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BIG beta to reward top participants with bitcoin via gamification

Tony Zerucha



Increasingly tech-savvy consumers know their data is being collected and they should share in the profits that data produces, SRAX COO Kris Nelson said.

Mr. Nelson said SRAX’s origins date back nearly one decade when they purchased media on behalf of brands and agencies. They then ran brand activations inside Facebook as marketing began its shift from a media foundation to a people-based approach.

“Facebook gave us that granular insight and capability,” Mr.Nelson explained.

Kristoffer Nelson

SRAX was one of the first companies to take this approach outside the limits of social platforms, Mr. Nelson said. He admitted it is a challenging space to effectively operate in as Facebook, Google and Amazon are all closed systems that do not communicate with each other.

Contrast that with the open web where sources offering data vary significantly in their collection methods and reliability. A main reason why that data is questionable is because consumers are not engaged with the data collection process, Mr. Nelson said.

“If we can create a method for putting customers back in touch with and in control of their digital identities we can solve a social problem of people being disconnected from their data,” Mr. Nelson said. “SRAX allows customers to connect with and be aware of their digital identity.”

The next step for SRAX is a beta test for BIG, its blockchain identification graph platform. A closed beta is underway with a public beta coming up in the next few weeks.

You can earn as many as five bitcoin for participating in the beta, Mr. Nelson said. People earn points for answering series of questions about themselves, such as hobbies, favorite foods and vacation preferences. The top three point generators earn five, two and one bitcoin in descending order.

Following the beta stage earned points can be redeemed for cash bonuses or possibly goods, services or gift cards.

Public reaction to recent data breaches has been interesting to follow, Mr. Nelson said. Many people didn’t seem to care about the Equifax data breach, even though it affected 55 million people. That may be because half of them never knew Equifax had information about them in the first place.

“It began with the commercial business problem of bad data,” Mr. Nelson said. “The consumer was disenfranchised from their digital identity. There was this resignation that this is just how things were.”

Breaches at Uber, Target, Yahoo! and other companies were mostly met with yawns by the public, but when the Facebook/Cambridge Analytica hit in the middle of a contentious election, people paid attention.

“Companies and organizations work very hard to make sure people don’t know what is happening with their data and that consumers don’t know what data people have on them,” Mr. Nelson said. “Consumers should be compensated.”

It’s an interesting time to be in data collection, as each generation has their own thoughts on their personal data, Mr. Nelson explained. Millennials care less about privacy, as they grew up with their social lives being openly shared.

“But they do understand the value their data has and they do get the intrinsic value,” Mr. Nelson noted. “Millennials understand that about themselves.”

For Generation X and older folks, privacy is more of a concern, Mr. Nelson said.

“Those generations value the ability to have that choice, to have control over what is out there about them.”

How will society think after Generation X has moved on to their collective eternal reward?

SRAX should be well positioned as it is already approaching digital data as an extension of self-sovereignity, but those companies utilizing consumer data as the core of their business will have to adapt.

“Facebook may not look the same. Instagram may not look the same,” Mr. Nelson said.

Tony Zerucha

Tony Zerucha is an alternative finance journalist with more than seven years experience in the space. The author of more than 1,000 articles, Tony was named LendIt's 2018 Journalist of the Year.

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