Location: LondonDate: Monday, 11th NovProject: The Missing CryptoqueenRole: Host
OneCoin, a project founded by Ruja Ignatova, promised a financial revolution. By the time Ignatova disappeared, the scam was alleged to have received over $5bn in investment (though some estimates may put it at over $15bn).
While OneCoin claimed to be running a private blockchain, in reality, it was a Ponzi scheme where buyers purchased 'packages' and received 'educational material'. During the process, they earned OneCoin tokens, and there were incentive schemes to onboard new users.
Once people had received their OneCoins, the only place they could trade them was with another OneCoin user on the scheme's private 'exchange'. While the scam began to unravel with the disappearance of Ruja and the arrest of her brother, many struggled to accept it was a scam and money continued to pour in.
The word scam is thrown around loosely in crypto, often from cult-like followers who disagree with an ideology that another coin possesses or sometimes due to a lack of knowledge. While some projects may be misguided or have questionable use-cases, not all are scams like OneCoin Bitconnect and PlusToken.
Experienced investors see these projects and immediately identify the warning signs; sadly, this is not necessarily the case for newcomers. The language used in Bitcoin and crypto can be confusing, and when regular people hear or read about a project that is 'The New Bitcoin' with promises the project is like buying Bitcoin at $1, $10 or $100, these scams can quickly suck in naive investors.
So, should Bitcoiners be doing more to spread awareness of these scams as they arise and what can Bitcoiners learn about guiding new investors from scams such as this?
In this interview, I talk to Jamie Bartlett, host of the BBC's podcast The Missing Cryptoqueen, an investigation into OneCoin and the disappearance of its founder Ruja Ignatova. We discuss scams, Ponzi's, pyramids, cults and multi-level marketing.
Connect with Jamie:- On Twitter @JamieJBartlett- On Wikipedia- The Missing Cryptoqueen Podcast
Mentioned in the interview:- OneCoin- Multilevel Marketing- Ponzi scheme- Pyramid scheme- Bernie Madoff Ponzi scandal- Ruja Ignatova talk at Wembley on ‘the blockchain’- Laszlo Hanyecz the man who spent 10,000 BTC on two Pizzas- Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug- What makes a cult?- Scientology
Other relevant WBD podcasts:- WBD072: JW Weatherman on Truth, Lies and Blockchains- WBD046: Francis Pouliot on the Network Effect of Money and Why Tokens Are Scams
If you enjoy The What Bitcoin Did Podcast you can help support the show my doing the following:
Become a Patron and get access to shows early or help contribute
Make a tip:Bitcoin: 3FiC6w7eb3dkcaNHMAnj39ANTAkv8Ufi2SQR Codes: Bitcoin | Ethereum | Litecoin | Monero | ZCash | RipplecoinIf you do send a tip then please email me so that I can say thank you
Subscribe on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher | SoundCloud | YouTube | Deezer | TuneIn | RSS Feed
Leave a review on iTunes
Share the show and episodes with your friends and family
Subscribe to the newsletter on my website
Follow me on Twitter Personal | Twitter Podcast | Instagram | Medium | YouTube
If you are interested in sponsoring the show, you can read more about that here or please feel free to drop me an email to discuss options.