Issue 32 🍵 Web2 doesn't like Web3

But do we need them to like Web3?

Disclaimer: This newsletter is not financial advice. We buy what we like, and you should buy what you like.

With the market cooling off a bit, there’s definitely been more time for things from the other side to surface. And by the other side, I mean the Web2 side.

For example, even movie studios are stepping into the fray. The upcoming Dune movie is launching some tie-in NFTs on Makersplace.

But then scroll down to the replies, and it’s an abrupt reminder that outside of those within the space, NFTs are just seen as an environmentally-destructive Ponzi scheme.

It’s a bit jarring to remember that this is the larger public’s perception of NFTs. And it’s hard to say if it’s any cause for concern, because after this week, it definitely feels like it can be somehow weaponized by companies like Apple.

Because this week, the tech giant has shown its hand—Apple does not approve of NFTs. It blocked an update for the mobile version of Gnosis Safe, the smart-contract vault popular amongst DAOs, specifically because it displays NFTs (read the Twitter thread here).

Because of course, NFTs are a threat to Apple and similar marketplaces, whose business models rely on being walled gardens. You can buy something on Apple, but you can’t ever take it out of Apple if you want to switch to a different device.

And here at Cup, we grumble a lot about NFT art marketplaces taking a 15% commission on artists, but it’s nothing compared to Apple’s 30%. It's a steep cut, and the discontent around it has led to it being the subject of legal dispute over the past few months.

So of course Apple is threatened by digital media on an openly tradable market, especially considering how the NFT market did $2.5B in volume in the first half of 2021. If that volume routed through Apple, that could have been $750M in fees for the company, right?

After this week, it’s a reminder that there are a lot of people out there who haven’t looked beyond the “NFTs are environmentally destructive” part. And while it does feel silly, if Apple’s imposing limits, then it feels like validation that even they consider NFTs important.

The fear is: if the environmental thing can last this long, what damage can a well-funded and well-orchestrated media campaign do?

Time will tell if things ever get that far, but I don’t want to discount the fact that they can recognize the effect of NFTs on their business.

Other news

🌱 In development: the Head of Product at Opensea, Nate Chastain, has been accused of buying NFTs early, then selling them when price spikes when the project gets an Opensea homepage feature. Insider trading is a pretty hefty charge, and Nate or Opensea has yet to respond.

🌱 Google has announced their partnership with Dapper Labs (known for NBA Top Shots and CryptoKitties). This will give the opportunity for developers under Dapper’s Flow blockchain to use Google Cloud. A big tech company giving support to the Web3 space? We can’t wait how this turns out.

🌱 Metapurse announced “Dreampurse”, a festival dedicated to NFTs. If you’ll be in New York this November, you can buy a ticket and enjoy displays of over 100 NFTs, an immersive display of Beeple’s “The First 5000 Days”, and DJ sets from Alesso, RAC, and PLS&TY.

Reading list

  • Seth Godin is very anti-NFTs, but his piece calling speculation as the new luxury good was pretty good. It doesn’t apply to everything, but speculation has undoubtedly driven some of the more manic behavior recently.

Creative corner

Nigeria-based visual artist, Adesola Yusuf, creates collages that reflects what life is like where they live. Though their works are vibrant, their stories can be dark. Some of their works talk about their government’s policies, and how the police arrest young people for self-expression. This is a great example of using art and NFTs to document ones truth.

Check out more of Adesola’s works on Foundation, OpenSea, and KnownOrigin. If you like what you’re seeing, follow them on Twitter and Showtime!

Try this

Learn about The Sandbox and Earn $SAND

The Sandbox is another virtual world where you can buy digital land as NFTs. You use $SAND tokens when doing transactions, and you can earn some on Coinmarketcap by learning more about the project!

The campaign will end in 20 days, but it won’t take much time to learn and possibly earn.

If you got any news or feedback to share, you can find us on Twitter.

🍵 See you again next Wednesday! - Elle and Gian