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Q&A with Fran Beighton, publisher at Maverick451

Q&A with Fran Beighton, publisher at Maverick451

Maverick Insider sat down with Fran Beighton, GM of Reader Revenue at Daily Maverick and publisher of Maverick451 for some quick-fire questions on the latest book offering, It’s Mine by Steven Boykey Sidley.

Tell us about the next book being published by Maverick451.

It’s Mine: How the Crypto Industry is redefining ownership by Steven Boykey Sidley. Published first by Hero, an imprint of Legend Times Group in the UK. Maverick451 won the rights to publish in South Africa. Steven is a columnist at Daily Maverick so it made sense to publish his book through Maverick451.

So it’s a finance book?

Not at all. To call it a finance book is both a disservice to It’s Mine and to the potential reader. The most succinct way to describe it is a really easy-to-read book about the future of the world.

It’s got ‘crypto’ in the title…surely it’s a bit about finance?

Ha! Yes, crypto is explained — like really explained — but it’s more to do with ownership, where the world is going in terms of how this new technology is going to change everything. I read a lot but I haven’t read a book that’s made me think about the future more than this. It challenged my understanding of government, of governance, how I can potentially make my kids’ futures a little more secure, what kind of jobs they’ll be doing, and what the world is going to look like for them.

So are you a crypto-cynic or a crypto-convert?

I’ll admit I was 100% a crypto-cynic before reading this book. I didn’t understand it but more importantly, I didn’t understand it because I didn’t really care about it. The crypto world for me was something that was happening for tech geeks and finance wonks… I wouldn’t say I’m a complete crypto-convert now but I am fascinated by how blockchain technology is changing the world. I’m honestly grateful that Steven wrote this book because I feel like he’s spilling the secrets of what’s coming. Imagine someone telling you about AirBnb or Uber or WhatsApp five years before they emerged. We use these apps as part of our everyday lives now; blockchain technology is going to have as big an impact.

That’s a little unnerving…

There’s nothing to be unnerved about. There’s no denying that technology is going to continue to change the world and how we live in it; this is just the next iteration. What’s a little more unnerving is thinking about how the world operates now. It could do with a change.

So are you running out to buy Bitcoin now?

With my spare half a million rand?! No. But I may just allow my kids a little more device time — especially any apps that teach them to code.

Okay, so sell it to us, why should we read ‘It’s Mine’?

If you are like the majority of South Africans, you worry about the future. You probably check what the rand is doing more often than you’d like to. You’re concerned about security — both personal and financial. For many, the “crypto” talk over the past few years has made us feel excluded. For me, it made me feel a little dumb. I have a much better understanding of it all now. The underlying panic of “I’m missing out” is gone. I still have a lot of questions but I feel like I can now ask the right ones.

Head to the Daily Maverick Shop to pre-order your copy of It’s Mine today.

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