- In the wake of FTX’s collapse, the founder and former CEO exchanged wild DMs with a Vox reporter.
- Sam Bankman-Fried said on Wednesday he was unaware that the meeting would be public.
- Bankman-Fried made the comments in a long and sometimes awkward interview with The New York Times.
Sam Bankman-Fried said he didn’t realize his infamous direct-message exchange with a Vox reporter would become public, and claimed that he thought the journalist was a “long-time friend.”
Twitter direct messages were published by Vox on November 16, days after cryptocurrency exchange FTX crashed. Among the dazzling messages, the founder and former CEO said that regulators “made things worse” and that he regretted FTX filing for bankruptcy.
Bankman-Fried was asked about the swap in an interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin of The New York Times at the Times’ DealBook Summit on Wednesday.
“This was not going to be a public interview. He was a longtime friend of mine, who I stupidly forget, was also a reporter,” said Bankman-Fried. , but it’s definitely been reported.”
Reporter Kelsey Piper is a staff writer at Vox and has been working there since 2018, according to LinkedIn.
Vox spokesperson Lauren Starke denied Bankman-Fried’s allegations in a statement to Insider. Piper said she interviewed Bankman-Fried when reporting a profile in May, and that “a few years ago, they interacted directly several times through overlapping social and professional networks.”
“Any suggestion that he forgot he was a journalist is unconvincing – in addition to the May interview, he is clearly identified as a reporter in his Twitter bio,” Starke continued. “She informed him from his Vox email, where his signature makes it clear that he is a Vox reporter, planning to write about his recorded purchases, and he didn’t raise any objections to his response before it was published.”
In the Vox story that posted the messages, Piper wrote that she did a Zoom interview with Bankman-Fried over the summer for a profile she’s been working on. He said he messaged her via Twitter for comment after news broke that FTX was intertwined, but didn’t expect her to respond as it was the subject of several investigations.
Piper said she got back to him a few days later, which resulted in a direct message exchange with screenshots posted by Vox. During the interview, Piper also talked about the conversation the two had over the summer.
In general, when speaking to a reporter, a conversation is considered recorded unless otherwise discussed and agreed upon.
a long time twitter series Published shortly after the DMs came out, Bankman-Fried also referred to Piper as her “friend”.
“I spoke to a friend last night. They posted my messages. These were not meant to be public, but I guess they are now,” he wrote.
At The New York Times’ DealBook Summit on Wednesday, Bankman-Fried had a long and sometimes awkward interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin that covered everything from rebutting reports that FTX and Alameda employees were drug-fed to searching for his family as FTX collapsed.
Acknowledging that his lawyers did not want to be interviewed, Bankman-Fried said of the FTX debacle: “I had a bad month.”