MIAMI. It was not the right time to celebrate the cryptocurrency industry. But the hall was booked, the guests arrived, and the performance continued.
On Wednesday, shortly after Sam Bankman-Fried was interviewed live by The New York Times in an effort to dispel the idea that he was the Bernie Madoff of blockchain, several hundred people gathered at the Faena Forum in South Beach, Miami, for participation in Crypties. , an awards ceremony that bills itself as the Oscars of Web 3.0.
At the end of the evening, they will recognize the winners in 10 categories, including NFT Project of the Year and Metaverse Project of the Year. The event was hosted by Decrypt Studios, a film and production company funded by Joseph Lubin, co-founder of the Ethereum cryptocurrency platform.
In June, when Crypties was announced, Bitcoin and Ethereum lost about half of their peak value in an industry-wide crash that sent nearly $1 trillion into the air in a virtual puff of smoke. This was followed by the recent collapse of Alameda Research and FTX, Mr. Bankman-Fried’s trading platforms, a multi-billion dollar crash that further rocked the industry.
Financial setbacks weren’t enough to cancel Crypties. The Forum, an arts and culture space designed by Rem Koolhaas, had been booked months in advance. Guests came from all over the country.
The red carpet in front of the hall was not swarming with photographers, but what were the organizers going to do if not try to get the most out of it?
“There are always risks in the financial markets,” said Alanna Roazzi-Laforet, founder of Decrypt Studios, who stood in the corner of the large cocktail area on the second floor of the Forum, sipping on a hurricane.
The dress code was a black tie optional. But in an industry where everything but sweatpants is considered formal, and the person hired to host the gala was Josh Ostrovsky, the comedian known as the Fat Jew, the focus was on the optional.
The host of the gala was Josh Ostrovsky, a comedian known as the Fat Jew, who roasted the crypto industry all evening.Credit…Isa Perez for The New York Times
Around 7:00 pm, the DJ put on Avicii’s remix of Coldplay’s “A Sky Full Of Stars”, accompanied by a violinist named Tamara. The waiters served miniature lobster rolls. Cocktail guests’ conversations alternated between gallows humor and proselytizing about humanity’s inevitable transformation through next-generation technology.