The media accused the service management of useless risk and the lack of timely reaction to the tragedy.
Tokens from ASKfm on the summit of Everest
In early May, the social network of questions and answers ASKfm announced the launch of the ICO to raise money for redesign and move to the block base. “Our project has been working for many years, and the possible transition of an audience of 215 million people to the block system will be the biggest mass step into the future for all time,” said Maxim Tsarik, the company’s CEO.
ASKfm came up with an advertising campaign for its ICO: raise the Everest cryptoscall with 500 thousand tokens and invite enthusiasts to get there to become one of the first owners of the ASKT currency. The company estimated the value of the crypto currency at the top of 50 thousand dollars, although official bidding has not yet begun. In total, she planned to release two billion tokens.
The tragedy at the height
On May 17, the YouTube channel ASKfm released a video about a successful expedition to Everest. Several “crypto-enthusiasts”, along with professional alpinists, climbed to the top with the flag of service and left the Ledger wallet with ASKT tokens there. In the video there were no references to the loss or death of the participants.
While others are trying to invent sophisticated marketing techniques, these guys climb to the top of the highest mountain on the planet. An elegant way to boast of ideological superiority over another crypto currency.
However, on May 26, the Financial Times reported that the ascent to the mountain ended with the death of one of the escorts. The group of climbers consisted of Taras Late, Roman Gorodechny and Dmitry Semerenko, with them there were also several local residents as guides on the mountains.
As the journalists found out, Sherpa (local escort) Lam Babu (Lam Babu) fell behind during the ascent and disappeared without a trace. The Ministry of Tourism of Nepal said that a local resident received a burn of the cornea of the eyes, and according to the alpinist portal 4sport.ua he fell through due to physical exhaustion. Taras Lazny did not disclose the details, but confirmed that one of the accompanying disappeared when he was behind the group.
On the same day, ASKfm issued an official statement: the company did not confirm the death of the Sherpa, noting that it knew about the disappearance and was in contact with the local authorities. The management stated that at the peak the group stumbled upon a stuck Chinese mountaineer, who helped to get to a safe place.
Opposition media, climbers and ASKfm
After the Financial Times article about the tragedy, many media reported about the death of Sherpas from the ASKfm team and criticized the company for a risky promo. The publication of Finance Magnates wrote the news of a tragic climb before the official information, and Bitcoinist ‘s crypto-exchange portal called the idea “unreasonable”, but recommended readers to pay attention to ASKT tokens.
After that ASKfm and climbers participating in the ascent began to tell the details. On May 29, the company published an investigation into the tragedy on Mount Everest:
- four climbers and three Sherpas climbed to the top from May 13 to 16;
- when the team reached the peak, the weather deteriorated sharply, so the climbers went ahead and outstripped the accompanying;
- Along the way, the climbers met a Chinese tourist who was in critical condition, and helped him to descend;
- climbers stayed for the night in camp number 4 and only in the morning they learned from two Sherpas about the loss of the third escort;
- upon reaching the second camp, climbers, together with the Sherpas, called helicopters and evacuated, as they had health problems;
- Nepalese authorities conducted a search for the missing, did not find the body and confirmed his death.
The complete history of the ascent was also published by the mountaineer Roman Gorodichny who criticized the Sherpas for being behind and not closing the tent from the snow. In his version, the information about bad weather was confirmed, he also told about the burns of the eyes of Taras Late.
I raise Taras, the form – tin, immediately affects the problems with vision, disorientation. He says how he opens his eyes, as if poured with pepper, puts on glasses, and on top of my mask is a chameleon. But he says that he still hurts, he has no strength at all, he takes tea, and his hands are shaking.
On his Facebook page, Gorodecny also published a letter of gratitude from the Chinese, whom they helped out on top. “The fact that people are dying is the terrible truth of Everest, but it makes no sense to look for guilty in this. Go to the top or stay at home – everyone’s choice! “, Explained the mountaineer.
May 31 Head ASKfm gave an interview in which he noted that the company has sponsored the ascent climbers who have climbed Everest anyway. He added that the media “easily picked up the story” because of skepticism about the ICO, but he believes that it should not do when it comes to death.
We no longer advertise our video about this promotion. We did not ask customers to actually go in search of a purse, it was rather a joke. Mountaineers who went there – professionals who have risen to that with us, without us.