Talking Bitcoin, ICOs, and Ethereum DeFi with ‘The Defiant’ founder Camilla Russo

Few people force a career switch from constantly publishing big financial news to writing a book about the risky crypto space.

This is Camille Russo, the rock star writer behind the cult film Infinity Machine, a story about the past, present and probably future of Ethereum.

For those who don’t know, Russo covered the financial markets at Bloomberg for eight years before falling down the immortal rabbit hole that is the crypto market. Bitcoin piqued his interest, followed by a quick jump into the wonderful world of Ethereum.

Since mid-2019, Russo has focused her efforts on researching and highlighting the growing decentralized finance (DeFi) market through her successful newsletter, The Defiant – which has since become one of the most read newsletters in the crypto community.

Today, Russo sat down with Alex Fasel, the charming host of the crypto entertainment channel Cryptonites, to talk about his journey in the crypto space, his experience writing a book on Ethereum, his views on the current and future market, and other topics.

Here is an excerpt of what they discussed.

From Bloomberg to Crypto

Russo began the session by explaining how she found her way into the world of cryptography: I worked at Bloomberg for eight years, first as an intern in New York and then when the site was supposed to cover the markets there, and it was actually in Argentina that I first wrote about bitcoin in 2013 and saw how Argentines were using the cryptocurrency to hedge against inflation as part of currency controls, she recalls.

I then spent some time in Spain reporting on European equities before returning to New York in 2017 and 2018, where I was a macro markets reporter for the Bloomberg Market Live blog. And I took the opportunity to write about crypto again. As you know, there was a huge boom in 2017, and (I) wrote about this space every day, covering all the craziness and disruptive technologies and (other) aspects of it. I really saw the huge potential it had, and I just liked the way it lit up, like that fast-paced, welcoming space has barely disappeared since then, she noted.

It was during this time that the idea of the Infinity machine was born: In late 2017, I decided to write a book about the history of Ethereum. I was dealing with Harper Collins, and then I spent most of 2018 between writing the book and working as a reporter at Bloomberg. But towards the end of 2018, I decided that I really needed to focus on finishing the book in the best way possible. And then I also decided that eight years in one company was enough and that I was ready to do something else and stand on my own two feet. That’s why I decided to leave Bloomberg in early 2019, she said.

train ICO

For part of the crypto segment, Russo dove into the forgotten but still famous beginning of the crypto market of the coin offering (ICO). For those who were not there : Bed and breakfast projects, outright scams and frauds using a simple website raised millions of dollars in 2017-18, with the promise of revolutionary technologies and other other other unworldly ideas.

What was delivered instead… literally nothing. Millions of people disappeared and only a handful of players (like EthLend (now Aave), Havven (now Synthetix)) switched sides and provided useful technologies.

Rousseau, however, sees the lighter side of things. ICO mania; there is much to criticize.  But in fact, it was the first time people could finance themselves in a decentralized way, which is pretty revolutionary, she said.

Author added: I think ICE has a very bad reputation, but it has actually enabled something more radical than centralized fundraising.

(What does Russo say about Bitcoin?) Where does she see Danfy coming from? What about the NFT? And much more in the full 39-minute interview with Cryptonites, available for streaming below)!

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Talking Bitcoin, ICOs, and Ethereum DeFi with ‘The Defiant’ founder Camilla Russo

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