ImagineBC is “leveraging technology so that people can unlock the value of their personal data.” The CEO Erik H. Rind will be sharing more with us in this interview.
Please tell us your name and about yourself?
Erik H. Rind,
- Graduate of The George Washington University with a B.A. in History
- 9 years of management consulting experience at Price Waterhouse
- 25+ year experience in building advanced technology solutions
- In the HCM software industry since 1990
- Started and sold PowerPay Software for $22 million
- President and CEO a human capital services company until 2018
- Advisory board member to Vertalo, Dashub and Health Wizz
What is ImagineBC?
ImagineBC is a software company dedicated to building software solutions that will allow individuals to take back control of their personal information and help that same individual monetize their personal information, monetize their intellectual property, monetize their intellectual creativity and perhaps monetize their greatest asset, their time. ImagineBC is a closed loop, referral only community where members spend and share information with brands, retailers, and each other. The community will be grown through partnerships with staffing agencies, labor organizations, business influencers, and social media influencers as well as through member to member referrals. ImagineBC’s role within the community is to deliver to its members the software tools that allow members to easily and efficiently take advantage of the commercial aspects of new technologies such as blockchain and AI/ML. People are social animals which is why participation in online networks like Facebook and LinkedIn is so high. Facebook was designed to be a social network and LinkedIn was designed to be a business network and both require an individual to share their privacy. ImagineBC is designed to be a commercial network. Through ImagineBC members can conduct online commercial where privacy is maintained. Commercial transactions within the ImagineBC community are conducted anonymously, safely and bypass traditional 3rd parties allowing a member to retain a significantly larger percentage of the profits generated from the goods and services they sell.
What are the Major Services you provide at ImagineBC?
ImagineBC provide a free mobile application to its members. This application is used by members to receive offers from 3rd parties to complete surveys, participate in focus groups, watch brand advertisements and accept direct offers for one on one contact. ImagineBC permits all members to remain anonymous to other members by maintaining a member’s identity using 2 scores that act as the member’s avatar within the community. A member’s TRUST score indicates the extent to which a member permitted ImagineBC to verify their identity and ensures other members that they only have a single persona in the community. A member’s REPUTATION score indicates how honorably a member is behaving within the community. The higher a member’s score, the more likely they are to be included in money earning campaigns. In addition to verifying a member’s identity and ensuring that an individual can only be a member of the ImagineBC community once, ImagineBC takes on the responsibility of creating money making opportunities for its members. ImagineBC only makes money after it has helped one of its members make money. And the member always makes 7x more than ImagineBC on any completed transaction. To facilitate commercial transactions ImagineBC provides a free web based application, known as BizBase, to its 3rd party members. BizBase includes a suite of tools that permit an organization or company to search for participants within the ImagineBC community who are interested in completing surveys, participating in focus groups, watching brand advertisements or speaking one on one through a direct offer. The BizBase suite of tools also allow an individual member of the ImagineBC community to market themselves to other members of the community.
Could you tell us more about your business Mission?
Imagine it is 1896 and a lone steel worker in Pittsburgh named John Smith climbs the stairs leading to Andrew Carnegie’s executive office. Now assume that Mr. Smith can even get an audience with Mr. Carnegie. In the few minutes he has to speak with the “Robber Baron”, he asks Mr. Carnegie to consider implementing a 40 hour work week and adding a few more cents a hour into his employees pay packets. Well, I’m sure you know how that meeting would have ended. It wasn’t until all the John Smith’s banded together into labor unions and started using the power of numbers that they got the attention of Mr. Carnegie and his fellow industrialists. Now, fast forward to today and imagine that Jane Doe takes an elevator to Sergey Brin’s office at AlphaBet and asks Mr. Brin to please consider fairly compensating her for the personal data his company Google uses to make their extraordinary profits. Well, just like John Smith, we know Jane is not going to get anywhere until she and all the rest of us band together to use the power of numbers to regain control of our personal information. ImagineBC’s mission is similar to that of the labor unions at the turn of the nineteenth century. ImagineBC wishes to provide the tools and community necessary to allow all the John Smith and Jane Doe’s to come together and use their power of numbers to take back control of the personal information and earn fair compensation for when that information is used by 3rd parties.
At what stage of development is ImagineBC, what is your success story so far and what is next on your roadmap?
ImagineBC is in its pre-launch stage. We are refining our applications UI/UX based on input from our marketing team, behavioral science team and our education team. We are working on building up partners who will help us build our community by inviting their contacts to download our software and register as a member of the ImagineBC community. We are working on our messaging. We have spoken to hundreds of individuals about our idea and it never takes more than a few sentences to get that individual to say “What wouldn’t I try this”. But it is far more complex to translate our 1v1 message into an electronic message and still hope to gain the same type of response. We are also concurrently working on signing up partners to agree to use our survey/advertise/offer marketing model. Early adoption by 3rd parties will make creating early income earning opportunities for our members.
Next on our roadmap is launch. We will launch the community in three phases. Early this summer we will start phase 1, which will be inviting friends, family and associates of ImagineBC to enroll as members of the community. We hope to get around 5,000 members signed up in this first phase. Phase 2 of our rollout will be A/B message testing. In this phase we will be testing the messaging our marketing and advertising teams have developed to find the electronic message that gets us the “Why wouldn’t I do this” response we are looking for. Finally, in early fall we should be ready for general release where we will start inviting, through our partners, 20 million plus contacts to join our community. Concurrent with the rollout of our community, ImagineBC will be working on completing and rolling out the next phase of its software suite, which will be he Imaginarium. Consisting of a “Main Street”, an arcade, an auditorium and a newsstand, it is within the Imaginarium that individual members will be able to market their intellectual property, intellectual creativity and their time.
Please tell us more about the ImagineBC process?
When fully operational, the ImagineBC ecosystem will work as follows. Say you were an expert user of an online game and wished to share your knowledge of that game with everyone else who plays the game. Today you would work on preparing media that you could upload to YouTube and then watch the number of hits you got from other members watching your uploaded content. If you are lucky and get a lot of hits, YouTube may pass on a few dollars to you. In fact this is exactly what my son’s brother-in-law, who we will call BEN, did and after getting a million hits on YouTube one week, BEN earned a whopping $3,000 from YouTube. This is not fair compensation for BEN’s intellectual property but currently BEN has no alternative. ImagineBC plans to offer that alternative to BEN and all its other members. Say that ImagineBC were live and instead of posting his media on YouTube, BEN instead uploaded his media to ImagineBC and asked for $0.25 in compensation for having access to the media. A member wishing to purchase the media who may not have $0.25 in their ImagineBC available balance, will be able to easily navigate to another area of the ImagineBC application and quickly earn the needed $0.25 by completing a survey or maybe watching a brand advertisement. They can then apply the earned $0.25 to purchase the media from BEN. Net result, instead of earning just $3,000 dollars from YouTube for a million hits, Ben would have earned $175,000 dollars that same week. (Sellers keep 70% of the cost of the good or service they sell within the ImagineBC community). This is the commercial community ImagineBC plans to offer to its members. The types of intellectual property and creativity we all have that we could sell through this type of marketplace are endless. ImagineBC would have earned $25,000 from the revenue produced by BEN’s media (ImagineBC takes a constant 10% from the cost of any completed transaction). The remaining 20% would be distributed among the membership based on who referred BEN to the community and who referred the purchasing member to the community.
What are the benefits of using the ImagineBC’s Services?
Individuals will be able to take back control of their personal information and ImagineBC will help create opportunities for them to earn income from that information. Individuals wishing to sell their intellectual property and creativity will find it more lucrative to sell into the ImagineBC community than traditional online communities.
Could you tell us about your team and customer support?
ImagineBC has employed a decentralized model to prepare its solution for market. On the development side we have used the services of Harbinger, an outsourced development team in India, to turn our design into a reality. We have used the services of WeR.ai, a silicon valley based, technology company to automate our AI/ML use cases. We have integrated into our solution the automated reference checking capabilities of aRefChex, a Chicago area company and we have integrated into our solution the online focus group solution from Remesh, a New York City based technology company. On the marketing side of ImagineBC, we have utilized the services of Hackless, a Chicago based marketing company, to provide us the services of a Chief Marketing Officer. Hackless coordinates the activities agency M, of our advertising agency from Philadelphia, Brawner Communications, our public relations firm from Washington, D.C. Trainsmart our educational training partner from Chicago DNA growth our social media content provider and Ipsos our behavioral science partner. On any given day, there are about 65 people working on making ImagineBC a reality. It would have taken years and way more resources to collect an equivalent team of seasoned professionals.
How Safe is ImagineBC, would you like to talk about your legal and security measures?
ImagineBC’s software solutions are build on top of blockchain technology. This technology permits each member of the ImagineBC community to be the sole owner of their personal information. ImagineBC only has access to member’s personal information for a window of 48-72 hours during which time ImagineBC uses the member’s information to verify the member is who they say they are and that the member is attempting to create a 2nd persona in the community. After the verification window is completed, a member is as anonymous to ImagineBC as they are to any other member of the ImagineBC community. Any miscreant who broke through ImagineBC’s security would find nothing of value. ImagineBC’s terms of service and privacy policies are designed to enforce the point that ImagineBC will never sell any member’s information without that member’s permission. Members information will be protected first by Microsoft’s Azure cloud security and then by Microsoft Azure’s private blockchain.
Do you have more information for our readers?
Thousands of years ago, when we lived and died within 2 square miles of where we were born, commerce was conducted within a community of people where everyone knew everyone else. Individuals with poor reputations were easily excluded from commercial society. As populations grew and technology advanced it become impossible to personally know everyone within our commercial network. Therefore, we transferred our trust to third party institutions like banks, accountants, a free press and government to help us facilitate commercial activity. Recently though, our trust in these institutions has been severely tested. You only have to look to the demise of the accounting firm Arthur Andersen, the public humiliation of Wells Fargo, the embarrassment of the Equifax hack, the negative news surrounding Facebook and Google and perhaps even worse the loss of faith in our own government. But we the people are the government and it is within our power to instill trust back into our community. ImagineBC wishes to provide individuals with the very tools necessary to do just that. The tools ImagineBC can provide to its community cannot solve all or our existing problems, but they can allow us all to take a firm stride in a positive direction. A direction where despite that fact that we now live in a world populated by billions, we can recreate trust in our community as if we once again lived within a world of just 2 square miles.
For more information, visit the ImagineBC website: https://imaginebc.net/