New York’s Blockchain Week, aka Consensus 2018, is not only serious talk among experts, entrepreneurs, and regulators. The cryptocurrency people gathering in Manhattan also want to have fun. At least, that’s what Ripple Labs thought when its representatives invited Snoop Dogg to headline their after-party at a secret location in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District.
Snoop Dogg, the 46-year-old American rapper who has sold over 35 million records worldwide, was chosen to entertain the cryptocurrency enthusiasts at a Consensus 2018 after-party sponsored by Ripple Labs. The invitation-only XRP Community Night brought Ripple enthusiasts and skeptics together to enjoy the smell of marijuana under the sound of the famous artist.
Opinions regarding XRP were not consensual. A few concertgoers were disappointed at Ripple for its dependency on banks instead of disrupting the banking industry. Other attendees, namely Wall Street bankers, were skeptical about digital currencies in general.
Choosing Snoop Dogg to headline the event became somewhat controversial among the XRP community as Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse has stated the concert intended to build community, not hype, around Ripple’s XRP. “Whenever I hear the word ‘promotion’ it makes me cringe”, Garlinghouse said, adding that he did not pick the author of Doggystyle.
And I thought crypto was about building open protocols and stuff.
Ripple’s Garlinghouse might not have chosen Snoop Dog for the party, but it seems that Snoop Dogg has chosen cryptocurrency parties before. Last year, he was the guest of honor and DJ at SparkleCoin’s initial coin offering which raised an estimated $15 million. His presence at the event was centered around a charitable donation, though. It was not an official celebrity endorsement, according to the organizers.
Despite not being an official endorsement, the President and Chief Executive Officer of SparkleCoin Victor Wong seems to be using Snoop Dogg’s image for self-promotion purposes. Wong’s LinkedIn profile picture displays a photo of him together with the rapper.
The gangsta rapper has made comments about cryptocurrencies throughout the years. In 2013, he tweeted he was going to have his next record available in Bitcoin. He was then approached by Coinbase and BitPay to make the idea a reality.
My next record available in bitcoin n delivered in a drone.
— Snoop Dogg (@SnoopDogg) December 2, 2013
At the XRP Community Night event, Snoop Doog refrained from talking about investing in cryptocurrencies, potentially aware of recent celebrity endorsements gone wrong. According to Ripple representatives at the event, the rapper wasn’t paid in XRP for the performance.
Marijuana, Snoop Dogg’s most popular topic, closed the night when he asked onstage if the audience wanted to smoke some weed with him. There, they found an overwhelming consensus.
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