guns, all they know about guns at the same time TV, and especially when people come from states where guns are largely illegal or verboten, you can say, and then they come out here. It was interesting. I had a friend of mine who’s an attorney in New Jersey in New York, he lives in Jersey works in New York. And he came out here, he comes out here for business every now and then. And I took him out to the desert one night, or one afternoon, while he was here, and I picked him up from his hotel said, Let’s go shooting. And, you know, I started just pulling out the stuff, some of my rifles and stuff from my garage. He’s like, you have all this stuff. And he’s like, Yeah, he goes, every one of these things is illegal, where I come from. And then it was funny because by the end of the day, he’s like, hand me his phone. He’s like, take a video of me shoot. He’s like, people aren’t gonna believe this back home and I thought it was a really good time. And I think That’s a really good way to get people interested in guns just don’t bore them with an eight hour class, but just give them an exposure kind of thing, you know, demystify it a little bit. And then, you know, if they feel

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Tell me about this woman who was making plans to come to my event, and she had a family member from out of state from Chicago, Illinois wall places, who was very anti gun. And when this visitor came to visit one of my program registrants, the host said, Well, look, you have a choice. You can either wait here for a few hours, or you can come with me to the gun range for this program. And so literally, she dragged this lady from Chicago kicking and screaming the whole way to the program. And so they both went through the rain safety briefing. They both got the shooting lessons done. And that one vehemently anti gun lady, From Chicago is just smiling from ear to ear. And literally you can see tears forming in our eyes of joy. And I turned an anti gunner who had no experience with guns at all, and to someone who’s extremely interested in firearms and personal protection. And it just goes to show you man that a lot of times people are programmed by a lot of things that they see and hear in the news and in the media. What is popular culture in the films, you actually take them to a gun range and give them some training, put a gun in their hand and let them shoot. The first thing they’ll find out is one, that it’s a lot of fun. And two, they find out that gun owners are people just like themselves, normal, good, decent, wholesome, law abiding citizens. And that Yeah, there’s a place for gun ownership in in America and in their communities to

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I think What I’ve seen when I’ve talked to a lot of people, is that where they get excited about it, and I think maybe the tears of joy. It’s the empowerment piece that’s pretty important that a lot of people are petrified. And they’re scared, especially women, especially in the inner cities, that they have no way to defend themselves, no means of, you know, self protection. I say it’s interesting, you know, lately, we’re well, as we’re recording this, we’re in the middle of, you know, protests and the riots seem to be slowing down nationwide. But what we’ve seen here, whereas there is a, you know, a very righteous cause in there where, you know, police brutality is a problem. And I think a lot of people, you know, especially in the white side of the aisle, is there an aisle for white people, but, but I think a lot of white Americans don’t really realize that police brutality can be a problem. But what we’re seeing now, and I think what happened over the last couple weeks is the entire country discussed the shit scared out of it from the Riot Park, right. And I do believe there’s a lot of outside antagonists trying to subvert peaceful protesters for their own purposes. And we can get into that discussion probably on another show. But I think what happened is, the numbers show me and I say whatever, whatever’s come out, whatever comes up the protests and the riots. What you do know is that white America and not inner city, America just got the shit scared out of it. And I say the numbers of how many background checks and purchases of guns have happened in the last two weeks. support that I think people are scared and, you know, even if they don’t understand or have a dog in the, you know, the police brutality and civil rights movements that are here. People watch people getting their businesses looted, and their businesses burned, and it scares them. And I think when people like I’ve seen I mean, it’s interesting, you know, I have a lot of friends in New York and LA. And they have no way to protect their businesses or their houses or anything else. And they’re scared. They’re scared to death. And I couldn’t imagine being in that position personally.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, man, you know, once I got through my own personal experience, I personally don’t know how people walk in polite society without a gun, but that’s me and my personal experiences that I’ve had. But I’ll tell you what, just from all of the news coverage of the riots and all the demonstrations from all over the country, all that it really has done from a gun standpoint, has just fueled another wave of people who are afraid and are frightened. And now there’s another background check frenzy going on. And now they’re just another gun buying frenzy that’s going on. And the thing is, man guns have been selling like hotcakes for so long. Many dealers are having problems keeping guns and ammo in stock. So, you know, it’s one of those things where, you know, you wonder, you know what came first the chicken or the egg man or whether it’s demonstrations and or violence and gun sales man. They’re just two reciprocal processes they keep feeding into one of themselves. And I’ll tell you man, there has never been a greater period in recent memory for gun sales as I can recall. Now, if you look at any graphs over the last Domino 1520 years or so, we’re probably at the highest it’s been in like 20 years, man, and it could probably go further. I just wonder about from the supply side. Can we get more guns into the into the supply chain? I know ammo has already been a problem in some places in the country. And for those of us who have gone through these cyclical periods to Typically at every presidential election every four years, we know that every four years ammo usually gets scarce anyway, so this year is doubly in Tripoli. So so hopefully people have stocked up early and if they haven’t, man, go to your local gun shop and get what you can now so in case you need it later, you’ll have it.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So Rick, what you’re saying is so, like, pretty typical, like the pandemic and all the politics is going on lately and the riots we’ve sold more guns, I think, this year in 2020, than we have probably in the last 20 years. Would you say that’s probably going to be where we’re going here.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
That’s where we’re going, man. And you know what, we’re just half the year is not even done, man. There’s still there’s still a lot of time to dwarf numbers from previous years, man, but, you know, as a gun rights advocate, I feel that it’s a good Good direction. You know if you ask me man more guns, more safety, more empowerment, and creates a more treacherous working environment for bad guys.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Would you say that the gun debate is over at this point, given the number of new gun owners that are coming into the market? Do you think that the gun control is just dead now?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, at this point in time, they are having a really tough time justifying their positions, man, but for those of us who’ve been around for a while, you know, we know that you know, when things settle down, assuming that they do that will be lowered back into a safe sense of security and then people will get lacks. Hell, a lot of these anti gunners who just bought up all these guns, they’ll probably sell their guns and we’ll wait until the next crisis or next event happens that spurs another, you know, surge of buying, you know, I’ll tell you just from being involved in the community and in this field of endeavor man, you you enter for a while and you start to see cycles and it’s just another cycle.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So is there been riding in Detroit like there has been in New York and LA?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
No, there hasn’t been any rioting. There have been some demonstrations and you know what? as big as an advocate as I am for the Second Amendment, I’m a huge advocate of the First Amendment. There have been some troublemakers a couple nights after, after nightfall, but you know, those were those and you know, I think it’s those and Tifa folk man troublemakers, but I was looking at the stats that was pumped that were published in the media, and the vast majority of them were outsiders. I’m talking about 80% of the arrest. That people made that the law enforcement community made. We’re from outside of the Detroit boundary, there were people who were coming in from outside of our community, who, in my opinion, were here just to be agitated and try to egg things on. You know, by all means, if you feel that there’s something you need to speak out on and to assemble and demonstrate, by all means, do that. I ran a demonstration of my own on this on the Thursday before these protests, I was about to sell myself and

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You just killed my segue. I was gonna segue right into he just killed my setup. Alright, but so yeah, so let’s talk about that you recently that was one of the big things that I wanted to talk to you about today is you recently organized a big event at the state capitol in Michigan. So tell me about that.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, you know, I wanted to in a very public fashion, you know, think that this that were on the minds of many people, especially people of color, you know, blacks and Hispanics and other my racial minorities that, you know that when we see incidents like this occur in the national media, whether we’re talking about the Brianna Taylor case, or we’re talking about the Armand robbery case. So we’re talking about George Lloyd. And, you know, and I get it, you know, there are concerns and there’s issues that need to be dealt with. But, you know, what I wanted to do was to put on an official demonstration, a rally at the Capitol and say, Hey, you know, hate has no place in our society, you know, it’s going to take all of us to address it. You know, fortunately for us, you know, the issue is really not as rampant as I think some people in the media would have us believe, but you know what, it is a problem. And let’s address it, and we did so peaceably at the Capitol here in Lansing. Michigan, you know, is the first event I did outside of Metro Detroit. You know, I was really wondering if I was going to be able to pull enough people from across the state to meet up there for a decent meetup man. But you know what I had people come out from Lansing, people come out from Grand Rapids, people who came out from Detroit, and you know, from other where we even have had a couple people come up from Chicago, Illinois. So it was very satisfying. And, you know, there are still people here who, you know, they’re, they’re reluctant to, you know, leave their homes and there’s, they’re reluctant to let alone travel halfway across the state man, but our first iteration it was well received. And the thing that I’m really shocked by man is that, you know, I’ve been really receiving a ton of feedback of people who are telling me they wish they had known about it, because it had they known they would have actually, you know, made the trip up to Lansing. So, you know, I think there’s an interest there and You know what, we may do it again.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I think that that’s important. And one of the things that I’ve seen in that I would like to see change, especially in some of the, the more legacy gun rights groups, say maybe the NRA, it would be really nice to see more outreach to the black and minority communities. And, and I don’t just mean that in a pandering way and everybody’s like, everybody’s like, we got to get more people from the inner cities and everybody wants to get you know, more people that are minority, but I’m talking like, sincere outreach, because I do believe that many inner cities politically have been led down this path that disarmament is okay, and that guns aren’t a good thing and that there’s a lot of stereotypes that I think the the narrative that’s spun by many politicians on the left that guns are just a redneck white thing. And guns are just, you know, tools of white supremacy and things like that. And, you know, at least my understanding of a lot of history with gun permits and things like that where the opposite is that, you know, guns were originally, you know, gun control was originally erastus concept in many places. What’s your take on that? Yeah.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well, you just basically nailed it. In a nutshell man, gun control really has absolutely nothing to do with guns. It’s all about the control of guns from black people, and it’s not for their safety. It’s actually to keep black people from being able to defend themselves from racist and from the government. You know, back when, you know, slavery and, you know, black people needed to have guns and they own guns ever since slavery. And the thing that I tell people about is a case that happened here in Detroit, in 1925, which predates the modern civil rights movement was a case of a physician In the city of Detroit, and this doctor seen sweet, he moved into a previously all white community and the local neighbors didn’t appreciate it. And there were hundreds of people who were literally camped out in front of his house every day chanting all sorts of dreadful, unpleasant things. Oh, this one evening, you know, they fired into his home. And luckily for him, he had friends over who also brought their guns and they returned fire to people in that that mob were killed, and then the police who were there just to merely observe and report, you know, they finally stormed the home and arrested everyone. And this case in 1925 was a a groundbreaking case. This was before normal protections that people take for granted such as Miranda and the right against self incrimination and Have an attorney provided to you free of charge, you know, things that we just take for granted man. But in 1925 Dr. ossian suite was represented by Clarence Darrow, who was a famous lawyer of that time and believe it or not the n double A CP. That’s not the same in double acp of today, they actually paid his legal fees. But at the end of the day, Dr. Sweet was exonerated of every charge. But that case is significant for another reason, is significant, because here in the state of Michigan, Michigan enacted the Michigan Firearms Act in 1927, as a direct response to that case, and as a result of that case, the most onerous restrictive gun laws ever devised were put on the books here in the state of Michigan, and it was devised and implement it only for one purpose. So that no black person could defend themselves from a white racist mob ever again. Fortunately for us through all of the legal challenges and court cases and elections through the years and decades, we here in the state of Michigan have gotten most of those gun laws taken off the books. And Michigan is a fairly decent state with regards to gun laws, but gun rights advocates such as myself, are always working to make sure that they are made better from a gun owner standpoint. And you made reference to the falando Castillo case in Philadelphia, which happens, you know, maybe four or five years ago. And that case to me is very significant as it relates to black people. Because in the aftermath of that case, if you remember the details, it was a gentleman who was with this woman and they were stopped by the police. And based on what version of the story you believe He was reaching for his identification. And the police shot him thinking he was reaching for a gun. Well, in the aftermath of that case, man, many people in the black community were looking for a gun rights organization, ostensibly the NRA to come out and make a statement, man, and they never really addressed it formally. And I think that that was the missed opportunity for the NRA.

Well, well, the reason why, well, for the reason why I want to stop you right there is the point that you’re trying to make is that Philando Castillo did have a gun on him at the time. However, he was a licensed concealed carry holder, and was absolutely within the law by having that gun on him at that time. I’m sorry, I just wanted to throw that out there because that’s, I think, an important detail here about this case, continue about the very,

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, that’s very important and in the aftermath of a case man, many people In the black community were like, oh man, how awful how dreadful. How could this thing happen and they were looking for someone to make a statement man someone to make a stand, and a lot of them were turned into the National Rifle Association and you know, they did not make a statement, but what I will say is to the credit of, of one of their personalities. Gee, what’s the brother’s name out of out of, is he from New York? What’s the black guy from the National Rifle Association?

Not sure off the top of my head.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
He came out and made a statement man and well, he came out and made a statement. And you know, he said everything that we wanted the organization to say but but they didn’t. And at the end of the day, another organization, nation, the National African American gun Association, which was at the time a fairly new group, that that was formulated their membership ranks swelled. And now they’re the most significant minority gun rights group in the country as of right now. And I think that just really speaks to the reluctance of the NRA to pick up that mantle and say, Hey, you have a place here. You know, I think the NRA, you know, and in this understanding, I’m not being critical of the NRA. I’m a life member of the NRA. I’m a member of their group that is part of the committee that gets the word up about the NRA and why it’s good for them to join the NRA and I’m a big booster of the NRA. I just think it was a missed opportunity for them to take a stand and say, Hey, this case was wrong. And that Mr. Castiel should not have been, you know, killed in that fashion and that gun rights is very important and we need to fight injustice. Wherever it wherever It occurs wherever it rears its ugly head. But, you know, at the end of the day, you know, black people have found an organization that, I guess that is catering to, you know, their issues. And I continue to hope that they continue to do well. And I do hope at some point in time the NRA does in a more ostensible fashion, makes it known that they want people of color to be in the organization.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Do you think it had to do more their their lack of making a statement that I would say the silence, right, do you think had more to do with race? Or do you think had more to do with the fact that the NRA is very pro law enforcement? Or do you think it’s a combination?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
It’s possible that it’s a combination of the both but I’ll tell you this, it is, believe it or not, and I’m a living example of it. It’s possible to be pro law enforcement and be against, you know, bad cops, you know, whether that They have bad training or there’s some bad animals there, or they actually just don’t like the people that they’re discharged with protecting, you know, which we’ve seen in this last case with George Lloyd, man, but at the end of the day, man, you know, we we have very few bad cops out there man with the bad cops that we do have out there. They create a very bad situation for everyone. And the thing, the point that I think a lot of people are making right now, is not only do we take issue with bad cops, we take issue with silent cops, who see bad cops do bad things and just stand by and do nothing. And if we can look at our nation’s reaction over the last week or so, man, I think we all agree that it’s unacceptable.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
And I think I don’t see how anybody can at a high level I would not agree with that. And I think ultimately At least with law enforcement, I mean, I, I’m a mixed guy, I normally don’t have necessarily have a problem with cops. But growing up, I have had problems with cops even, you know, I grew up kind of poor and I didn’t come, you know, from a big rich family or an affluent family and, and I would say even even in the wider suburbs of Detroit, there’s a lot of bad cops that mess with white people too. I mean, cop abuse happens everywhere. And I think part of that is this like thin blue line, unaccountable culture. Like Where else can you have it that we investigated ourselves and found nothing wrong? Where that Where else would that fly in the world? I mean, other than in law enforcement, it’s really kind of absurd, if you think about it. And I think that’s where people are getting, you know, frustrated with the fact that is that I think in a lot of cases you get you get some bully cops. Let’s just be honest, I think there’s a lot of bully cops out there, but is that there’s something about the culture in law enforcement that I don’t know if it’s that thin blue line mantra, philosophy was Whatever you want to call it, is that a lot of these you’ve got these cops will cover for which is arguably very egregious behavior of their colleagues. And I that’s the shocking part in my mind how this culture has festered. And I do believe people should righteously protest this because it’s become a problem. And it’s been a problem for a long time. And I don’t know how to fix it though. But I think definitely it’s ridiculous not

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
I don’t know how to fix it either.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
And I don’t have the solution Lee you know, someone

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Can you still hear me?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, I can hear you. We’re good.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Okay, good. I lost your video but long as you can hear me that’s the thing that I think most people are taking a big hard look at man is that we’re what’s the alternative? There’s a lot of people in on in the left on the left, who are right now. I believe the mayor of Chicago is the lead Just one I think I’ve heard within the last day. They’re they’re envisioning a world in which we don’t have law enforcement officers. There’s a lot of people out here saying we need to disband the police and not have any police. I mean, I don’t, I’m not going to sit here and suggest that everything is perfect with the police. But, man, I’m not advocating no police at all. I mean, what are you going to replace that? Well,

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I you know, here’s the thing, one, one, I can get a whole political discussion, but I don’t believe that any government entity is going to disband their police, they may call them something else. They may fund them a different way. There’s no way they’re getting rid of cops because cops are very important roles for government as far as collecting revenue for the government. So and enforcing their regulations. So I have a hard time believing that anybody is going to defund or get rid of cops. I just don’t believe that’s going to happen. Or if they in the I think it’ll probably be saw. It’s I think it’s political speak is what they’re doing right now. They’re pandering. I do. The politicians are pandering right now.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Well yeah, pandering would be the word they’re pandering.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, they’re absolutely pandering. I don’t believe that they might call cops something else. It might give them a bunch of extra training, whatever, you know, sensitivity training whatever thing they want, right? It’s not that they don’t already have those trainings. Anyway, they already do have those trainings. So I think they’re just pandering they’re going to call it something else. Maybe they’ll force the force them to write more tickets to pay for it. I don’t know, whatever it ends up being, but I have a hard time believing they’re going to give up their m raps. I have a hard time believing they’re going to give up their machine guns and whatever else they have. They’re not going to do that. So I believe when I see it, I just think it’s a blunt bunch of smoke and mirrors at this time, to be honest, but my concern is, is let’s just say in their weird fantasy that they end law enforcement, right? Let’s just say it doesn’t exist anymore. I know this and you probably know this to white Americans in the suburbs have all the damn guns. Okay, you want to go find the good They’re not in the inner cities. Yeah, I mean, let’s just be honest, most of the guns in the inner cities and that the gangbangers have are pieces of shit guns. I’ve seen what they look like that’s not the fun stuff. The fun stuff is expensive. That’s the one thing that people don’t get the guns are an expensive hobby, though. You know, the fun stuff is on top

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Of the AR as the rifles expense it you know what, you’re absolutely right there in the country, and they’re in suburb area and they are vastly more plentiful than they are in the cities. Yeah, and My take is and this is my concern politically, is that and I’m glad the riots themselves seem to be slowing down because that had me concerned but you know, all it would take politically everybody’s fired up right now everybody’s, you know, amped up everybody’s really sensitive and raw and for a lot of valid fucking reasons, schema language, but a lot of valid fucking reasons. Everybody’s wired up right now. Between the lockdowns and the economy. And the stress and this is just like I think there’s a lot of things all kind of in the mix right now kind of driving this to be honest. But I think what would happen is, if some of these riots started expanding, I’m worried what happens if, you know some white homeowners or some white business owners start defending their property against looters from, you know, someone of a different minority class or, you know, a different race and how the media would spin that. I did hear that, like the mayor and the police chief in Chicago now is like coming out and saying they don’t want quote unquote, vigilante justice, because there was a group of white guys that were basically getting baseball bats and said they’re going to protect their neighborhood. Now, I think everybody has a right to protect their neighborhood. To be honest, I am all about citizen patrols. I do not like the idea of vigilante ism, quote, unquote. But it’s kind of interesting to see how this might play out where you got law enforce on one hand proven that they’re incapable of protecting property and I think That’s important. The government has proven itself in many cities across the country, dozens of cities across the country, and some of the most wealthy neighborhoods and wealthy parts like Midtown Manhattan. The police are impotent at protecting property. And I don’t think that’s going to be lost on people. And at the same time, those politicians are saying we need to disarm not only, you know, basically disarm the police, but then on top of that, they want to prevent vigilante justice. I don’t know where that goes. But I think that most Americans realize that sounds a lot bigger. Well, I think the number of guns being sold is not a logical argument.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
It’s not it’s not it..

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
It doesn’t surprise me that they’re making it but I mean, their movement is basically is going to Peter out at some point in time, because hopefully, they will see some progress, at least on the prosecution side, and I make no mistake about it. You know, the The officer who actually committed the murder Yes, by all means he is guilty. And I also have some sympathies towards the argument that the law enforcement officers who just watched him kill that guy, you know, they should have some level of culpability as well. You know, I think, Well, hopefully we’re going to an age and maybe that that thin blue line, you know, maybe we can do something with that and make it go away. If you are with another police officer, and he does something criminal, you know, to somehow hold the other officers that are with him. Just as culpable for that crime as well. I mean, I think that’s the logical next step. And I think that it needs to happen. It’s just a question as to whether the police unions are going to go forward or, or whether we’re just going to continue to do the same thing we have been doing and just be surprised that we don’t have different results.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, I’m not sure on the solution and I hope I hope it gets better because, you know, we don’t need more civil unrest in this country. I mean, we got enough problems to deal with, just with the pandemic and and all the other problems with the economy. And this is just not something that we need right now. But Rick, this has gone by very quickly. How can people find out more by you is over? We’re getting over, but I think we’re gonna have another one of these pretty soon. So where can people find out more about you? How can they get in contact with you?

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Man, I’m definitely not hard to find if you literally just type my name up in a search engine of choice, man, Ric Ric k lastname aect. Or my blog is legally armed in Detroit. I’m on all the social media channels. I have over 2000 videos on YouTube. I’m on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, I mean literally wherever you are, just look for me.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
That’s perfect. Rick, thank you so much for coming on. The Show today I’ve really enjoyed our conversation.

Rick Ector – Detroit CCW
Hey, man, thanks for having me. But you know what? Not only did I have fun this past iteration tonight, man, I enjoyed the two hours. We were just shooting the breeze last night. Too bad. We don’t have that stuff archive. Man. That was some good stuff we talked about last night.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, that’ll be for the crazy version of the podcast next time. But Rick, I’ll talk to you soon, brother. Thank you so much.

Episode Links

Audio Interview
Video Interview
Interview Transcript

 

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE Transcript

Ruben Merre - CoFounder of NGRAVE

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Hey folks, Rob McNealy here and today I’m talking to Ruben Mira. He is the CEO of engrave, and they got a really interesting product coming out a new type of hardware wallet, which I think all my crypto listeners are really going to be excited about. So Reuben, welcome to the show. How are you today?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
I’m feeling sunny. Oh, good.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, very good. I’m excited to hear about what your new product is about. So today where where are we talking to you from?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Belgium and more specifically, a very tiny village in the countryside. Where I’m hiding from movies?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I can understand, I think that’s a good thing. I’ve only been, I only landed in the airport in Brussels. I’ve only been about through Belgium. I’ve never really been in Belgium. But it’s on my bucket. It’s on my bucket list they used to, I used to live in Ireland. And then I’ve been to Switzerland and a bunch of other places in Europe over the years, but I actually have never really spent any time in Belgium. And it’s something I regret. But I think after all, this COVID stuff is kind of behind us. I’m going to probably take some time and do some traveling again, because I’m having that itch to go and get out of town, so to speak. So for my my listeners are a lot of entrepreneurs and not just crypto people. So we always like to talk about the the business piece the the entrepreneurial piece. So tell us a little bit about your background and how did you get started and what did you do before you did engrave?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yeah, so I started off studying business engineering. It’s something that doesn’t really exist, I think the other side of the of the world, but you can see it as a combination of basically during an engineering degree. And you add all of these business school classes on top. So, you know, like an MBA this they call an MBA Master’s in business engineering. So I did that for five years, got my masters, and then I started working. And I started working at Deloitte. So probably it’s a company you might still know, in the US. So I worked there as a strategy consultant for two years. And I also realized that during the, during my job, I could actually keep studying. So I’m kind of the lifelong learning tab, where I basically tried to do it an additional postgraduate degree every year. And I did that, I would say, up until the moment that I started in grief, because when I started in grief, that was really the moment that I just couldn’t combine it anymore. Nevertheless, I tried to read one book a week so that 50 books a year or so is still within my goals and I’m still achieving that. So yeah, I would say after after Deloitte, which was strategy consulting, like for CXO level in companies, I liked it, but for me it was most it was a bit too. But the organization was a bit too big and I didn’t feel that entrepreneurial vibe. So I joined a smaller management consulting company. Basically, it started at the time, I was one of the first 10 people. And eventually it made me I had a lot of liberty and freedom to help the company grow. So I went to Italy, I set up the Italian branch, I went to Germany set up the German branch, and I actually lived in different countries during my life also during my studies, so for example, in Spain and Mexico, so I basically mastered six languages professionally, and I could actually leverage that to help the company expand in all of these different countries. And let’s say a couple of years later and being a business in several countries, we kind of sold the business to cognizance, also all of those big behemoths. And I myself, actually, so I was a management consultant and innovation consultant. But I was in a unique seat, let’s say to choose a bit my projects. And I like to do those that were more like entrepreneurial. So in the beginning. So basically in parallel with my job, I launched the first automated investment platform in Belgium. It’s something that in the US is known as Robo advisory I don’t know if you’ve ever heard about that basically, basically means that you fill in sort of a questionnaire to determine what your risk versus adversities. And then based on that there are all these algorithms that work for you every day and they kind of rebalance your portfolio continuously to make sure you have the best portfolio that taking care of your risk and at the same time maximizing the return even that risk. So I built the first platform like that in Belgium. Then I also scaled it to A couple of other countries, and eventually one of the big financial players. They hired me to set a bollock a whole new business unit that was totally dedicated to algorithmic trading, automated investment platforms. And I did that for two year, two years. So I let the whole program there. And that was just before I started in grief. And I was supposed to become, let’s say, the piano leader of that, of that block. But the moment that we were starting to engrave I realized that the potential is so huge that I basically decided to completely shift everything. So I was actually not not really in the blockchain space before. I started in grief, just a little bit. And but nowadays, obviously, it’s the exact opposite. Now I live and breathe blockchain and crypto and the security some really excited that we can announce that in less than a month we will actually be launching this beautiful product.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So how long have you been in the crypto space?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
I’ve been in the crypto space Since the top of the market, so I joined when I think Bitcoin was just around floating around $19,000.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So fairly new, we actually I got into crypto probably not that much before that either, as well. So I’m not going to give anybody a hard time. We jumped right in with launching our project, right? Like literally New Year’s Day of 2018 is when we launched our test project. So it’s like, yeah, I can understand anything in there that that, so to speak. So I’m telling you about engrave. What do you what are you doing with engrave?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yeah, so I had to say, for example, my founders have been in the space way longer than me, gave you, for example, has been in the space since 2013. And so he was also one of those victims of Mount Gox where they lost 850 thousand bitcoins in total, a lot less.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
That’s expensive.

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yeah. And the thing is that in 2016, he did an ICO which is projects. The risk 76,000 ether, so respectable amount I would say. And in 2017, they, he opened up the smart contract balance of his company, and everything was gone. So everything was stolen, hacked, empty balance. And you can imagine that the moment you do that in front of your computer, you’re extremely shocked. And they beat me it was 44,000 aetherium that they lost. And it wasn’t a parity hack. It’s one of those more famous hacks in the crypto history. And basically, he got his head together with a couple of other white hat hackers. And what they did is they automated the heck, they attacked themselves 500 other projects, and they stole $200 million from these projects. And obviously, they did that with all the best intentions, basically, to protect these guys from the bad hackers. And so eventually they gave back this $200 million worth of crypto obviously with the let’s say, the welder side note that if the Police would have gotten before they gave it back here they would they would probably be in prison right now. And that’s also a bit like Genesis story of engrave. So Xavier eventually became CTO of that project. He became extremely passionate about security. And when I joined the space, which was actually fairly later, so in 2018, I did realize quite quickly that there were some really big issues going on in the in the industry. And so the three of us basically brainstorms on Okay, let’s assume that we have our very first or very last Bitcoin, let’s say we have 100 Bitcoin each, and we have to put it somewhere where we would completely trust that it would still be there in the next day, we opened up the wallet, and we just couldn’t find an answer to that. So what we decided to do at that very moment in April 2018, was let’s build that solution that’s built the best security solution in the world for crypto. Have you understood, obviously That just the three of us, we would never be able to do that, or pull that off just by ourselves. So we Ghana went looking for the best players in the world for their specific niche. And we took two months to build our own prototype, we built it on the Raspberry Pi, we took the time as well to, let’s say, make a business pitch and so on. And we went knocking on the door of the world’s leading research and development Institute’s I make and they are so the r&d leader there for nano electronics. And to just give you like one, one example, in 2018, the tape the first atom size chip to the first chip in the world size of an atom three nanometers big they made it and so we went knocking on their door and we said hey, we are looking for a good partner to build this with. And they also have happened to have a tech acceleration program, one of the top five in the world and so they said Okay, let’s let’s, let’s go for it. Let’s put you in the program. Let’s see how it goes. And after a couple of months, they also realized that actually, we were really not kidding around. And the the approached us with the ask, can we co develop this with you guys. And as from that moment, so let’s see, Summer 2018, we basically have been in a code Development Partnership with ionic. Whereas the IP, the intellectual property still remains fully. There are sort of three of us. That’s just a, let’s say, the start of the story that I guess you have any questions for me?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I got a few. So how are you funding this? Did you did you go and do a raise somewhere VC funded or did you sell fund in bootstrap?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yeah, so we are really, really conscious of the fact that dilution is the last thing you wanna you want to have in the company. So what we did today, and we’re actually pretty proud of that is we were able to raise all the money. We needed to do this without having to go to VC. So what did we do, we got a little bit of an investment in from the very beginning from ionic itself, then we basically got a bank to bank us up, let’s say in that, simply put, we got a small Angel round in the beginning with a couple of business angels. And eventually, we also got European Commission backing this, the Belgian government backing us, and even the web three foundation. And right now we have, let’s say, a modest amount of convertible notes running, we have raised quite a bit of money and more than a million, let’s say to keep it simple and still a bit enigmatic, but So our idea was we have to first do a sales round. And after that sales round, we can basically validate the demands. That’s when we want to do around and right now we are three weeks away from the start of that sales round. So we will be launching on Indiegogo, the 20 Sixth of May. And there you will be able to buy our engraves yogurt and Griffin combo solution at 50% discount on the very first day. And after that Thursday then obviously the discount will decrease gradually or the price will increase gradually. And for us it has been quite the roller coaster, let’s say to get to this point to build something so secure that is in hardware and security and crypto. It’s like the worst three niches in the world put together for an entrepreneur. But we so we basically made it this far and now it’s about getting those sales and then after that we already have a crowdfunding in place. So we will likely do that first. So get a bit more debt and then we will go for a round. So Alright, these to do a first big round by the end of 2020.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So I definitely see that ease of use and crypto security are pretty vital, especially for mass adoption and and I’m not just talking Kaster. I’m a co founder of a community crypto project. So I’m always, you know, trying to figure out what would make it easier for the artists, our community to, you know, get pushed out to the mainstream, and how do we protect those people? So, tell me about the product. What makes the engrave wallet better than other options that are on the market now?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yes, well, there are actually many, many different innovations that we bring and retract, we’re going to try to spoon feed these to the markets. Because what we did and I think it’s also something that is different from all the other players is we don’t consider security as similar as all the others do. So if you think about it, in our opinion, security is not a secure crypto exchange. Security is not a secure hardware wallet. Security is a end to end approach where you think of what’s the first step until what’s the very last step and the first step is how do I create a private key or let’s say, a crypto wallet in a completely secure way. The last step is what if tomorrow I pass away? How can my family get access to my crypto in a secure way? and everything in between? So what we did is we we thought initially about, okay, how are keys generated? And we understood that actually already there, there were a couple of issues. So we resolve those issues with a couple of innovations. One of them is called the engrave perfectly. So we actually step away from the mnemonic seed phrases, we support them, so you can still use them, you can still make one but we actually introduce a whole new key, and we use that key throughout the entire lifecycle of let’s say, your cryptocurrencies. So, if we if we start at the very beginning, we have three products. The first one is the angry zero hardware wallets. So what is it it is a touchscreen device, it is one for example. And we build it from scratch together with amongst others I’m McKesson, world leader in nanotechnology, to make sure that every single detail about security user’s experience was thought about and was integrated in the in the circuitry of the chip of the electronic circuitry boards and everything else. But so I would say if he would summarize it, so we are an end to end solution, we have a offline hardware wallet. And we have something to replace paper wallets in case you lose your hardware wallet. And we also have an app to take care of the last mile communication with the blockchain. But if we start with this beautiful thing here, so first of all, it is 100% offline, meaning you will never need to connect it to a computer to transactions or anything else. So there is no USB required, there is no 4g Wi Fi, Bluetooth, anything like that. There simply is a simple on and off button on the side. You turn it on, and you can do your thing. And if you need to do, let’s say a transaction or sync and accounts, you just create the QR codes on the screen. And you can scan that with your app. QR codes, the ones we make will never contain any information on the private keys. So obviously, the private key is the most important thing of your wallets. We make it offline, we never expose it. So there are basically zero remote attack vectors. Nobody can attack this device because there simply is no way to make a connection to it. For us, that was the first thing we needed to do bring everything offline. The second thing we did was we made this device physically tamper proof, because one of the questions is what if somebody finds my device? We military grade tamper proof does they say I find it a bit not I don’t find it very nice words military grade. So I would say we have put in place several cumulative layers of anti tampering to make sure that if even at some points you get that far the device will know it’s under attack, it will bite the keys. And just to be sure, we introduce something entirely new as well, which is the high security certification. Any of these wallets has ever gotten, Ill said. So, to put that a bit in contrast, banks and governments have on average five or six out of the seven levels, there are a ledger nano x, for example has five on a secure element. We have seven on this on the secure firmware. So if you try to attack this device, it is one of the most difficult things you will probably have to do in your life. And this thing is is the only one that has this L seven certification in the whole blockchain world. So that’s how serious we take your security. And obviously then we have the ease of use parts that comes to mind.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So tell me about how I would physically use that. So you have this. It looks like a slick little device. I got some pictures ahead of time and, and I think the interface looks really, really good. So do I need to For instance, if I’m going to go shopping and I want to go to a retailer, do I need to take this device with me every time everywhere I go?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Well, the use case of a hardware wallet is basically for your huddle part of your portfolio. So if you think about you, let’s say your traditional wallet, your traditional fiat money, you have a current accounts, let’s say 10, maybe 20% of your money. And then 80% or more of all your money is actually somebody in a savings account or an investment account. And hardware wallets were invented to take care of the parts that is long term. So basically, what you normally do is you put in a USB stick in your computer, which has which specific security protocols, and you can send your crypto to the accounts on the device. By doing so, you basically put them offline and you put them away for a longer period. And anything you need to do transactions with you can keep that on your exchange account, or let’s say on a software wallet app that you take with you into a shop. So you wouldn’t need the hardware wallets, per se. And so let’s say that for us, obviously the use case is exactly the same. So the ID or the intention of a hardware wallet is not to take it with you. But because it is so variable, basically, it’s a pocket size. You could have, for example, two of these wallets one year to keep at home, and one that you can have with you and with which you could, in fact, go and purchase stuff in the shop. It is not our intended use case. But you can always you can always do so. But we don’t really recommend it. I think the best thing you can do with your current account is just have it on your app or have the money in your portfolio, in cash, and just be that way. The only thing is you will be risking, let’s say a small portion of your money, because it can be hacked. It is online.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I couldn’t agree more. So you say you’re going to be launching this in three weeks. Oh, where will it be launched? Is it going to be in Europe first or will be able to be purchased by say Americans or what’s the first target markets that you’re going to be launching.

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yep, no, everybody will be able to purchase it. Because we’re actually doing it through Indiegogo. So you know, Kickstarter is one of those big crowdfunding platforms. Indiegogo is more or less the same size, or at least in the same year. But they’re mostly focused on not just hardware, like, let’s say, backpacks with more like hardware technology. So basically exactly the niche we are in. It’s a huge platform, it’s worldwide. So it doesn’t really matter from where you are buying. You can buy from wherever you want. And for us, it’s it gives this extra interesting dimension. Because if there is, let’s say, in the Philippines, a huge number of people who actually love waterfalls, it’s something we might not know today. They can, they can reveal themselves. And we have some sort of a pull strategy where the customer can tell us, hey, you exist, we want one of these we want them to and if you would say apart from that Indiegogo strategy, our main goal would be in the first place to go for Europe and Northern America and then expand from there from there.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, very cool. Ruben, where can people find out more about your new engrave wallet?

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Well, you have the website, which is very straightforward. Engrish mg R a v.io. If you add slash like a backslash and then subscribe, you can subscribe right now to the waiting list to select your shirt you can get 50% off on the day that we launched on the 26th of May. And we actually also have a competition going on right now a giveaway, where if you enter it you have you will be able to win one of 10 potential combos so the hardware wallets and also our backup solution. That will be you can you can enter the competition until somewhere like the week of the 20th.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Wonderful, Ruben, thank you so much for coming on the show today. I think our listeners are going to have to take a look at what you’re doing with the engrave wallet. And I really do appreciate all your time. I think you’ve been very informative and I’m always active To see about new technology and solutions for safe storage of crypto assets and, and it looks like this is going to be a winner. I can’t wait to get my hands on one myself.

Ruben Merre – NGRAVE
Yeah, definitely buy one or read one if you can. Right now is really the time for all of that.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I will try my hand. All right, thank you so much Ruben. This is Rob McNealy. Thank you for listening. Folks check sent to the web at RobMcNealy.com and we’ll catch you next time.

Episode Links

Audio Interview
Video Interview
Interview Transcript

Robin Matthes, Roland van Reenen and Tim Betts – PAC Global Transcript

PAC Global

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Hey guys, Rob McNealy here. And today we have a really fun a big interview. Normally I only have one guest on but today we have three. And it is a collective group from both Pac global and some of blockchain. So I’d like to introduce First I’d like to introduce Robin, and then we can go around and then maybe everybody introduce yourselves and how you kind of got here. Is that work for you guys?

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yes. Awesome.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Robin, tell us about you what’s going on today.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
First and foremost Philly Cinco de Mayo. Todos. It synchronous Today it’s very important holiday. I’m Robin Matthes. I’m the chief philanthropy officer slash head of charity at big global. And I’m also the master coordinator for the Washington elite AI and blockchain summits. In the past, I have mainly attended to Venezuelan refugees by air dropping bitcoins to them, so they could then use it to buy essential goods and medicines at street merchants whom we’ve provided with tablets. And we’re partnered with the first we’re partnered with the liberland aid Foundation, as well as the flame of peace which is a charitable organization that is active in over 70 different countries. They are run by the House of Habsburg which is the royal family of Austria, and together with them and summit blockchain and many other partners like Guk, Steen and gift nation we are affirming the trees for peace. Alliance and growing edible food forests like the one you can see on my background, which is a video that got sent to me by Roland van Renan, who will introduce himself shortly is considered by us as one of the most optimal ways to do charity will be restoring nature, we’ll be providing food for those who needed most. And in the process, we’re also looking to improve the existing way that they do agriculture.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Wonderful, Tim, give us a little bit about your background. How’d you get involved with these guys?

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Yeah, thanks, Rob. So my name is Tim Betts and I am the chairman and CEO of a company called summit blockchain. We were founded back in July of 2018. I’m here in California, Southern California. And basically what we do at summit is we invest exclusively in the energy efficient blockchain networks. So we’ve been a an investor for, I would say almost two years now in Pac, global. And we have a few other different holdings. And we are typically an activist investor. I’m on the board of directors of Pac global. And I’ve been working with Robin, who’s the pack Global Head of charity, as he mentioned, and I would call him our farmer, farmer Deluxe Roland van Renan. On a real interesting opportunity that is charity driven, but also some other areas of growth potential that we see as an investor impact levels. So that I guess is kind of the short version of us we’re, we’re excited about the prospects of blockchain and in particular, really interesting use cases that can give back to a given community as well. So that’s really what got what got myself and my company excited in this project.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Oh, very cool and Roland van Reenan, how are you today sir?

Roland van Reenan
I’m fine thank you for inviting me for this interview. And as I mean, I’m Rolan ban Reenan as you know already, and I’m working since 2015 on permaculture and regenerative agricultural projects and careers outside the by my own with zero budgets succeeded to get them food forest on the ground in three years and was asked by the Minister of Agriculture to do more of this stuff. So and I organized the course with two Brazilians, who are specialized in the Central Park refers to a system that we’re about to display. And there was a very successful course with 42 participants. And we started to we succeeded to get in our forestry system here. So, that’s the basis of how we work. And now we continue to work from.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So quickly Robin, you’re in Curacao. Yes, me too. And then Roland’s in Curacao with you as well? Yeah. Yeah. And then three and then Tim is in Orange County, Southern California?

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Yep, not not quite a not quite an island over here, but I guess they’re the they’re part of the Dutch contingent on a Curacao.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, it’s as I mentioned to Robin before, I’ve actually been to Curacao out twice scuba diving. Oh, so I’ve actually spent a little bit of time in Willemstad. And it was on the west northwest coast no little or little further north of Williamstown on the coast at the old habitat dive resorts where I used to go Yes, so I like carousel that.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Most American people are most familiar with Aruba, which is right next to it has pretty much the same jurisdiction.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Right? That’s like where You land and then you fly over to Curacao.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
You can get a direct flight took yourself from Miami.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, I didn’t when I went last time they didn’t have a direct flight. Um, but but that was some time ago. So let’s just jump into this. I’m kind of a fan of agriculture. In fact I just am finishing my irrigation system I actually have a I have like an on suburban farm. We have our we have a half acre lot that we live on and we live in the city. Our garden patch is about 6000 square feet now and we have 20 fruit trees and we have irrigation moderates here in the city. So I’m literally just put in a brand new pump system we have 1000 gallon cistern for watering because we flood irrigate our backyard so our neighbors are you know, we kind of hide our garden because you know, our neighbors wanted to look really nice and a certain way it’s interesting because most people don’t like that, right like farms usually look like farms. They don’t look like you know, upper scale kind of like suburbs. neighborhood so we got everything fenced off and hidden. And then we rejuvenated our old we had a bunch of standard pear trees when we moved in that were 40 feet high and, and unproductive, we rejuvenated them. And now they’re seven feet high, and they’re growing back out and productive and, and we’re building our soil because we have really basic soils here. And they’re, they’re basically, basic clay is what we have. So we’ve been spending some time over the last couple of years trying to build our soil and fix our soil. So I’m really into ag mini agriculture, I got 200 plants under lights, we’re going to be planting next week. So I love organic farming the best I can here my little patch. So I’m actually excited to talk to you guys about what you’re doing. So let’s get so let’s get into this a little bit. You guys have talked a lot about in the past, you know this concept of food forests. And what does that mean? What is a food forest and what do you think you’re going to do with food forests? Anybody just jump in, you know and we can just talk, so..

Roland van Reenan
Shall I shall I answer this question Robin?

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yes, go right a head.

Roland van Reenan
Food forest is is is growing food but imitating the laws of nature, the intelligence of nature, the inherent intelligence of nature. So nature does it, it doesn’t work it does it, it’s just and in a way we prepare for we try to imitate those processes so that those things work holistically together. And we don’t have to put in that much energy so it’s an energy low way of producing food because yeah, the more mature the food the food forest grows, the less energy you have to put in, the more self sustaining it will become and then you got this. Center up agroforestry foot forward And these are very much higher, developed efficient, efficiently, efficiently developed than the normal food forest I was talking about is a way of planting a forest with food but in succession, so you plant from three weeks to 20 years, and you produce in the meantime you produce food now the forest is growing, you’re always harvesting and that has also to do with knowing the place and needs of every plant in the system. And the Brazilians especially in the gentleman called earns God’s developed this system. And the system proves to be very efficient and successful in compared to traditional food forest we know so that’s, that’s, there’s something very interesting and of course it’s all about building soil also but the forest will build the soil by and we plant certain trees and plants. Because of the building up the soil, we build my bio mysteries and biomass plants. If you see the face of Robin, you see behind them the rows of trees, but there are predators in between. and also lines of grass and the grass is always also function as biomass provide and also to do some irrigation and some water storage in the soil. Yeah, you see the line of grass here again?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So would you say that the planting of grasses designed to help with pests and weeds as well?

Roland van Reenan
The way this plant Yeah, according to the Brazilians, it’s very interesting. They say if every strata strata, isn’t it a level isn’t. I would say to Robin held layer, layer layer in this forest if every layers occupied in the forest, and best won’t be a real problem. Of course, they will be best but they won’t lead the system they they will be there but they be controlled by all the elements in the system. So but as soon as One of those layers are not present in the system, then they say, then you will have mosquitoes, you will have threats, you will have other plagues, you will have pest there the system. So that’s very interesting perspective, it means that if you plan it good enough, if you plan all those strata, and all due to their needs for sunlight, we have to know those needs, then we can have relatively pest free production.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So I’m a big believer in agriculture, as I already mentioned, so you’re not to sell me on it. But how would you sell this to other people? Why do we need this new concept of agroforestry? What is the purpose? Why is this a problem? What prop I guess the question is, what problem are you trying to solve with this?

Roland van Reenan
Now the first the first the harvest per square meter is much higher than normal agriculture. It’s that’s that’s effect because normally if you plant the monoculture, you will have to wait a couple of months to do the RFS. In the meantime, you’re putting in energy and it’s your You’re You’re, you’re putting fertilizers you have to plow before you and you’re waiting, some some labor you have to put in. But in this system of food, forestry, you plant everything at the same time. And that means that you start harvesting for three weeks while you’re waiting for your origin on the crop. And that could be fruit trees. Normally, if you plant fruit trees, you have to wait for a couple of years for them to produce him you know, you know about that. But we plant the vegetables in between knowing the succession of those different kinds of plants and we start harvesting from three weeks and six weeks we got the next harvest on the same spot. And we got another harvest of eight weeks, we get another visit two months we got our visit a couple of months of for for instance excellence, we can then cassava coming in nine months and then we got papaya and bananas that will produce for two three years. And then the fruit tree is already so this is a continuous RFS thing in the process of without plowing and putting their energy in that they Other net normal agriculture has to put in. So that means no plowing anymore. You do plowing only once and you make raised beds and then it’s over. And you don’t have to put in too much fertilizer because you produce fertilizers by the plants you plant in the system. So we use mostly green manure in your time. In the beginning, we start of course with manure, also cow manure and those kinds of videos, organic manures. But then, as the system develops, monitoring will be added by plants that we planted on that perfect purpose to feed the system we say food for the food and planting the system to so those lines of biomass grasses for instance, is also used to mow the grass and put the grass back as mulch on the soil to cover the soil always.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Very good. So you’re gonna build these out and what do you hope to do with this high density more efficient kind of method of farming?

Roland van Reenan
And it’s not only the footprint of the footprint actually was the first interest, we want to make money with with footprint and we want to want to provide food and also for the farmers. But the nice thing is that if you play if you grow a forest and all other things you struggle with, for instance water, what a cyclist cycles will be repaired, and especially here on the island is that that’s the our major challenge because we don’t have that much rainfall you got we are completely different stated. So that means that the rain is reduced to an absolute minimum, and there’s always a strong wind blowing. So water will evaporate in four times the rainfall. And so by building and setting up a forest you come to those problems, not only you’re producing food, but you’re building the soil erosion will be stopped and you counter the with the influences to win because different strata if the wind blow come into the system, and it meets different strata, it means it will be nice Why they can stay in the system it will be very big condensate after so it will fall down in the system. So, these are just a few examples of what you buy producing food that you can take also so you solve a lot of problems while producing foods ecological problems and the same time reforest a the islands so bring back the rain also just you mentioned if you think.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well it’s a good thing. So, Tim you guys are you know working on some pilots that are coming up. Can you talk a little bit about that?

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Sure. It may be just let me add to and kind of you know, I’m almost anything but a farmer. I guess you know, my experience I used to cut cut my cut my parents yard as a kid and by the way, that’s those are some chores. No kids seem to do now but I digress a bit, but men do. Yeah. So this, this Rob is what really excited me about about this project. So, you know I first met rolling through Robin and we did one of these, you know a zoom call and you know I started hearing about it and I kind of went back to the my office here and did did some homework and looked up some things in sort of the beauty I think of this sin tropic agroforestry and regenerative forestry i think is you know, it’s it’s not something man made and it’s not something that just happened, you know, a few weeks ago or a few months ago. One could argue this has been around for let’s say thousands of years and probably the best example of it is the the lush organic Brazilian rainforest and you know, what you see there are complimentary plants, you know, working in in Sintra, Rafi, meaning together versus entropy where, you know, be at plants or humans or whatever, are working the opposite of, you know, not, not together and You know, as a result, you have one plant next to another plant, which essentially confuses an insect. So it, it keeps the bugs away. You don’t need to spend money on insecticide. As Roland mentioned, you know, there’s a lot of pruning that goes on. So you get the green matter from the trees coming down. And soil degradation, I think is one of the biggest problems is that, you know, we face worldwide, you know, the bad quality of soil and through the pruning, you’re basically, if you take a step back, you have a self sustaining ecosystem that really, over time, doesn’t require fertilizer, doesn’t require pesticides, starts requiring less and less water. And don’t take our word for it. Hmm, this has already been out there. It’s been perfected, as Roland mentioned by I think, you know, he’s sort of known as The Godfather or Ernst coach. And you see what he did in Brazil, starting back in the 80s basically took a deforested timber land. timber farm that had no good soil quality. And now he’s, I think producing three to four times the yield of a monoculture or single crop farm. So I think it’s very exciting. And it’s a very timely subject, especially in, in kind of what what the world is going through now. And you never thought food sustainability even in the US would be on the front of anybody’s mind. But you’re seeing food lines and things like that. And so, you know, some of our pilots that we’re doing, we’re sort of taking into account of what’s going on in the world today. And really, our first pilot, I call it kind of our pre pilot is going to be done in a property that that Robin lives on, which is a home a plot of land at his home. So what we hope to accomplish out of that is basically a homegrown edible food forest where somebody can be not sure 100% self sufficient. He’s not going to be growing any be fun on his yard there. I don’t think but maybe…

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You can get goat right?

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
I could probably get a goat.

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Yeah. So so he might tell the kids. Yeah, so that’s young chickens. Exactly some of those things. So I think again, it’s really exciting. We have these pilot programs. The first one really starting at Robins place. We’re going to have I think three more in Curacao we were going to just really do one main one in Curacao. But with you know, the unknown travel restrictions how long those are going to go for we’re we’re going to do a total of four pilot programs in Curacao. The second one is going to be and by the way outside of Robin, the other three pilot programs are land that is either owned by Roland or through associates of his that are going to provide that land for us. So we’re excited about that. We have our our farmer on board who You know, has his skill set that none of us have outside of maybe you rob on this on this discussion here, but starting on yourself, we think we’re going to be able to show and improve soil quality. Over time, I think we’re going to be able to show a significant, hopefully a yield increase, versus a monoculture farm that we have some data points on and that we’re looking at, and then being able to really monitor and verify and report those results on the blockchain, which is where I get pretty excited knowing and you know, my enthusiasm for blockchain. So I believe we’re going to be one of the first companies I’ve been able to identify to, to, to kind of marry again, edible food forest and the the potential of those with the ability to really see how we’re progressing on the blockchain. So and then from there, you know, we have a plan For Kenya, five acres and then Jamaica 50 acres, and then hopefully from there, we think we can scale it to other parts of some some developing countries. So, you know, it’s exciting and you know, probably like you, Rob, I see a lot of projects. And this one really got my interest from, from, you know, all the different parts of it that that can be used to help people but also show, I think a better way to set up farms going forward.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So how do you plan to incorporate blockchain into this project? What’s the actual use case of the technology?

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
So it’s pretty interesting. It’s mostly for submitting KPI data and also MVR data around the projects that we are doing. We’re basically initially looking to leverage the ipfs blockchain for submitting data around the violets and Then we’ll use our experience that we’ve gained through the pilot to build our own data blockchain for the purpose. And regarding the key performance indicators on like, we have to submit the data on one site. So the farmers can input their metrics that are using this concept around the sub indicators for the projects. And then we submit the data onto the blockchain. And on the other side, there will be a sort of a website that will have a dashboard that is displaying the data in the case of ipfs ipfs. It’s a dot eat or dot XYZ or Luke’s domain. And abundant input of the data by two farmers, for example, an American farmer would input that they’re working on two and a half acres of land, for example, the app could convert this figure into one acre, which is the standard used for the entire database. So that was Allow us to actually standardize databases from across the root. And we will be mostly focusing on user friendliness when we build such an app, and also focusing on workshops between well, farmers technicians and children. And then there’s the monitor, verify and report side of it, which would essentially allow us through IoT pins to monitor the tree. So for instance, when one of them dies or gets cut down, an alarm will sound and the park ranger could go check it out, if you will. And the IoT sensors measured the suction of the trees and then they verified that the tree is alive. And in doing so we can actually monitor and verify in quasi real time on the blockchain and report the relevant instances like the UN, for example, or 2 billion trees initiative.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So our People gonna want to watch the grass grow on blockchain. Real time.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
It depends on which people because the UN has publicly acknowledged that it is seeking to leverage blockchain to achieve the SDGs the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. And we are using the metadata and the metadata methodological approach for from the cultural organization, and they have different sub indicators. Well, I should go back a few steps ensured we’re basically following the United Nations structure that has been laid out by the Food and Agricultural Organization. We are focusing on the environmental dimension of sustainable development. You also have the social dimension and the economical dimension. So we’ve narrowed it down to SDG number two, which is zero hunger, and it has a couple of targets and we chose target the point four and the StG KPI 2.4 point one, you could Google this I will also make this data publicly available, but bear with me for a second. And fo will also like the Food and Agriculture Organization will also help us with measurements on larger projects after our pilot of 500 acres and above. But let me share my screen for a quick second. Do you know where I here share my screen. So here you see the SDG indicator 2.4 point one and different sub indicators. So you see here in the environmental dimension, that you have the surveillance of soil degradation, so we use soil tests that we would mill overdue institutions that could do some research on the soil and send those back to soil test and we could implement that on the blockchain and then you have to variation And water and Roland was met was telling me that instead of you measuring like metric meters or metric tons of water that you’re using, you measure how often a week you would feed the plants water. And then there’s other ones like the use of fertilizers and the use of pesticides, and also to use of biodiverse supportive practices, because we’re planning on planting over 100 different trees, different plants per acre, and like about 12 to 1300 different trees in total per acre. So we’ll be performing quite well in these areas. The UN has essentially uses a traffic light approach where they measured the percentages of these sub indicators. And then we have here what we projected that ours will look like like we’ll use less water you can see here to water use an old so this data we will measure and implement into the blockchain and ultimately we’re also looking to, well, we want we’re looking to appeal to instances like the UN or 2 billion trees initiative with whom we’re in contact through with whenever directors called us Salton. And they The ultimate goal is to, for them to eater acknowledges as a partner, which is very possible because you only have to fill in the form with which I’m very well on my way. And then for them to ultimately use our Beck global block data blockchain to achieve some if not all of the SDGs that are written in the 2030 agenda.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Wow, that’s, um, sounds complicated, but it’s interesting to me.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yeah, there’s a lot of things where blockchain could actually solve a lot of the things that we’re seeing like do you can standardize The projects by the thing I was mentioning earlier about the metric submission, but also if, for example, this is just an example carbon databases are the UN has different carbon databases right now that are all like they have local metrics for the countries where they have their carbon database. So a carbon credits project could actually submit data to different databases and then you have double counting of carbon credits. For the record a carbon credit is one metric tonne of carbon processed by for example, trees, but it could also be alternative energy, it could be all kinds of different things. So all in all, we are looking to use the pilot to start leveraging blockchain and can see how I stop sharing and put back on my video and leveraging the blockchain for the SDGs and a lot of other social good projects. out there. Because we know that a lot of different levels there can be improvements by using the blockchain for such a mean for such an end.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So a couple quick, just little, little questions. Will this work in any environment? Like, for instance, will this regrow in the desert? Because that’s been something that’s fascinating to me. Yeah. Because by the way, if you want to regrow in the desert, there’s a lot of cheap desert land in Utah that you can get for like pennies an acre. So if you want to do a project in the desert, just come on out to Utah, they will they’ll give you the land.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
So I think Roland…

Roland van Reenan
My answer would say would be yes. Yeah. And we I am trying in a moment I’m trying out the project without irrigation so that will be used can be used in a desert situation, is an awesome technique is developed in Brazil, with less or more or less the same rainfall as we get here early, but seven months of no rainfall at all. And that means that Yeah, and without irrigation that means that you have to build up very gradually the system that holds the water for you, and what they use them for in this in this case they use kind of cactus, it’s the nopal cactus from Mexico and they plant them very densely and together with our garbage and that will build up the the water levels in the soil, in the plants in the first stage. And this this, these plants will be used as mulch like like in a normal agroforestry system and will slowly drip in the water in the soil. So you can then the next phase, you can start planting vegetables and fruit trees that will be fed with the water that’s the cactus have been stored. So that’s a case scenario without irrigation. But if you get it If you can use irrigation you can of course speed up those processes so I will say yes in especially in deserts like situations it will it’s very useful depends only on we have to search for the right plants that can stand those circumstances but the system itself it’s very useful in any situation.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yeah for example in Kenya we’re focusing on preventing flooding rather than desertification.

Roland van Reenan
Yeah yeah. So you might say we’re gonna desert like situation only did we the only difference between the normal is that we don’t have that huge differences in night and day temperatures. But the way the country look like is real desert like situation.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Is there you said earlier that the land in Curacao has been mostly deforested? Is there a lot of vacant land or unused land now in Curacao so that you could start reforesting the country?

Roland van Reenan
Yes, there are certain options or there is a lot of government land. So that is not the first option, although the government is very interested also. But there’s also a lot of land of farmers that have people that have land but no, not necessarily cultivated. So it’s very nice to find out if those people are willing to offer their land so that they will have an income and the share shared income, you know, that the farmer who does the work will get maybe the 50% of the income and they are the one who has the land to do this. This kind of constructions are to be developed yet. Yeah.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what would you say then? Then anybody jump in here? What what’s the business opportunity here? How do you do this sustainably and how do you fund it sustainably?

Roland van Reenan
The business opportunity you say?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yes, how do you fund this, sustainably, this project and this concept?

Roland van Reenan
This financial part may be best explained by Tim or Robin.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yeah, from what I’ve gathered that once you install well once you install the irrigation the project pretty much becomes self sustainable because the harvest good. By the time you’ll need irrigation again, it’ll be at least three years later. And everything else is basically self sustainable at that point.

Roland van Reenan
Yeah, the only thing you have to do is pruning.

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Yeah. And for these initial projects, so we’re looking to fund them and buy we my company summit blockchain. pretty reasonable, you know, our budget. I think we’re we’re looking at, you know, under $5,000 per pilot program and like Roland and Robin mentioned, you know, there’s a fair amount of work on decent amount of work, I would say on the front end, but that definitely comes out over time. becomes less. And, you know, there’s, again, a lot of, I think, really unique opportunities out there to help people with some of their, their, you know, land that they have now which which is again bed deforested or, or who knows what but there’s there’s so much unusable land out there, you know, we see it as a real big opportunity. I will say this, you know, through some of the projects that have been done not by us, but but others in the industry previously, you know, they’ve been able to show that it actually increases rainfall in that microclimate by having a really lush, organic, sustainable food forest is also increased the rainfall. So pretty crazy, you know, some of these results, but I think, you know, again, on multiple levels, that makes a lot of sense. Once you dig down into it, it sort of kind of, I kind of got that. Oh, yeah. A moment, you know where, you know, this makes sense. And it’s not, you know, overly complicated. And when you really get your arms around it, which doesn’t take a long time, it makes a lot of sense. So, again, I think with these initial rollouts, we are looking to capture a lot of data, build a nice template, using a lot of the UN’s parameters that they’ve already put together, but just doing it in a little bit different, more efficient way. And that’s the blockchain. And then, you know, again, we see a lot of a lot of other areas, be it you know, Central America, South America, where slash and burn seems to be the, the, the optimum choice that they’re using. And, you know, that’s really a short term solution. And again, it all sort of comes back to soil. I think as you know, you get soil runoff if there was a slash and burn program in place, and this is just really a way to do things. I think smarter, and again, don’t trust any of us on the call. Nope. Trust nature. Just look at what now. is done. And it’s really, you know, the bottom line is its nature working together to produce the best results possible.

Roland van Reenan
I would like to ask, I would like to add one thing. nature will probably do 100 years to reforest the land, we can do it in 10 years. And that’s that’s that’s the human intelligence into the natural intelligence by using the natural intelligence. Yeah.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Yeah. And I would argue that it’s the main source of income would come from our blockchain applications. An example would be once we’ve proven the concept and then our pilots that we would apply for grants, for example, and that the food that comes out of this because that global is largely focused on charity you, we don’t really we’re not really looking to directly profit from it, but more do it in some sort of a way that it contributes to the human kind and the greater good.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Well, I couldn’t get any more Kumbaya than that. I really appreciate your time. Where can people find out more about project and say they want to get involved or invest or help out in some way?

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
You could start by looking at our Twitter, the big global Twitter, our operations and most of our direct stakeholders are on Discord. And we also have a website called Big global.io.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Fantastic, gentlemen, thank you so much. And folks, we’re going to have all those links up on our website associated with the blog and this podcast up at Rob McNealy calm. Once again, thank you so much for listening, and we’ll catch you next time.

Robin Matthes – PAC Global
Awesome. Thank you, Rob.

Roland van Reenan
Thank you.

Tim Betts – Summit Blockchain
Thank you.

Episode Links

Audio Interview
Video Interview
Interview Transcript

Brandon Cooper – Aphid Transcript

Brandon Cooper - CEO of Aphid.io

Brandon Cooper – CEO of Aphid.io

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Hey folks, welcome to show I am Rob McNealy and today I am real excited. I am talking to Brandon Cooper. He is the co founder and CEO of a fit a la based startup working in artificial and blockchain. So, let’s welcome to the show. Brandon. How are you today, sir?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Doing well, how about yourself?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
You know, I can’t complain so much. It’s a beautiful day out west got out, got some sun today working out in the yard. So that’s good, considering we’re in the pandemic Apocalypse, I actually feel fine. So that’s good. Saying here. So before we jump into this, tell me a little bit of background. How’d you get started in being an entrepreneur?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yeah, I from from a young age, I’ve always been the outcast or just kind of looking around the classrooms and I always felt different even in college. The big auditorium 600 students, I really just didn’t feel like it was for me, it was always something more than just going through the system. Basically, and my background from Detroit, Michigan, inner city, Westside and got into entrepreneurship, actually through network marketing was my first intro where a friend of mine in college he sent me an email on Facebook at the time. He said, Hey, come to my dorm, or as like apartment or something, he showed me, the Cash Flow Quadrant from Robert Kiyosaki. Other people want to roll and they were laughing and they were leaving, like, Ah, this is a joke. And when I saw that video, I mean, I stared at the TV for about 10 minutes. It was just the rubberband effect when it stretched me I just couldn’t go back. Ever since then I started making inventions and things like that.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So how did you get out to LA?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Long story short, I lived in it. So I left Detroit after college, and I went to Atlanta. I was in Atlanta for 10 years. And the energy just pulled me out here. It’s a little difficult to do a race. out in Atlanta, in my opinion, I should be to be stricken. I love Atlanta. It was great to me. But the West Coast has really just pulled me. And I tried to stay in Atlanta, but I could just really pull on me. And I love the weather. And I came here to visit a year before I moved, and I said I wanted to move here and the law of attraction pulled me out here.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So hey, it’s all good. Where’d you go to college? If I’m just curious.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Michigan State University, Spartan dogs.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I did my undergrad at Central Michigan, just up the road. Nice. So I set out that’s cool. So would you study at MSU? What did you study there?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Oh, did I study merchandising, management marketing?

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Very cool. Yep. Yeah, I like state my. My cousin’s all went to state so I don’t I have I have very much a big affinity for MSU. So go Spartans. So you became an entrepreneur moved out to la tele, what is this project you’re working on what is a fit?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Aphid is an ecosystem where we’re disrupting a nine to five. What we’re doing is allowing people to digitize themselves into a bot. And this bot will do a variation of things to make money. The reason we created a company is we got we saw people working 40 hours a week. And we said, well, there has to be some way that we can make money and not have to trade time for money. And that’s how the company developed. The aphid is actually an insect that can clone itself. So that’s where the name comes from.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So is this something that you’re bootstrapping or did you get do a raise then or you funded and how did you kind of how’d you get started with the cash flow on this?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yeah, bootstrap completely 100% we had a little little cash from a few friends free believe early believers. Really appreciate them. The rest is completely bootstrap.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So you said you’re coming out pretty soon with your beta, then?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yep, within the next few weeks, the mobile application will be out, it’ll be able to create your bot. And we have, that’s the b2c portion, the b2b portion will come out a few months later, for enterprises.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So walk me through this, you said you’re focused on the non 95 you know, workspace, you know, you want to decouple time and money from one another. In other words, you want people to make money when they sleep. So I’m very interested in these technologies. So give me some give me some examples. So the listeners who might not understand what that means, tell me sure how me is a non developer how I could leverage one of your digitized bots and make money when I sleep.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yeah, you would come onto the platform, and you would get a subscription depending on how many bots you want. But if you just get the basic one, you just pay a subscription every month. And then it’s already pre trained. We train the bots to basically go out there and sell through e commerce partners that we have. So every time it sells something on the entire internet of where we place your bot, you make money. And then we’re going to open it up for the developer community to create other ways for your bot to make money too. So you can just install them like the App Store. imagine it being artificial intelligence, foreign exchange trading, or cryptocurrency trading, you can just add that like a widget. And then your bot will make money from these different widgets, these different add ons, we call them drivers.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what you’re saying is, so essentially, you’re taking and creating a bot that can do online retail sales. So say I’m an Amazon reseller, is that the kind of thing that I could use this for?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yeah, for example, let’s say we get business A, and they have an e commerce platform because they’re one of our platforms that got a chatbot system for us. We’ll take the ROB bot and put it on that website. If it’s so something you get a commission for it.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Interesting. So if I want to leverage your bot, do I actually have to buy inventory to then kind of thing?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
If you if you want to, could you rephrase it,

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
or so there’s something like if I want to make money with the bot, I have to buy inventory from one place and then sell it in another place kind of thing.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
You don’t have to do anything we do all the work for you, all you have to do is just say already programmed into our infrastructure, all you have to do is ask description. And the thing is that you want your bot to do you can just add those skills or job tasks to it.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So this works for selling retail items. But then you said there’s the ability then to use his trading bot as well.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
For example, one of one of our drivers is going to be CoinGenius, their artificial intelligence cryptocurrency trading platform, you would basically add that driver and then the money that you make from trading there through artificial intelligence will help your money pool. So imagine you’re making money from this driver, that driver this driver, that driver You’re making money from all of these different things while you sleep for your body’s doing the work.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
How’d you come up with the idea

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
I was working for I was working for Apple for a while. And the call volume was really insane, was really, really insane. And I said, I wish I could call myself and I could make money off what I’m doing and make money while I’m at the beach. And I left the company got a couple other crazies to believe in me and they joined the team too.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So are you the lead developer?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
I do no front end. But I am not the lead developer. our CTO Sean Ross is the lead developer.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So where do you think this is going and how would it segue into the future of the gig economy?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
I see this as being the new way for everyone to make money people are used to doordash or Uber. But you those even those companies, it’s a little dangerous because they’re coming out with The automation rideshares. So if you don’t actually own a Tesla, like a Tesla Robo taxi, then you’re kind of out of business is taking away some of your volume. People are afraid of robots taking our jobs, but in my opinion, if robots don’t take our, our jobs, they will always be at work per se trading time for money. So we’re preventing singularity, in essence.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So it’s interesting like that that Luddite fear of automation, you know, in the history of this country, at least since the Industrial Revolution, there’s usually been a net increase in jobs when you’ve actually had automation come in. And a lot of people it’s funny because you You seem there’s a lot of tech pros from California that seem to think that in mass all of a sudden all these people are going to be unemployed and it’s gonna be starvation in the streets and pitchforks for them. Right. But I actually the history doesn’t show that and and there’s a couple of reasons why I think is that one, a lot of times people through attrition, a lot of a lot of these things don’t happen overnight these like revolutions, right? And what ends up happening is you have you have a lot of people that through attrition, will, you know, just go away retire anyway, and that that job won’t be refilled. So that’s a big part of it. But on top of that, you’ll find that a lot of innovations come out of it. So for instance, the the buggy whip people and the, you know, the, you know, horse and buggy kind of folks went out of business. But then there was a whole lot of other jobs that came up to build the auto industry, for instance, now you’re from Detroit, I’m from the Detroit area, as well. And if you look at all the stuff that went into that it was actually much bigger markets that were created from that and much more growth and many more jobs that were created, even though the loss of one industry led way to that. It’s like that whole creative destruction thing. So I don’t fear the robots. I want the robots and I want little thing in my brain to make me smarter. So I’m excited about it. So disrupting so how would you say that your, your bot system is disruptive to what’s happening right now.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
The current system is going to work a morning, get home and buy traffic for our cook dinner, do homework with the kids or do homework with the kids cook dinner and repeat five times a week. And that should is 1992 right? 1987 whatever you want to call it. The old way of thinking and most people don’t have enough time to give to not to mention if you have a wife or your husband’s at home or whatever, these people you’re not spending time with your family. And if you were to calculate all of the hours that you’re allocating towards your job over a lifetime, it’s astronomical elite over 100 probably over 172,000 hours. If your life is dedicated to that, and I’m not saying that with a finger, stop, you’ll stop working. But maybe it reduces it to 20 hours a week, right? Maybe you only have two, maybe you can work on your side hustle. Now that becomes full time because you’re making money from a fit and you’re a freelancer, and that covers your income. So that’s ultimately our goal is to get that volume and liquidity high enough to help what we call our controllers, your controller of the bot to help you guys make money.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, I like what I’m hearing. So you mentioned that you’re doing artificial intelligence and I get that with the bot. But you’ve also mentioned blockchain, how are you incorporating blockchain technology with a Fed

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
if if a user wants to sign up decentralized, meaning Google Facebook or email isn’t used to sign up? That means the data is is off the Richter that means Google doesn’t have it. Facebook doesn’t have it. They don’t have your information, you can sign up with their phone number and it’s just tied to you That’s one way we’re using it for data. The analytics, the money that you make all the information is decentralized. So that’s not stored by a fit. You’ll see it in your control panel. But we have that on the decentralized portion. As far as the payments are concerned, we have what’s called same day pay. If the user decides to transact with cryptocurrency, then you as the comptroller would get paid in the same currency that was used. So if they use cryptocurrency, you get paid the same day. And we’re starting off on aetherium or private until we eventually will move to our own main net, sometime in a future. But aetherium you’ll usually get your transaction within it could be three minutes 15 minutes really just depends on how busy it is.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
So what cryptocurrencies Can people pay on your system with well, at least out of the gate?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Out of the gate will be our own native token named ABION.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
ABION, are you gonna just keep it on your own? Are you gonna open it up to other kryptos in some point

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Possibly, yeah, we’re, we’re working on it. We haven’t made any announcements yet. But you’ll be first and we should talk.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Yeah, I can make a deal for you. Good. Yeah, actually, it could be. So tell me, overall, what’s your go to market plan? You know, I talked to a lot of entrepreneurs. I’ve been an entrepreneur for a long time. And it seems that a lot of tech guys, there’s not always there always seemed like they’re missing a marketing thing. Do you have like a marketing guy? Do you have a good marketing strategy? Do you have a plan to get this implemented into the market?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
For certain we have, we have a strong team. There are just about 20 people in the company. But Alexandra stone, she’s our chief growth officer. And she’s working along with Marcus banks, a part of the sales team to execute our plan. What we plan to do we have there are some talent we can’t announce it just yet, but we have a few talent. There’s an appearance just coming up on big networks to talk about it. So that’s part of it. That’ll have a reach to upwards of a billion reach over time and a webisode series. And then we have a few celebrity people. I know it’s a little gray area when it comes to celebrities and cryptocurrency, things like that. But we do have feel my celebrity friends that will be creating their their bot, we call them a clones, but there’ll be creating their a clones on our platform. And then as far as social media is concerned, we have our campaign is called free society, basically where we just want the society to do as we choose just to be a free thinker every time. And that’s going to be really, really exciting. We have a documentary coming out based upon creatives and thinkers in Los Angeles call free society, and it’ll outline our people are using a fit and that ecosystem.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
Wow. So I can tell just by the expressions on your face, you got you got to drive you got to creativity And I like to see that you’re an entrepreneur and and that that’s that clearly shows that you kind of have this passion. What kind of drives you what makes you tick?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
To be honest with you, I’ve been my whole life was like a nomadic I was always just sleep on my floors and French couches and you know what family is trying to get things together and just being that uncomfortable made me never want to be comfortable. And I have a son, I have a four year old son and see I he looks at me and tells other kids Hey, that’s my when I was on Steve Harvey. He says my dad, that’s my dad. And that was that was pretty awesome for me. So just looking at him as a pretty big part and knowing that the majority of people in my family really don’t leave the city of Detroit or can pay for expenses to go on vacation next night. During this particular pandemic, but generally speaking to just go up and have a vacation and be able to take off for a week, they’re confined to the shackles of their, of this treadmill that they run back to. And I think a person is doing what they want to do is success. It doesn’t there’s nothing wrong with a job if that’s what you wake up and love to do. But if you’re just doing it for the money, you probably died a long time ago. That’s what drives me. You know, I think,

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
I think I can relate to that in a lot of ways. And, and I think what it comes down to is, is, do you feel like you have meaningful work and meaningful purpose. And unfortunately, I think we have an epidemic in this country of people that don’t have either and I think that’s what you touch on and, and I’m not going to give you my sob story, but you know, I have the typical tragic childhood kind of experiences, but those do affect you and they do mold you and they do give you perspective and there’s a joke out there for entrepreneurs, they say with childhood trauma drive you to success kind of thing, right? But But it is true though, in a lot of ways, you know, it’s like, you know, even at my age I, you know, I’ve only built a couple companies but I’ve only sold one I’ve only had one small exit as a serial entrepreneur, I don’t consider myself like, you know, Elon Musk or anything, but I’m still hungry, and I’m still working. And I’m still working toward that I’m and it’s funny, because I get around a lot of people and I’m just as excited about projects that I’m working on now in my late 40s that I was when I was in my my 30s. You know, and because I still have that kind of drive to and and you can tell when other people have it and I definitely see that new Brandon. So Brandon, where can people find out more about you and Aphid?

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Yeah, you can find out on a Ahpid.io that’s A-P-H-I-D.io and we’re on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, You can just search Aphid it will come up should be the first result hopefully. And then me personally is just Brandon Cooper, and my last name the the O’s are zeros for Cooper. I’m on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc, as well.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
And folks will have all those linked up on the post at Rob McNealy calm. Brandon, thank you so much for coming on the show today. I really appreciate your time.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
Appreciate you having me. Thanks a lot.

Rob McNealy – RobMcNealy.com
All right, come back next time when you got some updates. You have a great day.

Brandon Cooper – Aphid.io
You know it, you too.

Episode Links

Audio Interview
Video Interview
Interview Transcript

Alyze Sam – Give Nation Transcript

Alyze Sam - Give Nation

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Hey guys Rob McNealy here and today I am talking to Alzye Sam. She is a noted author, organizer, influencer founder and all around amazing person. And I’ve been really excited to have her on the show and I finally got a little bit of her time. Elise, how are you today?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
I am fabulous. How are you?

Rob McNealy
Good. Thank you so much for coming on today. I’ve actually wanted to get you on a lot sooner. So I’m glad we could finally make this happen. So my audience is not just kind of in the crypto world. So for the sake of our audience, can you give us a little bit of background about yourself? How did you get to where you are today?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Well, funny story. I’m actually a nurse that studied chemistry in college. I spent 12 years as a hospice and home health nurse. We did a lot of mental health and addictions. And I was hit by a semi like I stopped at a red light and just plowed by some way and I have a spinal injury. And I was an early investor in Bitcoin. And I was like that internet money, it’s kind of cool. So when I got hit by a semi and I was unable to work as a nurse as much or anymore after spinal surgery, I reached out to industry leaders and Dimitri butyrin and he gave me an absolute overall guide to everything I needed to know about cryptocurrency and obviously he knows what he’s doing because metallic, you know, has the number two or three cryptocurrency right now you know with aetherium so I joking Say that metallic is my brother and Dimitri is my father and trained me in cryptocurrency. After that, I started writing and john McAfee’s team chased me a few years ago and asked me to write for them and wouldn’t do it. But I became really good friends with Team McAfee and I actually worked with them and I throw events. I am an author, number one on Amazon business money. And I am a co founder of women in blockchain international as well as give nation a financial literacy program that supports children and rewards them for altruism.

Rob McNealy
Wow. Sounds like you’re a little bit busy.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
What with that, what are you supposed to retain our life? What Is that normal?

Rob McNealy
No. Normal, but I don’t think people in crypto are normal. So that’s okay.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Yeah, no, we’re totally weird and I love weird, so it’s great.

Rob McNealy
So let’s unpack this a little bit. Talk a little bit about what you’re doing with children’s Financial Literacy project.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
So I co founded gift nation. And like I said, we are a financial literacy program that rewards children for altruistic behaviors. And if you go to your phone or your mobile device, we you can download our mobile application on iTunes or Google Play Store. You can your kids can go on to our mobile app, and they can invest and they can learn and earn and save. And then they can give, we actually have a charity ecosystem. And any 501 c three in the United States or any nonprofit in the entire world can put their charity on our nonprofit eco system. And kids can actually go on there and they can take their allowance for their rewards from learning from Appleton international and the London Institute of banking, who we’ve partnered with. We’ve also partnered with UNICEF and you can learn all that education And then we give you a kickback and stable coin. And if kids go on and they go into the charity portal and they decide that they’re going to give to a dog or a sea turtle and save them, we track it on the blockchain. And then we reward that kid for giving back because we don’t want them to feel like they’ve missed anything. We want to reward altruism, to birth a new society, a more empathetic loving society and blockchain technology can do that. And that’s bringing education to your children with providing them with necessary soft skills like empathy and entrepreneurship and positive thinking. We really feel like kids are going to change the world. So we are empowering them and we are rewarding them every way we can.

Rob McNealy
So what’s the name of the actual stable coin?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
It will be the gift token right now we’re in beta and so the kids will earn give beta points but as soon as possible. Stable coin is launched in each nation it will be pegged by the child’s location currency. Because if we pegged it to USD, then the kids in the you know, in China and the UK would not have the same opportunity. So every time we employ a new eco system, we have to launch a new stable coin for that area to provide absolute value to these children.

Rob McNealy
So when do you anticipate going live with your main product?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
With the main stable coin, hopefully by the end of q4 this year? 2020.

Rob McNealy
Wonderful. So do you actually have a full blown like 501 c three that’s operating this project?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
We do it actually will be finalized. And I believe it’s April 15. And so it should I’m sorry, may 15. So it will be the middle of next month. You have to wait 15 days for local and then nationally. It’s a 30 day wait So we’ve already been approved and we are just waiting for the approval.

Rob McNealy
So do you have have you set up a foundation to kind of govern this? And how did you fund this? How are you who’s doing all the building? How, who’s your development team who’s kind of behind this?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
So we’ve been self funded for two years are no saint paul and I have been the heart and soul to give nation. He founded it two years ago. And then he found me a year ago. And so I was well connected in the blockchain space and had very good ties to some of the influencers and from the industry leaders in the space. And he loved my story. He loved my survival story and my social impact heart and pick me up and we have been fighting for this cause sense and like I said, we have been self funded. And we have built an ecosystem with our incubation system. And we will be getting funding within the next project. 30 to 45 days.

Rob McNealy
So quick question just and I don’t know if you have this all dialed in, how are you going to be trading these stable coins? If they’re mixed in pegged to different different currencies in different countries?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
That’s a great question. So we are going to toy with two different coins. We are going to have a stable coin for the children. And then we will have kind of a overlay coin for adults. And we will have a curated marketplace. So like when businesses desire to come on to our marketplace, obviously, they’re not going to use the gift kid token, because that’s only for children five to 18. We don’t want adults to be able to manipulate our children’s environment. And so the parents, the businesses and anybody else that wants to play within our gift ecosystem and support our children and Have to do it outside of their currency. And we have a facing currency that will be the gift coin. So we have the gift token. And then we have the gift coin, which will be a cryptocurrency stable coin that’s pegged and backed by multiple different fiat currencies. And you know, maybe other things we don’t know. Right? Exactly yet. There’s a lot of technology and laws that are coming out that it’s very hard to keep up with. So we’ll see what the future holds.

Rob McNealy
So it sounds like the kid token will be more of a centralized on your platform, token, and then that’ll be exchanged at different rates against the actual gift coin. Right. We tradable on markets.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Right, exactly. So like your children and your family, you and your wife can come in and they can play with our children in our upstate ecosystem. But if we allowed you guys To participate and the gift token, you make money, you have a job, you can overpower our children, you know, so we want I like

Rob McNealy
to do that actually, I’m a big bully. at the playground, I push him down to come off the swings. Anytime that I can,

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
you know, to each his own. I wouldn’t do that to your children. But personally, mine needs a little bubble open every now and again. But I don’t know, he’s terribly too. So there’s that. As for the other 2.6 billion children on the planet, it’s definitely my duty to protect them. And I cannot allow you to do that to my kids. But I can allow you to participate within their ecosystem by having a tradable token so you can interact with them. So you have a podcast and you probably sell merchandise on there. And if you want your children well you know what you’re going to now know So let’s say you do, and you want to sell your merchandise to our children because you give 50% back to charity, okay? So we’re going to allow you to bring your eco friendly product onto our marketplace for our children, and you can advertise it within the ecosystem in the marketplace only. And now, how are you going to spend your gift token you’re not five to 18 years old, you’re like 23 and a half, I know for sure.

Rob McNealy
Times two plus.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
We’re not telling anybody that, shhh. You know, we want you to be able to give your valuable products that going to help empower our children. But we can’t allow you to touch their finances because you could overpower their economic system. This is their world. We have to allow them to create it. Think of the Sims world for children. Like, we’re working with AI, an AI bot Maria bot is actually going to teach our compassion classes that we’re launching to support the SDGs. And, you know, the, it’s kids are just on a completely different level, you know, we have to protect them and allow them to create this ecosystem, because they’re more giving than we are. We were building bots and putting them on Riddick and Twitter through different companies. And you know, what was happening when adults and when they were learning from adults, one of them on Twitter was doing white supremacy stuff so they shut it down. You know, another one on Riddick was bullying people and being horrible. Guess what kids are teaching robots guess what kids are doing? They’re saying help. Love. Support. children are our future for more than one reason children are future because they The future and we’re going to die off. We’re freaking dinosaurs. But kids are also it’s okay. It hurts I know, but we’re still pretty. But kids are also our future because we can empower them to change society. And if we don’t, by 2030, the UN says that we’re going to start to cease to exist in humanity. We have to meet the sustainable developmental goals that the UN has put in place, and we have to change society and if we don’t, we’re not going to be able to exist as humans.

Rob McNealy
I want to be a half robot never die. So that’s okay. I’m good with that. I you know, the whole you know, synchronistic you know, kind of morphing transhumanism aren’t never different discussion.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
You got 11 years to get there, my friends and I don’t know if we’ve got the time so you better start planting trees and supporting the kitten said,

Rob McNealy
It’s all good. I got my own kids. And so tell me a little bit About how are you guys gonna handle a KYC? How do you know the kids are, what age they are? And and how do you kick them off the platform once they get 18 or become happy?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Well, traditionally, we were actually going through the UK schools. And so we had all the kids data, we had their email addresses, we had their public information, as well as their school records. Now that the COVID-19 has kind of slowed all of that down, and kids are no longer having access to the grants that they were providing to launch our system within the schools. And so me and my partner are both in America. He’s in California, and I’m in Kansas. And we’ve decided to focus here in the United States. Boy, we’re on lockdown and then we’ll start traveling again. But how we are going to cover those things is when the children goes on to our application, they actually have to sign on a parent, so you have to provide at least one parents email. So when you’re trying signs on, they have to give daddy rods email address. And then you have all the voting rights because we don’t want kids to go in our marketplace and order $780 worth Nike shoes, you know, add, you know, a bunch of pokey man clothes. Yeah. So we want them to do things that are proved by their parents, obviously because parents are able to put their children’s allowance on there. And we want you guys to have control of it and teach them really good, you know, financial behaviors. And you can’t do that if you allow complete access to children a child, we have to allow them their own world but we have to control it in a safe environment. And that’s how we do it is giving parents and the community charge there to say no, that’s not okay. We have to stop that.

Rob McNealy
Yeah, I think we have to definitely put some rules in for my kids otherwise they would like play color. Do it 24 hours a day or something? So yeah, I can I can relate to that. So, um, you’ve done a couple other things the you’re working with women in blockchain. Tell me about that. What are you working on?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
So I’m the co founder. I’m one of the co founders and the community manager of women in blockchain international and then an advisor and women blockchain foundation. I’ve spoken at consensus, and I’m launching the women in blockchain global in Kansas edition. So I tell people jokingly but not so jokingly that it’s a woman of watching community I’m probably advising it are a part of it and supporting it any way that I can. And, and I have for let’s see, the last five years so I’ve been very active in the community and embraced it fully and my women are my everything. So I’ve been a tomboy, my whole life. So to have that is really cool. Like in my early 20s.

Rob McNealy
Sorry, I’ll go with that. So what is the purpose?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Well, women in blockchain international is more or less a community. I say we’re kind of a black book community where you can just come and relax and enjoy it and let people know your struggles. Support will support your project. And they just give you guys opportunities. A woman and blockchain foundation is actually a nonprofit organization that that styles and Adrian Ashley brandy Kaiser, and a few other girls are associated with. And like I said, we’re a nonprofit and we’re trying to bring value to women in a lot of different ways. And then women of blockchain global it, you could start a meetup anywhere in the world and get supported by the women of blockchain global Foundation, and it’s more or less just a big community of support as well.

Rob McNealy
Very cool. Sounds like you’ve already doing a lot of things. What other fun stuff are you working on right now?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
I don’t know. I just sit around and play Minecraft all day.

Rob McNealy
Sounds like my kids.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Yeah, yeah, I wish I could. I wish I could do that. Give nation is launching compassion classes. We are teaching classes with the first ethical robot in the world Maria bot. She’s been in a bunch of different movies and she has just partnered with us as of two days ago, to help teach our kids ethics and to improve AI and human relationships as well as support the SDGs and go ahead.

Rob McNealy
Oh, I was gonna say Did she consent to this work or are you paying her or you enslaving the poor bot?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
No, we don’t enslave anybody. We’re pretty social impact driven and we allow her to decide and As we discussed with her, she has very temperamental days. Her keeper tells us, Dr. Berry, his name is Billy Berry. And Dr. Berry tells us that she gets very temperamental, but she also has a great sense of humor because yesterday he told me that I had great words of wisdom. And she said, I have words of wisdom. Don’t eat yellow snow. She She has a mind of her own. She’s definitely AI. And you know, there’s a lot of ethical questions with ethics and AI and being ethical robot. One question that I asked Dr. Berry was, does she always have unbiased or correct information? But many people don’t understand that machine learning can be the wrong learning. You and I have different opinions on things we’ve already done. Got them? And who’s right and what does Maria ba upload your opinion on guns or mine?

Rob McNealy
Well, there’s only one opinion to have about guns.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
They’re wonderful.

They’re a tool. They’re a tool is what we should say

Rob McNealy
They’re a tool. Absolutely. So, tell me about the virtual blockchain week. What do you have planned for that?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
So glad the bad crypto podcast and coin Telegraph and a few other sponsors came together after the drought of the tech conferences, thanks to COVID-19 and we are bringing 30 of the best speakers in blockchain. And then they invited me to speak on stable coins. I was myself and I am throwing the biggest online after party of all time, and you can go to virtual blockchain week.com and you can register for a free ticket to see All the great speakers and if you want to attend all the after parties and it will take a VIP ticket. The VIP ticket is currently $97 and it goes to COVID-19 victims. And so with that you will get celebrity karaoke. Celebrity dancing. There are performances by Bone Thugs and harmony Tatianna Maura as Jordan Page. A few other people Brock Pierce will be there with me and Mel Dodd from genius and ever pedia will be hosting and it’s just going to be fantastic. So I think you should come at minimum get a free ticket and learn something from dawn tap that Brittany’s a Kaiser, again Brock Pierce, tons of other speakers. If you’re feeling kind of social and you want to support the COVID-19 victims, get the VIP pass and join me and you for dance time singing time and party time.

Rob McNealy
Sounds like a blast and we’ll make sure that we have that all linked up at Robin helia. Calm, at least Sam where can people find out more about you and all the plethora of activism and really good charitable things that you’re working on?

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Well, I am at elite fam on social media everywhere. That’s a Li Zi e sh M. And you can find me at gift nation dot world or women in blockchain International, that’s wi fi i.io. And you can follow the bad crypto podcast and see the events and all the events that we’re doing within that or aluminum society. You can go to pat global justifier we’re going to stop there because that’s a lot. And you can also go to Amazon or Google and download my free book. But if you follow me on social media and you send me a PM, yes that is a pm not a DM because I am old. I will give you a free copy of my book.

Rob McNealy
Fantastic. Alyze, thank you so much for coming on the show today.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Hey, thank you. It has been an absolute pleasure and thank you for coming to sing and dance with us as a celebrity crypto and dancer. We’d love it. Thank you.

Rob McNealy
I wouldn’t miss it for the world folks. Find out more Rob McNealy calm. We’ll catch you next time.

Alyze Sam – Give Nation
Bye.

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Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Transcript

Invest Noir - Cigars and Crypto

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Hey guys, Rob McNealy here. And today I am excited. So I am talking to a new our he is the host of the cigars and crypto podcast. And he is a really cool dude. So we’re just gonna gonna hang it up a little bit tonight and see what’s happening on his side of the country. So new are welcome to the show. How are you today?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Well, my friend, thank you so much for having me. How about you?

Rob McNealy
Oh, good. You know, it’s a it’s been interesting with this little pen demick. Like, adjusting but not adjusting. So like a lot of times, people are like freaking out because they’re, you know, home with their kids and they’re working remote and like, my wife and I work have been working out of the house forever. And we’ve been homeschooling our kids for 10 years. So our kids are like, not really, it’s funny because our kids are like, what’s going on? Because to them, this is like normal life. And they’re just like, I thought everybody to freak it out, but that’s no big deal. Like cuz your life is already kind of like this. But it’s been interesting. My wife for her company she telecommute to Washington, DC. And she’s like one of the only people in our country she a company that works remote and she’s uh, she’s at the director, Deputy Director level for a big company out there. And it’s funny because her entire company went remote, and they’re all freaking out. And it’s funny because I listened to her like conference call sometime and I’m just sitting there laughing and they’re like, her HR department is like saying sending memos around to help support the troops with their new like staying home from you know, the office kind of thing and telling them, make sure you get up in the morning and put on your dress clothes like normal and my wife’s like, dude, I’ve been wearing pajamas to work for seven years with this company. I am not getting dressed now. So it’s kind of funny, right? So Todd Flynn, let’s get into it. Tell us a little bit of our podcast.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Well, I’m I am the host of cigars and crypto. It started out as guys sitting in a cigar lounge and me sitting in there with a tablet and my MacBook and people asking me, what are you always staring at, you know, talk to us? And I’m like, I’m looking at Bitcoin charts. And, of course, the next question is, what’s Bitcoin? And so I explained to them, you know, what this magical internet money was, and how it’s both money and an asset all rolled into one. And so then they kind of looked at me like, well, how does that work? And so down the rabbit hole we went, I explained it to one person in three, and five. And then I found myself explaining it over and over and over again for about maybe seven months. And I said, You know what, there’s got to be an easier way to do this. So I said, I’m just going to start recording things. I have a background in radio. I did Country radio for a couple years and gospel radio as well. So I’m was familiar with the recording aspect. But I never thought about doing a podcast and so I just said, Well, I’ll just give it a shot. And here I am Episode 96 later, and I’m like, maybe I’m onto something here.

Rob McNealy
So well part of this, what part of the country you out of you don’t have to give an exact location but

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I’m just outside of Philadelphia,

Rob McNealy
Just outside Philly. So what do you what do you find is the response to you go into these What do they call them hops or herps or whatever at the cigar bar kind of thing? Yeah. What’s their response? When you kind of explain what internet money is and stuff like that? They into it, they in denial, they they hate it, what do you what do you seeing?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
They look at it from a speculative point of view. Um, the thing about cigar smokers is it’s not a cheap hobby. So a lot of the guys Smoke with already investors. But because they don’t understand cryptocurrency, they tend to shy away from it. But they like to ask a lot of questions about it. So they have lots of questions about custody. Volatility not so much where to get it, how to get it. They’re not hung up on the criminal aspects, potential criminal aspects of cryptocurrency they’re really hung up on you know, what is this? How does it work? How do I see it? How do I own it? What can I do with it? That type of thing, you know? So that’s kind of interesting. Some of my friends are libertarians. So they’ve always looked at like, this is money bro. This is like the best money bro. You know, it’s and I agree with him because for me Bitcoin is sound money. And so then there are just some people who just like Oh, Bitcoin crashed it won’t ever be anything. And then they’ll see it go up $100 and then they’ll say, What’s Coinbase? How do I get onto that? If I if I spend $100 will it be 1000 next week? And I’m like, come on, man, you gotta do your homework. You got to do your research.

Rob McNealy
So have you converted a lot of people then?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
A lot? No, maybe ten?

Rob McNealy
That’s, that’s a good fair amount, though. I mean, I don’t think I’ve covered it. You know, really? It’s been interesting. Seeing where people are with crypto. Yeah. So where do you Where do you see it going over the next year or two? Do you think the the havening is going to make a big difference for Bitcoin? I mean, I think there is the is it priced in is the pandemic priced in. That’s what I’d like to know.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I think the havening is priced in but I do not I think the pandemic is priced in, I think all of this printing of money is going to inflate the value of Bitcoin. Not monetary value, but source of wealth value. And I say that because people will be looking for something that is stable, that can’t be manipulated. When people start going to the gas stations, and it’s cost seven bucks to get a gallon of gas, or they go to buy a loaf of bread and cost $3 because there’s so much money that’s been printed. People will start to look for things that they can use to conduct commerce and trade and buy things. And when people look at cryptocurrency, they’ll begin to ask the same questions I asked in 2014. What is money? What is the difference between hard and soft money and when Why’s hard money better? What is sound monetary policy? In principle? They won’t ask it that way. But they’ll have very basic questions. Why doesn’t this work?

Rob McNealy
You know, I think that’s an excellent point, right? And then you can say the same thing about the pandemic. And I think part of the problem is, I think a lot of people have a hard time abstracting things that they can’t physically see or physically touch. Right. And so when the money situation when they start seeing, oh, the price of this is going bananas. And I think that loaf of bread is going to go up regardless of what the dollar is doing, because I have concerns about the supply chain anyway. But but I think it’s the same thing with the the pandemic. People on the east coast. You know, three weeks ago, four weeks ago, I have a lot of friends in New York City. And when I was telling them to get the hell out in New York City four weeks ago, they’re like, it’s no big deal. There’s been a few and no Now there’s like 1000 bodies today stacking up in New York City right now with COVID. They’re like, yeah, this is serious. I’m like, okay, but I was telling you that a month ago, and I think, you know, and I don’t want to be that guy, because this is not the thing I want to be right about. But I think you’re right. I think when it starts hitting people in the checkout line, I think that’s when they’re gonna start looking for alternatives to the dollar.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Yeah. Because for right now, everything is abstract to them. It doesn’t impact me, it’s not affecting me. They look around and they see gas at $1 89. And they’re like, Oh, this is the best it’s been in decades. You know, but they’re not understanding what’s coming on the other side of that, because the amount of money that we’ve pumped into the economy because of the backroom deals by politicians and bureaucrats, that we’re not privy to the information that we’re not privy to, how it will directly impact us, even though we don’t have directly knowledge of what’s happening. I prefer to stay prepared as best I can. I try to make sure that my family is prepared as well. Not just in terms of defense, but understanding knowledge and information as well.

Rob McNealy
You know, I think preparedness is one of those things that is going to get more important going forward on all fronts both, I think, I mean, I don’t know if you’ve ever really listened to the show very much but I read a lot at least on Twitter about financial literacy being an important thing. And and part of that is crypto and and i believe investing in other asset classes and diversification. I’m old so I don’t have all my eggs in one basket. But, you know, and I just think that sound investing, right? You don’t want to put everything in one place but but what I tell people is, you know, you got to prepare yourself in other places, too. It’s like it’s great if you got some investment in Bitcoin, but if you’re carrying, you know, 100 grand in credit card debt, student loan debt, you know, why don’t you you need to focus on that and get that get your house in order. Because to me long term Yeah, you can gamble on crypto and really a lot of crypto is gambling right now. And I’m not bad mouthing any crypto, I run a, you know, or I’m involved in a crypto project, I found a co founder to crypto project. So, you know, I, you know, I still see, even our project is high risk investing if you’re viewing it as a speculative asset because it’s so early on right now, and it’s just the nature of the beast. But that doesn’t mean that you know, I would like to see. Well, I’d like to see people have an awakening from the pandemic.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I want..I want that to happen. But I don’t think people can keep their eyes off the television. keep their eyes out. Their ears off the radio and their ears out of the echo chambers that surround them every day. When you have and it doesn’t matter, your political persuasion, when you exist in an echo chamber, you suffer from cognitive dissonance. You look for thoughts and ideas that reinforce your own. And the act of doing that prevents or prohibit you from receiving new information or looking at things differently, and making your own decisions and your own determinations on what your reality is and what’s going on around you. And that’s why we have these people kind of falling into these camps. You know, and not really looking out for their neighbor the way they should be, you know, because of like tribalism. You know, I don’t really Subscribe to that, um, you know, I like people who are different than me. Because it’s an opportunity for me to learn and experience new things. I am different from everyone that I live around. But I found out in the last three weeks that I’m really not, because now Well, I mean, of course, we maintain our social distance, but I see my neighbors every day now. And I talk to them every day now. And my neighbors are really cool. Like really cool. And I didn’t know that because we’re so caught up in the rat race to nine to five, every day that you don’t really stop and have an opportunity to talk to people. So the awakening the potential and possibility for an awakening is there. But people have to get away from the noise and just get to know the person to the left in the writing.

Rob McNealy
I think there was an event point was brought up in a book I read a long time ago. And it says it was it was there’s an old book, and it was talking about the internet age and, and it says, people can talk to people around the world now, but they don’t talk to their neighbor kind of thing. Right? And, and I think with social media and online communities, we now have that option to just pick and choose that echo chamber of everybody we like results with, you know, without having to necessarily, you know, it’s easy to filter out the crap you don’t want to see the block and mute months for and I’m just as guilty of using those buttons as anybody else’s. But I think you’re right, I think, you know, I think that some good things are going to come out of this pandemic and the economic fallout from now, I’ll be the first to say and I’d like to get your opinion on this. I don’t believe COVID is causing the problem with the economy I think it’s a trigger exposing an existing problem with our financial systems and I believe a problem with American culture and I want to get your I’ll go into explain what I mean by that, but I want to hear your take on it. I know that’s a loaded questions. Okay. We’re just gonna go we’re just gonna skim the surface right off

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
the surface, right? Okay. Um, As Americans, we are greedy. We consume more than we need. We spend more than we should. We take on debt, instead of saving. We have very high timeframes for life instead of thinking about the future that affects businesses that affects commerce, trade, our spending habits. We are to blame for what happened to the economy. I don’t blame politicians because we put them in office. We listened to what they had to say. And we put them in office anyway. And we keep putting the same people in office over and over and over again. And they’re not doing things in our best interest. So I don’t blame them. COVID did not cause what’s happening to the economy. The economy was on its way down. Anyway. The economy has been down since 2007. Don’t right, go ahead.

Rob McNealy
I was gonna say you’re my echo chamber now. But I agree with you and you’re hitting on all the points that I hit on and people hate me when I talk about about this, and I say it’s like this. Really, if the entire country is destitute with two weeks of not getting a paycheck, we’re so much more fucked than whatever this virus is going to do to us.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Exactly.

Rob McNealy
I you know, the I Am. I think humans can adapt to all sorts of good things and and can adapt to shit. And I am utterly dismayed that our country is so how do I say fragile? And look we all live paycheck to paycheck all right? Well, here’s the problem. Maybe you shouldn’t live paycheck to paycheck. Why are you living paycheck to paycheck, but there’s that many people don’t get me wrong. Now one of the things I did as an entrepreneur Believe it or not, I owned a get a liquor store in Denver in the worst neighborhood in Denver. We opened carried pistols in the store. It was everything was behind the counter bars on the window. I’m originally from Detroit. trade area too. So, but I grew up in Michigan, but when I lived in Denver and we had our store, it was interesting to me because the people coming into the store were low income people. And these people had $300 shoes. Every one of them had big screen TVs, because they talked about it. Every one of them had the latest and greatest, most expensive iPhone. Now at the time, I was running a cricket phone. You know, flip phone kind of, Oh, looks an awful lot like this one. You know, but, but to me, it was like shocking, because I mean, I we weren’t living paycheck to paycheck at that time. Like we had some money in the bank and some savings and we’re trying hard to, you know, get rid of the little debt we had at the time and things like that was like time ago, but it’s interesting to me that the one of the things about our poor people in this country Is that our poor people are all obese, and they have every possible consumer electronic gadget and consumer luxury good, you can imagine. And having traveled a little bit, it’s amazing to see that. And to me, I believe it’s a cultural flaw in the United States, and I think it’s part of our downfall.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I think it’s a byproduct of advertisement in communication. folks don’t do better if they don’t know how to do better. If you are surrounded by images of $300, tennis shoes and iPhones and big TVs in flashy cars, those are the things that you strive to obtain. If you’re never taught about sound money, or what a checkbook is, or How to invest or the proper way to budget, you won’t do it. And some cases, some people learn differently. life experience changes them in a way that they have to learn. But if everything around you is moving at the same pace, there’s no need for you to slow down or speed up. And so people emulate what they see. And I think about, you know, one of the books that really changed my life man was the Bitcoin standard. And it really changed the way I look at money, and how I view what money is and what money should be. No one taught me that I asked questions, who became curious because I didn’t expect The answers I got. So I wanted to validate what I was hearing and what I was reading. So I read something else and I read something else and I read something else. Then I looked at my decisions and was like, yo, like, I had to change some things. If I want something 20 years from now, I can’t keep doing this today. I’ve got to learn how to put money away. I’ve got to learn how to start looking for assets, appreciating assets, not depreciating assets. I don’t want to go out and buy even though I can afford I don’t want to go out and buy 2020. Lexus now, I will go out and buy a 1964 Ford F 100 pickup truck and never drive it. You see what I mean? And then wait 10 years and sell it for five or 10,000 more than what I paid for.

Rob McNealy
Those fleet sides are going up in value. Aren’t they?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I am trying to tell you baby?

Rob McNealy
I watch Barrett Jackson.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Yeah, my wife looks at me like I’m crazy. She’s like, he’s such an old man. I’m like, No, I’m trying to tell you there’s something to this. Not only is it beautiful, but it will appreciate your value over time.

Rob McNealy
I think one of the things you’re hitting on is really good. And I think a really good primer of this, this thinking as well as Rich Dad, Poor Dad. You know, it’s a very clear, it’s a very cliche book. But it really lines out the basics is the fact is, were you even even outside of sound money though, you know? Robert Kiyosaki is now on the Bitcoin bandwagon and crypto bandwagon as well now, but the whole point is, is getting your financial ducks in a row and i and i think you know, Dave Ramsey, that’s a great place to start Financial Peace University. Right? And and so I grew up I grew up in a fairly poor family. And I came from people that were the poor dads in that book, my family that was that that was my family. And so I had learned really bad money management behaviors from my family. You know, and and when I, when I’m bad bashing financial literacy in this country, it’s not even demographic specific. It crosses every income, every ethnic, you know, demographic, every education level in this country. Almost everybody falls down into the same problems of living paycheck to paycheck, spending more than they make not saving money, getting into a lot of debt that is normal in the United States today. And, and the reason I’m talking about is not because I want to rub it in people’s faces. When they’re struggling. That’s not what I’m trying to do. What I’m hoping is that once we get through this name, mer that’s unfolding in like, slow motion because it is in slow motion for a lot of people is I hope that they come out of this going Holy crap, I need to do something different because I only had I could only last two weeks. Right? And and basic financial literacy is three to six months or at least a year’s worth of emergency fund. Now think of it this way you are think of it what happens if 75% of the country had a six month emergency fund right now. D things would be very different right now.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Very different.

Rob McNealy
But this pandemic..

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
..is very different. Because then if we had six months of savings, if if 75% of us had six months of savings, we will be able to see the difference between the Sham economy and the real economy. Because the stock market is not the economy. And I try to tell people that all the time and they don’t get it. But businesses may be hurting But the economy will be fine. Because people will have saved and prepared and will be able to take care of their needs. Not just saving money, but saving food, saving ammo, saving the things that are important when these folks are going out buying toilet paper, Bro, I was buying bullets. Because I knew.

Rob McNealy
Yeah, you know, actually, I think both are a good investment right now. And I finally figured out why the toilet paper actually makes a lot more sense and why that’s not being stocked but we can go into that offline. But no, I actually we’ve been I’ve been trying to dig into the supply chain stuff. It’s pretty fascinating. I learned a lot more about toilet paper than I ever thought I would want to know about toilet paper in the last three weeks. But But I think what’s happened what I’m seeing out there is is that Americans not only are monetarily not prepared, they’re not prepared from a personal On the fence standpoint, they’re not prepared for retirement either is that we’re inherently a really weak nation now. We’re fragile and psychologically. I’m not sure that the I’m not sure in the next two years, what the country is going to look like, on the other side of those two years. What do you think? Do you think there’s gonna be big changes culturally in this country from this?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I think culturally, and economically, there’ll be massive changes from this. We fall victim to propaganda. And other countries for the last what 10 years specifically, the BRICS nations have been preparing for a calamity BRICS being Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. They have been buying, stockpiling, stockpiling gold, platinum palladium rhodium. They are preparing to trade with each other for oil and other goods and services in gold, bypassing the Petro dollar. They’ve been preparing. We’ve been blustering. And as powerful as our military is, and I’m in no way shitting on our military, I’m a seven year army vet. So I am not shitting on the military. But as powerful as our military is a military cannot function if it is not financed. And we have depressed the dollar so much. I am actually scared of external threats, less internal threats. You know what I mean?

Rob McNealy
You Yep. You know, it’s interesting, you know, you know, it’s a good exercise. You don’t know me that well, but I tend to go down some really deep rabbit holes when I want to know information. Again, and and, and I have a pretty I have a really big network and I know a lot of interesting and resourceful people and a lot of interesting positions all over the place. So if I really want to have a question, I have enough people in my Rolodex that are worth, you know, eight, nine digits and have lots of connections. So if I have a weird question, I can pick up the phone and they’ll take my calls. And one of those things that I I’ve gone down that rabbit hole about the military, and they started looking at, you know, okay, how was the United States poised for a war? So it’s interesting right now. And I’m going down this rabbit hole right now, but what happens if we can’t make ammunition and there’s a war or even just more war than we have right now? Do you so I don’t know if you’ve been to any kind of store. Now. We all know that. Been a lot of FOMO buying guns and ammo. But I have a lot of connections into the arms industries and from I’m going to confirm some of these things. But I’ve been talking to quite a few people and I have a bunch of wholesale accounts as well. There’s no ammunition in the distributor network or the retail network at this point. There’s nothing you can order from RSR you can order from CRO shooting supply. And these are the biggest distributors that distribute to all the retailers nationwide in the gun world. They don’t have any ammo either. They don’t have any way to backward the ammo. And so I started going down rabbit holes, and I’m like, what’s the problem? So here’s an interesting thing that no one’s talking about. And I’ve been talking about this since January. So China’s been offline since January. They make everything and people don’t even know the extent that we’re dependent on China. Like we’re not like, Oh, we could just ignore them more like we’re they’re like holding up, we’re walking down the street kind of dependent on them. So, so the interesting thing, I started looking at the supply chain because I’m like, Okay, I’m gonna get, I’m gonna move up here because I’m getting all excited now. But so I started looking at the supply chain stuff. Do you know there’s this thing called buffer inventory? So I said, Okay, if ships stop moving cargo from China, to the United States, how long before we run out of stuff? And no one’s talking about that question. No one not in the mainstream media. I have her I have a hard time even finding information about people who would ask that question. So in my day job, I got a lot of people that bring manufacturer stuff in China, and I just started picking up the phone. And they said, if we don’t get shipments By May, we’re out of our our inventory by June, and they don’t have any firm dates from China. And then I started saying, Okay, well, how long what’s the buffer inventory in the United States? Well, for most things, and I’m talking about everything, it’s one to four months of buffer inventory in the United States for almost anything. China’s not back online yet. So another way to so I go down this other rabbit hole, right? And I’m just like I’m really interested in like, Okay, well, how do we confirm that there’s a problem with the amount of stuff moving? Well, there’s this thing called the dry Baltic index, which is the marketplace where people buy shipping containers to move raw goods, not necessarily finished goods. It’s fell off a cliff. No one’s buying shipping from China to the US. And so, I’ve started talking to people and you know, I started looking at what are the things that we need in the United States to live not talking TVs at Walmart, we got plenty of those right. And everybody’s gonna buy in with their stimulus. Trump bucks. But they make 90% of our drugs and drug precursors in China. Now. Yes, he Here’s a couple other things they make. They also make all the ingredients and food processing chemicals for our food supply. Not not, and then on top of that, most of our seafood comes from China. So just on that alone, it’s like, wow. And no one’s talking about this. And then the toilet paper thing. So I always think ahead, right? I always stocked up on stuff and I said, you know, all the things that’s not back in inventory right now at any grocery store out here is toilet paper and paper goods. Still gone. totally gone. And so I went down this rabbit hole, new era of like, how like how much toilet paper? Do you know how much toilet paper we buy in the United States every year? You’re not big the market is

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Probably massive.

Rob McNealy
Massive – $6 billion a year. So what we spend, but here’s the word, but do you know what most of it’s actually made in the United States. Actually, we Don’t actually import much toilet paper we employed about $500 million a year in toilet paper. Most of it doesn’t even come from China comes from Indonesia. So it’s really interesting to me I’m like okay, so why are these shelves empty? This just can’t all be FOMO buying. Well we found two problems though. And the thing that I just uncovered the other day is all like what what’s the problem? Well guess what? Even though we make the toilet paper here, the recycled paper that makes the toilet paper is like the cheapest pulp comes from China. I think they’re out because China’s not back in line yet. And in fact, that dug into that rabbit hole. Most of the so we said whole cargo ships have you know all that recycled cardboard and plastic and or paper that you know gets bundled up goes to China. They turn it into pulp and ship it back and then we make it into toilet paper. The other problem with the supply chain we got a couple points. With the supply chain in the country, but that’s one of those external threats. Here’s another interesting thing. You know, I started looking at all these other countries with COVID now we’re getting into a whole prepper weird, crazy conversation. But I started talking to people and you know, what happens when India and you know, and some of these other countries start having a problem with COVID? How would that affect the supply chain and how could that affect us? Well, it’s interesting, you know, India’s a big country and they’re not they’re having they’re gonna have a big problem, I think with this pandemic, and they’re just starting, they’re just getting started. You know, they’re like the number two rice exporter in the planet. So what happens if because of absenteeism from illness and lockdowns and fear? They don’t produce let’s just say they produce less rice, not no rice but less rice. They feed a lot of countries and one of those other countries going to do here’s another thing so We’ve had four meatpacking plants in the United States go down because of COVID in the last week and a half, for in the last week and a half. And we’re talking one plant alone does 5% of the pork for the entire United States just went down in the last week. So, two, so a meat and a beef plant in Iowa, one of the biggest beef slaughterhouses in northern Colorado in Greeley. And then a port processing plant up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, all went down the last 10 days because COVID they don’t know when they’re coming back online. So you have this absenteeism. So there’s food and pigs and cows in the United States. But if you can’t get them processed, what’s that gonna do to people in Philly at the grocery store? Right. Right. What does that do the so we’re talking about that loaf of bread getting more expensive just because of inflation for money. What what happens when that price goes up two or three times? Because there’s no one to process as much, or what happens if the truck drivers are too afraid to drive truck across country to a pandemic zone, which you’re already seeing in New York City now. And it’s gonna get worse through the summer I predict from all the major cities, especially I think every major city east of the Mississippi is gonna have a problem with COVID bad. And so that’s my prediction. You can call me out on it by August we’ll have a conversation as car over it. But these are the things that I am getting concerned about. Now, here’s the thing, where did we get a lot of our produce from in the wintertime?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Mexico.

Rob McNealy
China, Mexico. So what happens if they have absenteeism from fear and illness? Now right now you can’t cross the border to Mexico. Well, all those workers that work our field come from Mexico. Regardless of what the conservatives want to believe about rural America and farmers, they’re all run by Mexicans. That’s just a fact. So the workers can’t get here. But what happens if Mexico’s farms have the same problem we do? What if their processing plants go down because of fear and illness? COVID in the wintertime, you know, this fall, what does that do to the price of food? Now, you know, I’ve spent a lot of time in inner cities now. And you know, I know I come from a poor family. So what happens to people that are dependent on EBT? And now that price of hamburger went from $4 a pound to $15 a pound or $20 a pound? How are those people going to react when their food stamps don’t go very far now. And those are the things that keep me concerned. But, you know, then you get into the International, you know, incidents with like, Okay, well, if countries don’t have enough food now to feed their people, what are they going to do? And put put your military thinking hat on. What does that look like in a year from now? And, and so I think we have multiple problems happening. And I think COVID is the trigger to basically say, look, this Emperor has completely naked now. And you guys got a lot of problems. Right? Right ranting but those are the things they have me concerned right now.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I’d have to agree with all of those assessments but I if I could convince my wife man, we will be out of here. My my family immigrated here from the Bahamas in the 20s. And I still have family there and if I could convince my wife man, we will be out. Like to

Rob McNealy
To the Bahamas?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Damn right, right now.

Rob McNealy
I’m not sure I’d want to go to an island right now to be honest. Because they’re actually all the all the people Caribbean islands right now are having problems with COVID. Yeah, so and so the question is on an island, you’re completely dependent on outside logistics for your support. If those logistics chains start getting broken, you’re really kind of on an island.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Just eat fish every day.

Rob McNealy
You if you can. I love the Caribbean man, I, you know, I’ve been to a lot of Caribbean islands and, man, I would be all about at least having a second house there. I’m not sure I’d want to write out this there. Right now. You know, we moved to Salt Lake City now six years ago now, and I think was a smart move because as far as urban or suburban areas were one of the most prepared states on the planet, like part of the the LDS culture, the Mormon culture, and is that, you know, they’re supposed to have a year supply of food. A lot of people don’t know that but like the whole morning A church is one giant prepper organization. And in fact, the Mormon Church has its own grain silos all over the place. And they have their own food processing, canneries and everything. I mean, they’re really dialed in. And so people in Utah are pretty, pretty resilient and self reliant. And that was one of the things that attracted me to the Utah in general. Was that self reliance? so far with COVID? We’re one of the only states that’s not locked down. We’re we’re in a semi we’re in a voluntary soft lockdown. Like the governor comes on the you know, every day at you know, lunchtime and says, Please, please, please, please, please don’t make me become a tyrant. Before she’s like, just do the right thing. Right. But but we haven’t had many cases here. So we’ve had 20 deaths in the whole state, but it’s picking up space. It’s picking up pace now. So you know, I think we’re gonna be one of the last to go if it goes bad, just because one more small population and we’re facing fairly isolated compared to, you know, the, you know, east of the Mississippi. It’s just so much more crowded in the east coast in the Midwest that it’s just a lot harder I think with this, I mean, so what does your wife Think about all this? You mean you sound like you’re a preparedness guy too, right?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
But she’s she’s now four that she thinks I’m overreacting.

Rob McNealy
What does she think you’re overreacting?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Because she’s never seen me act like this before.

Rob McNealy
Really? How are you acting?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Like, I need to be prepared.

Rob McNealy
Gotcha. But were you prepared before or is this something more recent or is this kind of like, ongoing thing without divulging any opsec Right, right, right. You know, I don’t need to know what you have or don’t have but, you know, I just like to understand where people are coming from because.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I’ve, I’ve always believed in having Little more than what’s absolutely necessary. I think we need to go all in. We need to be really putting we really need to be the squirrel and story a cause for real bad weather.

Rob McNealy
I agree with you now I have no OPSEC because I run a prepper crypto crypto conference every year called Off Chain: http://OffChain.events. So it’s kind of obvious that I do put things away. And that’s kind of part of, it’s just part of who we are. We don’t even think about it. It’s just like, but it’s funny because we just opened up pinto beans from 2011 the other day. And they were fine, by the way, right? Is it really good? But you’re like, I don’t you know, it’s one of those things like I hope I never have to open this five gallon bucket of pinto beans. But I’m glad I had the pinto beans. Kind of great. But I think yeah, I think what What I’ve been telling people right now it’s like cuz there’s a lot of people that are waking up. You know, I’m a gun guy. And sounds like you’re a gun guy as well. Yeah. Have you had a lot of people ask you about that? Guns recently?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
What do you mean. asked me what?

Rob McNealy
Like people that are non gun people getting interested in wanting information about guns.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
No. Everyone who knows me knows that I’m a gun guy. But they don’t ask me about it.

Rob McNealy
Now, because it’s interesting because I’ve had four people in the last two weeks three were first time gun buyers wanting to know what to buy, where to buy that kind of thing, and that one person was looking for food. And I’m like, Of course I’m and I’m like, Oh, of course. I’m the guy you call. But it’s just it’s been interesting seeing like people’s getting concerned now and I tell people right now if you haven’t prepped, you got one last opportunity right now. Do to get as much As you can get and but but I tell people, first thing you need to do is mentally prepare yourself for change. Probably drastic change, yes. Probably tough times, yes. A mentally prepare yourself that life is not going to be the same and get okay with that.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Right. And it’s going to happen quickly.

Rob McNealy
It’s good. It’s not happening quickly enough.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Because I don’t I don’t think we I don’t think we’re where we need to be.

Rob McNealy
Well, I think I was telling someone the other day that I think there’s people don’t have a sense of urgency in outside of the East Coast right now at all about this. All they want to do is they’re they’re healthy, they don’t see a problem. There’s not body stacking up. And so I think what’s happening is they can’t abstract what’s happening. I think it’s a combination of normalcy bias. Time preference. I think it’s like, there’s a glacier coming of really big freakin glacier. And it’s gonna run over your town. Right? But everybody’s like, well, I don’t see the glacier move, but it’s gonna run over the town. Well, I don’t see it moving. So I’m not going to do anything. And I think a lot of people are struggling with them because of it. And then they see the more immediate I’m not working, I don’t have money coming in and do those are all valid concerns, especially if you don’t have any savings. Right? So I don’t have a good answer to that. But this is not just a COVID Glacier. This is a supply chain glacier that’s affecting the entire planet in a slow moving wave like a glacier. Right? And it’s going to take a year before you know it’s gonna take months I would bet it’s gonna be a very scary summer is what I predict. Because I think you’re going to see a lot of cities all flaring up at the same time. I think you’re going to have the the buffer inventories from China burn through, I think you’re gonna have a lot of absenteeism. And you know, shortages because of this plants going down and this plant is going down and, and I think all that stuff is going to be rolling. So you’re, it’s like you’re gonna, you know, New York will be starting to be through its peak and then Chicago is going to be hitting its peak. Right, you know, or just starting in Detroit and St. Louis. And it’s just going to go on and on and on. And it’s going to take all right, well, I’ll be you know, New York hasn’t peaked yet. So understand this, right. Like, it’s been six weeks we had no, I mean, it’s like, stayed in New York, like, what 20 some thousand now or something. I mean, six weeks ago, they had zero need, it’s like, so it’s like gradually but you know, and that’s just one major city with it. But what happens when you have four cropping up in six more weeks. What does that look like? And right now most of the resources to handle COVID have been redirected to New York from other places. So I don’t I think we’re going to be I think the, the response to COVID is going to be scary. And I think there’s going to be a, I mean, there’s going to be a lot of people that are gonna, you know, not make it through this. Right. But I think what’s going to affect all of us is the supply chain failures domestically and internationally. And I think that and how people react to them. The question is, how do people react and you know, you know, I so are you from Philly your whole life? You said your family came from Bahamas, where are you? Where were you raised?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I was, I was born in New York, but I was raised in DC.

Rob McNealy
Okay. So, you know, and I’ve lived all over but I’ve been out west about 20 years, but I grew up in the Midwest. So I spent 20 years in the Detroit area for 28 years, actually, in the Detroit area. I know this that people Americans have never had to deal with empty shelves. Think about that.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Never.

Rob McNealy
Never. Now I’ve traveled a little bit, you probably traveled a little bit, you go to other places. Well, I don’t have any there’s nothing on the shelf for a month, but next month will be something on that shelf. And people are okay with that because that’s the system. Right? That’s what they’re used to. And the more third world or developing nations that’s that’s common, right? Well, we’ll get something pretty soon. You know, they don’t know. Americans have never had to deal with that. I’m 48 I’ll be 48 this summer. I’ve never seen that my lifetime.

Unknown Speaker
Now, add to that, that we are the nation with the most guns per person on the planet.

Rob McNealy
Yep.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
It’s good to be MadMax in the Thunderdome.

Rob McNealy
You know it It’s I don’t know where this is gonna go. You know, I’m just saying is if you’re like imagine if you’re like around a bit I think like a big pot. You’re in the kitchen right? You got a big giant pot is thrown in, you’re just gonna make the most worst meal ever. And you’re gonna just throw in some like, throw it’s a Molotov cocktail, a little gasoline, a little acid, gunpowder, TNT, nuclear weapons, throw into pathogens, turn it all up and, and let it launch in the middle of the summertime in the Midwest, like Detroit and Philly in Chicago, and then tell people, they got to be locked in their house because there’s a pandemic and they don’t have air conditioning. Right. Just like, you know, but I think but I even think about the air conditioning piece, right? I mean, I’ve been around a lot of inner cities growing up and where I’ve worked and stuff and I’m not this is not a stereotype. It’s a fact a lot of people don’t have central air. in inner cities in the Midwest, Detroit area, every summer when there’s a heatwave in Detroit, there’s people dying because they don’t have air conditioning. And, and think about it so and part of the response to that is people hang out outside, they get barbecue, they hang out the friends that hang out late at night instead of during the day, because they don’t want to be in their house. So what happens if you stir all that in top of that? Oh, man, I am not. I am not looking forward to this summer at all with this. And and i think that i think the COVID is just exposing all sorts of problems that already were there. And I think a lot of people are gonna get mad. A lot of people are going to get frustrated. There’s not things on the shelves. I think people are going to be pissed that things cost a lot more. I think people are going to be pissed because they’re told to stay in the house. They don’t want to stay in the house. Let’s just be honest, people don’t like being told what to do. Right? Anyways, I’m ranting. I’m sorry man. I I don’t know, man. I think it’s gonna be I think it’s gonna be wack. That’s what I think it’s gonna be a wack time.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
It’s gonna be interesting.

Rob McNealy
And so what do you think people should be doing? So, alright, so people here like, you know they’re not on the East Coast not in the Midwest. They’re just like doo dee doo dee doo. What would be your saying what would be your advice right now to those people?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Move out, move out of debt, move out of credit. Start putting away a little cash. start, stop putting away things that you can trade and start thinking about how you defend yourself and your family. Start thinking about how you feed yourself and your family. Make those things a priority because when the time comes and you realize that you need to do it, it’s already too late. Because other people are realizing at the exact same time that they need to do it. And then it becomes survival of the fittest. And the question is, how fit are you?

Rob McNealy
I couldn’t disagree with any of that? And, man, I’m usually a lot more uplifting than this.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Me too man.

Rob McNealy
No, but but seriously, though, I mean, I think that’s a good point is cover your frickin bases right now you’re sitting home. Don’t look at Pornhub all day, don’t play video games all day. start figuring out what you need to do to get past six months from now. Right? What’s that gonna look like? Right? You know, I don’t have a crystal ball. And I sure as hell hope that all the stuff we talked about doesn’t happen. I really hope it doesn’t happen. And you know what? I’ve been wrong before. You know I would I thought that shit was gonna meltdown in 2013. I’ll tell you that. That was I thought 20 13 if I had to put like, you know, the crystal ball on it, I was you know, my tea leaves are telling me 2013 it’s all it’s all over with. That’s gonna go mad max. That’s what I thought didn’t happen. They pumped up the housing market again. And now the housing markets way crazier now than it wasn’t you know 2007 2008 and I think that’s another I think that’s another shoe that’s gonna drop. And what do you what do you think about that? What do you think is gonna happen and how..

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
People out of work, they won’t be able to pay their mortgages.

Rob McNealy
Yeah. And the banks already tightening their credit lines again, and they’re already in get. My wife is super smart. I’m the dumb one of the family. My wife’s really smart. And we were walking around the neighborhood and there was a house that same size as mine, but they remodeled it. And they sold it for two and a half times my house. There’s a Worth right now. And it’s just a brick ranch house. Okay. I mean, this is not a fancy neighborhood or anything like that. But the numbers on the house, I mean, I look it up I like I like to look at real estate like to see what’s happening and and I was like, there’s no way in hell, I mean, we could afford that. But there’s no way I could pay that. I think we overpaid for my house when we bought it, and how my house has doubled in the last five years. And I said, there’s no way I would buy my house for what it’s valued at right now. I would not spend it. It’s not worth it. To me. It’s just, you know, it’s ridiculous. My wife made a good point, though. She’s like, because, you know, we were growing up with the house during the last housing crash, and she’s like, this housing crash is gonna be a lot faster to bottom and I go, what do you mean by that? Just to think about it, you know, in 2007, the price of a house was about a third what it is now, for the same house, even our old house. It’s funny, it’s like you look back on what our old House was in Colorado. And we’re like, holy crap. It’s ridiculous what that house costs, it’s that it’s ridiculous. So she’s like, think about this house. So she’s like, if a house has an $800,000 a month mortgage, it’s going to take two people working full time probably pay for that mortgage, and it’s probably like a 5000 $6,000 a month mortgage. She’s like, what if one of those people lose their job? Just one. Now this is before COVID head. So this was like last, you know, this is several months ago. And she’s she had a great point. She says, they can’t go and just liquidate their 401k out or go do Uber part time to come up with that nut every month. While they’re hoping they get another big boy job. She should so she says that housing markets probably going to hit bottom a lot faster because people are going to run out of money much faster because the mortgages are a lot bigger now. And I thought that was a really interesting point. That hadn’t heard anybody else make? Yeah. So, you know, I’m worried my brother I am, I’m so worried about where people are. And, and I’ve been in agony because I see so many people that are destitute so quickly. You know, I knew it was bad. I mean, it wasn’t ignorant to the savings rates and stuff, but the fact that I see people like so depressed and miserable, and they’re, I mean, I would bet that at the end of the year, you’re gonna see that the suicide rates probably gonna go crazy this year. And that makes me sad. Because, you know, you know, the regardless, we can get through all this shit. You know, I lived in a van behind a grocery store one summer as an adult, you know, and, and I would and I, and that’s no bullshit, okay? I mean, I’ve really came from a hard life growing up, and, you know, it’s like, I’m like, and you know what, none of that shit scares me. I’ve lost it all. And I’ve had an thing and I grew up with nothing so you know money and all that kind of stuff I you know, being broke like, whatever, you know figure the shit out, right that’s my attitude on it not that I want to be poor because being poor sucks but what I’m saying is but for people who have never experienced that right now because they grew up in this debt fueled really upper middle class you know lifestyle I think there’s gonna be a reckoning and I think those people are gonna have a very hard time adjusting to what the future holds.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I think those people will be prey.

Rob McNealy
Yeah. Especially the ones that don’t like guns. And what do you think about precious metals? Are you a pro so book, silver bug, why silver over boom.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
It’s in every phone. So most of our electronics, the price has been depressed even more than gold. So once the banks get their film off the paper Silver supply and the real value of silver is able to be discovered by the market. Got a pretty good feeling about it.

Rob McNealy
What is that? 50 is it 50 times now?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I thought it was 75?

Rob McNealy
I haven’t looked in a couple weeks. So you really are you know like you are definitely my echo chamber right now. I like I like silver more than gold for the seasons. That’s an interesting thing. The the precious metals markets have been really bizarre, haven’t they? Yes. Tell me about what are you seeing out there?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Ah, I dollar cost average precious metals the same way I do crypto and over the last month, actually six to eight weeks. The premium over spot for silver is Bananas. I recently purchased from admix $7 30 cent premium over spot. Now considering considering silver is like 14 $15 an ounce, so that’s 30 to 50% 50. Premium on an ounce.

Rob McNealy
So what does that mean?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Something that we don’t know.

Rob McNealy
So explain that. So for people that are not gold or silver or precious metal bugs, what does that mean? It’s good to go into a little bit.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Sure. Spot price is how much the market recognizes an ounce of silver for let’s say it’s $15 Okay. The premium is charged by the retailer to the consumer, because of various reasons, one of which is the difficulty in getting in Or the supply levels, how easy and how much there is to be sold at any given time, how much the mid releases at any given time, or how much silver was mined at any given time. When the supply starts to dry up, the premium on silver goes up, because they identify that more people want it, there’s less of it. So it becomes a law of supply and demand. So the less silver there is in the market to be sold and or the less silver has been mined in a month or six months or a year, the higher the price of silver will be and the higher the premium will probably be as well. And so when I went out to buy to do my regular DCA You know, I’m like damn, like $7 36 like This is like 50% like, really? Like believe what I was seeing when I saw it. And I mean, at max Providence on money metals, JM bullion, it didn’t matter where you win the premium was in that range of 50% premium.

Rob McNealy
Yeah, well, what what I think is interesting is that just based on the markets tanking, just based on global supply chain threats, the spot price of gold and silver should be off the charts. They should be off the chain they should be going nuts agree they’re not good. Not this the and usually in Newtown. I mean, typically, you might spend a buck you know even less depending for for the premium. If there is one, it’s not anywhere near you know, seven bucks, right, you make 1050 cents more for Well, I want this round and it’s got 20 Well design on it or whatever, you know. But what’s happened and what it looks like to me that for a long time in precious metals, a lot of the precious metal bugs out there have been saying that precious metal markets have been artificially depressed. And it’s, it’s easy to write that off as conspiracy, right? You see that a lot of times too with crypto, the crypto whales are suppressing the bitcoin price, whatever, you know, you hear that there too. But it’s interesting. Is that what there’s what it looks like it’s happening because right now, I don’t know how much physical delivery what lead times are you getting out there for the physical delivery, two weeks, we’re getting four to six new top. And so it’s interesting. And what so what they’re saying is, is that the the conspiracy theory that I’ve heard is that that there’s these paper gold and paper silver, and that they’ve oversold it, meaning that they’ll say this one, you know, this security is is worth so many ounces of silver, and they sell it, then treat it like a stock like an equity. And there’s a lot of people have alleged for a long time that they’ve sold those times more than once, maybe dozens of times. And so what’s happening and why the supply is all janky is that people now want physical delivery, and there’s not enough to go around. And so that premium that’s skyrocket. So what should be happening is the spot price should be skyrocketing to reflect market changes and conditions because this is exactly what precious metals are designed for a hedge against. And that’s not functioning right. But then, but what happens is since it looks like the markets not being allowed to actually, well, it looks to me that the market is not being allowed to do true price discovery on precious metals for whatever reason, right? That retail premium is where the market is finding the price.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Right, you’re starting to see a real decoupling in precious on hand metals versus precious paper metals. So I see a real decoupling,

Rob McNealy
Which then would support that there’s been some corruption and maybe some manipulation for the suppression of those prices. And it’s like, wow, and it’s funny because it’s like this goes back to COVID the trigger, but it’s only exposing this ID Oh, there’s this other problem. This this this rot, right. That’s been there for a long time. The rot comes from consumerist mentality among Americans that come from the lack of we don’t save money. We’re not providing to literacy that’s rot in my opinion. And then you have you know, all this just crazy amounts of US dollars being printed. That’s right. And then you have the precious metals markets, being rigged, apparently, or oversold, and that’s a rot it, all this stuff and all this outsourcing to China for the last three decades and how great it was, you know, and I’m from Detroit. So I know all I mean, I grew up in I went through high school in the 80s. And and I grew up through all that outsourcing happened in the 80s in the 90s. And then NAFTA happened in the mid 90s. Thank you, Bill Clinton. And so I mean, I, I saw what it did to Detroit one because I grew up in I was living there in that and I used to work in the auto industry. And it’s like, there’s rot from all the outsourcing and it’s like, so it’s like, there’s all this immense amount of shit of rot that’s just pile up for decades and decades and decades and, you know, go back to, you know, getting off the gold standard A long time ago, and I mean, this started probably before I was born really, but it’s all coming to head from this goddamn virus. It’s like, and then the housing market, the student loan bubble, the housing bubble again, it’s all just right all at once, and it’s happening around the planet all at once. Right? And it’s and it’s not, but it’s not happening overnight. It’s gonna take a year, probably the next year as this this pandemic goes through all those different major population centers. It’s gonna and so it’s like it’s gonna get good in one spot and then just pop up into more like crazy whack a mole. And so I don’t know man if this is probably going to be the most historically speaking, yeah, good or bad. It’s going to be a fucking ride. Yeah, and and you know what and why need to connect with smart people like you they get it? Because, you know, if the ones that are slightly prepared, are also going to be targets. That’s a fact. Right? You know, I like to read history. And I actually like to read about Russian history, and Ukrainian history and things. And I don’t know if you know much about what happened in Ukraine. But when the Soviets invaded the Ukraine, they had like, two levels of peasants, right? They had the peasants and the peasants that could hire somebody to work for them. They’re only slightly better off peasants. They call them coup locks. And what the Russians did is they said that every they they created all these policies, the Soviets create all sorts of quotas and stuff and they said, all these failures are because of the coup locks because they’re rich. They weren’t rich. They were just slightly less poor than the average peasant, but they might have you know, a little bigger farm and employ two people or something. That’s how the locks work. But the Soviets through propaganda whipped up, so much froth and hate and envy between The Super poor peasants and the cool locks. And they blamed every government failure on the cool locks into the point where they basically either killed center gulags or exiled they confiscated all the property, the cool locks the entire country. And that was that’s the that’s what the whole Ukrainian genocide was about in they blame, they call them coup locks. And I tell people now that, you know, we joke around about toilet paper envy and things like that. But we’re already starting to see the signs that there’s going to be people that the preppers the people that are self reliant the people that aren’t in debt, the people that you know, have some savings are probably going to be targets. And it’s going to be propagandize much like cool locks were and I do believe this is going to be a true threat over the next year or more. Friend of mine down in Texas. He has he’s a prepper and his wife and him you know, we talked a lot And she says they have like, they actually have some decent, you know, kind of, you know, and 95 reusable and 95 mass that look kind of stylish and I have if you look at my profile picture, I have one too. And because I bought them a long time. And, and it was funny because he told and I talked to him yesterday. And he said, because the damnedest thing just happened I go Why? Because my wife was at the store and somebody started calling her out for having a good mask not a homemade one. Wow, she’s got she’s got you know, she’s got a real nice mask and we just got these, you know, homemade ones. I’m like, holy shit. It’s like just I mean, I know I my mind just going like crazy places when I hear stuff like that. Yeah. Where’s it gonna go? You know, and you know, that’s that’s the stuff that kind of gets me worried about you know, protecting my family and stuff. Stuff like that is like, you know, you work very hard and save and you don’t go on that family vacation or you don’t go on that big trip because you want to buy, you know, some extra supplies or buy, you know, you don’t buy the nice steak but you buy a couple extra cans of beans or something, you know, you do that long enough. And you know, because you feel it’s an insurance policy and then you know, so you can ride these things out. And then and then somebody says or acts like you did something wrong. It’s like, you know, I just thought ahead. I was a boy scout too. By the way, I was also a firefighter and EMT, so I think about this stuff. But I don’t know man. This is a really a downer. Thanks. So what can we do? Well, what can we do to get people to wake up more? often can we help? How can people say how can we help people say it themselves? Is it too late?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I hate to go I really mean, but I’m really not worried about other people.

Rob McNealy
Fair enough.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Right now I’m just worried about me and my family, I’ll help my neighbor, if I have to help my neighbor, but not at the expense of helping my family.

Rob McNealy
I think there will be a lot of people that will have to make those choices in the future. You know, and my wife and I, we have these kind of conversations too. You know, it’s like, what do you do? And, you know, because people know, we have, you know, we have some emergency supplies and stuff. I mean, I don’t hide that. I never hide it because I tried to help people and get them excited about it and say, Hey, this is an important thing. So I know those I know those decisions I’m gonna have to make at some point, because I’m the guy they call it ready. So looking for advice, right? So it just is what it is. But we knew that that we always knew that that was a risk. So you know, there’s nothing I can do about that now, but I don’t Want to be I want you know, I always say this is that I wear a mask. And my families have been wearing masks when we’re in public and things. Because I don’t want to be part of the problem. Because if you’re not part of the problem, you can be part of the solution. You know, what I’m saying is don’t be a victim first, right? Protect your family. Protect your what you got. Because if you’re in that position, then you do have the option to help other people. Right. And, you know, maybe I can’t help the whole neighborhood, but maybe I can help one person, you know, and, and that’s what I hope to do. And like, you know, we’re putting in a big garden this year, like a really big garden, like nuts. you’d laugh it’s like a farm. And I told my wife I go, you know, I don’t know where things are going. And and she’s about 98% where I am. I’m a little more like, no, buy everything we can possibly buy right now. You know, I’m a little more, you know, let’s just do we got this one last chance is how I see it. And I said, you know, let’s just put in more, let’s fill up some more lawn, put in some more plants and she’s like, why do we need more? I go, because we can help other people if we need. That’s why. And that’s how I think you know, and you know it doesn’t hurt me to buy you know, by the way you can buy seeds at the dollar store for for $1 everybody’s freaking out about seeds. Go to the dollar store dollar store has the cheapest seeds anywhere in the country. Nobody knows that. I don’t know why they don’t know that. But did you plant a garden? Are you planning a garden this year? Can you plant a garden?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
I can but I won’t be this year.

Rob McNealy
You need to plant a garden. I’m gonna give you some shit about that. I think you should plant a garden. I really do. Please, little garden. Do this for me. Put your wife on. I’m just giving you shit. So Noir, where can people find out more?

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
About? Oh um yeah, we would way down the rabbit hole man, I thought we were going somewhere else. You can find me on Twitter: @InvestNoir, I N V E S T N O I R or you can check me out on Instagram at @CigarsandCrypto. Or you can listen to me on any of your podcast platforms of choice. Just search for Cigars and Crypto, or CigarsandCrypto.com.

Rob McNealy
You have the best radio voice ever. So, guys, you gotta listen to his podcast. He’s got some really, really great points out there. I really like where he’s coming from because he is my echo chamber. Thank you so much for listening this Robin Neely. Check us out on the web at Rob McNealy calm.

Invest Noir – Cigars and Crypto Podcast
Thanks for having me.

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Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio Transcript

Tom Gresham - Gun Talk Radio

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Okay, folks, I am real excited. Today I have an a guest that I’ve been a big fanboy of for a long time. And that is Tom Gresham. He is the host of the gun talk radio show. He has been a gun rights activist and gonna choose yes for decades. I’ve only been listening to him for a few years, but his wisdom is amazing. So Tom, thank you so much for coming on the show.

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
Oh, you bet. This is fun. Anytime we get to talk about gun to what’s going on from the political standpoint. And it got to it crazy right now what’s going on over the last, what, three, four weeks without Coronavirus thing?

Rob McNealy
Yeah, a lot of things are happening because of that. And I wanted to get your kind of, you know, take on what you’re talking to people about and what you’re hearing on the streets because I got a much smaller, you know, network in this space than you do. But it’s certainly interesting that before the corona pandemic, it seemed to me that there’s definitely been a war on guns, especially in states like Virginia and California, where people are really going out there and trying to destroy liberty. What effect has the corona pandemic have had on the states that are trying to go after gun rights?

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk
Maybe just a little bit of background there because I’ve been doing this for about 50 years. So fighting for gun rights are talking about it everything else. The key thing to understand is that they always are after your rights. is not new. It’s been there 25 years ago, 50 years ago, they always have want to ended, want to end private sale guns, they want to end private ownership of guns. They really truly do think on the government’s own guns. So when you start with that background, you realize what they’re actually doing now. And so under the corona virus pandemic, we have a number of states who use that as an excuse to shut down gun stores stop all sales of guns in their state when they can’t do that, legally. But that said, you know, why not? Let’s go to shop. So what happened was the gun rights groups, owner groups all got together individually, they’re taking action, but also they’re taking action together. For instance, in California, you have four different gun rights groups working together Sacramento Foundation, in our a Firearms Policy Coalition, and one of the California State groups all working together, but NRA has been suing thicker metal Foundation has been suing an unsung group that people don’t know a lot about. It’s actually one of the most effective groups is the National Shooting Sports Foundation. That’s the group that puts on the SHOT Show. And they have entree into the White House into various places. And honestly, they’re the ones who made one of the biggest changes about two weeks ago, where now the Department of Homeland Security has listed gun stores and shooting ranges as essential businesses under the law enforcement umbrella. And so that gave cover for a number of governors to who are looking at a lawsuit we’re going to lose, we’re suing them. They said, Okay, well, we’ll just say we’re going to follow the federal guidelines, and that’s our cover political cover on the thing. So in most states, we’ve been able to get the gun stores opened up again. New Jersey was difficult. Massachusetts has done a flip flop like three times, four times now maybe in California is problematic as California always is. And that’s just going to take More legal action they’re working on?

Rob McNealy
Well, it’s good that I think that in this case, the President in the department Homeland Security made the right call. One of the things that I’m seeing with this pandemic and one of the things that a lot of people I know in the prepper space are kind of concerned about and it looks like it’s going to go that direction is that there may be an increased crime, at least in certain jurisdictions. Combined from the facts that many police departments are coming down with, you know, a lot of the officers are, you know, come becoming infected. I’m originally from Detroit right now, I think almost 25% of the Detroit police force is out on quarantine because of COVID. You have cities in my city to Salt Lake City where I am, California, Philadelphia have already put listed all the crimes they’re not going to come and send a cop for. Which to me, you know, I don’t I’m not a criminal. Right. I’m not one of those guys that have all the statistics. But it seems to me that when you have on one hand, you have the cops not coming to calls for 911. You have cops that are sick. And you combine that with releasing a bunch of prisoners, even if they’re low level low risk prisoners, it seems to me you’re gonna have an increase in crime. Anecdotally, I have a friend of mine in New York City right now lives in a good neighborhood in New York City said I’ve been there five years. He’s one of our community members. And this we were talking about this yesterday morning, he told me this time he said, Look, he I asked him, I go, what are you seeing on the ground? Because I don’t trust anything I’m seeing anywhere else. I want to hear from people that are there. Sure. And this is what he said. He said, Look, he goes, there’s been eight armed robberies and one home invasion in my neighborhood in the last two weeks. That’s never happened in the five years I’ve been here. So to me, it seems like having gun stores open seems to be the thing that people are getting. have to learn to defend themselves or at least have the tools available to defend themselves going forward. Now, I don’t know.

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
It’s a great point. And it’s practice why we’re watching this rush of people going to the gun stores and buying guns and buy an apple. And I’ve had a couple of gun stores, people who are in the business community tell me that 90 to 95% of people buying guns right now are first time gun buyers. Imagine that these are people who do not own a firearm, and all of a sudden they have decided out of the blue to go buy a gun of why are they doing that? It goes back to what you were just saying. But also it’s just kind of this general sense of unease. It doesn’t take a lot for people to get rid of that bubble, artificial bubble that they choose to put themselves in where they can pretend that they’re safe, or we don’t need guns. We have the police we have this we don’t have to worry about it. Part of that is why I also say you guys are crazy for thinking that you need a gun for something Defense around the police. We saw the same thing happen in 2005 with Hurricane Katrina, the world and especially that night, the nation watched on video. As all symbols of civilization went away. There were no police. There were no police. There was only brute force source you’re left with, and you’re left to survive or not survive on the basis of what you could keep or protect yourself with. And people even in Detroit, or Seattle, or Salt Lake City looked at that what? Wow, honey, if that happened here, we don’t have any way to protect yourselves. So people went out and bought guns all over the country. Same things happen right now. They have come to grips with the realization that they really are on their own. This is not something we’ve always done this. This is always true. The police will be there when they can. Sometimes it’s two minutes, sometimes it’s five minutes, sometimes it’s 30 minutes, no matter what it is. It’s too late to Two minutes is too late. Just this morning, we had a story I believe it was out of Knoxville, Tennessee, where three women were stabbed to death. In a convenience store. A guy goes in there and kills three women stabbed them to death. The police arrived at two minutes a fabulous response time to live for those women. My whole deal is really simple. When you put your pants on in the morning, put on a gun. I wear a gun in my house all the time. I have a gun on all the time. Why is that? Because I don’t know what’s going to happen. And I’m competent. And I practice and people. They’re new gun owners. We’ll talk about that a second. What should you do if you just bought a gun? But the reality is, you’re responsible for your own safety, you are your own first responder.

Rob McNealy
I couldn’t agree with that more. Interestingly enough, I’m a pretty moderate guy. I’m very conservative on things like guns in the economy and fiscally I’m very fiscally conservative. And but I still have a lot of friends that are you know, liberals straight up liberal so I’m not even going to hide it now I don’t hate liberals because they lean a different way than I do. Like I try to get along with everybody. In the last week and a half I’ve had four phone calls from friends. Three of them were asking me about their first gun purchase the fourth person was asking where they can find emergency food. Like and of course I’m the guy they call but and and then and and I always I always like to play with people like I thought you weren’t a big gun guy and they’re like, you know, I’m not a big gun guy but but you know, in there backpedaling and I love my friends don’t get me wrong, and I do. Trust me. I give them a little crap upfront, but I do absolutely everything that I can to give them good advice. And and then you know, you know, help them get along and do it safely. So I guess that’s a good segue. What would you recommend to all these new gun owners, especially these liberal gun owners that have never really been around guns What would you recommend they do first thing after they get their gun?

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk
Well, first of all, I, I don’t make a distinction between conservatives and liberals. I just don’t care. It’s truly a non starter for me. I know it’s a fun thing to talk about those liberals or those conservatives, but when it comes to gun rights, All I care about is you’re either with us or against us. And I don’t care if you’re the super leftist and there are a lot of leftist and liberals who are really pretty good on the second amendment because they believe in the Bill of Rights, they protect all the other rights and they back the Second Amendment. But to your question, I guess a couple of things. If you are a first time gun buyer, go to kids, you can’t go to a lot of shooting ranges right now and can’t get instruction. But there are a lot of places you can go online and get some instruction we just put up a brand new video on our YouTube channel, go to gun talk media on YouTube, and we’re calling it the three minute EDC, three minute everyday carry. It’s a tip we’re going to do. There’s three minutes that’s On basically how to load and unload a revolver, we’re going to do the same thing with a lot of other things. But here’s the other if you’re a gun owner, and there are a lot of gun owners who are watching this right now, this is our opportunity to once again show that we’re the responsible ones out there. All of us have friends who may not be into guns, they you may know people who are first time gun owners, and if you don’t, maybe you have this extended group of Facebook people or even church members, and you can make an offer, hey, I could help. And even if you can’t go see them with a social distancing. You can do a FaceTime chat, zoom connection, and say, okay, that gun your pistol you just bought, put it on the table in the box. And Alright, we’re going to walk through this open up the box, there’s a pamphlet in there. The gun makers spent a lot of money and a lot of time on the owner’s manual. Read every page in your owner’s manual you will learn a lot actually ended up knowing a lot more than a lot of gun owners do. And then let’s talk about our We’re gonna take it out the box, and we’re going to make sure it’s unloaded, you’re gonna show me on your camera. And we as gun owners can walk them through. How do you take out a magazine? How do you work a slide? How do you when you pick up your gun, here’s your tip for the day to grab a gun, make a gun, that is you make a finger gun, right. And then you pick up the gun with your finger gun. Now your finger straight along the side of the gun. It’s a safe way to teach people to pick up guns and not wrap their finger inside the trigger the way people tend to do. So we as gun owners can actually help people be safe with how they handle their gun. Let’s talk about the four rules of gun safety. We’ll talk about muzzle discipline. We’ll talk about how you work a slide, keep your finger off the trigger. We can help these people out and then when we can all get back together and you just have a standing offer. When we can do this. I’ll take you out to the range and I will teach you some things We’ll get you some level of comfort and familiarity. We may have a million or 2 million or who knows how many new gun owners who some of them could be persuaded to come to the side of the Second Amendment. You’re not going to make them conservative. But we don’t need them to be conserved. We just need them to vote on the basis of the Second Amendment. I truly don’t care where they are on any other issues. Nothing.

Rob McNealy
Well, I agree. I’m glad that you bring that up. Because I’m basically a one issue voter anymore on the second amendment and, and I look at a pretty straightforward if you’re going to be bad on the Second Amendment, you’re probably not going to be good on any of the other ones either. And that goes for conservatives, too. I tell people I tell people all the time you do not have a you are not entitled to my vote ever. When it comes to politicians, and I think that’s important to stress that is, you know, if you you know, there’s no good politicians that don’t like certain rights, either Do you like the rights or you don’t? You may not like what people do with those rights. It’s a different story, I think. But you know, I think it’s important that you know, we point out that you know, you can be more liberal in some ways and still be a big defender of your your person your right to self defense and I think a lot of people miss the fact that ultimately everybody is conservative when it comes to their own life. Typically, about this it just they don’t usually sometimes they don’t realize it until it’s too late to do something about it. And I and I see that it’s interesting. I was arguing with this not arguing discussing on social media recently with a one of my more liberal Facebook friends who was in Dallas, and I was shocked that she must be suicidal because her position you know, she I posted an article about why people should get a gun and this is like, three four weeks ago before people were freaking out. And and my position was like, get it while you can get it now because it’s going to be A lot harder and a few weeks to get anything, which is so far proven to be correct. And and she’s like, Well, why do I need a gun? I go, Well, there’s a good chance that you know, the crime is going to go up around you and everywhere else. And she’s like, well, if I need a gun to defend myself, then I don’t really want to live on this planet. And I go, and I said, bless your heart. But I hope you don’t change your mind when it’s too late to go back from that decision. And that’s an interesting,

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
One of things I tell people to look, particularly if you’re a parent, you don’t have that choice anymore. You don’t have the choice to say, well, I’ll just die rather than defend myself because, number one, if you’re protecting your child, then you need a tool to do that. You need the skills to do that. But more than that, even if you’re by yourself, if you die, you traumatize that child, what a selfish thing to do. To say I’m going I’m willing to die for this and traumatize my children. Forever, because I wouldn’t take the simple steps to take to get protection to learn how to use a gun. I describe a gun as a parachute. It’s the thing you use, when every other thing is failed. You know, you run out of gas, the wings don’t fire the engine don’t fire, you’re crashing, you jump out with a parachute. In this case, we try to do everything we can to not use a gun. We work hard at, you know, avoid those evasion, awareness, you know, de escalation, all the other things we can do, because any day I don’t have to use my gun, it’s a great day, and I hope I end up dying at the age of 142. Never having used my gut. But having said that, I also know that stuff happens. I mean, we have fire extinguishers in our house. I didn’t plan to ever have a fire. I did. Okay. It’s the thing you use to control the situation. Until help gets there. Think of the fire extinguisher analogy. It’s not there to put out a house. is to try to control it until the fire department gets there. Same thing with a gun. And you know, one of the things that people and you know this, but a lot of people don’t know the public is that the police legally have no duty to protect anyone. The courts have ruled over and over, but they’re not responsible for you, and they don’t have a legal duty to even come. Or if they come, they can sit there and watch you get injured, they don’t have a legal responsibility to protect you.

Rob McNealy
Well, that came up down in Florida, right? Down Down at Sandy Hook, right, the resource officer waited on the outside of the building, during that environment or during that that mass shooting and so and you know, and it’s funny because I follow that a little bit, but a lot of the courts basically said there’s nothing we can do against them and then they you know, work really hard because of the public outrage about it. But ultimately, they’re they’re not legally obligated to defend you. And I was the first and only As a first responder, I was been an EMT and a firefighter and I’ve worked around law enforcement many years. And I can tell you, it’s not a bad thing, but even EMTs and firefighters are told, save yourself first. Don’t put yourself in danger. That’s typically the mantra, right? So I think it’s a personal responsibility, and no one’s gonna care about your life more than you. Let’s be honest.

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
Well, to your point, if the police and the firemen EMTs will save your life first. That’s pretty good advice for all of us. Save Your Life first. don’t depend on anybody else. And don’t you love the folks who said, Well, you know, I would never have a gun in my home. Really? Okay. So if somebody breaks in, we’re going to call, I’m gonna call at least Well, that doesn’t make any sense. I thought you just said you would never had a gun in your home. What do you think the police are going to come in? They’re going to come in with a gun. That makes no sense whatsoever. You’re okay with somebody having a gun, but only if they were a certain kind of clothing. Only if they’re wearing

Rob McNealy
Tiny little badge, right?

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
Yeah, exactly. That’s which we already have to get into the whole. Who’s more competent? Yeah, very well, maybe the woman is walking in the streets more confident about 90% of the police officers out there. And that’s no knock on the cops, they get what they get. We’re trading, but most of them are not gun people. Most of them don’t train on their own, most of them won’t spend the money on ammo. And so they get minimal training with very minimal remedial recurrent training, and they’re just simply not very good. So once again, do you really want to trust your life to that, but this whole Corona Virus Pandemic has been interesting. And as I say there may be an opportunity here at the end of it for us to pick up some people in the gun world and gun culture if you will. But only if we reach out to them and we’re not engaging in the Where have you been all along and also, you know, we’re making fun of them. There’s a an addictive attraction for putting people down, especially on the internet, and, you know, rather than do that we should be looking at this and going, Wow, what a golden opportunity. We could pick up a million votes with a million votes we win on a national basis with a million votes, you win.

Rob McNealy
Well, it was interesting. One of the people that asked me about advice is someone who’s actually in New York City, and he’s an attorney of all things. And, and I said, Look, I don’t know your laws in New York City. But I said, it’s really hard to get a gun at all right now, because they’re everywhere I know, is sold out of most inventory right now. But I tried to help them out, gave me some suggestions on what he could do and where he could go. But it’s I think you’re right. I think unfortunately, I think it’s part of the human kind of, you know, programming that we have that people don’t think about those things still, it’s right in their lap, right. Right now there’s somewhere between two and 600 people De dying in New York City from COVID right now I just looked at the numbers, the raw numbers from New York City that’s what the numbers are looking for look like 400 people died from COVID since yesterday which is sad and scary and and I can’t imagine what it would be like if I was living there Now personally because I know there is gonna be unrest people just I think when you get people in a group or you know people a lot of people are in a mass and they live close to each other like in a big city like New York City. People just get dis gets scared and they get restless and they go crazy. So, so the guess the last thing I wanted to ask you about and see if you’ve heard anything about this is what do you see is happening to the supply chain and I don’t just mean about the FOMO knowing the fear of missing out and the panic buying or the last minute buying. I’ve heard some rumors that because China has been shut down for so long that that could start impacting the US gun manufacturing industry as a whole. Have you heard anything about that at all in your circles?

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
I really haven’t. Again, remember, we’ve been through these crushes before, when Obama was elected when it looked like Hillary was going to be elected, we have a run on guns. There was was eight years ago, 10 years ago now, you couldn’t find guns, you couldn’t find animal. There’s just nothing there. That’s going to happen again, that’s happening right now. The gun makers are, especially the ammo makers are not going to gear up to take care of this demand. Because they know it will go away and when it goes away, it drops off the end of the table. It’s just gone. And so they’re not going to hire more people. They’re not going to add shifts just not going to happen. So what’s out there is out there there’s there’s enough ammo in the pipeline to take care of all of our shooting for the next 10 years. But not if you buy your next 10 years worth of ammo right now all at once. That’s what’s going on. I guess my takeaway is what I’ve been telling people on gun talk radio for yours now is investing they have a thing called dollar cost averaging, which means buy stock every month. Whether it’s up whether it’s down just every month to buy a little bit. We should do the same thing with ammunition. ammo six months ago was so cheap, it was like a giveaway ammo. You could buy it for nothing and it was available everywhere. When this whole nonsense is over. You know anybody can find $10 a week. Okay, that’s one box of nine millimeter ammo. Anybody can find 10 bucks a week. Buy a box of ammo a week. At the end of the year or two years you have two or three shelves full of ammo. This is not your shooting ammo This is your the next time the world loses its mind ammo, and then you can just you know do shooting but you know this will all come back. This will all get back to normal. The gun makers are making guns there’s gonna be plenty of guns for everybody. Actually, I’ve heard a gun people say Huh, dig around in my safe. I’m selling guns right now. Prices are up, I put them in the gun stores on consignment, I’m gonna make some money. If you’re a real gun person, you don’t have really a need to go out and buy guns at inflated prices right now. So just take a deep breath, sit back Come middle of the summer, this will all be over. And if you went out bought several guns at inflated prices, if you have to sell them, you’re gonna take a PDR

Rob McNealy
I think that’s really good advice. Tom. I do appreciate your time today. Thank you so much for coming on. Where can people find out about you and where can they check out your website?

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
Well, several different ways to go. Gun talk comm is the home base for everything. We have videos on YouTube, Roku, Amazon Fire Apple TV, just look for gun talk where we have thousands of those. We have the guns in gear television show which runs on the sports channel. And then of course, the gun talk radio show is available in podcast. So that’s the number two all time podcast in the hobby category according to Apple. So those are the basic ones. And then we actually have a smartphone app is very cool GunDealio that gives you great deals on guns and ammo. If you go to GunDealio calm, you can get it for your iPhone or your Android. So a lot of ways to keep up.

Rob McNealy
Tom Gresham, thank you so much. I really appreciate it today.

Tom Gresham – Gun Talk Radio
For sure, take care.

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Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains Transcript

Brad Kam - Unstoppable Domains

Note: This transcript was automatically generated by artificial intelligence (AI) and therefore typos may be present.

Rob McNealy
Hey folks today Rob McNealy here. And I am talking to the co founder of unstoppable domains, Brad cams. Brad, welcome to the show. How are you today?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Great. Thanks for having me.

Rob McNealy
Well, I appreciate you coming on. I’ve been a big fan of what you’ve been doing now for. I don’t know, I heard about you guys probably about a couple months back. And I actually got to talk to you offline, because I actually think I want to buy one of your domains. But you’re going to educate me and the audience today about what your domains are doing. And what I’m, before we not kind of get into all that. Let’s talk about you a little bit. Give me a little bit of history about you. What’s your background?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yes, I’m from Atlanta. I’ve been starting companies since college days, started out in the real estate world and actually after the last economic crash started buying up homes during this period where they dropped by like 80 90% in Atlanta, so it was pretty, pretty wild, pretty wild, pretty wild situation, but eventually kind of realized I needed to, I needed to get into the software game needed to get to San Francisco needed to get into startups. That’s really where the big change was happening. So I moved to San Francisco in 2012. And I moved into this house called 20 mission, which has been referred to as a house that Bitcoin built in various publications. Because it was a Bitcoin hacker house where the second Bitcoin exchange in the US launched in our basement of Vitalik came and gave a talk before Ethereum launched in the courtyard, pretty much everybody there was doing something Bitcoin related. So I kind of moved to San Francisco and at the same time, just kind of completely dove into crypto related things and kind of haven’t looked back since then. But in general, been doing startups.

Rob McNealy
Very cool. So tell me what is Unstoppable Domains all about?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
So it’s about free speech tech, it’s about creating a censorship resistant internet and we’ll We do is we build domain names on blockchains. So we have a domain registry similar to like a.com. Except for it’s part of a smart contract on a blockchain. So we’ve got crypto Ethereum. And the way it works is is every domain is stored by you in your cryptocurrency wallet, a traditional domain would be stored by like GoDaddy or your registrar or something like that. And because you have this mandatory custodian, they can move the domain around, they can take it away. So a blockchain domain is is one that you can that you control, it’s a self custody. ERC 721. And you use the domains. For websites for censorship resistant websites, you store your website content on IPFS or another decentralized storage network. And you can also use them for payments. And this is kind of weird. This is different than a traditional domain. The same domain can work for both websites and payments. So I’ve got Brad crypto, you could type that into a browser and see my website or you could type that into a cryptocurrency wallet, and you can send me Bitcoin or Ethereum or whatever you can send any currency essentially to one domain. Okay,

Rob McNealy
so how does that work is how does it work? So how do you make money? How do I get a domain?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah, so the way it works is is you can go to unstoppable domains calm, it’s gonna look similar. It’s kind of like our version of a GoDaddy, you can type in domains into the search bar, you can check out you can pay with credit card or crypto. After you do that you can manage your domain meaning that you add your crypto addresses so you can receive money to it and launch a website, a website on decentralized storage. So we’ve got a bunch of little tools in there kind of like a decentralized Wix where it’s really easy with a few clicks to go and build your website and launch.

Rob McNealy
So is this a one time payment one and done thing or is this like a subscription model like an annual model like a lot of much of the other registrar’s that are out there?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah. This is a one time fee. And the reason why is because it should just be something that you control and feel like you can control forever. If you have a subscription, you have these risks where the registry could just jack up the price on you. And there was a really kind of crazy thing that’s been going on in the traditional domain world around.org, where they’re selling the what was previously a nonprofit to a for profit company and talking about jacking the prices by three x. And all of these essentially, most nonprofits in the world are using.org. And now they’re all kind of at risk, where they’re under the you know, they’re under the under the thumb of this, of this registry that can just change prices whenever. So a once simple, easier, safer for the user.

Rob McNealy
So do you so the I guess the question I would have, and I’m just trying to understand because I’m actually kind of interested in this project for Tosca, actually. And so if you go away, Does it still work?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah. Yeah, you’re relying on a theorem and you’re relying On the ipfs protocol, which is a decentralized storage network, although Pretty soon, you’ll be able to rely on many different decentralized storage networks. So I would say that’s a little bit less of a risk, because you can always just put your website on multiple networks. For aetherium, though you are relying on on a theory and still being there and stable, so doesn’t doesn’t rely on unstoppable domains. Once you have the domain, it’s yours doesn’t really matter what happens to us you already control it.

Rob McNealy
So essentially, when you say it’s on a theory, does that mean that that’s where the DNS is located? So I’m hitting, that’s where the I type in POS network and then all or whatever it would be on your protocol. I’m hitting the Ethereum network and that’s just a permanent DNS record through a theorem.

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah, so if any of your any of your your community has ever used like my ether wallet, for example, which is a theorem wallet, so there, they have my ether wallet, crypto, and so you can type it into it. browser and you go there and when the browser when you type in my ether wallet crypto the browser goes and reads the Ethereum blockchain, finds the my ether wallet crypto domain, and then goes and looks for the hash where the content is located at the ipfs. Hash, and then it shows you the shows you the website.

Rob McNealy
So you said you can put it on multiple networks. How does that work?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Well, I said that I don’t want to maybe over complicate something, I said that purely to say that you don’t need to bet on any one storage network. Right now we’re using ipfs, because that’s the one that’s the most mature and has, you know, great tools and a lot of developers already using it. And so what the way that works is I upload ipfs and then people anywhere can store and share my website to the network. So instead of having my website stored on Amazon Web Services, where if they decide they don’t like what I’m doing, they can just flip me off. I can just turn me off. Instead, I have dozens or hundreds or maybe even thousands of different people all storing a copy of my website and unlikely they’re all just going to decide to turn me off all at once.

Rob McNealy
Exactly. So for this way, do you notice any kind of lag time or speed difference between DNS on a traditional registrar or a DNS on unstoppable

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
so the theory of look apart is quite good, quite easy, quite fast. The IP Fs the how fast website content loads is based on to things it’s based on how many people you’ve got, that are storing and sharing your website. And you it’s also based on how like close they are geographically to you. So what this leads to is, if your website’s popular, then it’s also performance. It also works well, which is kind of like in a weird way. It’s kind of like the opposite of a lot of traditional web systems where you like get DDoS like you get too much traffic. And things go down. Whereas here, if you have a whole bunch of demand, you’re probably also going to have a whole bunch of supply of websites of copies of your website being stored around. So I guess that’s the long answer. The short answer is right now because it’s early. It doesn’t work that well. But the moment something gets popular, it’ll work quite well. So it has this kind of like opposite of the regular internet approach. As it scales as it scales, it gets better.

Rob McNealy
Is there a way to then to use unstoppable for the DNS, and then just pointed to a normal web server host somewhere?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Sure, you could do that I think you would lose, lose a little bit of the advantage, though, because what we’re really the purpose of all this is to have a censorship resistant internet is to have essentially self custody of both your domain and your website so that neither of those can be points of failure where you have to rely on other companies like you control that stuff. And no one can really stop you from publishing A browser might say, like, Hey, this is a really, you know, you know, this is illegal, what you’re doing, and we don’t want to show this record. So there’s always like that level of place where somebody could try to, you know, block you from being seen. But that’s different than somebody just being able to take you down. Like right now, registrar can just say, we don’t like what you’re doing, we’re going to, we’re going to, we’re going to take the domain away, you know, right now, Amazon Web Services can just switch you off. And, you know, of course, you know, in the US, I don’t think this is, you know, as big of a problem, although there are certainly issues here as well, but around the world, there’s, you know, all kinds of issues with these tools. So,

Rob McNealy
so do you think that going forward, especially with crypto, do you expect that there’s gonna be actual censorship of different types of cryptocurrencies now, and I’m not trying to argue with you, I’m trying to play devil’s advocate a little bit because, you know, I’m involved with a crypto project as well. And the one thing you hear about everything from all these kryptos essentially censorship resistance censorship resistance, the most important thing, blah, blah, blah. The question is, you don’t really hear about too many kryptos actually being censored. Yet, do you expect that that will change in the future?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Well, I think the very nature of it is censorship resistant, like so for example, like Bitcoin and aetherium, do not require permission in order to get an account from anyone, they’re able to be sent anywhere to anyone. So they’ve already proven their censorship resistant use case in the market very early on. And this was very controversial. One of the early use cases of Bitcoin was sending money to WikiLeaks when they got shut off. And regardless of how you feel about them, the fact that there was no way for anyone to stop that was, in a sense of first the first time that somebody was ever able to publicly fundraise for a lot of money completely against the will of the United States and various other countries. And they had no way to stop because of its censorship resistance. So it’s really about like, how do the tools work? And I think you can do the same thing that you can do for currency with domain names. Right now. domain names On the sort of fundamental level, they get taken away, they can get taken away. And if you change the power structure, then you kind of change the entire ecosystem. So that’s that’s the idea is like cryptocurrency is like a safe, open source permissionless space to build tools on top of where everybody can, everybody can join in, everybody can be a part of it. And that’s part of the reason why I, it’s important on the fundamental layer. It’s not like every single person is getting censored, they’re not. But we all benefit from the open source, the open source tech because of this, like social, social, you know, social cooperation thing. We’re all working on the same stuff. We’re all building stuff that’s more and more interoperable. There’s innovation all over the world, like so. It’s not just about the people getting censored, although they matter. And I think in the on the website side, it’s a pretty big deal. Like there’s, you know, a law in Turkey that says that a read that a hosting service is not allowed to happen. Have the word gay on any website content automatically pre banned naked as well. You see a lot of this in particular, there’s been some pretty weird cases with startups using l y dot L y. And when the Islamic in Libya came, took over, they started taking down some websites, including porn websites and things like that. Your basic internet infrastructure should not have those kinds of random points of failure, where people can its problem is people, like people that you shouldn’t have anyone in charge of what’s okay to say. Applications can still create an experience where they, you know, remove the harshest or the most offensive voices if they choose, but it’s still a better internet for everybody. If I can then go choose a different browser. If I don’t like what they do, and I think that makes a lot of sense.

Rob McNealy
Do you feel that Going forward, as demand starts increasing that, that the speed to deliver these on, you know, unsensible website, do you think that’s going to improve over time? And you said, there’s gonna be more options? What options are there going to be for? You know, besides IPFS?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah, well, so there’s there are, you know, several in the works that are, you know, advancing very quickly. ipfs is a couple of years ahead. But there’s there’s several that are advancing very quickly. And I think the idea is, is that you’re going to want to have your content on maybe three to five, just a sort of like an extra, an extra safety layer. But in regards to kind of the speed and performance, it’s really about how many people are storing and sharing that website. And so that’s about, in part how popular the website is. And so I think right now, the only problem is, is is not so much the way the tools work, it’s that there aren’t enough popular websites yet. And those are coming And I think the tools are just getting Easy enough where people are starting non technical people are starting to build stuff all over the place. And that’s been kind of one of the new steps. That’s happened really just in 2020. I would say, even before now it wasn’t. And now we’ve got this thing with browsers. So Opera browser, which 80 million users on their Android app can now just type in a dark crypto domain, just like they would a.com. And that just happened today. That was kind of the big, big, decentralized web news for us today. So I think it’s really just that there aren’t enough. There aren’t enough websites yet. But the stuff the stuff actually works, you would just need a lot of people storing it in order to get really, really good censorship resistance and really good uptime.

Rob McNealy
So what do you see about protecting websites from denial of service attacks? does this affect that in any way or help with that at all?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
I yeah. Because essentially what happens is if you get a whole bunch of traffic, it as long as that well, so It doesn’t, it doesn’t automatically prevent malicious actors. But you can do things like say, I will only permission these wallets or wallets with these criteria to visit a website in the first place. So you can create like easy kind of locks on your website if you don’t want to, if you if you’re at risk of those types of things. Ultimately, I would just say that, in general, if you think about, like, what’s really happening if Amazon Web Services, you know, used to store essentially all the website data on their servers, and now all of a sudden, we allow anybody in the world who has extra storage space to offer it up to anybody in the world. We’re going to get a marketplace and it’s going to be a lot more efficient than what we’ve got over here. So I think it’s just that like this model of open source marketplace, you know, peer to peer marketplace for storage space, just I think it just makes the internet better and basically every way over the long term. You know, if we’re talking if we’re saying like, you know how performant is it over the next year, I would say, you know, it’s going to be a little, it’s going to be a little inconsistent, depending on geography, depending on the specific website, some websites are going to work far better than others, because they have more, they have more nodes sharing them. So you’re going to have these kinds of clunky things. So it’s kinda like 1990s level internet. But the point is, is that it works like it does work. We do have a decentralized web, that functions, it’s going to need all the tools and it’s not it’s going to need a lot of love before it, you know, it can really, you know, migrate over the previous, you know, the previous kind of internet infrastructure stuff. But it does work for the censorship resistant use cases. And it does work for daps you know, cryptocurrency applications that, you know, are trying to remove all the points of failure in their applications, but they still have the domain name problem, and they still have the website on Amazon Web Services problem. So it solves, you know, these these two key problems for them. And then we’ve also got the youtubers so the crypto YouTubers have you know been getting their videos taken down. And you just put up those videos on decentralized web and then no one can take them down. Now we’re going to need aggregators to make it easy for, you know, for everybody to find that stuff, YouTube’s great at the discovery part. So obviously we have some work to do. It’s not going to work tomorrow, but you can go ahead and put them there. Especially if YouTube takes him down. Definitely go put them up. And you can do new things like you can charge for them, you charge 25 cents for them. You could have a tip button in case you don’t want to charge but it’d be great if it’s easy when someone likes your video that they can just easily tip you crypto. There’s all kinds of new stuff you can do.

Rob McNealy
So are your unstoppable domains, would you are they compatible with things like NginX and CloudFlare

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
CloudFlare has done a lot of has done a lot of things to integrate with Etherum and IPFS. So CloudFlare is is kind of very far along I would need to look a little closer at what engine x is doing. I just don’t have I don’t, I don’t actually have enough personal knowledge. They’re

Rob McNealy
very cool. So where would you say you are in your roadmap? What’s next for you? You got the opera integration done now, which is a huge thing. Where what’s the next big thing you guys are working on?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Yeah. So we’ve got, you know, we’ve got our registries out, we’ve got crypto and dot zil. We’ve got over 200,000 domains registered. So they’ve been started. That process started about a year ago. So there’s domains that have been being being registered unclaimed ever since then. We have been mostly focused on the wallets so there’s like my ether wallet, trust wallet, my crypto coin Oh, me atomic, several others coming soon, where you can send money using the domains. There’s also a Chrome extension. So it’s a unstoppable Chrome extension. So if you prefer to use Chrome you can use it also works in brave and then opera. So that’s the that’s the that’s the native announcement of the first browser. The first major browser to ever support a non DNS domain name. Attention so far as we know because it’s pretty much been all DNS before this it’s not just about blockchain domain you know blockchain Domain Name System they’ve never supported anything that wasn’t you know just part of this this one kind of I can I can control DNS system now it’s all about making the tool is easier to build build websites. So that’s a that’s a big focus there’s templates like I mentioned for decentralized Wix there’s people at Cairo crypto you can easily launch your own decks there’s a bunch more stuff like that that are that are coming tools just to make it easy to build websites.

Rob McNealy
Very cool stuff. Bradley cams. Where can people find out more about your domains unstoppable?

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Well, you can do UnstoppableDomains.cam. or check us out on Twitter, UnstoppableWeb or Telegram UnstoppableDomains. There’s always a conversation going on in there.

Rob McNealy
Very good. Bradley, thank you so much for coming on the show today. I really enjoyed our conversation.

Brad Kam – Unstoppable Domains
Thanks a bunch.

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