Bitcoin blockchain

The First-Ever Blockchain Bulletin from the Serially Sporadic

Issue #9 of the Serially Sporadic newsletter is here, and this one offers a behind-the-scenes take on how the recent column on Blockchain was born. As a dear reader of this blog, I’ve pasted the intro message below; if you read the newsletter already, it’s even better in convenient RSS form. If you want to compensate me, please travel back to 2010 and pay me in Bitcoin.

Here’s the intro:


I wrote my first blockchain column.

Back in 1994, there was a guest columnist, perhaps even a contributor to Advertising Age, who finally wrote his or her first piece about the internet after hearing so much about it. And soon after, he or she was writing about little else. I wonder if that’s what’s about to happen to me in 2017.

I owe credit to a lot of people for helping me get to the point where I could write a column – “27 Ways Marketers Can Use Blockchain” (see below for links) – that I wasn’t embarrassed to submit. Jeremy Epstein of Never Stop Marketing really was a pioneer here. Lou Kerner got religion this summer, and he’s now the top crypto columnist on Medium. Jeff Pulver had me on the agenda at his MoNage conference in Boston last month that covered chatbots and blockchain, and even attending just a few blockchain sessions proved eye-opening.

I’m not convinced – yet – that blockchain will be bigger than the internet ever was, as some enthusiasts and experts are saying. Most of the applications I’m seeing for blockchain, whether for businesses or consumers, present improvements to how internet applications have done the same tasks. Ad Age’s editor Nat Ives had similar feedback when I sent a draft of the article. A lot will also have to get sorted out.

In the meantime, it is a fascinating realm to explore, and to try to process.

One other fun tidbit: I did an experiment. On my LinkedIn profile, I added a bullet buried under the description of my blog that reads, “Bonus tip: if you frivolously mention blockchain, cryptocurrency, ICOs [initial coin offerings], and Bitcoin on your LinkedIn profile, it means you are a blockchain expert.”

This has been on my profile for a week or two now, and every day, I get LinkedIn connection requests from people who are blockchain experts, enthusiasts, and executives (as usual, I barely accept any). One blockchain tech company wanted to interview me for a job. I declined, but I did a call with them to learn about their ad-supported model, and when I asked them any question about advertising, they had so few answers that they actually pretended that they needed to get off the call 12 minutes into the conversation. I had dates in college back out on me with better excuses than these blockchainers. It was one of the most awkward calls I’ve been on. These are weird times.

I’ve got a lot more to share. It’s been a blistering stretch lately, and I’m writing this near the end of a span of eight talks in 12 business days. In the process, I finally published my children’s book, but that’s a story for another day – literally. Maybe the next issue…

Thanks for reading. Meanwhile, I’d love to hear from you. What are you making of yourself?