15 Questions for @blainjones by @hetty-rowan (BRO newspaper editor)
15 Questions for @blainjones by @hetty-rowan
As @raymondspeaks mentioned last week, he had asked me to put some questions to the CPTTalk/Listnerds team. Without further ado, enjoy the questions I put to Blain. Better yet, read his answers carefully. And get to know the deeper side of the man behind the code!
We know you best from CTP, of course, or should I say Listnerds? Listnerds is THE project that brought the greatest fame I think. But, of course, you've been on Hive for much longer.
Looking back, what was the moment when you felt THIS is it! I will continue with this, I give myself fully to this?
Well ListNerds is just the project that the most Hive people are familiar with, CTP has over 200k members and we also have multiple other projects on Hive! Looking back, when talking about “THIS”, it was not originally hive. It was building a business online. I knew that having a business online would give me more freedom’s than I had been afforded in my life as well as provide stability to income and the famed financial freedom. Hive, originally that which shall not be named, to me, is just a path or a means to help aid in my goals. It doesn’t hurt that decentralized has been in my favor for years and allowing people to take ownership of something only increases my drive and want to use the ecosystem.
We'll stay in crypto for a little while longer before moving on to the more personal questions that tell us who @blainjones is. But now a question about CTP and Listnerds. We all know that the crypto market is constantly changing. And in order to go along with that, it is important to keep developing.
Can you spoil us with some secrets about what else is in the pipeline for CTP and Listnerds?
Some secrets about what is in the pipeline for CTP and ListNerds… Well a lot of what we have planned isn’t really a secret. We’re actually behind on our plans, life happens LOL. I will start with ListNerds!
Currently, I am rebuilding the site with a better backend, but I am also building quite a few new capabilities on the site like adding transactions to our own second layer on hive using the id of “CTP”. This also opens the door for us in the future to build on our own layer and not have to rely on Hive-Engine for everything. This also brings more visibility of what is happening for the members, such as easily tracking all transactions they have within the site.
Honestly, I could go on for days about what we are bringing to ListNerds, but if you hang out in our Telegram group or Discord server, you can easily find out what is in the pipeline. For CTP, we have always felt like CTP is more of a community than anything else, originally CTP stood for “Click, Track, Profit”, but it has evolved into so much more than that. We are planning on splitting up the site and taking away from the old “Click” mentality and focus more on content creation, funnel creation (we are still marketers after all!), list building, and business building in general. But I will leave this little bit of information that we have been toying with and will be coming sometime in the future. It's just one word. NFTs.
Last week I asked Jon about liquidity. He explained that nicely. A matter of demand and supply. Now, that buyback order is your and Jon's way of helping the community.
But are there actually things the community can do to help you build the project? Other than the obvious, take profits responsibly, and buy Listnerds?
YESSSS!!! So many things can be done to help ListNerds, Hive as a whole, and everything within. LEARN, LEARN, LEARN. Learn how Hive works, learn how the second layer works, learn how to build projects on the blockchain. For example, Jon and I got tired of paying upwards of 1% fee’s just to go from HIVE to SWAP.HIVE, so we built HivePay Swap or @hivepayswap. There is only a .2% fee to swap and that fee is 100% used for two things, to build the liquidity within the project and to keep the server running.
We also wanted a way for merchants to be able to accept payments in Hive and Hive-Engine tokens that had an IPN (Instant Payment Notification) system similar to PayPal, Stripe, etc.. so we built HivePay.
We are always trying to do everything we can to build use case for Hive and Hive-Engine tokens in general. And there are a bunch of others out there doing the same thing in the best way they know how. But I consistently urge people to get involved and “take ownership” of these platforms. Build something to help, just do anything more than “Day 1,234, I am still alive”. I never understood the idea of trying to build a business of mediocrity…
Last week, we had visitors, especially because they had seen some of my paintings. Now they wanted to get to know me better to know if they dared to commission me to make 2 paintings for them that have a great emotional meaning for them.
My paintings were looked at but only later, when they entrusted me with the assignment, they told me that my paintings had not been decisive. That was what drew her to me in the first place. But in the end, my empathy had been decisive in giving me the assignment.
If you had to describe yourself to ensure that I gain confidence in you as a person so that I want to invest in you, and therefore in your project?
That is an interesting question for sure, I have never really had to describe myself in that manner, but I will give it a shot!
I see myself as a no BS person. I have been building businesses online off and on for nearly 20 years now. Sometimes people come to me for direction and guidance, I do not personally see myself as an “expert” in anything. So I always go with my gut and tell people exactly what they need to hear, not what they want to hear.
I feel that if you want to build a business online, you have to be serious about it! If you are just here to waste time and make friends, there are plenty of places to do that, that are not business building based.
And this catches quite a bit of flak from people that think I am just out to get them. But the reality is I care less about your business than you do, and I should never care about your business more than you.
So if you don’t care to improve your business, why in the world should I? I get questions all the time, where people want me to fix their issues or want me to be their support for their business. Step 1, PAY ME. Step 2, figure it out yourself. IT IS YOUR BUSINESS.
But at the end of the day, I am passionate and absolutely love what I do and love building on Hive and cannot wait to get to the next level in my business. Jon, Eliana, and I do not sit around and wait for things to happen. We are always building, always improving, and always brainstorming to determine what we should do next (and by next, I mean in about 6 months because we are backed up with work!)
Now that we are slowly getting more personal. Which character traits of yourself would you describe as character traits you are proud of, and why? And the same of course with the qualities you are not so proud of, and why not?
Character traits that I am proud of, well I would start with perseverance and determination. I am determined to build everything that I can, and I will continue to persevere until they are finished. Then I will continue to figure out how to improve and build on what has been built. I am always trying to figure out a way to “do it better”, whatever “it” may be. For qualities, I am not so proud of, I am a lazy perfectionist. I will almost always try to find the easiest way to do something, but only if it is perfect.
People love animals, at least I do. So it seems logical to me that everyone has a favorite animal. But did you know that your favorite animals also say a lot about you? That absolute favorite animal is a dog will not surprise anyone, a wolf out of two is not that strange anymore I think, but would you have expected that after that a tiger would complete my top 3 of favorite animals?
And while we're on the subject, what's your top 3 when it comes to favorite animals. Of course we also want to know why?
Favorite animals? Well, first on my list would be fish. There isn’t a single specific type of fish that I like, they are all my favorite. Because realistically, where would we as humans be if fish didn’t exist? They are the most interesting things on this earth to me, but we have explored more space than oceans. Crazy right?
My second favorite is dogs, because who doesn’t like dogs, am I right?
And to throw in a curve ball, my third favorite is dinosaurs. Growing up, I always had in interest in them and as I learn more and more about them, it only continues to peak my interest. Did you know that there is a possibility that some dinosaurs lived at the same time as early bipedals? This would mean that some survived the apocalyptic event that ended the majority of them. Not to mention the dinosaurs that still live among us in the oceans!!!
After the death of my parents I went through a period in which I was quite lost. It took me a while to get myself back together. And while that is not a fun period to look back on, I certainly learned a valuable lesson during that time. “Let go of what you cannot control”. I learned that there is really only one thing that I can control myself, and that is myself… that helped me in many things later on.
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned, and how has that lesson helped you?
The most valuable lesson I have ever learned and I mentioned it in one of the earlier questions is that nobody cares about you or what you are doing more than you and you cannot expect anyone to care about you or your stuff at all.
In reality, I understand that most people barely give a crap about their own stuff, and it shows, especially in the marketing world where I interact with online business owners all the time who don’t bother to update simple things like how their site looks.
Especially if it was designed for $40 or less in 2005… This is why Jon and I partnered up initially, we are both very passionate about what we do and this has helped propel everything we have done. We maintain our passion and continue to build on it.
When I was about 25 years old, I organized ghost tours in the woods with a group of friends. And even though I knew what would happen, it was still an experience every week. To gain inspiration, we sometimes went on a ghost tour that was organized by others. One of those trips just about gave me a heart attack, walking alone through unfamiliar forests in the middle of the night, knowing that all kinds of things are going to happen. I was always quite brave on the trips we organized ourselves, but that one night in that forest I didn't know… little of my bravery was left.
Whether this is the most exciting thing I've ever done, I won't say, but of course I want to hear from you what is the most exciting thing you've ever done?
What is the most exciting thing I have ever done? Well let’s see… I have travelled the world. I have seen a child be brought into this world. I have experienced the works of ancient civilizations. I have tried nearly every kind of food there is. I have been in firefights. I survived being blown up. I have learned about species of animals that have been extinct for millions of years. I have gained knowledge on how things that we as humans can see, touch, or sense in any form works. I have been a part of building some truly amazing things. I have helped to maintain life in many forms. I have had the pleasure of having so many chapters in my life and paths to go down.
But the truly most exciting and amazing thing I have ever done was when I married my wife and realized that every chapter of my life from then forward would have her in it.
I spoke with Ray and asked him if there was something he´d really wanted me to ask you. He came up with the very "boring", yet interesting question, ¨
How long have you been a coder, and was it always tied to affiliate marketing?¨
And when I think of affiliate marketing, I get a headache because of negative experiences in the past. That makes me think you have to feel stress!
Do you often experience stress? And at times when you experience stress, what is the activity that immediately calms you down?
Starting with Ray’s questions, I have been developing since around 2009 or so. I had built my first membership website and paid a well known freelancer to do some custom one off work. That freelancer then went and sold my ideas to everyone that would pay for it. I learned my lesson and knew that if I wanted to do something truly custom and unique, that I would have to do it myself. So I started learning the languages and building my own stuff ever since. It hasn’t necessarily been tied to affiliate marketing so much as tied to business building.
Yes, I believe that everyone experiences stress in every day of our lives, but how we handle it is what is important. I usually just take a break from whatever is causing the stress, then I think about what happened that caused the stress and what actions can I take to prevent it from happening again and how do I turn the stress into a positive event.
As I told last week, what I´m doing now is pretty close to what I´ve always wanted to do as a kid.
If you look back at what you always wanted to be as a child, how close is the work you do now to your dream from the past? How would 10-year-old Blain react to what today's Blain does on a daily basis?
I believe that my childhood wasn’t the “average” American childhood. So I never really had dreams or aspirations to be something when I was a kid. I was basically just trying to figure out how to survive without the weight of the world crushing me. 10-year-old me would be ecstatic at what I have become and the knowledge and understanding of the world that I currently have. He would be in awe of the things that I have done and seen, the places I have been and the people that I have met along the way.
You know, I sometimes dream of what I would do if money were no object. Where I would live, where I would go on vacation, I would travel. What would my days look like? I often see myself standing on a beach, but I also see a boat in my visions. Surrounded of course by my loyal dogs and my partner.
Suppose you were allowed to do what you wanted for a year, money is no object at all, you have more than you can ever use. What would you do?
My wife and I actually already have a plan for that! She has about 10 years until she will be done with her current contract and we plan on spending that time forward, travelling the world just looking for our forever home. We will visit every continent and find what we like the best then go there!
We live in a time when it is clearly noticeable that the world is getting harder. There is a lot of dissatisfaction all over the world and it often seems that people are no longer grateful for anything. Yet in my opinion it is important to remain grateful for what you have. That does not always have to be tangible like a house or a car. It could also be that you are grateful for the love of your partner, your children or just grateful that you have food on the table every day.
What are you most grateful for, and why exactly?
I am grateful for everything I have in my life. I am grateful for my wife, my son, my dogs, my fish. I am grateful that I do not have to check my bank account when I go grocery shopping to make sure I have enough money to buy the food I need to survive. I am grateful that I am no longer just surviving, but actually able to live my life as I see fit. I am extremely grateful that I have found true happiness in my life.
While it is often difficult for people to list qualities of themselves that they are proud of, it is important to do so. Modesty is good for man, but it is good to know what your strengths are.
So Blain, the question isn't that hard to ask and I hope you don't find it hard to answer. But what are you most proud of yourself? And why exactly that?
I am most proud of being here today. With the life that I had and chose to have early on, I honestly didn’t think I would make it to 25 let alone past that.
For you of course the same question as I asked Jon last week. If your wife got the question, $100 million or Blain? What would she choose, the money or you? And what would you do? $100 million or your wife?
That’s the easiest question, I would tell her to take the money, then I will change my name and we can remarry. BAM. But realistically, there isn’t even a question there neither of us would take the money. We have truly found our “one” and to let that go purposely isn’t even a thought in our minds.
Now we've talked about all sorts of things, but the last question I'd like to ask you is: Leaving aside CTP, Listnerds, and Index, which Hive-Engine projects would you recommend Bro Newspaper readers to invest in? , why and what tips can you give to grow on Hive?
HivePay, HivePay Swap and any of our other projects that I haven’t mentioned yet!
But in reality, I wouldn’t recommend a single project for anyone to invest in. My first recommendation for anyone to invest in is themselves. Invest in yourself, both money and time.
Invest in learning what your passion is and following it. Invest in what you have to make yourself better off in the long term. Invest in HBD to get yourself a nice 20% APR.
My tips for anyone to grow on Hive is to help grow Hive. Just like I stated before, learn it, understand it, figure out ways and methods to help bring Hive to your local communities.
This is it guys! I hope you all enjoyed it to get to know the man behind the code! And of course, many thanks to @blainjones for taking the time to answer all those questions while in the middle of moving. Very much appreciated!