Issue 8 🍵: Is *this* a scam?

Some apprehension, Aavegotchi launch, Nyan Cat, and more. Your NFT news for the week.

NFTs, NFTs, NFTs. Everywhere.

Seriously, everywhere we turn, there’s some new NFT project popping out of the woodwork. Act now to be an early buyer or lose out on profit!

We’re definitely exaggerating here, but there are a lot of new collectible projects just appearing out of nowhere! And we’re definitely a bit taken aback. Where were you last year, when we were starving for NFT projects to look at?

It feels . . . worrying.

And to be clear: the boom of money flowing into NFTs is not what we’re worried about. It’s great that artists can earn a living with NFTs. It’s fantastic that people can make money for their skills, during a pandemic.

Like, we know someone who’s close to turning their $14 in Top Shot into money for a laptop, and that’s awesome.

Rather, we’re worried that a lot of these new projects might be scams. It’s worrying how popular the pricing curve of Hashmasks has become. To recap: the first pieces start cheap, but the more that’s bought, the more expensive each new mint becomes. Ultimately, the earliest buyers benefit.

And yes, rewarding early buyers is generally how NFTs work. But before, these would take months or years to play out! What’s wrong with being rewarded for years of faith in CryptoPunks or Axie Infinity?

But now, that timeline has been compressed to a matter of days. And all of a sudden, the crypto and DeFi influencers who have never spoken about NFTs before—they got NFT projects they’re endorsing.

Is this genuine interest? Or is this just an attempt to get their followers to make them richer? After all, this wouldn’t be the first time that crypto influencers have colluded to get their followers to inflate the influencers’ net worth.

So, yeah, we’re sharing our worries. We don’t want any of you to get scammed or FOMO into buying something you can’t easily sell back.

If you’re completely new, this article on how to stay safe in the NFT boom is more important than ever. And our additional tips:

  1. Buy things that you like. If you like art, buy art. If you don’t like basketball, why would you be throwing thousands of dollars into Top Shot?

  2. If you don’t know what you like, then experiment! Just make sure to do it with funds that you can afford to lose.

  3. Do your research. Join Discords, engage with the creator on DM, see what other people are saying! Personally, it concerns us if a project’s Twitter was created just this month, and it’s even worse if the Discord doesn’t have any NFT people we know.

  4. If you don’t want to do research, throw your funds into older projects. You can’t go wrong with the teams that were building before NFTs were cool.

Stay safe out there, and have fun.

Other news

👻 Aavegotchi, the cute pixel ghosts backed with interest-bearing cash, have announced that they’re ready to launch on March 3! HYPE.

🐱 Remember Nyan Cat, the pixel cat flying with a rainbow? It recently sold for almost $600,000, and this article we just linked was the New York Times’ coverage! $600,000—that’s how much owning a piece of Internet history is worth. Now, what’s a meme worth?

❎ If you’re collecting on Opensea, heads up: they decided to remove the blue check mark for projects with less than 20 ETH in volume. That’s approximately $30K, in current prices, so it’s a low blow to new entrants to the space.

🎟️ With the increased attention on NFTs, different platforms have announced experiments with distribution. The art marketplace, Nifty Gateway unveiled a new lottery mechanism, and NFTboxes, the artist-curated NFT box, also announced the same. It’s definitely cool to see them experimenting with fairer drop mechanisms!

Reading list

And tweets!

Creative corner: Miguelgarest

Scrolling through Miguel’s feed is just the loveliest experience. His colorful, kawaii works are such a burst of joy!

But you know, it’s not like we developed a bias once we saw that he has a NFT collection about drinks. And no, pssh, it definitely doesn’t kill us inside that Cup of NFT doesn’t own a tea Cuppa. 🥲

Find Miguel’s portfolio here, and a compilation of all his crypto art links here.

Things to try: check out the Sevens Genesis Grant

If you (or someone you know) is struggling to get break into the crypto art place, then this grant is a fantastic opportunity!

Sevens Genesis Grant was created by illestrater, the collector most known for acquiring one of Beeple’s NFTs for $777k. The grant is specifically meant for artists who have yet to mint an NFT, and it’s geared towards giving them funding and support to get started.

You can find the rules and application link here.

The judging committee is composed of some well-known artists, so as a collector, it’s going to be exciting to see who gets chosen!

If today’s issue was helpful, please consider sharing it with a friend!

And a secret: we had a goal to hit 50 subscribers by March, and we blew past that already. Like, wow. Thank you, really, for reading. Absolutely nuts that some of you have been reading Cup for over a month already. ; — ;

🍵 See you again next Wednesday. Thank you for being here!