CNBC Hit with Controversy over Fast Money Segment Covering Bitcoin Cash
CNBC Fast Money aired a segment with crypto investor Brian Kelly promoting Bitcoin Cash (BCH) on the channel, even stating that it is “the must-own digital currency” of the moment. According to Kelly, the altcoin’s worth will skyrocket thanks to the development fund being reportedly set up by bitcoin cash miners.
Comparatively Speaking: BTC, BCH, and XRP
Kelly continued, “You’re going to be getting more use cases to the extent that usefulness translates into value. That could be a positive for bitcoin cash. That’s a place I want to buy.”
Even though BCH is far from the all-time high valuation that it managed to achieve in December 2017, its current price of just over $1,100 is still significantly higher than the levels it was trading at just a month ago. CNBC also highlighted the altcoin’s performance over the past month and pointed out that other cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin (BTC) and Ripple (XRP) had lost value since.
While there is nothing inherently wrong with highlighting a particular digital currency, social media communities were quick to point out that personal profit rather than honest reporting may motivate Kelly’s position on the matter. The accusations against him was largely a by-product of his first personal involvement in the cryptocurrency industry in the form of NautilusCoin.
Kelly Knows Controversy
NautilusCoin was the brainchild of Kelly and aimed to be a “superior version of bitcoin” in 2015. Shortly after its release, a CNBC article highlighting the coin’s adoption by an island in Greece quickly went viral. The digital currency became an overnight success, going from a valuation of nothing to around 12 cents per token, resulting in a market capitalization of over half a million dollar. Ultimately, the public characterized the project to be little more than a “pump and dump,” leaving it with no value whatsoever.
A blog post describing the scam-like nature of NautilusCoin stated, “Being a spawn of coingen.io means that NautilusCoin brings absolutely nothing new to the table. It’s nothing more than an awful clone that lacks everything that makes Bitcoin great – the huge network, the businesses and infrastructure built around it, and most importantly, the thousands of brilliant individuals that work on the codebase.”
Given Kelly’s past credentials then, it is perhaps surprising to note that he has made several appearances and statements on the Fast Money segment. CNBC credits Kelly as the “founder and CEO of BKCM, an investment firm focused on digital currencies,” but does not acknowledge his past endeavors.
It is perhaps worth noting that CNBC has had a somewhat notorious love-hate relationship with cryptocurrencies in general over the past few years. A Steemit post published in 2017 became rather popular after it highlighted the network’s negatively skewed bias towards the crypto market, even at a time when the industry was booming.
Positive Vibes Unrealized
It is undeniable, however, that Kelly’s position at the network has helped paint a somewhat positive picture of crypto before the masses. In an interview held on April 13, 2018, with CNBC’s Trading Block, he said, “I think this technology is going to work, it’s going to be game changing, but it’s very early days, so we can have this massive volatility.”
Kelly’s statement on Bitcoin Cash comes only days after the Consensus 2018 event held at New York failed to stimulate the market. For the past few years, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have picked up significant momentum after the conference, presumably due to increased investor interest. This year, however, the market continued its declining trend in spite of the event.