John Karony, CEO of SafeMoon, conducted an interview with Shaun Fox, of Australia, an entrepreneur, author and expert in the global financial services market who heads the FOXI group of companies at the recent Fund Launch Live event in Las Vegas. The following discussion on the power of community and social impact in blockchain is Part 1:
Karony: A little more than a year ago in March 2021, before SafeMoon had a public-facing presence of anything… once we’d safely kicked off and realized that between Twitter and Discord we’d amassed such a massive following (more than two million that now refer to themselves as the #SAFEMOONARMY … I next realized what a powerful force they’d become and that our tribe needed to face together. I realized quickly they required education that doesn’t exist. Statistically, many or even most of them are unfamiliar with most cryptocurrencies, blockchain projects or companies. I’m just kidding, to some degree … but most don’t have a Bitcoin. Nobody knows who Satoshi is.
Fox: So you’ve been putting all of that education out? Because that’s actually…Wow.
Karony: Yeah. So you know, for most of the legions of the “crypto curious” there’s been no face behind most of these projects. You don’t know who’s behind it. You don’t know who’s really behind their projects 100% You don’t have these resources behind a phantom network. For most of these ventures, you may hear whispers of who they could be, you don’t actually ever meet them. So for us, what we wanted to do, and what I specifically wanted to do, is to put my money where my mouth is and essentially put my face out there – to dox myself, which comes with some benefits, such as taking the mystery out of the company and the technology for these massive legions of participants.
Fox: It’s something simple that I do, as well. For retail fundraising, and most of these fund managers, they want to hide behind the initiative, to stay in the shadows. So, what I did as a wholesale funding provider with RAIC Capital was that I put myself out there. I said, “Well, look if you’re trusting me with money, I will put myself out there, so you do the same, if you guys are going to get behind me. The power in this is amazing. I have question for you — have you been purposely building your tribe, your village, and how have you done that? And in that brutal subspace, when did that actually start? Did you start building the tribe before you launched the client?
Karony: No. The “army” formed organically around our visionary impact and branding. So, it was organically formed, but as we realized the power in this, we took that phenomenon and cultivated it, and enabled our tribe to be effective. During that early phase we started engaging with them, which at that time was more about engaging them primarily to continue following, to continue their participation. I’ll never tell anybody to buy, sell or do anything in the form of a financial advisor in any way, shape, or form.
But I will say, “I would like you to use our products. I’d like you to use our services. And I’d like you to follow our vision because you can be part of our community, and we don’t participate in whether they want to buy our token. And that’s our policy whether you’re a whale, or whether you’re someone who only has a fraction of a penny. If you’re participating in the vision and the return on Impact mission, then you are part of our tribe. And our tribe expands past our own products. So, I communicate to our ecosystem. The ecosystem includes additional people who listen to our platform, and they go through a vetting process with us before we fully engage. We go through a vetting process to see if participants we work with share the same values and the same vision as we have.
Fox: That’s fantastic. So, with that tribe that you have, with the number of people you have been two-plus million, how many of them are in the token?
Karony: Actually, give or take, between 600,000 and 2 million.
Fox: That’s wild. And you can add extra value to other partners who can then be and share in that community.
Karony: And our partners bring their communities with them as well. So, our tribe grows and grows and grows.
Fox: I absolutely love that. So, these are the things I wanted to talk to you about today and about the synergies. Because I’ve been to all the token events in Miami the other week, and I’m at the fund manager event now. And you’re probably the first person I’ve found who completely aligns the vision of how I see community. For me, it was around growing that community of the retired nurses in my own kind of retail fund and then becoming a regulating entity. Now I authorize other fund managers to be funded. As I’ve said from the stage, I don’t ever see competition. I see other industry partners, and we can create a market space together.
Karony: In the crypto space, people don’t realize — it’s early, and when institutional investments and money starts flowing in, not one cryptocurrency exchange can handle that volume. When the mainstream gets involved, no one company can handle that. Like the customer support needed for even, perhaps, 20 million devices. The footprint is astronomical. And so you’re not actually in competition with each other. There are ways to find synergy and work together to help to create a solid and positive impact.
Fox: Like any credit market and what you said here on stage, which was amazing, that within your community, you found out another exchange had been hacked before they’s found out and then just picked up the phone and said, “Oh, guys, you got an issue,” Right? Which is amazing. And that’s what the power of the community is. It’s creating what I’m trying to do it in the fundamentals but creating resources and solutions in the token space that is such a fast-growing industry is isn’t taught, but there a half million cryptocurrencies out there. There’s a huge amount of power in being able to start creating a safe environment space for other market industry people to go just talk to you guys and to talk about “How do we work?” I love that. That’s probably one of the things that really shone out for me about what you’re doing with SafeMoon.
Karony: Yeah. And you know, it’s also about creating positivity because the crypto market has been traditionally plagued with FUD (fear uncertainty, doubt) issues where we have coordinated FUD attacks happen. Defamation. Campaigns slung against another crypto token, to sway people to bring them over. It’s completely backwards. They need to realize we’re all one community. It’s not Dogecoin versus Bitcoin versus SafeMoon. It’s that we all provide value to each other in different ways. You know, Bitcoin is more widely adopted at this current point in time. So if you can get a trading pair with that and then provide additional value to your community that allows them if they’d like to exit they can exit into Bitcoin, yeah, versus just being limited to exiting into BNB or Etherium. It’s providing that additional value, but you’re also providing that additional value to the other organization.
Fox: Well, I think that’s one of the things I’ve identified. I’m looking at this concept because we’re in the process getting the licenses to go to authorized exchanges, and particularly in Australia, the most regulated country on the planet. So, I’ve been steeping myself in the community of blockchain and looking at the challenges – there are so many coins out there, but how do you get grandma retail to adapt to it? How do you find true utility, and a true use case for getting into there? So, from what I see, and from being a mentor for years, and seeing what you’re doing within the industry to go and create a safe space, let’s work together. Which means you can get away from people doing the sort of photo tagging stuff. We should be worried about it, because the real issue is how do we bridge those other gaps, and by doing what you’re doing, you’re saying “Guys, let’s now work together and we can actually start fixing the issues you have.” That’s the power of the tribe.
John Karony is the CEO of SafeMoon, provider of the SafeMoon cryptocurrency token and protocol and an expert in Venture Philanthropy. In addition to cryptocurrency and software development, Karony is a U.S. veteran, passionate about civil rights and social action, disaster and humanitarian relief, economic empowerment, human rights, politics, and poverty alleviation.