Criticism of journalism has increased in recent years. There has also been the swathe of criticism over fake news. This criticism has spread to the world of cryptocurrency journalism as well.
This week, my colleagues sat down to discuss the issue of journalism in a Coin Rivet debate. Sadly, I wasn’t able to attend, but I found it extremely interesting viewing.
I myself am not a journalist. I am fortunate that I get to write what are essentially opinion pieces. Saying that, there are a few points that I think were very interesting from the discussion.
The Coin Rivet newsroom is not one where we sit down and pat each other on the back discussing how great our beliefs are. Instead, the day usually consists of us constantly challenging one another.
We each have our own opinion on the cryptocurrency industry. Some of us are Bitcoin maximalists, some multi-coiners, and others are believers in the blockchain industry but not necessarily cryptocurrencies.
Debates are constantly had, ideas are shared, and voices are sometimes raised. However, there is an underlying respect between us. Whilst we have different views and may disagree, we respect each other’s integrity.
Journalism in the cryptocurrency industry is particularly difficult due to its complex nature and the lack of trust. My colleagues raised a valid point in the debate over the lack of response from members of the industry when reaching out for a comment. There is a clear lack of dialogue between industry leaders and those who report. Much of the debate can happen on Twitter, where discourse can become warped.
Another issue raised is that many businesses or cryptocurrencies see media companies as their personal public relations vehicles. Criticism then can be seen as a targeted attack, and with such fervent communities of cryptocurrency bagholders, there is a lack of introspection. Evidence has shown that certain media outlets will take payments for sponsored advertising or promoted articles. Thankfully, Coin Rivet is not one of them.
There are also a lack of experts in the cryptocurrency and blockchain industry, meaning that finding high quality journalists is an issue. The technology is new and complex, so very few have had time to catch up. A knowledge of the underlying cryptocurrency code can go a long way, but few possess these skills. On top of this, there are an abundance of scams within the industry, and these scams can sometimes appear very convincing to the untrained eye. The difficulty lies in proving that these are scams, otherwise there is a risk of a lawsuit, which for an upcoming media company can be disastrous.
Cryptocurrency journalism is not without its faults. An open and more honest dialogue between journalists, industry leaders, and communities is required.
Let us know your thoughts on what we can do to improve as well.