Platforms for ebooks are plentiful, though met with varying success. Now, a startup aims to put ebooks in a blockchain-fueled environment. The iShook project will give a single platform for authors to display and monetize their content, in a manner similar to that of blockchain-based social media.
User-generated content is becoming more powerful by the day – but its success depends on the platform, its outreach, and the possibilities to receive a reward for publishing. The iShook platform aims to bring authors and audiences together, with an added dimension through the creation of a token.
What is IShook?
- iShook White Paper
- Country of origin: USA
- Ticker: SHK
- ICO Dates: 12 March – 10 May
- Soft Cap: 2,000 ETH (minimal viable investment)
- Funds raised: Unknown, presale ongoing
- Industry: Publishing
- Funds accepted: Ethereum, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ripple
- My Rating: 2/5
iShook Social Media
The iShook project aims to bring decentralization to authorship and publishing. Even in the age of the Internet, independent book publishing remains in the realm of gatekeepers, where censorship is rife. Small-scale curators are not viable, and the popularity of content is usually defined by large companies which promote a handful of authors.
This is the reason why iShook aims to democratize publishing. While other blockchain projects like Steemit have democratized blogging and video, iShook chose ebooks as its niche.
The ICO mentions nothing about US-based investors. At the moment, ICOs sold to US investors may be facing scrutiny due to KYC requirements. Moreover, the iShook ICO has listed an address in New York as its chief office – and nothing is known about whether the project can comply with the requirements of the state of New York on client transparency.
The ICO has a strange choice of crypto coins accepted. Users can choose between Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ethereum, but also Ripple, an asset still seen as experimental. When paying in Ripple, the minimal amount is 25 XRP, the equivalent of around $20. The minimum amount of Bitcoin, however, is 0.1 BTC, a much steeper amount.
The IShook Team
While the iShook ICO states the USA as its country of origin, the team is made up of Russian experts. The founder, Beni E. Rachmanov, lists his occupation as “road scholar”, and seems to be more of an idea person rather than a developer.
The co-founder and CFO, Michael Yusupov, is a finance expert.
The project relies on an international team of developers to complete its bid to building a publishing and curation network. There is a red flag with the team, though. Blockchain developers are scarce, and this ICO hired its entire team from India. While this may be a positive thing, it is also possible that the startup is cutting corners and relying on freelancers. While most startups are centered around a founder who is also a developer, iShook seems to be entirely idea-driven, and the tech team is there to fulfill the task, and there is no one that could be seen as a visionary developer.
About IShook Token
The iShook SHK token will be instrumental in the rewards and content ecosystem. Beyond content creation, authors would receive rewards for longevity, readership and reputation. While the iShook platform would accept other crypto coins, the SHK token would remain the central digital asset for making value move through the system.
It is highly important for buyers of this ICO to create a MyEtherWallet and verify their address before the token generation event. For sending Ethereum, also use MyEtherWallet, which will also receive the tokens later. The landing page has a warning that sending Ethereum from another wallet, such as Exodus, or an address that is not white-listed, means a failure to receive the tokens.
The iShook ICO price is based on 1,000 tokens per one Ethereum, with different levels of bonuses, ranging from 35% to 20%.
There will be a total of 1 billion tokens, of which 57% would be distributed in the crowd sale. Tokens from the reserve would be distributed over time in the rewards and incentives ecosystem.
Investing in IShook: The Pros
Content generation and curation has turned out to be one of the most successful use cases for tokenization. At the moment, multiple projects are trying to link social media and content of various formats – pictures, videos, short-form blogs. So iShook is coming in to fill in the demand for book-length content.
The same principles of promotion and rewards would apply – but this time, with less censorship.
One of the big advantages is that even for a small minimum investment in XRP, one may take part in the ICO.
Perhaps the biggest advantage is that iShook has an already functioning chat app, as well as the iShook.com content media application. Along with that, the company has an ebook store with more than 12,000 independent publishers, and clear experience in this sector.
Its not smart to be the company who collects fast and maybe makes the product. #iShookICO we made and now we are collecting. Learn more about iShook.
— iShook (@ishookinc) March 1, 2018
Even the iShook team reminded investors of that undeniable fact, and it is much more encouraging to add a token to an existing system than hope for any product to appear from scratch.
The Risk of iShook
While user generated content sounds like a good idea, in reality, content platforms and their tokens end up with a whole different game. Coordinated voting, bots, and an arcane system of rewards and referrals that may have some elements from a pyramid scheme – all of these are the underlying reality of a lot of social media platforms.
The other risk affects US-based investors. The ICO has merely opened up a token sale Ethereum address, with no further instructions on limitations and the status of the SHK token. There is no discernible procedure to verify a user, and the ICO sale site just gives raw wallet addresses, which are still empty of any balances.
Final Thoughts on iShook
If you really want to test out iShook, the project has joined the trend of organizing airdrops. Arranging an airdrop of free tokens is relatively easy, while browsing the project's social media. And while this may just be a handful of tokens, it is still some exposure to a promising platform.
As for other investors, the purchase of the minimum ETH or Litecoin amount may be a wiser move. While iShook has proven itself to deliver a product, there is no knowing when and how its social network would take off. In the case of older blockchain-based social media, the process took years.
https://t.co/QNUAEVvUg8. A new airdrop
— iShook (@ishookinc) March 1, 2018
In the future, the iShook project aims to move beyond ebooks, and into radio, podcast, blogging, and TV content. Personally, I don't see any of that happening soon. Blockchain and cryptocurrency is still in its infancy, so to dream that it will influence TV programming within the next decade is a huge leap.
Maybe, I can believe that by the end of 2018, iShook could compete with other blockchain-based social media. For this ICO, My Rating would be 2/5. The platform holds too many unknowns, and an airdrop or a small, affordable participation may be the best idea.
Should YOU Invest?
Honestly, most people looking to invest in altcoins, tokens, and ICOs are hoping they discover the next Bitcoin or Ethereum. The chances of that are rare.
So where is your money best invested? My recommendation might surprise you. It's free to join, and won't require that you invest in risky cryptos!