Review: NFT WTF? The Rise and Fall of NFTs


Eagle, CO

Last updated on May 23, 2024

Posted on Dec 22, 2023

Many thanks to Heni for making this film available for free. Here's my not-so-hot take on it.

I've been a tech entrepreneur since '89. I've been in crypto all day every day since 2.22.20. I've spent way too much money on Currency NFTs and Heni art. All but one of my Currency purchases and all my Great Expectations NFTs are worth much less than I paid. Hoping for a rebound!

But I also did really well.

I turned $135k into $2.25m net in less than 2 years. I started buying Bitcoin and ETH wen the price was $5k and $175 respectively. I sold apes when ETH hit ATH. I sold Bitcoin when BTC hit its ATH. I bought more Bitcoin when the price was $20k. Here's a picture of me leaving the bank on 11.12.21, just after paying off our house from ape sales.

Overall I thought it was an infomercial for the Currency project, which I'm highly qualified to comment on. I was one of the lucky ones to score a Currency, was one of the first 100 in the Currency Discord. I spend lotsa time in the Discord, traveled to London for the Dots party and Currency burning, spent lotsa money on Heni, and have written plenty about my experiences. Search my blog for either "hirst, dots, or currency".

The film left most of the story out. It barely touched on the apes story and the early days culture. apes are what kicked off NFTs. It left out the thousands of degens (defined as the GameStop crowd) including yours truly who beat the system all because of NFTs and crypto. The dark side of NFTs - the market manipulation, groupthink, and scammers - was pretty much left out too. What was mentioned came across as the price of progress.

How Four NFT Novices Created a Billion-Dollar Ecosystem of Cartoon Apes
Bored Ape Yacht Club took over the internet by making NFTs of grungy simians that are both viral images and tickets to a new lifestyle.

The title of the movie is lazy. Yes, NFT's definitely rose, sky rocketed. Then they crashed. IMO (hey it's all my opinion!) 99% of NFTs are worthless now. But this doesn't mean NFTs - or crypto - are dead. Far from it. As I wrote in my post yesterday, the bulls are raging in the distance. I think '24 is going to be a good year. Only up from there.

It was nice to see at least one person I know from the Currency project in the film – "dots" as I call them.

Here's a picture of Smyth (I don't know his real name) from the Shoreditch street art tour that him and another dots were kind enough to do. Smyth is a stand up dude, give him a follow.

In the film Hirst is seen taking selfies and what not with the dots who were invited to his studio tour. He looks to be connected with his customers. Hirst seems proud of his Discord, real connections are spoken of. I'll vouch for the connections. I've chatted with dots that've connected with Hirst. They report the man was kind and caring, I have no reason to believe otherwise. But what's left out is that Hirst hasn't once interacted with Discord members since he did an AMA (ask me anything) shortly after the Discord opened in July of 021.

The film, which as I say is primarily an infomercial for Hirst and ostensibly Heni, wants the viewer to think Hirst and Heni joined in an altruistic mission to bring the Currency NFT to the world. But then it trips over itself in the $2000 pricing segment. I got the impression that had they a do-over, they'd have charged more than $2000.

The film leaves out the unsavory and shady side of the art world that's prevalent and repugnant. Maybe because Heni funded it? The art world can be brutal, it's really easy to get burned. At least Hirst doesn't hide that machines and assistants are making most (all?) of what he sells. Heni deserves credit for allowing sharp criticism in their Discord.

But some of what goes on crosses the line and lacks ethics. People get burned. Hard earned savings go up in smoke and they know it. Why aren't more calling them on the carpet? Hirst has plenty of critics. Artists are probably afraid to speak up in fear of being blacklisted. Existing holders bite their tongue because they don't want to see the value of their art go down.

Is the film worth watching? Yeah, but only if you know someone who'll fill in all the blanks, explain the rest of the story. Ping me anytime, happy to share my thoughts.

Whatever you do, don't sleep on crypto. There's going to be tremendous opportunity in the coming years.

Don't buy art as investment. Don't buy art because you think it's going up in value. If anyone selling you art mentions anything about it going up in value, kick 'em in the balls and walk away. Don't put art on a credit card. Don't spend savings on art. Don't believe what the gallery, dealer, or anon's in the Discord are saying about art. Set yourself a budget for art and stick to it. Think of whatever you spend on art as money you would've otherwise burned. Find people in the know, ideally someone who's been burned from buying art, to get both sides of the story.

Or just do this. Buy art just because, and only because, you love it.

One more thing.
If you go home with someone who doesn't have art on their walls, don't fuck them.

tty next time,

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