One of the new big ICO’s going around of late, seems to be coming from social network ASKfm. As a part of their re-launch, ASKfm have launched an ICO to fund the next steps in the ASKfm journey, a journey that has taken a horrible turn for the worse and has led to the unfortunate death of one man on Mt. Everest. According to Business Insider, last month, ASKfm established a new publicity stunt which was designed to bring some much-needed attention to their ICO. A part of this publicity stunt would lead to four crypto-fanatics climbing up Mt. Everest, the tallest mountain on the planet, in order to bury two crypto-wallets, holding a value of around $50,000.00 of ASKfm’s new tokens. According to Business Insider:
“To attract the public's interest, ASKfm tasked four cryptocurrency enthusiasts with the audacious mission of scaling Mount Everest to bury two hardware wallets containing $50,000 worth of the company's tokens, ASKT, at the summit. The wallets could later be retrieved by someone brave enough to scale the mountain and find them, ASKfm suggested.”See the full report for yourself here- http://uk.businessinsider.com/man-dies-climbing-mount-everest-in-askfm-cryptocurrency-publicity-stunt-2018-6?r=US&IR=T Alongside the team sent up the bury the wallets, followed a local guide who was eventually reported missing during horrific weather near the summit. According to Business Insider a member of the ASKfm team tasked to go up the mountain had said:
"At the top of Everest, the weather was very bad, and then we were coming down. We were going down to Camp 4, which is at about 7900m, and one Sherpa [a Himalayan guide] was dying."It is now reported that the man did not return from the mountain and thus is now thought to be dead. Our thoughts go out to the family and friends of the guide who has sadly passed in this horrendous incident. Many people are now questioning the integrity of ASKfm, first of all, why did they think this is an acceptable form of marketing and moreover, why on earth did they think it would be ok to encourage people to climb Everest in order to retrieve some wallets they had decided to bury up there? This is a frankly sickening piece of marketing and a ruthless idea. Even more disturbingly, according to Business Insider:
“When asked whether or not he felt that ICO marketing stunts had gone too far, Tsaryk (CEO of ASKfm) said he didn't think that ICO marketing and standard marketing were dissimilar, and that he felt it didn't make sense to blame his company for a publicity stunt gone wrong.”It seems as if ASKfm are avoiding taking any form of responsibility for this. This is an utterly tragic story that has concluded with a loss of human life, in circumstances that would be been totally avoidable should somebody at ASKfm had realised how utterly ridiculous of an idea this was. We don’t often say this, but if there’s an ICO you should avoid, its this one, if only because of their poor taste and disregard for the safety of their staff and their fans. Imagine trying to encourage people to climb a mountain, in order to retrieve wallets that would no doubt be almost impossible to find?