The 4th Estate in Crypto
The role of media in any business cannot be ignored. Media plays a very vital role for businesses; what is written or said by in the media can either become a pain or a gain for someone. It applies to businesses in Crypto and Blockchain as well. Currently, there are many media companies which are dedicated to reporting of crypto and Blockchain stories on a regular basis. So much is happening in this space these days that some news or the other is being relayed almost every minute. India too has its share of crypto news websites and they are doing quite a good job in keeping us updated with global crypto and blockchain news.
Why discuss media
The burning question about media came in my mind when I saw the crypto news media sites in India and compared them with the ones from overseas. While the Indian sites are working very hard, I noticed that only a few seems to be well funded and hence the die-out rate could be high, if not already happening. Plus the maturity in reporting, the line of stories, research was inadequate to a large extent.
Needless to say, media can be very useful to the crypto community. I am sure that the budding and bigger enterprises in this space area already using the help of media to promote their wares, but I have observed more business going to foreign websites. Why can’t or doesn’t it stay in India?
I had also been observing that media companies overseas appear to be much more mature than their Indian counterparts and in many ways funds play a vital road. We are yet to come across someone who has taken crypto reporting to a new level altogether in India. But that was until very recently when I met the prospective guest of the prospective episode 5 (now produced) and watched his reports on his news website.
The guest who made a statement
I will always remember the day I met the person I wanted to call on the show - Naimish Sanghvi – Founder of the news website Coin Crunch India. It was a meet-up in Gurgaon where I was speaking for the first time and he had specially flown down from Ahmedabad. He had been wearing a T-shirt which made a statement.
India was already reeling under the banking ban and here was a young man wearing a T-shirt which said “Rishte mein to Hum Bank Ke Baap Lagte hai, Naam Hai Bitcoin” (In relationship, I am the Father of Banks, My Name is Bitcoin!). While this was funny as hell, it was indeed a fantastic statement under the circumstances in the country. So while everyone wanted a selfie with Naimish’s T-shirt, for me it was a good moment to understand more about the man within.
Transformation is key
From being a Bio-tech engineer, to a fintech consultant, to running his own YouTube channel and website making funny videos with his sister, to being hired by News18 to develop a product, Naimish seems have found his calling in the Crypto arena probably because he thought that money could be made! While that may be true in many cases, his foray into CoinCrunch.in, his news website, had been like any other journalist finding stories around the world and making them his own. But a turnaround came when he started being analytical, logical, brave and bordering-on-the-rebellious (just like the T-shirt) with his writings.
His transformation and his writings challenge the status quo – for the readers, of the industry as well as the authorities. That is what Hard Fork is all about.
Questions on our mind
The many thoughts discussed above in why media, drilled the idea of bringing in a media professional, who is a startup, not a career journo, understands the subject, know many in the industry like the back of his hand. Answer – Naimish!
Imagine asking questions to and talking to a journalist – I mean who does that? The dread on me was palpable when I thought of including this episode in the series of the first season. I am glad my producer and media partner is an ex-journalist (Lovejeet Alexander). That settled me a bit. Some of the thoughts I had for him were:
- What ails the crypto news companies in India?
- Why don’t we have a Cointelegraph or Coindesk from India?
- Why International and national stories not “breaking news” on an Indian site?
- Are mainstream journalists interested in being dedicated Blockchain writers?
- What is lacking in us? Could it be a training issue?
- Can we not build a reliable media source in India?
- Is there something the industry should do to enable that?
- There are not many vernacular mediums of reporting? Will that help?
Naimish is a grounded, practical, analytical and a very well-read person when it comes to the cryptocurrencies/assets and Blockchain tech in India and overseas. His does not mince his words and his very straight forward in putting his thoughts across. His fluency over his own subject of media can be ascertained when you listen to him.
His views were very personal, truthful, from the heart and as candid as one can be on a 30min talk show. I am hopeful that the chat with Naimish will help understand the importance of supporting a media house.
Hear it more on the [Episode].
We premiered the 1st episode on Amazon Fire TV on 22nd April 2019 and officially launched the @founderINDIA channel on 23rd April. All Hard Fork Episodes will also be simulcast on other platforms including YouTube.
Watch Hard Fork Episode 5 with Naimish Sanghvi on Amazon Fire TV (FounderINDIA channel), YouTube and Facebook.