Floating Man – Breakaway Civilization in the Zone of Separation

Flag of Liberland

Thanks for Burner Tiki Tiki for bringing this to my attention. Liberland sounds amazing, would love to visit one day.

Motto: “to live and let live”

Coat of arms of Liberland

Anthem: “Free and Fair”

March: “Victory March to Glory Land”

You can rent a 3-bedroom AirBnB houseboat with a hot tub there. The New York Times covered the birth of the micro-nation in 2015.

Re-blogged from The Irish Times, story by Jillian Godsil


Floating Man, Liberland: A tiny festival in one of the world’s newest (and smallest) states

What happens when a Czech libertarian throws a festival on a scrap of land on the Danube?

Wed, Aug 28, 2019, 11:47 Updated: Wed, Sep 11, 2019, 18:28Jillian Godsil

President of Liberland Vít Jedlicka with Floating Man festival-goers. Photograph: David Simacek

President of Liberland Vít Jedlicka with Floating Man festival-goers. Photograph: David SimacekShare to FacebookShare to TwitterShare to Email AppShare to Pinterest

Mud, mosquitos and music – the original ingredients for a festival. Add in an airstrip, riverboats, cryptocurrency, Croatian police and a new micro nation taking its first baby steps and you get a better picture of Floating Man Festival, the newest festival on the circuit for the traveller who likes their adventure raw and untouched and their conversations peppered with political philosophy, and whose festival neighbours vary from nomadic world travellers to multimillionaires.

For those of you who have not heard of it, Liberland, officially the Free Republic of Liberland, is the latest in a series of emerging micro nations. Founded by Czech libertarian politician and activist Vít Jedlicka, it is an uninhabited parcel of disputed land on the western bank of the Danube, between Croatia and Serbia.

This area has remained unclaimed since the dissolution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1991. In fact, for many decades, it has been uninhabited, and no claim was ever made to this piece of land. It was therefore Terra Nullius – a no man’s land – until Czech politician Vít Jedlicka and his partner Jana Markovicova proclaimed it as the Free Republic of Liberland on April 13th, 2015. The total area is approximately 7sq km and is now the third smallest sovereign state, after the Vatican and Monaco.

Application for citizenship is open on the website. So far, approximately 600,000 people from as diverse origins as North Korea to America have applied. For a new state to have an immediate diaspora of this size is impressive – for which the voluntary tax code may hold some explanation.

But, back to the festival. As it is the inaugural Floating Man festival there are some hiccups. Plans to have a large riverboat, The Liberty, fully fitted out are not realised and some of the guests have to travel in small boats. For smaller boats read no DJ, food or refreshments. The airstrip itself had an inspection the week before, and due to a missing micro payment, of around €2, flight displays are not permitted.

The weather

And that’s before I mention the weather – an unexpected deluge of rain on day two practically closed the access road, turning it into a slippery mud-covered pond which really needed four-wheel drive vehicles to navigate; intrepid festival goers without access to a jeep hiked 5km cross country.

But the first Floating Man was far from a flop. I compared it to the hiccups at the first Woodstock Music Festival in 1969, when the opening act, Sweetwater, got stuck in traffic and had to go on later. Joe Cocker’s performance had to be suspended for 40 minutes due to a thunderstorm, and the Grateful Dead’s set was cut short when stage amps overloaded.

Other similarities: Floating Man was not just about the music, it was a movement. Conversations then in Woodstock and now in Liberland focused on politics, human rights, the planet and how we live today.

Picture this: we are travelling on a flat riverboat on a canal off the Danube. We have met at a dock in Sombor in southern Serbia, the closest town to Liberland. The boat has seating for around 20 people, with a small wheel house at the rear. It is covered in the distinctive yellow Liberland flags. We are a motley crew, not as yet introduced, as we set off down the canal. Serbia is very warm in August, and swimmers as well as drinkers are on the dock. The locals have that casual approach to river bathing. The dock is wooden and unvarnished. They step in and out of the water with unstudied ease.

About 100 people attended the Floating Man festival. Photograph: David Simacek
About 100 people attended the Floating Man festival. Photograph: David Simacek

As we push off down the canal, which is green in colour and layered with dense vegetation on both sides, small private moorings appear on the right bank leading up to homes. These mini moorings are very rickety and charming. Local families appear and slip into the water to bathe. I am worried that the casual nature of these bathers will be caught by the boat’s engine, resulting in a terrible carnage. The wheel house is blinded by the canopy over the seats, but the bathers themselves swim back to the green edges and out of the path of the Liberty.

We see herons and smaller birds. The warm sun is now low in the sky, blinding everyone’s view. The assembled guests, as colourful as any Hercule Poirot cast, take selfies at the front of the boat. I have not got my river legs and eschew such dramatic shots for fear of falling overboard.

We carry on in these gentle waters with only the sound of the engine for company over several nautical miles following the curve of the canal. Then up ahead we see a dusty landing strip and Vít Jedlicka, the current president of Liberland.

The airstrip is flanked by great phalanxes of corn, a common crop in Serbia. There are tents and a platform. There is vegan goulash and Serbian sausages and Czech beer. There is even Liberland wine. Conversations begin and people start to mix.


Airshow

Day one was to be an airshow, but the aforementioned official visit stopped that. Day two is presentations – cut short by the rain storms – followed by music. We drink and talk to fill the gaps, which is no hardship.

The music is an eclectic mix of styles, from troubadour poet to hip-hop, rap, and then blues. There is even some – what looks like – Irish dancing. I want to join but having never danced a step outside of the Gaeltacht, I abstain, though I could have if I wanted to. It is just that kind of place.

Day three is the cornerstone of the festival. We head back to the boats for a trip down the Danube to visit Liberland itself. I am on the main boat, complete with DJ, barbecue and refreshments. We have presentations (one of which I deliver on Women in Blockchain and Women in Liberland). We have a ceremony to commit the ashes of the president’s late father to the Danube.

Messing about in boats at Floating Man. Photograph: David Simacek
Messing about in boats at Floating Man. Photograph: David Simacek

As we approach Liberland, two hours into our journey, we are joined by Croatian police tailing us in small motorboats. They keep pace all the time we are in the vicinity of the disputed territory. As we draw close to the border we see police on the beach, dotted like lighthouses along the coast. We do not land. We are not arrested. Instead we arrive at an island on the other side and those who applied are presented with our official citizenship parchments.

This has been the inaugural Floating Man Festival. The camaraderie of the people – around 100 in total – is very evident. We have swapped stories and ideas and made friends. Next year there will be more planes, more boats and hopefully less mud.

Interested travellers who want to volunteer, perform or just attend, should book now. See floatingman.ll.land for more details.

Photographs were taken by David Simacek. david@simacek.biz

Burning Man Sound Camp “CYMATICA” Breaks Record for Longest Continuous Running DJ Set

MIAMI, JANUARY 31 – Cymatica Incorporated, a Florida non profit corporation and a Burning Man sound camp, shattered the record this past Monday morning for the longest running continuous set of DJs performing with a Burning Man style interactive open bar – running continuously for 61.33 hours. In collaboration with Miki Beach, Distrikt and Big Puffy Yellow, the record-breaking event was hosted at “The Love Burn” a Burning Man Regional Burn held on Virginia Key, an island just off of downtown Miami created by Quantum Glenn and Prosperity.

Cymatica whose mission is to support artists, music and community, was founded by five members: Bram Stoke, Jeannie Kelly, Jodi Darren, Nicholas Porras and Julian Uribe. Their dedicated hard work throughout the 61-hour event made all of this possible. This was the fourth Cymatica appearance at Love Burn. Miki Beach was founded by Dan Ruiz who shuttled back and forth to perform surgery while the event was happening. Deejay Kramer the founder of Distrikt – one of the largest and oldest sound camps at Burning Man was designated as a honorary witness of the record.

Cymatica whose theme this year of “Forbidden Garden” opened as usual on January 24th at 10:00 pm and played until their traditional sunrise close. Due to inclement weather, Miki Beach’s beach set, which was due to start 6:00 am, was relocated to the Cymatica’s Bus and sound stage. The one-of-a-kind bus is a DJ stage created from a 1955 GM SceniCruiser by Julian Uribe and Cymatica volunteers.

The collectible vehicle is #653 out of 991 produced and one of only 100 left in existence. Uribe’s creation was the first ever attempt to create a new genre of art car – accomplished by maintaining the outside appearance of a classic car while the inside is fully converted in a typical art car fashion. Cymatica’s set kicked off the record-breaking marathon and did not finish until 5:05 am Monday morning, January 29th.

This event also marked the unveiling of an Aphrodisiac Bar with nine different types of scientifically proven aphrodisiacs such as Yohimbe, Safed Musli, Damiana, MACA, Mondei Whitei and others, which were infused with various spirits and flavors to create a wide variety of custom cocktails. The Aphrodisiac Bar was managed by Lexi Raduenz who prepared the infusions and Chef Mark Fiori, Cymatica’s chief mixologist who was continuously cooking up more batches of his own creations before during and probably after the event.

Gino and Ashley Tozzi, the former owners of LMNT and members of Cymatica, gifted top shelf alcohol to be served throughout the duration of the event. Specialty cocktails concocted with Apple Playa, a liqueur inspired by a trip to Burning Man, was also available to anyone who visited the bar throughout the 61 hours.

Organizers credit Lawrence Salemme Cymatica’s executive chef for feeding all the volunteers and Marco Lorreto and his team with their instrumental contribution to the event’s success by handling various logistics, including providing continuous ice to the bar for the entire duration of the 61 hours. Megan Greenhaus managed the bar for the second consecutive year.

In spite of torrential rain throughout all three days, the set continued and the dance floor was almost continuously full. When the rain began, members of Miki Beach brought out their shade structure to cover the dance floor and keep the Burners dry, although many chose to dance in the rain.

During this time, live performances were provided by Kahill Head and Kerri Aultman. Ysiad Ferreira and Alex Green of Symmetry Labs, the creators of the Tree of Tenere at Burning Man, provided the Sugar Cubes for lighting. Claudia La Bianca, Cymatica’s artist in residence, and Louis Belhoste contributed their talents to set design and other décor.

When the founders of Cymatica were asked why they did this – all they would say is:

“we are Burning Man participants who align with the Burning Man principles and this our gift. By setting goals which are impossible for single individuals to achieve –a community is created. This forms lasting bonds and friendships that ultimately make the world a better place.”

DJ’S THAT CONTRIBUTED TO THE RECORD:

FRIDAY, JANUARY 25th
1. 3:45-4:00 pm – Alan Epps
2. 4:00-5:00 pm – Luke Hunter
3. 5:00-6:00 pm – Sundance Kid
4. 6:00-7:00 pm – Dude Skywalker
5. 7:00 pm-8:00 pm – Jeremy Ismael
6. 8:00 pm-9:00 pm-Alice Iguchi
7. 9:00-10:00 pm – Adisyn
7. 10:30-11:00 pm – m.O.N.R.O.E.
8. 11:30-1:00 am – Nii Tei

SATURDAY, JANUARY 26th
9. 1:00-3:00 am – Alan Alan Epstein
10. 3:00-4:30 am – Meneer Van Helden
11. 4:30-6:00 am – Jeremy Ismael
12. 6:00-9:30 am – SPR Artists
13. 9:30-10:15 am – Dylan
14. 10:15-11:15 am – Von Funkhauser (Big Puffy Yellow)
15. 11:15-12:30 pm – Dtr
16. 12:30-12:45 pm – Alex Cecil and Deejay Kramer
17. 12:45-1:15 pm – Jeff Moreno b2b Mario Rosentahl
18. 1:15-1:45 pm – Burner Brothers
19. 1:45-3:00 pm – Grant Grosky
20. 3:00-4:30 pm – Crowd Controlol
21. 4:30-5:45 pm – Freak the Disco
22: 5:45-6:30 pm – Felipe
23. 6:30-7:30 pm – Vela Fjord
24. 7:30-9:00 pm – Iman Rizky
25. 9:00-12:30 am – Meneer Van Helden

SUNDAY, JANUARY 27th
26. 12:30-2:00 am – Mobad
27. 2:00-4:00 am – Deejay Kramer (Distrikt)
28. 4:00-7:00 am – Alex Cecil
29. 7:00-9:00 am – Catori
30. 9:00-10:00 am – Bryant Jensen
31. 10:00-11:00 am – Adisyn
32. 11:00-12:00 pm – VelaFjord
33. 12:00-1:30 pm – Deejay Kramer (Distrikt)
34. 1:30-2:30 pm – Iman Rizky 
35. 2:30-3:30 pm – Nii Tei
36. 3:30-4:30 pm – Mark Salner
37. 4:30-6:00 pm – Brian Cid
38. 5:30-700 pm – Freak the Disco
39. 7:00 -9:00 pm – Alan Epps
40. 9:00-11:00 pm – Iman

MONDAY, JANUARY 28th 
41. 11:30-2:30 am – m.O.N.R.O.E. b2b Adisyn
42. 2:30 am-3:30 am – Dude Skywalker
43. 2:30-5:05 am – Alex Cecil

For further inquiries contact Jeannie Kelly Cymatica’s CCO “Conscious Community Officer” at cymaticagroup@gmail.com.

EXCLUSIVE: ShelterCoin Founder Christian Weber

Screenshot 2017-09-01 11.55.57Screenshot 2017-09-01 12.02.22We have been a fan of the “inspired by Burning Man” SHIFTPODs since day one, and we have covered them before:

SHIFTPODs: The New Generation of Burnitecture

Where Did The SHIFTPOD Come From?

SHELTERCOIN is something new, and as far as I know, the first Initial Coin Offering (ICO) connected to a real company with real products. Most of the ones I’ve seen promise that something will be built a year or more in the future, hoping at that time there will be a community ready to use their digital tokens. This offering is drawing an existing community of stakeholders together to solve old problems in new ways.

This seems like an idea that has come at just the right time, as the devastation of Hurricane Harvey has shown us amazing scenes of citizens springing into action to help each other, instead of waiting for centralized authorities to get their bureaucracy together. The decentralized model works; the centralized model keeps failing us.

Last week, Fast Company magazine profiled the company behind SHELTERCOIN and SHIFTPOD, Advanced Shelter Systems Inc of Napa, CA

Screenshot 2017-08-29 12.12.52

Arriving in the desert that August, in 2015, I saw a SHIFTPOD for the first time. As someone who, like Weber, had explored countless Burning Man camping methods, I was intrigued by how a SHIFTPOD could both keep the dust out and be set up in less than five minutes. It looked like a lunar habitat–conversation piece!–and you didn’t freeze overnight. There’s nothing else like it. So prior to Burning Man 2016, I bought one.

In my camp alone last year, there were five SHIFTPODs and more than 1,000 on the playa. By then, Weber had sold his green-fracking operation and launched Advanced Shelter Systems Inc. (ASSI), the Napa-based company that’s turned his late-night Burning Man lodging idea into a multimillion-dollar business whose market extends far beyond the U.S. festival circuit—so far, in fact, that it requires an entirely new currency.

[Source: Fast Company]

The article caused  somewhat of a stir on the Burners.Me Facebook page, with some Burners screaming “Commodification!” and (predictably) “Burning Man is over!” and “ICOs are just a fad!”

Christian Weber, Sheltercoin Foundation

I got the chance to raise these concerns with company founder Christian Weber directly. The ShelterCoin Foundation’s Initial Coin Offering on the blockchain is actually inspired by giving shelter to those who need it most – which seems very compatible with Burner principles like Gifting, Immediacy, Civic Responsibility and Communal Effort.

 

B.Me: What is interesting about this story for Burners?

CW: One of the things I learned over 23 years out on the playa is to help people out if they needed it.  The Black Rock Desert is one of the most inhospitable places on Earth.  Back in the day, before chefs and camp producers the thing that really struck me was that everyone wanted to help the other have a better experience.  That has faded a bit but we all still bring extra parts and even heavy equipment to share with surrounding people and camps.  When you get right down to it, beyond ego and politics it feels good to help others.  Especially in times of need.  This is a natural extension of the burner ethos and experience.

B.Me: Just before Burning Man started this year, “Hell Storm” Hurricane Harvey hit Houston. Are you doing anything to help them?

Texas National Guard soldiers helping out in Houston. Image: defense.gov

CW: We already mobilizing product, family care hygiene kits and getting ready to load trucks and planes to get the goods down there.  We are in contact with FEMA, Team Rubicon and several other NGOs with boots on the ground to enlist help with distribution.  I have my chainsaw gassed up and ready to go. I can’t wait to get down there and help.  I just spoke to a friend and colleague who has been running a boat for 48 hours straight rescuing people.  After the initial rescue efforts subside he has committed to help run shelters and supplies for us.  Once we mobilize he will gather the people he is working with to help distribute and deliver the goods and material we bring in.

The need for shelter and supplies in Houston is huge, with more than 30,000 people in emergency shelters. People are reaching out to help their fellow citizens, regardless of skin color or political affiliation. Helping those who need it most is the American way, and that is what we are trying to do with this ICO.  The recovery is a massive task and unfortunately we will only be a small part of the solution, for now.

B.Me: Are your pods safe in a Hurricane?

CW: We have put a lot of work into making our products highly wind, rain, and temperature resistant. We recently wind tested them up to 106 MPH sustained winds, which is above the highest level 12 of the Beaufort Scale. Hurricane Harvey was an unprecedented storm with some winds being recorded even higher than that.

B.Me: What is SHELTERCOIN?

CW: SHELTERCOIN is a new crypto-coin that will be used to build and supply emergency shelter, equipment and responders to people in need in disaster areas in advance, of and in times of need.  This is a natural extension of our “sell 20 donate one” program we have had in place from the beginning of our shelter company.  So far we have donated hundreds of SHIFTPODS all over the world including to the fire victims in California, Earthquake victims in Japan and Ecuador, victims in Haiti and to refugees on Lesvos, Greece.  We even donated to the earthquake victims in Nepal but these units got stuck in customs when the government wanted 100% tax on the full retail value before they would release them as gifts to the people.  Crazy.  Most recently we donated to the Nation of Hawaii to help with a homeless program there.  In this program the people will have to “pay rent” to live in the SHIFTPODS and they will pay this “rent” by taking classes on their heritage and working in the garden to grow their own food.  If successful the SHELTERCOIN will allow us to do more and build more product to donate to people in need.  It will also allow us to build and stage product in advance so when there is a disaster the units will be close or on site so there is no waiting for equipment to be shipped in from across the country.

B.Me: What can people use SHELTERCOIN for?

CW: Anyone can buy, trade and use SHELTERCOIN to make purchases, get discounts, make donations, to access new software or to store wealth. As we build our SHELTERCOIN community and eco-system we hope to have many vendors that will offer discounts on product purchased with SHELTERCOIN.  We will offer steep discounts on our products for both retail and large commercial buyers and we will show people how to convert to SHELTERCOIN on our check out page to get the instant discounts.  This is just one of the ways to support the demand for SHELTERCOIN.  The other use for SHELTERCOIN is to directly support missions to disaster areas.  Rather than donating to a normal NGO where less than 5% goes to the actual cause, we will use SHELTERCOIN to raise funds for a specific disaster or mission and then the donors will be able to track the use of funds almost in real time with transparency.  We hope to shift the donation and disaster response paradigm with the SHELTERCOIN. A decentralized solution on the blockchain lets us connect donors and responders more directly to people and areas in need, and much more efficiently than the centralized institutions who seem to take most of the money for overhead.

B.Me: Is this a for-profit, or altruistic venture?

CW: We have created the SHELTERCOIN Foundation to issue the tokens. SHELTERCOINs are an altruistic token, not an investment. When you buy them in the ICO there is no guarantee that they will go up in value or be worth anything in the future. Cryptocurrencies and alt-coins seem to generally be doing well, we think it is an exciting new trend with a lot of potential to fix old problems in new ways. If our idea works, more and more people will start using SHELTERCOIN and will donate to bring shelter rapidly to places where it is needed.

B.Me: Why would people buy a coin in an ICO if it was not tied to profits?

CW: We are seeing right now with Hurricane Harvey the immediate response from people stepping up who want to help. When you give money to a relief fund, the money is gone from you and most of it won’t reach the people who need the aid. When you give money to our ICO you get something in return: SHELTERCOINs.

Buying tokens in our ICO will help bring shelter in response to disasters. People who buy the coins will be able to get large discounts in our online store and VIP access to our latest products and disaster response software platform. They can also choose to use the coins to enable relief efforts, or hold on to them in the future.

Screenshot 2017-09-01 12.03.26B.Me: How does the price of an alt-coin get determined?

CW: there are many alt-coin exchanges around the world and we will endeavor to get SHELTERCOIN traded on as many as we can. The laws of supply and demand set the price, and we hope demand will grow over time. Our supply is fixed. We hope that as people become aware of what we are doing and see the success of a decentralized approach to disaster relief, demand will increase.

B.Me: So if a disaster strikes like Hurricane Harvey, people will be able to use SHELTERCOIN to send aid to people?

CW: Yes. We will be able to finance many units for the SHELTERCOIN FOUNDATION from the ICO, and future donations will help us pay for the first-responder personnel to get on site. The blockchain and our software platform lets us connect donors and first responders directly to the people, places and projects where shelter is needed.

B.Me: What problems are you trying to solve with a new alt-coin?

CW: Well, with so many people forcibly displaced in the world and so many disasters happening all over the world many people want to help.  Most donate to large NGOs that have huge executive teams and lots of overhead. In most cases these NGOs only get less than 5% of what is raised to the actual people in need.  It is really astounding.  In the case of an NGO that raised hundreds of millions for Haiti, less than 1% actually made it to the people in Haiti.  This is a huge problem and there has to be a better way.  We hope SHELTERCOIN will be the first of many new tools built to decentralize disaster response.  We aim to create a response eco-system around the SHELTERCOIN that can move quickly and efficiently to get goods and services into disaster areas and to the actual people in need. Through technology we should be able to make the whole process more efficient and deliver more value to the actual cause.  In some cases we will also be able to get ahead of the curve and get shelters and equipment staged in problem areas in advance of the disasters.  This is a very exciting prospect.

B.Me: Most of the money goes to overhead, instead of going back out to those who need the charity? Sounds like Burning Man! How does your solution compare to the existing “big institution” approach to disaster relief?

CW: We believe software and crowd-sourcing can help with a lot of this. Much of the distribution can be done without a lot of executives and overhead.  A lot of systems and agencies get too top heavy over time to be really effective.  You need the people for an event but then you don’t want to get rid of them so you have to raise more money to keep them and the next thing you know you have a huge bureaucracy that only really works when there is a disaster.  The beast needs more and more fuel to continue.  We are not running an event or a year around bureaucracy and connecting people and disasters is something that can be done online.  The blockchain can be used to let people see were money raised for a specific campaign gets spent. Our hope and belief is most all of this can be done with much much less overhead than the traditional model.  This will allow more money to get to the hands that really need it.

As for the shelters, many tents the large NGOs are using are made of that same material as the standard blue tarp, not fabric but a cheap plastic material with no thermal or reflective qualities.  These do not last and when you consider many of the refugee camps are in place for 5 years or more, we need a better solution.  We believe our SHELTERPOD is the better mouse trap.  It sets up quickly, is large and spacious, it uses new long lasting fabric technologies and has great thermal and heat reflective characteristics.

One of the other issues in response to disasters is the time between the disaster, raising funds, manufacturing goods and then delivering them to the disaster zone.  This timeline can run many months and by that time the dire need has past.  We hope the SHELTERCOIN will help us and other vendors get ahead of the problem so we can manufacture and stage goods and equipment in or near areas that are prone to or expecting disasters.  This will reduce the delivery times and make more product available faster when it is needed.  Why wait?

Screenshot 2017-09-01 12.04.15

B.Me: Are ICOs just the latest fad?

CW: ICOs are getting very popular.  I believe we are at the very beginning of the alt-coin craze and over time some coins will fail and some will become community standards.  The alt-coins or tokens give people all over the world an unrestricted way to support projects and causes they believe in and the block chain can be a way to track efforts and spending.  The beauty of it is that they are really market supported.  If people believe in the project they will succeed, if not they will fall away into the abyss, the way it should be.  My Grandfather once said buy what you believe in.  With alt-coins it could not be more true.

 

B.Me: So if I buy the coin in the Initial Coin Offering, that enables shelter to get to people in need. But in return I get the coins, which still have value and may go up in value like BitCoin?

CW: Exactly.  They may go up or they may crash and completely lose all of their value.  They are really not a security and we do not have a crystal ball.  Sorry, had to put that out there to keep the lawyers happy.  How much is BitCoin today? If the value of SHELTERCOIN went up like that I think we might be able to solve the homeless issue all together.

 

B.Me: It’s philanthropy with upside!

CW: Yes. This is the beauty of alt-coins, it is a new way to crowd-source support for worthy projects where everyone is a winner.

sheltercoin image

B.Me: Do you think SHELTERCOINs might one day be worth as much as BitCoins?

CW: We are not trying to be or replace BitCoin or any other crypto-currency. Decentralization is a new world with a whole new financial model. There will be thousands of digital currencies, we want to use ours to bring together a community of shelter providers and disaster responders with our enthusiastic and fast-growing SHIFTPOD community.

 

B.Me: You are literally making money. Is that what this is all about?

CW: This is about more than making money, which is why we created the SHELTERCOIN Foundation. This is about the decentralized, peer-to-peer model of the blockchain providing a more efficient way to get shelter to people who need it immediately, they don’t have time to wait for big bureaucracies to raise billions but never spend them. We are building a new system and community around SHELTERCOIN. We have emergency responders vetted and ready to get on planes with a moments notice.  If we can create value in an alt-coin it can support the mobilization of not only equipment but also people.  We have vendors we can engage to support the coin and the cause.  We can bring all of this together and use software and the Internet to take a lot of the cost out of the process.  The money we are creating is borderless and can be used to support projects all over the world.  It is all there and we can use SHELTERCOIN to bring it all together.

 

B.Me: Why use a SHIFTPOD for disaster relief? Aren’t they expensive?

CW: Expensive is relative.  Many of the “tents” used in disaster response can cost $5000 to $50,000 each.  Many of these take multiple people hours to set up.  We have the fastest shelter set up for the best price available on the market anywhere in the world.  We can deploy hundreds of units in a matter of hours for housing, triage units, and even operating rooms.   Our units can be dropped by plane or helicopter.  When you consider the mobility and speed of set up, durability and all we offer a very inexpensive option that is setting a new standard that is quickly being adopted.

Screenshot 2017-09-01 12.12.32

B.Me: Some Burners have said “this is just a glorified ice fishing tent”. How do you respond to that?

CW: Some ice fishing tents have a similar look and fiberglass poles but that is really where the similarity stops.  It is pretty funny when people think they can compare them especially for use in the desert.  The list of differences is very long but the most obvious ones are most ice fishing huts are a dark color and are designed to keep heat in, they do not have floors and they have velcro windows.  We have developed and patented a 5-layer composite fabric that reflects the heat of the sun in the daytime and keeps body heat in at night and engineered our units to be all weather and long term shelters.  Our patented shape sheds the wind and has been tested to 109MPH! We have created many other features make it possible to live comfortably for extended periods of time.  We have spend a lot of time and attention on the details of long term living, in some of the harshest environments in the world.  We currently have people in Hawaii living in our original unit for more than a year and we have units going to Iraq, South Sudan and Haiti for long term in-field testing.  We are building our current units for families to live in for up to five years.  This takes a lot of engineering.

 

B.Me: How can people participate in the ICO?

CW: Our ICO will be open to the public next month, and our white paper will be released at http://sheltercoin.io in the next few days. Sign up to our ICO mailing list there if you are interested. People can buy into the ICO with BitCoin, Ether, or by wiring fiat currency to the SHELTERCOIN bank account. To improve security and give us time to get the word out the ICO will happen in stages, with a lower coin price for earlier participants, just like our camp contributions.

Spread the word, buy, use, trade and store SHELTERCOIN and more importanly get involved in your community and help those around you.  Just get out there and make it happen.  Remember, everyone can make a difference and every second in life counts

B.Me: Thanks very much Christian for giving us this exclusive interview. It sounds like an exciting project and the right thing at the right time with so many victims of Hurricane Harvey needing shelter. Good luck down there!