Problem: I got scammed on Twitter but Twitter won’t allow me to report it

I debated for a long time whether I should write this blogpost – because as a reputable known person, it’s extremely embarrassing. I had a lapse in intelligence and suffered humiliation and financial loss because of it.

However, I decided to write this because that’s how the Twitter Scammers get their way – people are too embarrassed to call them out so they keep scamming.

I wanted people who follow my work to avoid making idiotic mistakes that I make and prevent this terrible experience that I went through. So here you go:

Here’s the story of how I got scammed for the first time in my life (after fending off dozens of scammers), and the heartbreaking fact that Twitter wouldn’t even allow me to report the scammer (and hence, the scammer is still out there scamming people before my eyes).

Specifically, I got scammed by a person pretending to be a reputable YouTuber on Twitter and lost $400 as I pulled the plug right before losing more.

This post about the Twitter Scammer is broken into three sections:

  1. How I got scammed
  2. Why I couldn’t report this on Twitter
  3. Some lessons to avoid being scammed in the future

The pandemic of Twitter Scammers

Twitter scams are quite common. The fact that people can change their Twitter Handles and IDs very easily – while useful – also leads to scammers constantly changing their identities while having an account that seems to be long lasting and credible.

There’s also a ton of bots on Twitter, which allows fake profiles to look like they have a lot of followers. This is the reason why Elon Musk recently withdrew from his offer to buy Twitter.

But the craziest thing is, after an hour of trying, there is no valid way to report a scammer on Twitter (only other things), until I finally gave up.

Without anything else I could do while knowing that this Twitter Scammer is scamming other people constantly even right now, I decided to write this blogpost.

How I dodged a Blue Check Twitter Scammer

Continue reading Problem: I got scammed on Twitter but Twitter won’t allow me to report it

Metablox Memory: Gamification Workshop at The Vault Coworking Space! (2015)

This is a Memory from, my NFT Platform aiming to preserve humanity’s most important memories onto the Blockchain. Check out the Memory (and more photos) here: Metablox – NFTs powered by real life memories

This was the second time I hosted the Octalysis Gamification Full Day Workshop at The Vault Coworking space in San Francisco.

The reason why I used this space is because I was part of the Founders Network, created by a good friend Kevin Holmes. It’s a network of Founders helping Founders. I asked if anyone had a good venue suggestion that I could use.

Kevin D Smith was kind enough to share his space The Vault with me, and as a benefit The Vault Members could attend too (my workshops can run up to $1000 per person). For this workshop, it turns out that Verizon sent quite a few of their employees to this event.

Since I was hosting a gamification workshop, I brought in a lot of fun game props. The Plants vs Zombies Flower and the Final Fantasy VII Cloud Sword was a favorite. 

One of the innovative things I did for this workshop is that when people contribute or answer questions, I give them a magnetic dart. At the end of the workshop, everyone plays a dart throwing game.

Everyone has one score, but if you have more darts you get more tries. You could see for the whole day, people were eager to get more darts because they were afraid to only have one dart and it wouldn’t even make the board. 

As you can see people had a lot of fun playing the dart throwing game towards the end. Even the online audiences (who was in a different timezone and pulled an all-nighter for this workshop) asked if I could turn the webcam and they wanted to see who would win the event. 

Towards the end, the winner of the Dart throwing game received an Apple Watch.

However, awkwardly, a week later the winner had to return the Apple Watch because they said Verizon was the company that sponsored them to attend the workshop, but due to company policy, they cannot accept these rewards at the end. 

Still everyone had a great time, and I hope by now they have all applied the Octalysis knowledge to all corners of the world!

Inflation & Recession: how to beat this crazy game?

As you are well aware, the world’s economy is in turmoil due to a combination of inflation, COVID-19, war, and commodities/supply chain shortages.

As we are officially in a recession (and things are looking to become way worse before becoming better), no investment market has been safe from huge declines — crypto, stocks, even gold and bonds have been suffering greatly.

So what do we do in this chaos? Where do we invest our time and money to not only protect what we have, but thrive to ascend above our environment in this new world?

If you look at the Hero’s Journey (or any game), at the beginning there is usually some shock in the system that changes the whole world negatively.

This becomes the call to adventure for the main character (you) to begin a heroic journey.

If there was no negative shock, then the hero would just stay in their comfort zones and not become heroic.

But the journey is still uncomfortable and scary.

There’s usually a “refusal of the call” where the hero still doesn’t want to go outside their comfort zone and change the course of this new world of chaos.

That’s usually when some kind of aid or mentor (potentially me, but could be anyone you respect and want to learn from) gives them the extra encouragement and reassurance to take on the heroic path.

Okay, so what’s this heroic path, and what do I actually do in this recession?

I’ve said this before, and as cliché as it sounds, in a recession, you want to double down on investing into YOURSELF and your Growth.

Even in good markets, you could make 0.1% — 20% returns with a variety of risk profiles, but if you invest in yourself and become more skilled/knowledgable/effective, you are GUARANTEED to reap returns from the investment for your entire life.

For example, I bought Daniel Kahneman’s book Thinking: Fast & Slow for $50 back in the day, and the knowledge I obtained from it at least helped me make $400,000 more — either because I used the knowledge to close a number of client projects (each worth $100K-$200K), or it was the key knowledge that formed my designs for these client projects.

The crazy thing is, I will keep reaping benefits for the next 50 years from this small investment in money (but larger investment in time).

This is just one example, but there are a lot of great pieces of work and knowledge where my return was actually much higher than buying my first bitcoin in 2013, as crazy as that sounds.

Ever heard about people going back to getting an MBA or Law School when they got laid off during a recession?

That’s because they know at that point, they can only invest in their skill growth, to prepare for the time the economy is strong again.

But why wait for being desperate before doing the most effective thing? During a recession you want to build your super powers so you can start dominating when the timing is ripe.

So how do I invest in myself and my growth?

There are a lot of ways to invest in yourself and your growth.
As mentioned above, if you want you should go buy Thinking: Fast & Slow and read it 3–4 times.

Or you can absorb Robert Cialdini’s work on Applied Psychology as that has also been a six digit gainer for me.

You could also read a bio like Elon Musk’s and see how accomplished people get to where where they are in life via the choices they made on that journey.

Or you can look into what I’ve worked tremendously hard on for the past 6 years to offer people who follow my work: Octalysis Prime.

Octalysis Prime is like a Gamified Mentorship Journey where you essentially get to download my brain and access me directly.

I’ve made over 900 videos of my greatest learnings/insights/case studies on how to live a more effective life: from productivity, to behavioral design, to parenting, to career, to managing finances.

To be clear, I’m no Elon Musk (I learned a lot from his bio), and don’t have random Lambo’s lying there in my garage next to my garage bookshelves, but I’ve definitely mastered some techniques and systems in my life that made me effective at things I do.

My design work has empowered over 1 Billion Users. I’ve sold 100K books with at least a handful of billionaires being fans of my work. I’ve taught at Stanford/Yale/Oxford/Tesla/Google/Uber/IDEO, and was rated the #1 Gamification Guru in the world 3 out of 4 years.

For $50/mo, OP Members get to download my brain and have weekly Live Coaching Sessions (in a group) with me.

They also get my full Masterclass content which I ran in 2020 on the 5-Step Octalysis Design that we charge $100K-$200K to implement for clients (the workshop was $1000 per person and had 17 hours of content) as well as my latest research/learning/insights on everything Octalysis.

So how do I know this works?

The proof that OP works is that more than 80% of the Consultants/Designers I hired for my own consulting firm The Octalysis Group came out of Octalysis Prime.

It’s literally the best things I have to offer, and I would not be hiring them and putting them in front of my clients like Microsoft or Lego if they didn’t learn everything it takes to represent my work and my brand.

The proof that OP is engaging can be seen from OP Members that have been logging in EVERY SINGLE DAY for years (we know because we have streak rewards), who have consumed all my 900+ videos and pushing me to make more faster.

We have a DAU/MAU (Daily Active User/Monthly Active User) of 38%, which is pretty unheard of in the online education space.

So if you want to start investing in yourself and start to thrive in this new chaotic world, I strongly suggest that you check out Octalysis Prime (we fully guarantee full refunds if you don’t like it anyway).

Learning with Games

Why Game Based Learning and Learning Games are essential

A baby Learning through games with the piano.

Humans have an innate desire to learn. Learning is one of our most fundamental activities. In fact, when things become too easy and no more learning opportunities are there, it becomes boring.

Playing Games become boring when you can't learn how to improve, like Tic-Tac-Toe

We don’t like to learn from long lectures or huge paragraphs of text. They learn from 3 ways:

  1. They learn from trial & error.
  2. They learn from watching other people do it.
  3. They learn from Stories

1) They learn from trial & error.

Primitive times - people

Imagine at primitive times – people just figuring how a stick works, or inventing the wheel – the process of trying things, seeing it work or fail, and then iterating, is very engaging.

2) They learn from watching people do it

We like to learn from watching other people do the activates. If they succeed, we are happy for them. But when they fail, our brains take special notice.

This is likely why we think it’s funny when people something stupid and hurt themselves – our brains want us to take special attention to this event by making it pleasurable.

We would even want to tell this #fail activity to our friends so we could all laugh at it. It’s not just about being morbid, it is a survival trait that uses joy to spread important lessons (much like gamification and learning with games)

3) They learn from Stories

Even when we are listening through long monologues, we feel immersed when it is in story form, with people we care about, and events that surprise us. Think about times when people in a village sit around the campfire and listen to the elder talk about experiences and adventures he had in his youth. Our brains are fully engaged, and we likely learning all the lessons.

The relevance of of Educational Games

These are the 3 ways our brains like to learn. But what shook up the system is that the things we have to learn in the past century became dramatically more complex – things like advanced mathematics, philosophy etc.

Unfortunately, the technology to deliver the education was always stuck at the same place – we rely on pen and paper, and to some extent powerpoint. And therefore, the tools we have failed at engaging our brains to learn the most important things in life.

This is where educational games and learning games come in place.

The opportunity of Learning Games

Because of new gaming technology, for the first time in history, students can now learn through

1) Trial & Error by playing and replaying through the game

2) Watch other students and players play the game and learn from that

3) Instead of listening to a story, they actually become part of the story.

And this is why Educational Games are so impactful.

Nowadays you will find a variety of stellar learning games and educational games for every grade level that teaches all sorts of topics in a classroom, including math, science, research, writing, and language.

This helps educators and students grown and learn in schools and classrooms. Some even help engage parents to become of the interplay between the teachers and the children.

No longer would kids need to deal with boring school skills and tests, but students become excited through the gamified class that now involves teamwork and gameplay.

Every classroom can now help students through learning from games and math to achieve maximum fun.

This will help them become excited in school, while succeed in the fields of math, science, language, and more.

Educational games and learning games makes learning amazing for teachers and students alike.

In order to progress in our skills, free our knowledge, focus on distance learning, and support our assignments and scores, educational games are definitely the best way to go.

Of course, the big question is what Educational games to use and discover, so that students and teachers can both growth and have fun together while improving their skills.

For that, check out my others posts, such as Top Ten Learning Games For Kids.

Yu-kai Chou Personal Update 2021

It’s been a long two years since I’ve written my last update. Things have been pretty crazy.

At first I thought no one would have noticed as who cares about a random person’s yearly update, but I started getting repeated messages from distant friends on how they haven’t received my update emails for a long time and asked if they have been removed from the list somehow.

I guess people do notice when I slack off on stuff like this.

The past two years have been pretty wild (it’s long but hey – two years of updates!).

Here’s the tl;dr

  1. moved my entire family back to Taiwan March of 2020
  2. Twin daughters Symphony & Harmony Chou are almost 4
  3. Consulting Company (Octalysis Group) and Education Platform (Octalysis Prime) growing and doing well.
  4. I was fortunate enough to also teach my Octalysis Framework to Yale & Oxford University. Google Scholar shows over 1500 academic journals and PhD thesis
  5. My book has sold more than 100,000 copies
  6. I spent some time as Head of Creative Labs and Head of Digital Labs at HTC, contributing to the future of AR/VR and the Metaverse
  7. I started my own NFT project called Metablox with my 16 year work partner Jun Loayza who is from Google/Youtube. Was self-funding but recently a friend convinced us to take his $100K investment so thought might as well open a round of investments.
Continue reading Yu-kai Chou Personal Update 2021

I “fled” to Taiwan right before the California lockdown

This is going to be a time of change and reshuffling. There is a 3-5 year period to hustle and strategically position ourselves to create positive impact in this world.

On March 17th, the moment we heard that our city in the San Francisco Bay Area will start to go through a stay-home quarantine in midnight, we bought a one-way ticket for the whole family to fly to Taiwan.

We literally had two hours to pack out of the blue, and could only bring the essentials for a trip that could be anywhere between 3-8 months. Usually it takes two hours to pack for a one-day trip for my twin daughters, but this time it was like escaping an army of plague. We only grabbed what we needed to survive the plane flight, and planned to figure out where to live and what to wear after.

Taiwan was one of the first countries to get hit by COVID-19, as every week there were 150,000 people commuting between Taiwan and China.

But Taiwan managed it very well and so far has only experienced 3 deaths to date. When we left the US on the 17th we believe (and still believe) the worst was yet to come. In Taiwan we believe the worst is already over (these 2 weeks due to a mass reverse-exodus of people like me, Taiwan’s cases jumped from 50ish to 300ish with deaths 2 and 3 during this time too, but it is not the fault of Taiwan operations and they still handle things very well as will explain below).

Also, Taiwan is very aggressive in testing people so the numbers should be exhaustive (as opposed to many countries saying you have symptoms would not get you treated if you did not travel). Even after the virus wave, I believe there will be so many/much bankruptcies, unemployment, social unrest, and aggression towards Asians that it wouldn’t be an ideal place to stay for my daughters.

Here’s what Taiwan is doing:

All foreign returns including myself are self-manage quarantined for 14 days.

What makes Taiwan stand out is that my neighborhood head (like mayor but for the neighborhood) calls around 2-3 times a day to make sure my family is staying home and feeling well (we get individual calls for each individual in the family).

The CDC also texts us daily to make sure we are feeling well, and if not, responding to the text would trigger a special vehicle to take us to the hospital (many global cases were results from Taxi rides to the hospitals).

Even at home, I’m supposed to be wearing a face mask at all times to make sure other family members are not affected (btw, since most sick people don’t know they are sick, saying you should only wear masks if you are sick is not useful).

The Taiwanese government also provides some money for each day of self-quarantine to ease economic impact or get a helper to buy food for individuals etc.

Last week they even sent a full police force to bust into nightclubs, Karaokes, and markets proactively to escort violators back home and fine them $3K – $30K USD which is substantial for a Taiwanese salary.

Again, the people who are fined huge amounts are not confirmed cases, just foreigners returning from risky areas are supposed to be quarantined.

The government is taking no chances of this breaking out. Everyone is afraid of the chink in the armor for the national defense and is preventing that outbreak in all means.

What’s also unique is that each sick person has a unique number. So everyday in the news we will see statements like, “We now know #25 transmitted to #36 as they were attending the same school in the UK. #43 recovered and returned home from the hospital last Tuesday but a follow up check shows that she seems to be getting worse again.”

This is why despite being the inconvenienced quarantine foreign returns, I feel much safer and better being here in Taiwan than anywhere else in the world.

This whole experience became a prelude for me to think about the Post-COVID Resistance, which I will talk about in another post.