Episode 4: June 9, 2021
A conversation with Sarah Austin on blockchain, crypto, and NFT opportunities for creators
A conversation with Sarah Austin on blockchain, crypto, and NFT opportunities for creators
- Gregarious Narain (@gregarious)
- Ken Yeung (@thekenyeung)
- Sarah Austin (@sarahaustin)
- Jeremiah Owyang (@jowyang)
- James Yu (@jamesjyu)
Gregarious Narain 0:20
Surprise! We are back. Welcome back, everybody, welcome to the Created Economy. I cannot know the name of our on show. This is our weekly news show on everything happening in the greater economy. We're bringing you a round of the latest news, commentary, interviews, and of course, some deep dives with experts like our friend Sarah, who will be joining us very shortly on everything happening in the creatoreconomy. So we go live on Wednesdays at 3pm. Mountain Time. You can find out more over at created.show it is the official show page where we have our episodes of and all the details of upcoming episodes. But if you want long form content, because that's more your thing, head over to createdeconomy.com that is where we post up our show notes and lots of other interesting things. It's also an opportunity for you to sign up to be a guest. Because guess what? We need more guests in the long term. By the way, we are streaming right now on Facebook, YouTube Twitch. Sometimes LinkedIn but Ken deleted that this week, so...
Ken Yeung 1:28
You're just going to automatically throw me under the bus and we're not even, we're not even five minutes in,
Gregarious Narain 1:33
It would be better if LinkedIn actually allowed you to schedule your events to start, you know, like when you needed to start them as opposed to having to schedule an hour in advance. But it's been a busy week. So we haven't been able to do that. But we are on clubhouse we are on Twitter Spaces. All right now, so feel free to join us there for audio. Of course, you can join us for video as well. I need to go share a link. But before we do that, Ken, how you been man? How's it going? How's it going out there? You had a birthday?
Ken Yeung 1:59
I did. I did apparently 365 days I decided to cycle up, level up. So now the season finale of my 30s was was spectacular. I am now in the fourth season, I've been renewed for another decade. So that's always a plus.
Gregarious Narain 2:19
How are the upfronts this year?
Ken Yeung 2:21
oh man, they were horrible. They're horrible. You know, it's like all still TBD, these type of things. So we'll see how it goes. But as you can tell I'm around I'm back to sporting a tie-up pulling the what is that? That that eccentric stock guy on CNBC, you know, the one that uh, that Marc Benioff always talks to you know, it's like, that's, that's kind of pulling that type of energy right now and that type of look. So,
Gregarious Narain 2:49
You know my favorite line? Was that movie 25th hour,
Ken Yeung 2:52
Gregarious Narain 2:53
Ed Norton and the other guy. And my favorite. My favorite line from that movie was a guy was like, you will take effin optical illusion, you were in a striped tie with the striped shirt.
Ken Yeung 3:07
I'm trying to throw it off here. It's like I could have worn green. But you know, green on video was just probably not a good idea.
Gregarious Narain 3:14
He's not wearing a striped tie or striped shirt for anyone who's listening.
Ken Yeung 3:18
Well, I am wearing a striped shirt. Just not a striped tie.
Gregarious Narain 3:21
shirt too. I mean, that would make you an optical illusion. Oh, by the way, let's see in the business. Don't wear striped clothing on a video.
Ken Yeung 3:30
Well, go bigger go home. Right. But yeah, so we're back. This is Episode Four. A little disclosure. Apologies for the noise you might hear in the background. Turns out that we're doing some creator space-type stuff in my condo building. So, you know, it's all part of the act. Right? But thank you all for joining us. And looking forward to another great conversation this time with our very dear friend who we've known for, oh, good lord, so many years and and and we've had so many amazing conversations. Oh, no, no, no, no, we are old. Not her. But she is she's done such an amazing she's had an amazing career. Not only as a creator, but as a journalist, as a founder, as a hacker, a developer, and now she's an investor doing some fantastic stuff. And I'm sure we'll have a lively conversation about what it all means to the creator economy. So we'll bring Sarah Austin on in a little bit...
Gregarious Narain 4:43
And a creator, and a creator also.
Ken Yeung 4:45
Yeah, I mentioned that earlier. Come on. She's all of it. She is an amazing individual. That yeah, basically, like, I'm wondering, is there anything that she can't do like it's fantastic. It's absolutely fantastic. But we'll learn more about her...
Gregarious Narain 5:09
You keep all the flattery for when they when the guests is visible with us now, at least we can see the preview.
Ken Yeung 5:17
She can catch the replay later. We'll make it as a meme, you know it'll probably wind up being as a LinkedIn testimonial sometimes.
Gregarious Narain 5:28
Anyways, we got a lot to cover this week as per usual. So let's jump right into it. So yes, it is June 9, Episode Four. Thank you for being with us today. We have a lot of news I mean, there's just always too much news at this point. You should see the fights that Ken and I have about who gets to tell which story. So, on that note, let's jump right into it. First up, let's go our first segment on creator economics though. And so Ken, was this yours?
Ken Yeung 5:59
This was mine. Yeah, yeah. Although you did try and poach it. So here's the thing about a collaboration like he needs to really laid out like things can be very territorial. So but our first story comes from is specifically around a graph that was in an Emarketer report. Basically, it highlights like what, which of the social media platforms are the most creator-friendly, right? And the thing with that is, it's like, most of the results are all around Facebook properties, which is not necessarily so surprising because they have the biggest reach, Facebook properties have the biggest reach, but out of all, whether it's Facebook, or Instagram, or whatever else they have, I think ultimately, what probably shouldn't surprise anybody is that Instagram and Instagram stories, tops, TikTok, tops YouTube and Pinterest and Twitter, Snapchat and all these other things. So this is it, there's a high likelihood for brands for marketers to really engage with influencers there. And as we get through the rest of the news for this week, it'll be pretty apparent to see what's being done from the Instagram and Facebook side to encourage and entice more creators onto their platform.
Gregarious Narain 7:16
Well, it seems like we're in an arms race again. So it's coming soon. There Pinterest livestream. You know, I thought that was interesting. I think we talked about that a couple weeks ago. Next up, related, by the way, there's a lot of news about this topic, actually. And there's a lot of discussion going on right now about, you know, how much you know, in general, I think, Ken, like the take rates that different organizations and platforms actually are exactly the charges are exacting from creators. And one of the biggest sorts of takers in the space is Apple. Right? And so there's an increasing discussion, Facebook announced actually right that they were going to be disclosing how much Apple was taking from you as part of them delivering their fees to in their new dashboard. But The Information has a good article about Apple's brewing battle over creator commission, in case you don't know Apple takes 30% I believe they didn't they lowered it though to 15%?
Ken Yeung 8:19
it depends it's all based on how much revenue you get. And but even that's very tricky, right? I mean, it's like 30% is the default for Google and Apple and their
Gregarious Narain 8:31
team to take the arrows the way Apple does though.
Ken Yeung 8:34
Well, I think the Google, Apple's more in the limelight now because of all their dirty laundry. All the inner workings has been aired at in their loss in this antitrust lawsuit. It was the Epic Games. Yeah. So they're throwing that all out there. And then there's another article that came out, I believe it's from The Verge that basically showed that look, there's a like Roblox is was not considered a game. So there's some loophole now. So Apple has gone through and change their policy in terms of, what's considered a game versus a content creator, and then there's some leeway for them to fuss around with that. So it's not really 100% clear in terms of the creator commissions, but I think that that's actually going to play a big factor over the course over the next few weeks, or not years, in terms of how these platforms cater towards creators. And I think there's a lot of soul searching that not only these platforms need to do, but creators in terms of where they need to go and how much money there they stand to potentially lose. Well,
Gregarious Narain 9:36
I want to talk to Sarah about this topic, too, because I know one of the reasons people like are advocates of crypto is that there are no fees per se. There may be gas, but there are no fees. Right. And so this is one of the appeals of a blockchain-based universe as well. What's up our next story up? I did come across this yesterday. It was just a chart shared by The Information as well. I really sort of highlighting all the deals that a16z is put forward. And interestingly enough, one of the reasons for their investment so strongly in this area is because they have their crypto fund. And so they've made a significant number of investments into sort of the crypto ecosystem. But of course, they've invested in a number of other things that you may have heard about, for example, like Clubhouse PS, turntable FM is back again, really? What happened there?
Ken Yeung 10:27
Gregarious Narain 10:30
we used to listen, we used to be on that all the time, actually. So I can't complain about that. But there are several NFT investments in here. And I definitely want to ask Sarah about these. When we get back to here, maybe we'll bring this chart back in there, but yeah, Andreessen, I would say is certainly a prolific investor in the space. But there are a number of other great VCs and investors out there. So hopefully, we'll have some of them on here soon to talk with us. last article was one that came up, not too not too very recently, actually, New York Times talking about how young creators are burning out and breaking down. You know, the interesting thing here is, I feel like I'm gonna have a breakdown, just trying to produce a daily, weekly show with you. I can't imagine being on the hook. And you seen some of these stories, right? Like, I remember reading about Ninja like, he had to, like, figure out or calculate the loss from going on his honeymoon, because like that six days cost him like half a million dollars in annual subscriptions or something like that. Yeah, it isn't always on proposition. There are a lot of challenges, there's a lot of pressure.
Gregarious Narain 11:37
Some of it, I think is the same things I preach to other founders, though, is that you can and should actually still have a life outside of your work. And part of it is the pattern that you set up from the beginning, right? Unfortunately, algorithms do govern a lot of this success, determination, or make play a big role in the success factors for creators. And so that cadence and that regularity can often be a critical part of your success. But if you are a creator out there, and you have got, you know, have you been suffering from sort of feelings like distress or depression, by all means, we'd love to hear from you. But also, we want you to know you're not alone. You know, it is better to build something that lasts a long time, than if something's just successful for a very short time. You've got your whole life in front of you.
Gregarious Narain 12:25
And this is a good read, though, because it does go behind the scenes with several tech talkers, sort of talk about some of the challenges, they faced some of the emotional drain that goes with it and sort of that that perpetual sort of hamster wheel that you can feel like you get on, you know, to be a creator, I like I could say, from experience, just Ken and I just doing this show, we probably talk every day, about some part of it. And we're not even producing every day, right? And our produced production workflow is like the dog crappiest version of like what you could call producing a show. We don't do any editing with any of the fancy, coolest stuff that like actual no other creators out there doing so I can understand and relate to this feeling for sure.
Gregarious Narain 13:09
But let's go on we've got some YouTube news, as well, just continuing through. Ken this was yours?
Ken Yeung 13:16
Yes. So it oddly, like a 180 switch to what we talked about and mental health is, is first and foremost. I think what we're talking about earlier way back, in the beginning, is of the show is our there are all these platforms that are capitalized for brands, right and what YouTube has going for it which was, which was, I guess formally announced or formally revealed, if you will, by Fast Company, is this creator in residence program that YouTube has, and I remember back in the day, I think this was like probably like five-plus years ago, when I was writing for The Next Web, I visited a YouTube Spaces facility in Los Angeles, right just north of the airport. And the whole premise of that particular space, this is a physical space where creators can go and produce content, produce their work and in this, you know, with top of the line equipment, but with this creator in residence, this is more like an incubator, so an incubator type program so they will do what YouTube does is they'll choose a select number of creators and artists and influencers and they will work with them to give them access to tools they will allow them to kind of really beta test and preview what's coming down the pipe for what YouTube's doing.
Ken Yeung 14:39
And at some point and they will and YouTube will even visit them at these creators' homes to help them help offer whatever guidance they need. And the potential afterward is like look, once you've done that you could protect you might be able to advance into some special funds right like for example, the first couple The article cited the black creators fun that YouTube set up a while back. So this is an opportunity to do that. So this is another incentive that YouTube's doing to encourage of creators to do that, because they feel like, "Hey, we are the one that most people associate from when it comes to creators and influencers, those have those original types of content. And so we have those capabilities, that expertise compared to Facebook and Snapchat and everybody else." So this is, as Greg pointed out, another part of the arms race to to amass a large, loyal following of creators in the future.
Gregarious Narain 15:39
Absolutely. Another in other YouTube news. Last week, they reported, or at least through a press release, that in the last 12 months, YouTube's paid out $4 billion to the music industry. I mean, I think it's easy to lose sight of this, but YouTube is one of the most viable sources for creators, I think, to monetize their efforts, right? They payout like we're at war, whereas everyone else is, you know, just getting started maybe a billion here a billion there, YouTube's doing 10s of billions of dollars paid to creators, largely and through an array of services. So I think it's important to remember, that predominantly, still, I think is still the, the AdSense sort of advertising-driven stuff, but increasingly memberships and tips and a number of other ways to monetize so don't sleep on YouTube, and you know, maybe it feels a little old fashioned, sir, for some folks or you know, a lot of folks are on tik tok when you're trying to figure out how to monetize. But the YouTube size definitely use sort of where it's a bit more prolific in terms of like, tried and true and steady revenue. Once you can get to certain sizes, unlike, say, other platforms like Twitch and maybe TikTok, where you might be able to grow an audience, Twitch is actually pretty hard to but on TikTok I know a lot of people can grow up on TikTok pretty quickly, but doesn't necessarily always lead to revenue. But YouTube still still blowing it out of the water here. This is mostly related, by the way to music stuff. So TikTok k is one to one a better way to get paid for music and a lot of ways than say even Spotify. Actually, if you have a Content ID and some of the other features that are enabled there.
Gregarious Narain 17:17
Instagram news, what else we got going on over here now? Let's see.
Ken Yeung 17:21
So Instagram, as we talked about, I think it was a few weeks ago. Instagram has their Creator Week, right? And on the eve of this Creator Week, Mark Zuckerberg came out and said like, Look, we will, we will take care of we will work with creators in terms of revenue share, and there there's no rev share program in place with Instagram right now. But according to Mark Zuckerberg, if there was one day Facebook will have it be less than the 30% of Apple and Google and what this all kind of spat came across with the apple and Apple's Epic Games trial. And there's certainly no love loss between apple and Facebook, in light of the Apple's new privacy features in place. But here's where it gets interesting, right as we're talking again, this arms race that's for creators, Instagram is making it easier for creators to make money and through like having some sort of a native affiliate link opportunity within Instagram. So your creators can make more money, they will be able to even be able they might be able to sell merchandise further down the line. So there are a lot of interesting things at play for creators to do to take advantage of it within Instagram. And I like I think Instagram will certainly have it enough mo ahead in its arsenal to take on TikTok and YouTube so I think in over the next year it'll be very fascinating to see how much more the brands can feel Instagram and Facebook will stand up against more traditional ones such as YouTube or Twitch.
Gregarious Narain 19:11
Yeah, I'm not gonna hold my breath. I mean, I know the tools are being deployed but we also have like a decade of them not paying a penny to the creator
Ken Yeung 19:19
Gregarious Narain 19:20
I'm not going to be grateful Yeah. All right, some news on Twitch.
Ken Yeung 19:28
Twitch, Twitch, Twitch I mean, we're talking about like the big on the traditional social media plays but I think we got it we can't ignore the fact that Twitch turns 10, it's now 10 years old, right. That birthday's past, but it's 10 years old. But what's fascinating is like this Wired article, like the Twitch exec calls Twitch the "original player" in the creator economy. That seems kind of interesting and almost dubious. I think I'd be very curious to hear your thoughts, Greg. But especially since YouTube's been around a lot longer, but it seems that in terms of YouTube, they're just producing content that's just like, okay, we're here. Well, Twitch is more like, hey, it's more dynamic. It's more about life. It's more about like, it's that Justin.TV type of modality. That was that's how it got started.
Gregarious Narain 20:24
Yeah, I'm torn on this, I would probably, I could reasonably give Twitch credit for being the original to some degree. Right. I certainly for live streaming. Right. I think there wasn't really any I mean, back then there were other things those weird things, right. Marie. Marie says YouTube is the original YouTube was definitely original for public videos. Twitch's probably the O.G., for I would say streaming user-generated streaming video or content, right? But, you know, twitch has a lot of interesting capabilities that now when you look at the space, what's happening, people are actually copying more of what's in Twitch and bringing it outwards than what they're bringing, then like the other way around, right, like the video part, YouTube was brave and early on and sort of getting video onto the web. But all the other tools that are having to current like version or iteration of a creator economy that we're looking at, it's actually the community-based tools and subscriptions and, and the tipping and all these other features and capabilities that exist on the Twitch universe, they're actually being mirrored now in other places.
Gregarious Narain 21:33
So I will give Twitch some credit for doing a lot for the creator space. From very early days. Obviously, YouTube was one of the leaders and the first in in sort of getting video, online and networked, right, in the manner that it was, you know, we said we got tons of respect for YouTube does as well. But yeah, they're both important to the ecosystem we think they have lots of life left in them for sure.
Gregarious Narain 22:02
So, by the way, that's the end of our new segment, and we're gonna give you a chance to if you're in the audience listening anyway, we're gonna bring Sarah in and ever do so before we do her intro actually just have a reaction to the news. She wasn't paying attention to watch. I should have told her we were gonna quiz her on the news that, but no, but just in case you didn't know, we are always live tweeting out the links to all these articles. So if you're watching us to check the comment stream there, if you're on Twitter, Check Twitter for the links to these posts. And of course, you know, we have a Flipboard over at @CreatedEconomy. There's a link on screen now. But if you head over to our Created Economy Flipboard you can find all of the news that we considered even before the ones that we picked to talk about today. So with that, why don't we bring our guest Sarah on to interact and react? So this is the part where we like to sort of like just do our quick reactions to news before we get into the full interview. If anyone's listening out there and wants to come on up, feel free to raise your hand and we'll bring you up as well. Sarah, how are you?
Sarah Austin 23:07
Hey, guys, it's really good to see you. It's been a while since I've done everything.
Gregarious Narain 23:14
It's been forever. None of us live in the same state anymore. How do you like that? Oh, where are you? I'm in Denver. He's in Washington. Yeah. And you're the only one left.
Ken Yeung 23:29
See, we move just so it made it easier, gives us all an excuse to travel. Once everything's all said and done. Like we can all visit more places.
Sarah Austin 23:39
Yeah, I certainly would love to go to Denver. It's so beautiful there. And then I'll hold it down in California so you guys can come. But yeah, I didn't know that you guys left. So that's sad. So many people are flocking to other states ever since everyone works from home. But yeah, just my commentary on the news. I think the thing that really stands out to me is the YouTube program for creators to give feedback to YouTube. So that can be you know, iterated into the user experience. I think that Instagram should have done that when they made that change. I don't know if you guys remember when Instagram made the algorithm change so that content creators were forced to post two photos a day versus one photo a day and caused a lot of creator fatigue and
Gregarious Narain 24:33
they're worried about hiding likes, but they're but then they're forcing you to post more.
Sarah Austin 24:39
You know, they're causing their influencers and their stars to have to create lower-quality content in order to meet the demands to keep their followers increasing and keep them fed with even just being able to populate their news feeds. And that's, that was something that a lot of creators complained about so you know, YouTube probably is learning from these mistakes in the industry. I mean, it's like, yeah, maybe you call that a mistake, but then look at Instagram is number one on the chart for the number one demand for marketers, I think the percentage was 97% of marketers are choosing Instagram for advertisements. So yeah, so maybe just, that's what they care about at the end of the day is serving those ads. But you know, YouTube, I think sees the long-term value and investing in their creators and trying to build products that the creators are okay with, and that match their lifestyle.
Ken Yeung 25:43
So Sara, in terms of like, your, your background is, is extensive in terms of creating content like you were you started pop 17, back many years ago, you worked with a lot of brands. But as you look at the landscape now, if you had to go back and do it all over again, which of these platforms which you probably put more of your time into, would it still be YouTube? Or would it be Instagram, tik tok? Or twitch or anything else?
Sarah Austin 26:13
That's a good question, Dana, just as a career trying to get on as many platforms as possible. But then you have to adjust your content because it's not always one size fits all, which can be pretty exhausting. I like what you guys are doing with your live content. So you know, clearly coming from some creators with some experience as well. But I would say YouTube to answer your question, yeah, YouTube seems to be an
Gregarious Narain 26:38
individual creator, or like as a business like so if you were advising a business, would you have a different answer?
Sarah Austin 26:45
No, I would also say YouTube, just because, you know, YouTube has excellent SEO, and it's become the de facto search engine, a lot of people prefer to receive their information through videos. And so you're seeing more and more search over on YouTube search. So it's a great place for discovery. It's a great place for businesses to attract their target customers. And that's, you know, something that's morphing and changing as new features evolve with web 3.0. And everything that's going on with the future evolution of technology. But it seems like YouTube's pretty cutting edge. And I think also that technology always wins.
Gregarious Narain 27:32
All right, now, let's do a quick transition here. We are interviewing Sarah. And I will start we'd love for you to just be able to like, oh, how do I do this? This is so complicated. I need to do this so that I could do this. Right. Sarah, can you just do a quick intro and tell everyone who you are before we jump in? Because we already have we have a ton of questions.
Sarah Austin 27:53
Okay, sure. No problem. So Hello, everybody. It's a pleasure to be here live with y'all. I am Sarah Austin. I am knee-deep into cryptocurrencies. So I've kind of transitioned into web 3.0. After an extensive background as early dating back to web 1.0. When I was at Stanford, as a teenager, I was actually around the valley in Palo Alto for the verification of web 1.0. And everyone thought that the money was in the protocol. But then AOL came out and Yahoo, and next up Google, and everyone learned that the money was actually not in the protocol. But this time around. I think that the money is in the protocol, as we're seeing with cryptocurrencies. So I'm, I'm really interested in NF T's just being a content creator myself, I'm coming at NF T's. After diving deep into financial instruments and understanding the entire ecosystem of that is crypto and the history of crypto and decentralized finance defi. I think you really have to know it all in order to fully, you know, see the future of NF T's because it's the merchants. It's like finance and content coming together. The whole idea is you're cutting out the middlemen, you're going direct to the consumers, and you're creating, you know, through smart contracts and technologies, and new distributed distributions. And then a new completely new models for content. And you know, of course, brands are trying to get into this as well because NF T's don't have to be just videos or art, or music, they can be so much more than that. They could be this T-shirt I'm wearing. It could be anything so,
Gregarious Narain 29:56
so let's step back for a second real quick though. Um, a lot of folks There's a lot of different interpretations of web 3.0, for example, like, do you have a definition you like using or that you find helpful for people understanding sort of the broader sense of this?
Sarah Austin 30:11
Sure. I mean, the way that I think of web 3.0 is everything. Everything encompassing cryptocurrencies.
Gregarious Narain 30:20
Gotcha. Okay. That's good. And I know you're working now a lot with NFT's. Right? But you were doing crypto like way before. I know you've been involved with crypto, do you want to? Can you tell us a little bit about what you're doing crypto before and after us? Because I think then we do have to dive into some of the things as well.
Sarah Austin 30:41
Sure. I got into crypto by writing white papers. So I'm a technical writer, I contribute to a ton of magazines and publications over the years. And as a writer, back, you know, in this, this first bubble in 2017, right around that time, there was just all these Russians and Chinese that wanted technical white papers in English. And so I ended up capturing some clients who wanted to pay me in Bitcoin, because of the cross-ease of cross-border payments with Bitcoin coming from these countries. And I was interested in, in this space, because one of my friends, she's also a content creator, her name's Rachel Wolfson. And so she had been writing some papers. And so she kind of told me about this. You know, while ago, like, maybe it was 2016, you know, I got my first gig writing a white paper, coming up with some token economics as a result of that, researching a ton. You know, learning about the space. And, you know, voila, a few white papers later, getting paid in Bitcoin, watching how that space on folded started, you know, trading my Bitcoin, started investing it into different tokens and then start, you know, building out a portfolio and, you know, researching all of these companies, it's been, it's been interesting to see these projects take off, and to kind of choose some of the best projects early on, and sort of ride this decentralized finance wave, and sort of see how it's settling in now, with content creators as NFT's are turning into a big trend. Ken, did you have any?
Ken Yeung 32:43
So, Sarah, explain in layman's terms, as I've, I've seen NFT's buttered like, oh, somebody's putting out their NF T's like you have these the all these means that you've seen on social media, oh, they're now being auctioned off as NFT's. We saw that record-breaking like Beeple's work of art was sold for $69 million, like this massive record as an NFT. Can you explain first of all, like what NFT is in just for layman's terms? And then second, can we dive into how creators if they're like, oh, we're seeing this trend? How do we get involved in this? Like, what do we need to do to have an NFT? And, like, what what do we do with it afterward?
Sarah Austin 33:34
Sure. So digital assets are huge right now, as we know, we're all watching the news about Bitcoin and elans tweets. You know, a vital characteristic of a popular tradable currency is its fungibility, cryptocurrency cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Etherium, they're completely fungible, which means that each token is equally as valuable and indistinguishable from the other one. So if a currency is non-fungible, then each transaction actually requires the buyer and the seller to agree on the tokens value through a smart contract, or a similar module on anything outside of the Ethereum network. But non-fungible tokens. These are called NFT's. They have a ton of use cases, just beyond a medium of exchange of value. So it's really become this nation that industry and then of a teaser, just getting so much recognition from you know, you mentioned Beeple's NFT selling for an exorbitant amount of money. Also crypto kitties, and then you know, NBA top shots. That's another example of an NFT company that is Um, is in the news a lot right now, sometimes maybe not like positive news. But there, there's an artist explosion, and there's a, you know, in the area of monetizing digital artwork. So instead of just carrying a monetary value, and NF t represents the value of a unique item that is completely different from a, and distinguishable from other items, so, you know, they cannot be replaced by another, they're totally different in their functions and what they do. And so, you know, I think creators are trying to find that cool angle, like, how do I package my content? How do I make it really different? To distinguish this from this one from another one. So you think like, kind of try to think of like a package deal. That's what I think the artists are trying to sell. So just like a work fine art, um, you know, you can you can that's completely indistinguishable from another work of fine art, you can have replications of each just like you have a print of fine art. So you could sell, you know, the original one, and then you could sell, you know, the first 50. You know, copies.
Gregarious Narain 36:27
So sorry, let me ask you a question about this. And wait, I guess like, the cynical people out there. I consider myself cynical enough sometimes, right? would say like, I already have this thing. So why, like, Why buy it? Right? Like, what, what are some of the underlying, like, I guess, motivation? Like, why are people buying these things? Right? Like, I get, like, obviously, if I can make something wants to buy it cool, like, good, good for me to be able to sell it. What are there like any patterns or trends or reasons you see people buying them? Right, like it? And I think like, part of my cynicism, I guess is, we're still stuck in a physical world. Sort of context, right, like so, you know, like, all the digital things didn't make sense to the people who were analog before. But now digital seems so native. But you know, like, we've always held art still kind of separate, right, like, or digital art, certainly had, like, it was a different domain, it feels like it's catching up or getting parity with some of them with the physical analog or art world now to some degree as well. Right. So but are there any thoughts on motivations? Or why people are buying these? Um, you're sort of just like, what, what, is there something else, there are other things going on here at the same time, right? It's not just like the availability of crypto per se.
Sarah Austin 37:49
Right? I think that I'm just like an art collector, you buy art because you want to add it to your collection. And maybe that collection will be worth something one day, so you like it, you want to show it off to your friends, you have this ability to hang it on your wall, your friends can see it, they think it's cool, you get to enjoy it, you get to look at it. So I think it's it's similar to that it is attractive to collectors, it's attractive to crypto traders, and to people who want to hold their digital assets in new ways that they think you know, instead of buying one thing that's like every other thing you know, a Bitcoin is indistinguishable from another Bitcoin. They say, Well, why don't I just hold this cool NFT? It does something, I get this value out of it. Like Gary Vee launched his series of NFT. Yeah, yeah, you can put it up there. But he, you know, with each one of these trading cards, you get a ticket to his annual conference for something like five years, maybe 10 years, you get to have an all-access pass. So people are coming up with new experiences. And, you know, that's kind of up to the creators. But also, there's a lot of technology, innovators, innovators out there, and startup companies that are coming up with great ways to help the creators package these possibilities through new technologies that offer, you know, more options for creators to create content in this new model where you know, you're not dependent on this middleman, YouTube or Instagram to get you to know, your advertising revenue. You know, actually, it kind of cuts out the advertising model altogether. I mean, in this new world of web 3.0 there, there really are no ads, only the best content wins. So if brands want to get there They're their name out there, they're going to have to get really creative work with the creators and find new experiences in this economy. So I think like, tickets are doing really well, people like access people like experiences tangible things. So like, for example, this card unlocks, you know, a bunch of different experiences. It's not the card, and then the card itself actually holds a value a monetary value that you can sell.
Ken Yeung 40:33
Right, so Sarah, let's point out, like, in recent days, there was a one company OneOf that raised 10s of millions of dollars, right. And their whole thing is fascinating about it is that it's backed by Quincy Jones. And it's all for like, musicians and artists, right? And as we're talking about, like, what you can do with these type of things, can you explain, like, if I'm a musician, like what can I do with like, what? Obviously, right now, there's, there's, like, live music isn't happening for maybe a little bit longer due to the pandemic. And so a lot of people are out of work. But these artists want to maintain their relationship with their fans and their community. So obviously, they could put out their posts on like, social, traditional social media. But if they want to have some sort of by a, a Patreon type of experience, minus actually having it hosted on Patreon, where which might, which would take some sort of cut of the fees or whatever of this loyalty program, the subscription program, they could use an NFT this way. So they say, hey, you can buy an NFT of our latest album cover. And that will get you access to a virtual show with us. If you know and plus, you know, free merchant at a discount merchandiser, blah, blah, blah, is this kind of what could possibly be the potential of an NFT for this for this type of these type of professionals?
Sarah Austin 42:19
I see what you're saying, like discounts on a T-shirt. Um, you know, I think it's just, it's really this wide-open space for these creators to come in, you know, with the most creative ideas. It's, you know, with blockchain technology, there's this ability to democratize the ownership and really bring that economic empowerment to the artists and to the fans because the fans get to have the opportunity to own their art. And, you know, it's, it's really up to the artists to come up with the most creative ideas and build those experiences for their fans. And minting an NFT it's never been easier than it is now.
Gregarious Narain 43:16
What do you do? Do you have a site you like? Or can we pull something up here for folks to look at?
Sarah Austin 43:21
Um sure why don't you pull up the one that Ken just mentioned?
Gregarious Narain 43:26
Sarah Austin 43:29
Yeah, so you know, one of his green NFT platforms, and it was built on the Tezos, blockchain and Tezos blockchain protocol is a long-lasting energy efficient blockchain and you know, it's sustainable. And it's low cost, which is really great for artists who
Gregarious Narain 43:52
Can you explain it real quick? What's the process to make an NFT?
Sarah Austin 43:57
Sure. So you just go on and you mint an NFT. You, you have your art, whatever it might be. The OneOf platform is actually not live yet. But they did put out a launch. A lot of people in the industry are talking about it. Um, but you know, there's a bunch of them. I think the most popular one that people mentioned is called Open Sea. And they allow anyone to go on there and do what's called mint an NFT. So, sort of think of it in web 2.0 like, minting would be like an upload, you know, like upload a video, right? So that would be sort of the concept. But when you meant it, but an NFT is you know, it's a non-fungible token. You're minting it on the Ethereum network. One thing that is difficult for artists is that you know when you go to Open Seas on the Ethereum network when you mentioned NFT, you have high gas fees, and even if someone
Gregarious Narain 44:59
Explain gas for everybody?
Sarah Austin 45:01
Gas fees, you know, there's that its smart contracts are, what Ethereum. They call them smart contracts, it's a contract that unlocks the block, there's a lot of steps involved, the more there is the more congestion on the network that maybe wasn't built for this level of scale. And security, you know, with that congestion can be problematic because it causes higher what are called gas fees. So in order to mint, an NFT, there's a fee. So if I just want to upload, right, like the concept of uploading a video to YouTube, it's free, right? But it's not really free, right? Like, there are costs to YouTube involved with that they make it free for the user. Because the Ethereum network is decentralized. There are fees associated, so it could cost you know, $200 to upload your content, which isn't actually called uploaded be called mint an NFT. But just to give you some sort of conceptual comparable,
Gregarious Narain 46:10
Sure. It's not necessarily the production resources that create that created that thing, per se, right. So it's not like they say it was a piece of art digital artwork, like it's not like the Photoshop file. It's, it's whatever you put it into the whatever you meant is in the thing, okay. It's
Sarah Austin 46:32
It's everything, the intellectual property, you're selling it. So instead of streaming something on YouTube, and people get to watch it, but you're ultimately the owner, you're actually selling this. So like, this digital art piece here is going for two Eth. But when you go to buy that you're going to have to pay gas fees associated with it.
Gregarious Narain 46:54
Oh, and also, interestingly, here, I know you have to use a cryptocurrency.
Sarah Austin 47:00
Yes, you have to use a cryptocurrency. That's correct. So one thing that I did notice about OneOf his that anyone can buy an NFT with a credit card. So you know it makes it easier for people to get into the space who are maybe first-time users.
Ken Yeung 47:19
One thing I've noticed here, Greg, if you scroll up slightly to the next to the previous section. Actually, one more up is this ego responsibility? Like we know, Elon Musk made it abundantly clear why he was backing away from accepting Bitcoin for Tesla's just because of the energy usage. And there's been there's a lot of claims that say Bitcoin is not necessarily environmentally friendly in terms of mining it. And, look, we're dealing with climate change. You got it, we have to deal with that. But it's fascinating to see this type of approach from a company of that saying, look, we are we're diving into this NFT industry, which is still very much a wild wild west, right. And we've seen like NFT valuations, the cost of NFT's go up with people, and it kind of goes down. But now, no one was like, Hey, we're here. But we're also taking it a secondary approach that we are doing. We are socially responsible. We're doing something socially responsible to make this happen. Like what does that say about the industry itself? The world of NFT's?
Sarah Austin 48:38
Well, that's um, you know, it's, it's interesting, you pointed out Tezos is energy efficient, what's called proof of stake blockchain that takes 2 million times less energy to mention NFT compared to NFT platforms like OpenSea that we just looked at built on Ethereum network. So just like one quick stat about that, that I happen to know, is minting three NFTs, you know, on OneOf has the carbon footprint equivalent to the weight of a snowflake. And if you compare that to the carbon footprint of some of the NFT platforms like open seatbelts on Ethereum network, that could be equivalent, some of them to 900 pounds of carbon emissions. And so that's why I saw, you know, Elon, tweeting about the environment because Ethereum network is a blockchain that uses proof of work consensus mechanisms, and that is the mechanism that is also used by Bitcoin. And it requires miners to compete like to compute. They have to solve complex mathematical problems that validate these transactions on the network for a chance to win a reward. That's their incentive. And so that requires this very expensive mining equipment that's consuming large amounts of power. And so you know, no matter how great NFT's are If you're you know hurting the environment, then that's not something that I think artists or public figures want their brand associated with. And so that's likely why Elon was tweeting. He's pulling out.
Gregarious Narain 50:18
Do you think that's a rate limiter to more people using them currently?
Sarah Austin 50:24
Like a barrier to entry?
Gregarious Narain 50:25
Yeah. Like, are people hesitant? Because of these? I think there has been more awareness, the impact of this right?
Sarah Austin 50:33
I think so. Yeah, I think that artists really care about the environment. And they, you know, this is a cause that they are concerned about, and so they want to be mindful of their ecological footprint. And, you know, that's, that's just something I've noticed with artists is they're very particular about who they work with. And they really care about their art being associated with the planet in a positive way.
Gregarious Narain 51:04
Are their use cases that you think we should be aware of, of NFTs maybe, or smart implementations or usage that you've seen that you know, that might be a good source of inspiration for brands, or for creators out there who are thinking about, "Hey, this is an interesting concept?" You know, you know, early on, it takes like, you know, when YouTube started, people just thought of all kinds of videos, then eventually, they're starting to become some design patterns for kinds of videos or use cases that normal people get normalized to, are there any of those that you might want to point out or that you like?
Sarah Austin 51:42
Um, yeah, I mean, I think that there are some artists doing some really great work in the NFT space. And it's such an early time that you know, there are brands, I'm sure that want to get involved, I'm sure, you know, a bit a bunch of big brands is all, you know, having board meetings right now, about NFTs. How do they get involved? Should we take this seriously? Is this just a fad? Or is this here to stay? But you know, similar to Nokia, they held a board meeting and they circulated the iPhone on the day that the iPhone launched, and they said, Is this a competitor to us or not? And they just kind of laughed and said, Well, look how much market share we have, look how much money we have in Nokia, and then you know, fast forward a couple of years, like it's all about Apple, it's all about the iPhone. So, you know, you got to really take the technology seriously. Like I said earlier, the technology always wins. And NFTs are certainly in my opinion here to stay. It's the new frontier. So if the time is now for, for brands to jump on the bandwagon.
Ken Yeung 52:53
So sir, in your experience, your vast experience of being a developer, reporter, journalist, and creator. And now like, what does it say in terms of like the world of blockchain technology, right? This rise of blockchain technology, this decentralization, in we've seen reports, we've heard stories of how platforms, these traditional social media platforms, these web 2.0, God bless those times when we all went to these conferences and heard about the latest figures from Twitter, from YouTube and Twitch and everything like that. It's like, Hey, we're launching these new features for, for our users to create on there. And then we hear that, oh, they just these platforms, just quash these creators, they just take away what they give us a takeaway, right? And then we're, the creators are like, well, what happened? Like you, you said, you're there for us. And now you take it all away from us. And now you're back again. And we're saying, Hey, we're here for you. And but you're like, at some full point. It's like, Alright, you guys are just basically baiting us because you want our suit. It's not like we need you at this point. And there's a there's, there's an article that from an interview that jack Conti, from, from Patreon gave, he's like the creators have a lot of leverage now. Right? And, and we talked about it last week. And I think what you're talking about with this, with this dissent, decentralization and blockchain and NFTs it's almost as if like a creator these days can just say, you know what, minus the network effects that you get from traditional social media. Forget all everybody else, could a creator just be completely decentralized and run an efficient business? Is that would that be a fair statement to say and is that something thing you've seen in the wild?
Sarah Austin 55:03
Oh, yeah, I mean, just look at how much money, you know, Facebook, YouTube, and all these tech giants have made off of my content for the last 15 plus years, I mean, I get a revenue share of that, but it would be great if I could have all of, you know, just go straight to my audience and share my content, and they can purchase it, they can own it. And if I ever really wanted, I can, you know, hit one of them up and buy it back. You know, it's an economy, the content is, is, is open for multiple people to share in the ownership, which is also an exciting kind of crowdfunding technology that we're seeing enter the NFT space now, with startups, who are innovating new technologies for what's called fractional ownership. So it doesn't have to be for the few elites at the top. And platforms are enabling also NFTs to be sold at low purchase prices. So not all NFTs, there'll be those $62 million dollar, you know, people, you're gonna see very affordable NFTs. And if you can, in with an artist early, just like a traditional artist, you buy their work early, you never know where they could go in their career. So it's really just about liking something, wanting something that's unique and different. And having that collector mentality.
Gregarious Narain 56:35
Just to know I, from what I understand, though, you can't sell future revenues, right, in a traditional, right. So you're just sort of like it's the one-time thing. Yeah. And you said something? And I think Sorry, I think the thing that you encounter both pointing out, which I think is the powerful part is maybe the real dynamic To me, the real dynamic shift is that in the past, you had to get big, right? Like, like, you didn't have an option, right? Like if you didn't get the 10s of 1000s, or 100,000, or a million followers, subscribers, whatever it was, like you couldn't really live off of like that smaller amount, right. And so I think like, what we're seeing now is a transition to where it is possible now for a smaller audience to potentially be a bigger contributor into the mix. Well, they said, this has been awesome, I think, sorry. Oh, but thank you for actually taking the time to explain some of these things to us. Because we're, you know, new to this, figuring this out.
Ken Yeung 57:36
We'll have to launch our own...
Gregarious Narain 57:38
Ken feels way more informed right now. But, um, we are about to go into the last part of our show, and I know you have to pop off. So by all means, thank you so much. We just want to say thanks again. We hope to have you join us in the future. But thanks, we will see you soon. And we look forward to talking about anything and everything you do in the future. So come back soon.
Sarah Austin 58:02
Wonderful. Thank you,
Ken Yeung 58:04
Sarah, one thing like how do people find more information about you give your give our listeners? How do they How do they keep in touch?
Sarah Austin 58:12
Sure. @sarahatv on Instagram, @sarahaustin on Twitter. Follow me.
Gregarious Narain 58:20
All right. Well, make sure you get out there and follow Sarah. She's, uh, definitely been in this for a while. And he's definitely been doing fun and interesting things. So I hope you will take a chance to learn more about her and connect. Alright, Sarah. Thank you so much. Thank you for being here.
Ken Yeung 58:33
Gregarious Narain 58:34
Created After Dark
Gregarious Narain 58:36
All right, everybody. Well, we are now going into our After Dark series. So part of the show, which means that everyone listening, we want you to get on stage with us. So raise your hand. I see some of you out there on Twitter Spaces. But it's really just a chance to chat and catch up reflect on what we'd heard or discussed today. So if you'd like to join us raise your hand I'm going to see if I can invite some friends up here to speak with us. If you do come on up just say where you're speaking from. When we check onClubhouse, we got some friends out there listening on clubhouse as well. If anyone in Clubhouse wants to come on up, just raise your hand we're happy to have you join us to join a conversation share your thoughts. It's an opportunity just to you know, connect, and reflect a bit. So Ken, what about what are your thoughts now? What are you going to mint is your first NFT?
Ken Yeung 59:27
You know? I have no idea like it's the there's so much potential based on what Sarah is talking about is like, we could totally do that. And I mean, especially when you cut through the middleman and it's it but it's kind of it makes sense. Especially when you look at what all the headlines in the past in terms of like hey, we're gonna allow like YouTube's been experimenting with like allowing creators to sell merchandise, Instagrams about to do some sort of a shopping type of play. Well, so it's only a matter of time before these big platforms are starting to see the potential of what's in this blockchain and with NFTs and everything and kind of incorporate that. But it's almost, but I think that what the these social platforms are doing is they're holding the network reach as hostage. That's their leverage over the creators, right? And, but I think if these companies, if the creators are like, you know, what, hey, let's go ahead and get rid of, you know, bypass the traditional platforms and go straight with, you know, blockchain and, and do out own Creator coins and do NFTs? Who knows, right? They could very well make it, we could see a whole new, we could definitely see this next generation of this creative economy, to what Niel was talking about. Was it Niel, talking about the... No, sorry, it was Dimitry. Oh, my gosh, Dimitry was talking about the creative economy 2.0, like, maybe we could start to see the ushering in of this new era, that of the creator economy. And it's like, and I don't know what the like, the sky's the limit. And I mean, now Sarah's explained it to me, I'm like, Okay, great. This is going to be now I understand it better. I know what everyone's talking about. I think the execution, the execution of creating one is still a little above my head. But I would love to love to know more about that.
Gregarious Narain 1:01:31
I think the creation part is the easy part. It's the value part that I think is challenging.
Ken Yeung 1:01:36
Gregarious Narain 1:01:36
Murry actually has a fairly good comment here. He says the NFTs remind me of crypto kitties. Cool, but not required. They only have value someone is willing to pay for them. I've seen NFTs backfire on major artists because their fans question their cost or value.
Ken Yeung 1:01:51
That's always the case, right? It's like, it's, it's all about how you can put something out there. And it could be wind up be like, Oh, I'm gonna I'm hoping to make it make $69 million, like Beeple to sell from art. But ultimately, you basically,
Gregarious Narain 1:02:05
most people are not gonna sell an NFT for $69 million. Yeah, you know, I, I am? I would say I wouldn't, I'm cautious about them. I think the more they at least for now as a transitionary thing, the more they marry to that analog world, like the better like the thing that's interesting about like Gary's sort of NFT collection is he drew them all right, like, and I think that there's something interesting about knowing it was like a hand-drawn thing by someone right now. That's just me, maybe it's just I, you know, I've been in technology my whole life. But like, that seems rare, more, quote, unquote, real to me, right there now, moments, I think, also seem very real to me, right. So if I, if I'm imagining use cases, I think like, if I was in a live stream, as someone was here as our guest, you know, I'm on the Joe Rogan podcast, and it's that little clip, you know, that moment as a commemorative piece, like where I can mint it, stamp it, push it out, and I know that it's there and like, you own that moment. And, you know, it feels a little like owning one of the stars, you know, like those sites sell you a star?
Ken Yeung 1:03:15
Yeah. Well, it's almost like you could say like that, that, like a historic moment in time. Like, for example, when like, say, when Barack Obama announced that he's running for president, right, or when, when it was announced that Barack Obama won, was elected president for the first time, like just taking that moment and making that as an NFT. Like, imagine? Like, obviously, the eyesight
Gregarious Narain 1:03:38
Someone has to make that right. I see. Priscilla has joined us on Twitter Spaces, if you want to, unmic, feel free to join in anytime. I so i think but I think it's got to be there has to be or dynamic. You can't it can't be it has to be someone commemorate that moment in time, it can't just be that that moment, time existed, right? So you're a photographer. In the past, you know, when you would sell you could sell, like, the perpetual rights to like, you know, to a photo that you've created. Right? You could sell prints to it, right? To me, it feels like when you if you're if you were to go down the NFT pathway, you would be converting one of your foot, you'd sell the rights to say put the rights to your photo into a thing, right into an NFT, and then sell that, right? I get it that that's just like royalties and licensing and those kinds of things kind of have existed in the past, right? Like it because it's like, you know, kinda like, a lot of Star Wars never sell their originals, right? They only sell like the prints, right? Unless it's like bespoke work or something like that. Even then, like if you get married, right? They often don't give you the originals, right? Like don't they'll give you your prints right or something like that. Um So, you know, I It is interesting where I'm curious, you know, about some of these other now the use case that actually I think, are really interesting is these NFT kind of like Gary's doing these NFTs as tickets, right? Because they are also one-of-a-kind things, those are things that were previously numbered, like things that existed in a series that were numbered, etc. Right? There's some interesting stuff there. I think like it because, Okay, great, you have a ticket. There's only like one of these in the world. And this one ticket can get you into this one door, right? So I think like when it facilitates or enables access to a thing, for me at least just mentally, it's easier to wrap my head around those some of those use cases than understanding say the value of owning like an original the, because here's the thing, you don't own the rights to like, say, say you bought a YouTube video on empty. Unless it's and I saw this done. The remember Charlie Bit My Finger?
Ken Yeung 1:05:58
Yep. Yep. That went on auction too.
Gregarious Narain 1:06:01
Yeah, they sold the NFT. But this is what I thought was powerful. They also deleted it off of YouTube.
Ken Yeung 1:06:07
Well, no, there was thought so we're gonna take I don't think they took it off of YouTube.
Gregarious Narain 1:06:12
Well, I talked to the guy who was running it. And that was that at least the plan. Right? At least to me, that made sense, right? I was like, Okay, so now, like, the original is actually back, you actually have the original. But you know, like, there's something to it, right? Like, I mean, like, like, but the thing, the fact that it's always the way you consumed it originally was like in a print, or none of the original, right? Like, like when you go to a museum, what do you do? You see, you see the original, and then you buy the print?
Ken Yeung 1:06:40
Right? Or you take your phone and you take a picture?
Gregarious Narain 1:06:43
Yeah. But in the digital world, it's kind of the opposite. Like what we're talking about here is because you view the original with the exact same fidelity basically as the print. Right? And then it's just literally bragging rights to own the original, I guess. Yeah. But you don't know the royalty from it. You don't have the money from it. You don't necessarily own the right to create new prints of it. Right. I don't know. It's a complicated area, for sure. I think.
Ken Yeung 1:07:11
No, I think there's there's a lot of promise with the NFTs. It's a bit it's still very, that it's what you could do afterward. It's still very ambiguous. But that's not necessarily a bad thing, either. Right? I mean, because it's like it's, it's this while again, we're talking about this wild west like, and I think at some point, we need like this type of a jar where we put in coins, every time we utter that phrase, the wild, wild west, you know, it's like, I'm basically 50 cents into this thing now. But the what you could do with them with this, these NFTs and this decentralization, and it's, and it's certainly worth diving into in future shows, of how decentralization can change this, this creator economy, especially when we are when we're talking about how these are now businesses, we are no longer individuals, but we are sure we are businesses. And so in order for us to have we need to do what's best for the business, not necessarily, you know, as an end, like I think as an individual, it's like it's a completely different mindset. But as a business, you got to do what's best to monitor.
Gregarious Narain 1:08:19
We do have Jeremiah here joined us in from Twitter spaces.
Ken Yeung 1:08:23
Jeremiah Owyang 1:08:25
Hey, everybody, hey, Ken How's it going?
Gregarious Narain 1:08:29
It's a discombobulated world because I can see Ken, but I only see lines moving next to Jeremiah's face.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:08:35
What do you mean?
Gregarious Narain 1:08:36
Well, we're in a video stream also. But like I'm listening.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:08:39
Oh, got it.
Ken Yeung 1:08:42
It's technology. Jeremiah, technology.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:08:45
So I did a tweet like six minutes ago about a tease coincidentally. And I identified that there are more features for the modern NFT. Right, so so Can I just tell you
Gregarious Narain 1:08:59
share a share that I'm looking at it, share what you have here.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:09:02
So digital art, which you just talked about. But the other thing that it could include? It could be a mixture of these things. There are like eight things. It could be personalized. So the music digital artists bt, he's a DJ and musician. He launched an NFT and sold it and then he made the art personalized for the person who bought it. Also, there's social credit. So you see people you see the d fi friends and like board, ape, folks, they turn whatever NFT they bought, they turned that into their Twitter profile. The next one is the Gary Vee play which has access to an event which he is promising to do. So it's become a ticket. The next one is belonging to a community. So board a when you buy their NFT you get access to their, their Yacht Club, which is an online virtual community, kinda like Club Penguin. I think in the future, all games are going to be like this. The next one is derivative rights. So you can mix up the end of Tea if you purchased it and reuse it like a creative commons, ability to change and alter, and then of course resale revenues and maybe other forms of revenues could be dividends and things like that. So I think we're past phase one, which is just purchasing a license or a copy of the art. The modern NFT must include those things I just said in combination. That's it.
Unknown Speaker 1:10:24
Gregarious Narain 1:10:26
I like this. This is great.
Ken Yeung 1:10:27
Jeremiah Owyang 1:10:28
can you retweet it if you like it?
Ken Yeung 1:10:30
We're not sharing it at all.
Gregarious Narain 1:10:32
Right now. We're sharing it.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:10:35
I know I'm asking for a retweet. Dammit.
Ken Yeung 1:10:40
I made an NFT of your tweet, Jeremiah.
Gregarious Narain 1:10:42
I retweeted it also
Jeremiah Owyang 1:10:44
This is social audio.
Gregarious Narain 1:10:47
You're late to the audio part. We were on video first.
Ken Yeung 1:10:51
But Jeremiah, I just made it NFT of that tweet. Is that a little meta-tweet?
Ken Yeung 1:11:01
But no, this is really, really good. Jeremiah. Thank you, I guess very timely, based on what we were talking about earlier.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:11:08
Yeah, I was just like two minutes before this room start. I came into this room. Unbelievable. We're, we're on the same wavelength. I mean, yeah. I mean, the digital NFT market kind of died out. I mean, they need to add more features.
Gregarious Narain 1:11:20
Right. And so Jeremiah, do you think these types of these models will be hardened into like software? Or do you think it stays kind of in this bespoke arena that we've been sort of seeing so far?
Jeremiah Owyang 1:11:32
Yeah, I think you can do a mixture like So Greg and I are both part of Rally in so we're gonna have an NFT feature. I actually am not sure which one of these features it will have. But I'm sure like open sea and variable are trying to add on these things as well. I mean, Gary Vee, what did he use for his?
Gregarious Narain 1:11:55
Oh, it has something like nameless or something underneath it. I forgot. Yeah, it's v friends. By the way, Jeremiah also um, like, there are things like that. I know. I've seen that at least for like turning tweets into NFT's like there's a website or something that does that. But yeah, Gary Vee is using a service called nameless, nameless which is called watching your custom NFT product, and never been this easy. Let's see here. I'll put this into the stream as well if folks want to see it. It was.io in case anyone's interested and if you're watching you can also see it here. But yeah, they provide Oh, so they provide the whole thing actually the whole thing is V oh actually v friends maybe Gary probably owns this company.
Gregarious Narain 1:12:47
Like v friends is in the header image. But um, he may be that maybe these were, you know, combined forces at the same time, right?
Jeremiah Owyang 1:12:56
Yeah, I think he invested in
Gregarious Narain 1:12:57
Yeah, I would imagine he did anything
Ken Yeung 1:12:59
Anything with V in it is Gary, essentially.
Gregarious Narain 1:13:03
Yeah, interesting. So with this, you upload any type of media asset, he can bundle up these NFTs and it basically show like a stripy kind of thing as well.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:13:14
Yeah. I mean, it's gonna be any type of like access to an event will probably become an NFT. Right? Yeah, tickets. Club access to anything like, like you can imagine clubhouse rooms can become NFT. Right to get to those rooms, Facebook groups can have an NFT.
Gregarious Narain 1:13:35
You see, this is where I prefer the tokens though, Jeremiah, because I like the one-off production for like, like membership type of things. I mean, I guess you know, like, if you got a membership card, the analog world would be that membership card for a year. But since these may not die, you know, maybe I but they have a minting date. Right? So you could use that potentially?
Jeremiah Owyang 1:13:57
You could, I mean, you can make it programmable there's I mean, the thing with the NFT is it's not programmable but well actually I'm not sure that's true, but I guess you could wrap it
Gregarious Narain 1:14:07
Yeah, this nameless was thing support something they call evolution NFTs which is don't get stuck with typos and errors in your digital collectibles or evolution of teams to allow you to make changes on the fly interesting.
Ken Yeung 1:14:20
So Jeremiah, I have a question about your tweet
Jeremiah Owyang 1:14:26
Eventbrite, so imagine Eventbrite and evite, and in you know upcoming every type of event or company or Facebook has an associated NFT Can you imagine that? Go ahead, Ken.
Ken Yeung 1:14:40
So it based on what you're talking about with you know, digital, our personalized assets, social credit, events, and everything else. Who is the what is the company or who is the one that should be responsible or will be the individual or group that will establish these type of protocols or services?
Jeremiah Owyang 1:15:08
I don't know but the blockchain community will say this, well should be a smart contract as distributed the that's what they would say. But you still need a neck to choke when you're when you get sewing tickets to things right. So I suppose it will be the person who posted it for sale. So so let me amend that the original person who created it and posted it for sale will be responsible for fulfillment. Actually, I don't know. Let's see if we get
Gregarious Narain 1:15:36
James in here. By the way, James, you listening on Twitter spaces, has minted some NFT's himself. Have you seen James's NFTs?
Jeremiah Owyang 1:15:47
No, let's go see it. Let's hear about it. James, tell us what's going on.
Gregarious Narain 1:15:50
He's still listening. I was hoping he comes on up. But he did some he's been using. What's that? Ai thing called again? The GPTthing?
Ken Yeung 1:16:01
Gregarious Narain 1:16:03
Yeah, he's been doing some like generative art. Using AI, which is very fun. One is very interesting. James' ones actually feel kind of like art exhibits that I would go look at like in a museum.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:16:14
I'm looking at his feed right now.
Gregarious Narain 1:16:17
He has some super cool ones, as well that he's done. Alright, here he goes. James.
Ken Yeung 1:16:23
Gregarious Narain 1:16:25
Jeremiah Owyang 1:16:26
James Yu 1:16:27
Hey, what's up?
Gregarious Narain 1:16:28
Is your avatar, an NFT?
James Yu 1:16:31
Gregarious Narain 1:16:32
are you and how do we know you're really you?
James Yu 1:16:36
That's gonna be a high price.
Gregarious Narain 1:16:42
So, James, you've been doing some awesome experiments with NFT's as well. We were just having a talk. We're curious about your thoughts on you know, what, what made you start experimenting with them? And, and sort of what have you learned in the process of putting it out there?
James Yu 1:16:56
Yeah, sure. Um, I guess I was, yeah, I wasn't really into the NF T or even the blockchain space for a long time. what really got me into it was just sort of seeing in a sort of outlet for a lot of my digital, kind of I even consider art before by been making sort of viral creations that were sort of literary in basis. They were kind of weird. And I figured, like, oh, if it's got like, a lot of, you know, and IoT platforms were, well, they are digitally native, right. And the fact that value creation, it sort of value transfer is baked into the protocol. You know, it just made me think like, oh, and it felt like also the audiences are more receptive to weird things, in general, versus sort of the old genres that we see in kind of web 2.0. But also like, because I've been involved in sort of writing short stories and various other literary outlets. So yeah, I've been experimenting with just like making some interesting, little like AI generative art, and mostly been experimenting on him at nunc, which is a tezos based NFV platform.
Ken Yeung 1:18:15
So James, having a coming from somebody that has very little technical prowess to Was this an easy thing to set up like to do these things yourselves? Like, how much skill Do you need to hire
Gregarious Narain 1:18:32
Highly technical people person, you might not be the best.
James Yu 1:18:37
here's the analogy, if you like consider all the Ethereum platforms like OpenSea, Foundation, variable, etc. and you compare that to the tezos platforms like hicetnunc, which I don't like the name, by the way, just like impossible to pronounce. Let's just call it HEN. It's like HEN is like his foundation. It's like the subbies HEN is like the the really spare Brooklyn loft, with like, punk rock here, like, like it like blasting. And there's no, you know, there's no handrails or anything, it's like it's pretty bare-bones, it actually reminds me of the early days of love the web 2.0 platforms that were out there, which is actually very exciting, because I felt like I feel like that platform has actually the most experimental art that's out there. And it is also, I believe, the platform that has the highest share of people who are both creators but also are collected. So I think that's really interesting. That's why I've been investing more into that platform, specifically, and I believe it also has now surpassed the AU versus OpenSea. So just in terms of the number of wallets there are interacting with those smart contracts but yeah, terms of getting a setup. Yeah, it's not user-friendly. It's like anti-user friendly. I feel like they actually do it on purpose. Because like, they want people who are really like, want to do it for the intrinsic value of like creating, it is at least user-friendly platform I've ever used in my life.
Ken Yeung 1:20:18
It's like you, you finally figured out found the holy grail and therefore you're allowed to to live forever. But if you like, you can't Tough luck. You don't get it. It's like this very, really weird quest
James Yu 1:20:31
like that. I think that and also, they just started like three months ago, which is crazy. Right? So and it's it's basically like, over overshadowed in terms of EIU. So I have a lot of faith in like the future of that platform. I think it's very bright. But it's hard to use today. But there's a lot of it's super decentralized. There's no like, company behind it. Unlike foundation and various other ones. It's just a lot of volunteers like making the platform from scratch. And this is the
Ken Yeung 1:20:58
right, yeah. And this is which What's this platform again,
James Yu 1:21:02
it's called hicetnunc, which is Latin for here and now. So it's hicetnunc.xyz. So that so that's the piece I started out foundation did a few sort of weird AI poetry stuff there. And I moved over hicetnunc and I so I made a piece. That was that went viral. It was called things are a little crazy right now.
Gregarious Narain 1:21:25
It sounds right now, by the way. Over here. I don't think that's the one. Oh, is it? Oh, no, I have. I have it on the live stream. Yeah, I'll put it to the tweet, as well.
James Yu 1:21:37
Yeah. So that was very surprising. So that's, that was a piece that, you know, I maybe would have made this like it's kind of a fun little piece that's like two AI bots trying to schedule meetings together. And they just never schedule it. So it's very apropos for like the COVID zoom times. But because it was also an NFT. Because went viral on Twitter, it was able to, I was able to sell it for like over $10,000 like if you depending on how you would like to do the conversion rate tezos. So there were like 15 limited editions, and I basically like price that higher each time. And I was very surprised, like, but I think that's I would attribute that to its viral nature on Twitter. So there are definitely a lot of speculators on tik tok as well, where collectors are just like tracking prices of these things and going out and and seeing like the artists values go up. So there are definitely a lot those folks who were buying and then immediately trying to resell actually, someone did resell it for I think about $20,000 on the secondary market. So that was a that was a crazy week for me. So that then that really proved to me that like, wow, like people, I like it because I people enjoyed the thing for free, right on Twitter. And I even saw posted on my site as well, just in case you know, like, like, like, it's still like a little unstable at that point in time. It was like a month ago, actually, they did go down for a little bit. But, but also like for people who want who like, like the art and want to support me or support. Me, I also like donated all of this to all the proceeds to organizations against API hate. So that might help that as well. They can support it. It's not like supporting through like, oh, some kind of tipping mechanism. It's not like some other like side-channel thing. It's like v chat. Right. So I think that's the cool thing by effies, because everyone can enjoy it. And then you can in the primary channel support the Creator, right? And then the secondary sales as well, because I get a 15% cut of those. Oh, wow.
Gregarious Narain 1:23:44
Is that configurable? Or is that just built into the platform?
James Yu 1:23:48
is configurable. We can set it, I don't know what the range is. But from 0% all the way up to maybe like 30 grands pretend or something? Yeah. I'm not sure if that's the constraint on it is the constraint of a hiccup actually, places.
Ken Yeung 1:24:03
So So James, if you've gone from being an entrepreneur developer, to going to write short-form books, novels, in your this new chapter of your life, and now you're kind of moving in, I mean, you're creating your own writing and now you're doing NFT's like Was there any particular rhyme or reason? Or is it just more of your of curiosity that you have as someone that's a fan of technology and, you know, as an expert, and in there and you just kind of want to get your hands dirty?
James Yu 1:24:44
Yeah, I sort of see it as like seasons of life. Right? I do follow my curiosity a lot of times. I see. Specifically why I got into this is I was actually a little frustrated with like sort of the publishing industry in general and I'm curious about other kinds of models that could actually be experimented with for writers in that creative space that I feel like that a lot, a lot of those classrooms like gray aged, right, and it's empty to provide opportunity here. I mean, what I'm creating there is not necessarily like literary, and when we call it hyper literature or something like that. But there are definitely some folks who are experimenting for literary and lefties as well. So I'm part of this group called crypto writers. So there's a whole cadre of poets and short story writers, novel writers who are experimenting with NFT's whether you know, you're selling one page of a novel at a time. Or there's this cool initiative by Simon he runs something called untitled frontier. He has, he's building this platform where, sort of, you're like building a shared universe together. And then the funding model could be that you sell artifacts from that universe. So imagine, just like, just like how, you know, I think Star Wars like they sell like, collectibles, right. Whether it's lightsabers, you know, like-numbered, etc. Like, I'm actually your favorite science fiction novel, it's like, oh, you can actually buy, like, you know, maybe the outfit that like the main characters wearing or some artifact inside that universe. And so then these novels or short stories could be for free. But then if you really get into it, you can buy things that are like, elements in that story. So I think that's, that's an interesting, interesting model.
Gregarious Narain 1:26:35
Is this where you think mirror fits in, I guess, in this ecosystem is just kind of like, and what you just described sounds like next level past that, but have you looked at Mirror or thought about or tried it yet?
James Yu 1:26:48
I haven't tried it. I think I think that's interesting, too. It's like being able to have shared ownership in a in a particular essay, or kind of like, artifact, right, the actual reading. And I believe that they did have a couple novels that were essentially crowdfunded. From that platform as well. I think it's interesting, because it is different from sort of the Kickstarter, where you sort of get a little trinket it's like, oh, well, you actually, like, have ownership stake. Right. In that novel? Yeah. And like, I guess royalties, like, and other, like, could profit from it, based on how well it does. I think that's interesting. But I think that, yeah, we should have all of these right, apparently should be happening.
Gregarious Narain 1:27:29
I had an interesting idea. You know, James, we all have a lot of us have kids here. You know, why don't we make 529 funds, and just put all of our kids artwork in there and let everyone else buy?
Ken Yeung 1:27:43
Greg, are you saying that you're starting a new company? called? Lil grams? NFT. That's gonna aggregate everything.
Gregarious Narain 1:27:52
Lil' Grams at XYZ? Of course.
Ken Yeung 1:27:55
Yeah, you're gonna NFT all the artwork.
James Yu 1:27:58
I've been tempted to mint some of my son Remy's artwork, but rent movies pretty good, though. I was. You know, I buy it. But you know, he doesn't really understand and appease, right. So it feels a little weird doing that.
Gregarious Narain 1:28:14
He may want it back, you know?
James Yu 1:28:16
And also, like, I don't know, like, when he does grow up and become a serious artist, and they, it's like, this is forever in the blockchain. It's like, Oh, god, these pieces are like following me throughout my entire life.
Gregarious Narain 1:28:28
But you know, you could you like you, if you look at this nameless thing, right, you could potentially create something like this, make it private, and then basically invite people to I, I really think there's something potentially interesting there because, like, to your point, if they did become an artist, these early works would actually, you know, it's the ideal vehicle for like, actually creating value for that. And that buyer.
James Yu 1:28:50
Yeah. Yeah. It's interesting. I just feel like there's a bit of a consent problem. Without a doubt, without a doubt. Yeah.
Gregarious Narain 1:29:00
But I do think it'd be it's a way for people to definitely give you money, basically, right. And it's something that only a grandparent largely can find value.
Ken Yeung 1:29:14
So yeah, it's Christmas presents or anything like their holiday presents or birthday presents, like look, you like just get here you go, we'll just buy it buy this nnf T of rameez work, it'll go towards this college swipe. There you go. It's like who needs bonds and everything like that?
James Yu 1:29:29
Or Yeah, giving it to a kid for Christmas. Like by the words.
Ken Yeung 1:29:36
Like you're thanking me when you can afford to go to college.
Gregarious Narain 1:29:40
Okay. Jeremiah has a suggestion for James.
Jeremiah Owyang 1:29:43
James, I suggest that you build a virtual avatar AI of your child and have it create an NFTs and you can sell that without any emotional guilt.
James Yu 1:29:53
Oh my god. Creepy. Yeah.
Gregarious Narain 1:29:57
Original Remy works and then you know like
James Yu 1:30:00
Someone creating fake fake work for my son
Ken Yeung 1:30:06
GPT-3 do that for you. You know, it's like really? Yeah.
James Yu 1:30:12
Yeah, just connect the GPT, that's the future right? connecting bt three to well clip the GPU 3d GaNS, right? Like this create everything from scratch
Ken Yeung 1:30:23
and then patch it and then patch in MS Paint into there so it looks more like a kid's thing.
James Yu 1:30:31
HEN platform like that's like that. That is the aesthetic. Actually a lot of the glitch art. It's like, okay, yeah, it's purposely looking as though it's supposed to look like it was from a mistake, but it's cool. Yeah.
Gregarious Narain 1:30:45
Zarex has joined us. How you doing? Hello, welcome. Thanks for joining the convo. Did we lose them?
Ken Yeung 1:30:56
Nope. Nope. Hold on.,
Ken Yeung 1:30:59
Zarex? There we go. Hello?
Gregarious Narain 1:31:10
Sorry. Well, some people might know French.
Gregarious Narain 1:31:17
But well, this has been a fun episode. Actually, I'm, I'm really glad we had one, some of our friends were able to participate, which is always fun, and also just some hyper-relevant experience, which goes a long way in these convos. But we are at time so I think it's about time for us to wrap up. Thank you, everybody, for participating from Twitter spaces, from Clubhouse, folks on Facebook on Twitch on YouTube. Next week, we'll be on LinkedIn again if Ken doesn't delete my stream. But tune in next week, because we do have Alex from get Vokl back. We got Fernando Parnaz from super fans coming up the week after that. Mike Donahue from subtext after that. And then Matt Zuvella, who was originally going to be here this week, but we had to reschedule him will be here from fame pick on July 7, head over to CreatedEconomy.com if you'd like to get the show notes, we'll probably have them up in an hour and a half or so. But you can also find out about past episodes, you can sign up for our newsletter, you can also apply to be a guest if you have a topic that you think you'd love to share with us about the creative economy. So Ken with that, just final goodbyes. Thank you all for being here. It's been fun. This is always a highlight of the week.
Ken Yeung 1:32:33
Yeah, I mean, four episodes in like, Who knew we could we could have such amazing conversation, again.
Gregarious Narain 1:32:40
Who knew we could be consistent?
Ken Yeung 1:32:43
Might as well what we're virtual, you gotta have to be right with time constraints in everything like that. But no, this has been great. Thank you to Sarah. Thank you to Jeremiah to James, and everybody that joined us on this on the show. We look forward to hearing from you guys. Again. If you guys have topics that you want us to talk about, feel free to drop it on our website at created.show. Again, as Greg talked about, more all everything will be on CreatedEconomy.com later on, of course, follow us on Twitter. We love that. So we can @CreatedEconomy on Twitter. Yep. And then we also we are on the YouTube. So bit.ly/createdeconomy. Get us there so we can get some more creator tools. Whoo. Because it's all about followers, right?
Gregarious Narain 1:33:34
Yeah. So we are here Wednesdays, just a reminder, Wednesdays at 3pm. Mountain Time 2pm. Pacific and what's that 5pm eastern time?
Ken Yeung 1:33:45
You say? Yeah. All right. We need like little clocks.
Gregarious Narain 1:33:50
But thank you, everybody. It's been always a fun experience. Next week, we'll be back with more news and another deep dive. But I think next week, we're talking about podcasting, actually. So if
Ken Yeung 1:33:59
we have nothing that we have no idea what that's about at all.
Gregarious Narain 1:34:02
I know what are our guests is an expert in
Ken Yeung 1:34:05
so so it's all about education. So bring it on.
Gregarious Narain 1:34:09
Alright, everyone, thank you so much. Have a great day. Have a great week, and we'll see you next week. Bye bye.