Comedian Jimmy O. Yang is earning praise online for refusing to advertise crypto companies to his fans long before the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX.
Earlier this year, the actor shared with Vice’s Motherboard how he refused multiple offers to promote crypto-related platforms because he did not want to influence fans into investments that they might eventually regret.
Yang, who has his own investments in crypto, revealed that he and his girlfriend, venture capitalist Brianne Kimmel, have always been cautious about endorsement deals relating to cryptocurrencies.
A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.
Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.
Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.
“Especially with something like crypto, it’s important to [ask] ‘Is it going to hurt the financial well being of my fans and people who follow me?’” Yang shared back in July. “For me as an actor, looking at endorsement deals, it’s like, ‘Is it gonna make me look like an asshole?’” In a recent Instagram post, Yang looked back at the interview after the impact of FTX’s downward spiral reverberated throughout the crypto community.
“Trust me, I love making money but not at the expense of others,” Tang wrote. “I will sell you some other things, just not Ponzi Schemes. Here’s a little virtue signal post. Bri and I talked to Vice back in July, when we had already turned down a bunch of crypto deals. Happy we trusted our gut so now we don’t look like buttheads. It really helps to have a super smart girlfriend! Sorry for anyone who has lost money out there.”
Social media users commended Yang for not following in the footsteps of other celebrities who endorsed companies like FTX, which suffered an estimated $8 billion liquidity shortfall due to an alleged improper use of client funds.
Many cheered for Yang with clap emojis while others expressed that his points had been right all along.
Yang’s post comes days after celebrities such as Tom Brady, Steph Curry, Shaquille O’Neal, Shohei Ohtani, Naomi Osaka, Larry David and Kevin O’Leary, among others, were included in a lawsuit filed against former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.
The suit alleged that Bankman-Fried created a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme designed to take advantage of unsophisticated investors.
“FTX’s fraudulent scheme was designed to take advantage of unsophisticated investors from across the country, who utilize mobile apps to make their investments,” investor Edwin Garrison said in his complaint filed on Nov. 15.