Published on 21 Apr 2021

When social influence gets monetised into crypto exchange

The Straits Times, page B9 -

Earlier this month, a Facebook post and tweet by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong made waves among investors and social media influencers. He had asked for his name and photograph to be removed from BitClout - a social crypto exchange where users trade tokens based on people's reputations. It had used his profile without his knowledge.

Observers The Straits Times spoke to felt this may have had the unintended consequence of drawing attention to BitClout, which had gained some traction in the United States but not much in Asia. Discussions revolved mainly around how the platform monetises social influence. Asst Prof Saifuddin Ahmed from NTU’s WKWSCI said the platform, if widely accepted, could open new revenue avenues for social media influencers. But social risk will be high, said Prof Saifuddin. “Only those who thoroughly understand the associated risks will claim their profile.”