TBL May 2024 - 12

Glauber " Pro " Contessoto is one
of the stars of " This Is Not Financial
Advice, " a documentary that
tracks how the rollercoaster ride of
cryptocurrency affects investors.
How FOMO &
Social Media Are Driving
magine making $179,000 while you
shop at Costco, and then losing a
million dollars during an episode of
" Saturday Night Live. " That happened to
Glauber " Pro " Contessoto, one of the main
characters in a recent documentary, " This
Is Not Financial Advice. "
The film-which premiered at the
2023 Tribeca Film Festival and will be
screened for free at the National Leadership
Conference next month-is the fifth
feature-length documentary for Optimist,
a company that focuses on making films
about social issues for teachers to use in
the classroom. Optimist breaks down each
film into short segments and provides
free modules for teachers to lead students
into discussions about financial empowerment.
The non-profit company also raises
money to support the causes its films
focus on. So far, it has helped raise more
than $92 million.
" This Is Not Financial Advice " came
out of Co-Director Chris Temple's fear of
missing out on the cryptocurrency craze.
After the 34-year-old started investing his
own money, he put out a tweet asking if
anyone would be interested in making a
film to follow the movement.
Contessoto, an immigrant working
multiple jobs to pay the rent on his
220-square-foot apartment, responded.
So did the film's three other main characters:
Senay Kenfe, a community organizer
who runs a nonprofit called The Six to
educate local immigrants about finance;
Kayla Kilbride, the TikTok star of " Girls
Talk Stocks " ; and Rayz Rayl, a professional
poker player and father of three who
lost all his money on the GameStop short
squeeze before turning to cryptocurrency.
Soon, Temple and Co-Director Zach
Ingrasci started filming their experiences,
not knowing where it was going to lead.
The title of the film is a tongue-incheek
reference to the disclaimer often
associated with financial advice, especially
since many of the people giving it on
social media do not have formal financial
training. According to a survey by Forbes
Advisor, almost 80 percent of young
people have gotten financial advice from
social media.
" You have a lot of frustration at the
system, you have a lot of distrust in institutions
and banks, and a lot of people are
struggling, " said Temple, who majored in
economics at Claremont McKenna College
in Claremont, California, and previously
worked in international development.
At the same time, money is being democratized,
he noted. Many more people
are able to enter financial markets for the
first time, but they can also gamble away
their life's savings in a few seconds on
their phone. Add in pressure from social
media-which encourages people to compare
their lives with wealthier individuals-and
the marketing machine behind
cryptocurrency, and it can be a lot for new
investors to handle.
Temple said his own education didn't
prepare him for the workforce; when
he graduated college, he didn't realize
he should start investing in a Roth IRA,
for example. He hopes the film will be
a launching point for people to discuss
investing strategies and how to separate
them from emotion.
He also hopes it will help students
improve their financial literacy. One
of the classroom exercises tied to the
film-created in collaboration with
partners, including Next Gen Personal
Finance-asks students to bring in a piece
of financial advice they see online and
analyze it by researching the background
of the person giving the advice and
whether it is sponsored content.
" What we hope the film does is help
people learn about their own relationship
to money and hopefully make better financial
decisions as they enter the market
for the first time, " Temple added.
To learn more about the film or to
register for free educational resources,
click here.

TBL May 2024

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of TBL May 2024

TBL May 2024 - 1
TBL May 2024 - 2
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