Issue 39 🍵 Facebook's new Meta

Well, it seems to be everyone's favorite meta.

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

Facebook would like us all to know that they’re interested in the metaverse. After all, they literally rebranded themselves to Meta.

And well, to keep this short: this all feels a little desperate.

The Facebook news was met with a lot of people poking fun at it, and upon personal reflection, I think it’s because Facebook hasn’t built a name for being savvy or innovating.

No, when I think Facebook, I think of the company that influenced the American elections. When I think Facebook, I just think of a relentless copycat—just check Instagram to see what they stole from Snapchat and Tiktok.

I think there’s been a growing sentiment that Facebook is out of touch. What’s worse is that they can’t recognize that, but they’re still so aggressively trying to reach the youths anyway.

And at the end of the day, there’s no substitute for figuring out what people need. Like, take NFTs. In the last issue, as we said—Web2 has created so many shitty hostage situations. You can make money on specific platforms on the Internet, yes, but it’s so difficult for people to take their audience or content and earn money with it elsewhere.

NFTs are the opposite of a hostage situation—at the end of the day, they’re just digital certificates on the blockchain. From day one, it’s the seller who imbues it with something worth owning!

And there are so many byproducts of certifiable digital ownership. NFTs enabled digital flexing, and thus, we can buy NFTs to signal our communities online. Which of course, is a big deal in a post-pandemic world.

And we can buy game NFTs—land plots, monsters, card packs. Investors are also willing to put up a lot of money to have a true ownership stake in a borderless, permissionless economy.

So if all Facebook is going to do is put up some games and create some Sims-like avatars . . . what need does that even solve? Virtual avatars alone does not a metaverse make, it’s gonna need a reason for people to be there.

But sigh, “metaverses” seems to be the next Silicon Valley battlefield. Microsoft also popped up to declare that they, too, are creating their own metaverse (but y’know, for work).

Once you get a bite of true digital ownership, nothing really compares. As each piece of news passes us by, it really, really does feel that Web3 is gonna make it. (W3GMI?)

Other news

🌱 Upcoming Drops: Pulp Fiction and The Matrix: Resurrections

🌱 Sci-Fi NFT card game, Parallel, held their second pack drop last weekend, and it sold out in less than a minute. The most expensive pack actually sold out in 10 seconds. Pack Drop 3 is expected to happen early next year, and here’s hoping we get some more limits or different distribution mechanics. (Yes, we didn’t get packs 😢)

🌱 The Rarible Protocol can now be deployed on the Tezos network. As of writing, wallets from the network is still not supported on their marketplace, but developers can already use the protocol. Genuinely hopes this brings more attention away from Ethereum, because ETH gas fees are disgusting.

🌱 The renowned game studio Ubisoft announced its intent to enter the space of blockchain gaming and play-to-earn. Games are a fantastic vehicle for onboarding people into crypto, so this is gonna be interesting.

🌱 The membership platform Patreon announced that it’s entertaining the idea of using crypto for the users on their platform. Interestingly, the article mentions that it was brought up alongside Mastercard’s ban on adult content, which is how the OnlyFans debacle happened. Funny how that ripples over to Patreon too.

🌱 If you didn’t sell your Botto airdrop, it’s probably worth mentioning that the last sales for its art were 79 ETH and 100 ETH recently. Probably worth claiming!

🌱 You can now make your own NFT marketplace using Wordpress, thanks to Art Haus’ new plugin on WooCommerce. The plugin uses the Zora protocol, so 0% fees will be taken from any sales, and it also works for any ERC-721 NFT through their Auction House contract. You can also set up curator fees in case you want to.

Reading list

  • Gassing ourselves up: Elle chatted with Zora about Cup! Zora is one of our favorite projects in the whole wide world, so this was surreal, to say the least.

  • Now, for some numbers and cool chart! To start: NFT sales surge to $10.7B in Q3 of 2021.

  • And then Mason Nystrom of research firm Messari tweeted this thread about NFTs on the Solana blockchain. (wen Tezos marketplace data?)

Creative corner

We found Caramuru’s work on Twitter, and it was so striking, we knew it was going to make the newsletter.

Hailing from Rio de Janeiro, the artist’s linework and use of halftones evokes vintage designs, but the colorful gradients makes it feel fresh and new.

Check out more of Caramunu’s works on their website or SuperRare! You can follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

Try this

If you’ve been actively trading NFTs, you can take a look at paperhands.gg to see what you sold a little too early. Just connect your wallet at the site, and it pulls in the data for you.

For those unfamiliar, Urban Dictionary defines “paper hands” as “a trader who gets scared and sells. Then watches those with diamond hands land the profits”

Diamond hands basically means you’ve held, and the website also congratulates you for it if you haven’t sold anything.

P.S. This is a fun joke, but to be clear: nothing wrong with taking profits and cashing out, especially if that money can change your life! It’s not life-changing money until, you know, you change your life with it. The space fetishizes diamond-handing a little too much 😅

If you got any news or feedback to share, you can find us on Twitter. And if you like the newsletter, please, share it with a friend or two.

🍵 See you again next Wednesday! - Elle and Gian