How Influencers Hype Crypto, Without Disclosing Their Financial Ties

Some projects that Mr. Armstrong was a small-time, experimental crypto venture that eventually ran into problems. In those cases, he said, he also considered himself a victim.

“They are hunting down novice crypto influencers who have just become popular and trying to figure out what they should and shouldn’t do,” he said. “It’s hard to go from 12,000 followers to a million a year and make all the right decisions.”

Mr. Paul gained a reputation as a video blogger and occasional actor; YouTube once reprimanded him for publishing footage of a corpse found in a Japanese forest. Over the years, it has transformed its Internet reputation into an eclectic range of entrepreneurial businesses, including a line of energy drinks.

Mr. Paul was interested in crypto last year as the NFTs market started booming. In a recent interview, he admitted that he was still learning how to navigate the crypto market, even though he tried to make a profit from the technology. “I’m an extremist, not an executor,” he said.

Mr. Paul Dink was involved in some of the initial brainstorming for the Doink project. But the venture was eventually led by one of his roommates, Jack Broido, who met Mr. Poll 2.5 per cent tokens that were initially issued.

Inside Tweet Last June, Mr. Paul called it one of the “stupidest, most ridiculous” cryptocurrencies he experienced, and aired a video of a cartoon character singing sexually explicit songs. “That’s why I’m in it all,” he added. He also appeared in a shaky-cam video on the Telegram in which he described Dink Doink as his favorite crypto investment.

The campaign flops, and Mr. Paul was praised by YouTube critics. The price of Dink Doink hovered well below one cent, before falling further in value over the summer. Mr. Paul said he never sold his tokens or made a profit from the project. But he said he regrets promoting the coin without disclosing his financial stake. “I certainly haven’t acted as responsibly as I should have,” he said.

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