Established media’s embrace of crypto coverage is continuing at pace. As FN first reported, the FT is following Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal and other mainstream outlets by considerably expanding its editorial, events and sales efforts around the blockchain industry.
These movements are all happening while crypto’s own trade media outlets, namely CoinDesk, Decrypt, The Block, Coin Telegraph and Blockworks, aren’t sitting still as they go on hiring and expansion sprees of their own.
In this context it should be no surprise that Axios, the fast-growing newsletter media company established by some of Politico’s founders and famous for its bullet-pointed reports, is also joining the crypto coverage party.
The outlet hired Brady Dale in March from The Defiant, where he was a senior reporter. Before that, Dale was at CoinDesk for more than three years.
“Dale’s reporting and the Axios Crypto newsletter will cover the biggest and most consequential trends in cryptocurrency, including how cryptocurrency and blockchain are upending financial markets, and how the policy and regulatory environment is responding,” Axios announced at the time.
Dale has since helped launch Axios Crypto earlier in April and the team, which prides itself on “smart brevity”, is looking for an additional reporter to join him — potentially adding to the switcheroo phenomenon as crypto trade reporters go mainstream, while established journalists go the other way.
On the latter moves, Dan Roberts, Editor-in-Chief of Decrypt and a former Yahoo Finance staffer, told FN that the move towards crypto trades was partly because the news cycle is “so crazy, fast paced, interesting and weird”.
“You don't have to be a crypto believer / devotee to see how interesting it is as a topic. So that's the biggest motivator,” he added.
“The second biggest factor is that many legacy media places with their very old-school hierarchies and structures are looking increasingly outdated and stuffy and not fun. Covering crypto is challenging and can be stressful (because it trades 24/7) but it's also fun.”
But how can the likes of Decrypt, CoinDesk, The Block and The Defiant compete with media Goliaths like The New York Times and Bloomberg with their vast resources and clout?
“So some of the newer more nimble publications are gaining attention simply by being open-minded and doing real reporting on this new and admittedly confusing technology,” Roberts argued.
“And finally — and this is not at all specific to crypto but it's something we've seen across media for years now — targeted / niche publications are the future and are the ones thriving.”
To really get a sense of how far the news media has shifted in its position towards cryptocurrency over more than a decade, consider Bitcoin 2022, the world’s largest Bitcoin conference held just last week in Miami. The event had a plethora of media attendees, including no less than CNN, CNBC, Forbes, Politico and NPR.
But well before the industry had a market cap’ of $2tn, its supporters had to post on obscure forums to gain any publicity and face years of derision from the established media. How times have changed. Now the crypto industry is one of the most lucrative and desired gigs to have in the news media industry.
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