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The Protocol: ‘Private Jet Brandization’ Is One Way Polkadot Burnt Cash

BURN RATE: At the very least one has to give Polkadot credit for transparency. On Tuesday the blockchain project released a lengthy report, including spreadsheets and copies of invoices, detailing its spending over the past six months. No good deed goes unpunished, however, and right on cue, twitterati tore into the project’s multimillion-dollar spending on activities like marketing, advertising, sponsorships, events and influencers. At the highest level, the project spent $87 million worth of its own DOT tokens on various activities during the first half of 2024, a pace that would exhaust the $245 million currently in the treasury within roughly two years, as relayed by CoinDesk’s Shaurya Malwa. But it was the green-eyeshade details that left the report’s readers agog – $4.9 million for influencers, $1.9 million to sponsor the race car driver Conor Daly, $1 million for digital ads on CoinMarketCap, $490,000 to the press-release website Chainwire, $180,000 for “private jet brandization,” $6.8 million for a “deal with a prestigious soccer club,” as the report termed it. (Lionel Messi’s team, Inter Miami?) Snarky posters on X remarked that, for all the spending, the influencers seemed strangely inactive – while others joked that the report was finally bringing Polkadot the publicity it coveted. Polkadot officials noted that the spending went further than expected, thanks to this year’s mostly-up crypto markets: “We can observe a huge jump in spending, as proposals got more ambitious in scope and ask size recently,” the report read. “The good news is that the average DOT price has gone up this half-year, resulting in more bang for the DOT, highlighted by the fact that DOT spending went up by 2.4x, but the USD-equivalent value is up 3.2x in the same timeframe.”

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