MaidSafe: The Post-Internet Internet and a Historic $6M Crowdsale
CHALLENGES AND GOALS
A technology eight years in the making, Scotland’s open source MaidSafe data storage platform promised to be one of the more compelling stories in modern technology, a complete disruption of the client-server model that had powered the web for over 25 years. Once user adoption hit critical mass, the MaidSafe code would be able to disperse bits and bytes in fragments across the distributed web in a kind of perfect storm of buzzword manna: “Bitcoin for the Cloud.” Anybody who had the opportunity to see a full demo presented by MaidSafe’s creators was instantly converted from skeptic to fanatic, not unlike the witnesses to the “The Mother of All Demos” that first introduced the computer mouse, or the urban legend about how every single person who bought the Velvet Underground’s debut album in the first years of its release ended up starting their own band.
However, it could also be a story that was difficult to tell and sell in the abstract: Scotland isn’t necessarily a traditional technology hotbed and eight years is a long time to release any piece of code, even if it does promise to be, to use another buzzword hybrid, “the Linux of the Internet.” Concurrent with its launch, MaidSafe was also auctioning 10 percent of its platform (with MaidSafe data “tokens” taking the place of company equity) in an unprecedented cryptocurrency crowdsale exchange. This obviously involved a lot of very large, moving parts and required boiling down the MaidSafe story to its simplest and most compelling elements.
THE TRANSFORM/SOCIALRADIUS DIFFERENCE
- A coordinated launch at Inside Bitcoins New York, one of the most eagerly anticipated Bitcoin conferences of 2014 and a likely destination of potential press evangelists who would be able to process the platform’s importance and disseminate information to the most crypto-engaged, likely crowdsale participants.
- Pitching of different, appealing angles to traditional and mainstream media that would position MaidSafe as the antidote to many of the issues dogging the traditional Internet: centralized service failures, PRISM, net neutrality, and the like.
- Key outreach among Bitcoin enthusiast outlets to ramp up awareness among those most likely to participate in the MaidSafe crowdsale.
- A huge feature in Forbes and coverage in outlets as varied as the Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, the International Business Times, VICE, CoinDesk, and a number of other blogs focused on the growth of the Bitcoin ecosystem.
- MaidSafe broke not just technology crowdfunding records, but all modern crowdfunding records, selling out its allotted tokens and raising the equivalent of about $6M USD in only about 48 hours.