The Techmeme Experience: The NFT
2:01AM Feb 23, 2021
Hey guys, welcome to another episode of the Techmeme Ride Home podcast, what he had to say today is
I feel like I was probably just like 700 now like over a year's worth of or like two years worth of
someone needs to remind me we're coming up on the three year anniversary. In two weeks one week. Yeah, it's coming up
well as the Ombudsman I suppose.
Remind me when that is.
Once I actually put it on my calendar, great speaker
will give it for folks to show up and join the room. I noticed Simon. I feel like he was one of the first or at least that gave me a personal experience of what it's like to have a clubhouse room kind of are the audio brought outside. You know, and that's that's obviously something we're going to get to today, but we'll see. We'll see if he. If he's doing it again today I guess I should go check his Twitter's and feel free to put it. Let's see.
Can I say this up front Ride Home people, if you are listeners to the show. Raise your hand now. And then we'll do the first couple segments and then we'll bring up the like don't wait like raise your hand now and we'll get there Oh see, there we go. It's already started there you go, that's what I wanted. Yeah. Why someone's not part. Oh.
The other thing that we need to mention, let's see. So Austin. Okay, cool. Austin How are smart Austin you have put it in your profile photo which is beyond me for now but.
So Austin halleck set up a back channel for Josh constine, and he has done the same thing for us. So one of the thoughts was although we would I think eventually prefer to have folks you know come up on stage and you know, lend their voice to this experience. At the same time, if you either are in a listen only and typing mode. Then you can go to a site that we just did up today called techmeme.live. And that is the back channel you can register for a free accounts and leave your comments, your feedback. Just meet each other if you want to have some conversations. Obviously we're going to have our front channel going, but that's something else that we're adding to this as an experiment to see how that goes as well. So we got six people lined up here that's great. Okay. Brian hopefully you are watching those folks. Yes. Okay. All right. So, I suppose we can get started here, I feel a little disheveled I just did an interview with a Japanese Broadcasting Company, about the origin story of the hash tag, and it was just one of those like sort of fascinating moments where you're sort of talking over a language barrier about, you know like, the hash tag and just hearing the word but then everything else is in Japanese anyway so I'm in a little bit of a fate of like a fog I suppose my words may not be working for me, but.
Anywho, alright, let's let's let's sort of go over the the sort of overview and then we'll dive into the first clip. So this is our third experiment of the tech team experience. What we are trying to do here is basically provide a slightly more interactive way of consuming the Daily News of understanding what's the important stuff and going a little bit deeper than the kind of overview of five to seven stories that Brian puts into the Techmeme Ride Home podcast show. I personally was a longtime listener and got to a place where I was like man you know I really just would love to have a place to go where I could like talk about these stories because I got opinions and man this like, you know, I really really like Brian's perspective on it but what about this, what about this, So this is that space this is that room. And so today we're making a few more modifications.
The very first time we tried this, we just kind of dove into the stories, and what we heard was that some folks found it a little bit hard to follow because they didn't have context, then in a second experiment. I played the entire segment from Brian show, and I got a little feedback that that actually went on a little bit too long. So today I will be using what Brian calls audio stingers basic little segments or snippets. Usually there are about 30 seconds long to just kind of level set get us on the same page, and then we're going to dive into a little bit more conversation about that. The first part of the show is going to be largely that, and we're going to cover three different stories. And then the second part of the show and it is a very ambitious stay for us today we're going to be diving into Dispo, a little bit briefly, as well as NF Ts, and then seeing NFTs all over the place. I, I feel very, let's say, maybe NF t naive. So I'm not coming at this as an expert, but I do think there's a lot of interesting stuff to piece apart here. And to put into a broader context. So Brian anything else you wanted to play the first clip in it. Alright, here we go.
This first one is about Spotify stream on event.
As I'm recording this Spotify is just wrapped up its Spotify stream on event in which it announced a bunch of stuff including new tools for creators new monetizing options, even an ad marketplace for podcasts, which might be too in the weeds for our purposes, although I reserve the right to reassess that later. What is probably more interesting for normal consumers for us at the moment is the fact that Spotify is launching a new subscription product later this year called hi fi that will offer CD quality lossless audio.
Alright, so there is our first story now. Okay, I see Brian you want to jump in on this one, and Megan Fox
mean. Number one, this is, you know, Jay Z is calling and saying, This is our
whole thing does anybody want to buy me, please.
We can go into later, the different things that Spotify, because there's a whole nother story about, you know, the creator stuff that they did. And the idea of Spotify becoming a Creator Academy. But, yeah, if anyone has thoughts, just about this idea of doing what Neil Young tried to do and couldn't do would apple. Be. Are they basically, they have to do this now, especially because they have these almost $500 hedge quotes. If. Yeah, I'm just curious to think, just to hear what people have to say about at this late in the game. Hi fi CD quality. The, the thing that my dad has been saying for years because, you know, he's an audio file like you you you kids with your ear pods and all that stuff like finally Is this what we're about to get
okay so so let me jump in on this, just because I have a few several thoughts on this one It feels like Timing is everything. Right. And what I'm noticing, or what I sense is that a step change is coming in, bandwidth in audio in like just like the prosumer kind of saturation of need for higher quality. You know sound or whatever, and a while, like I agree with you on the one hand you know what does this mean for, like air pods, Max pro or whatever. It seems as though one we're gonna see a lot more high fidelity audio systems coming out, you know, whether it's like thanks to Dolby, and some of the stuff that they're doing with Atmos, but I think more importantly we're gonna see a sea change in, like, or maybe it's already happening now we're starting to see the fruits of that of audio engineering capabilities of tooling of just more capable, you know software. And so, that part of the ecosystem I feel like, you know, probably has a lot more capacity than it previously did, whereas previously you were trying to sort of maybe compressed formats down you're trying to deal with 4g networks with 5g, you're gonna have all this extra bandwidth suddenly becomes possible to actually put high quality audio over the wire and then that becomes a selling proposition right then you move more into the higher end, you know, and you're starting to sell, sort of like you know the BMW, Mercedes style computers and competing experiences. And so that creates this stratification where you're gonna want to pay for a premium subscription model to get access to like you know the best quality stuff. So to me this sort of all fits into that trend in the market of moving more towards subscription based services as opposed to freemium you know freemium or free Tier offerings, the free tier will not only be advertiser supporting. There'll also be low quality crap. And so, instead, that stratification i think is what's happening. You know I'm a Sonos customer and it feels like what Sony has to try to do with their HD Radio, which probably is not going to when I was it's going to work, that this actually sets up a very interesting either relationship or partnership or acquisition target for either of the two or the merge, I don't really know what's gonna happen there, but I certainly think that this is a bigger trend, and a bigger story in terms of getting people to think differently about how they're buying audio products.
Who, who ends up buying Sonos is a fascinating question who ended up buying TiVo, I don't know but i. That's an interesting point like the stratification in terms of, you know, as I said, is Apple going to clearly get into the space and then there's a there's a tiered level of doing that. Harley, let me, let me bring you up. Do you think that. Do you think that if you pay it. Would you be willing to pay, either on Spotify or on Apple Music, or anywhere for weather, what would it be double $5 a month or more Would you be willing to pay more for this level of audio. No, as someone who listens to music, constantly, if I if I want to listen to something at a higher audio level, I will either give off Bandcamp or I will get the vinyl. I mean it just isn't like streaming to me is quick access, it's for me it's not meant to serve as high audio quality. If I want something high quality I go to the source for it. So that's, that's kind of what, that's kind of what Chris is saying is like so that's that's almost like they're kind of going uphill, where, if you're. They have to educate the consumer that you would want to pay more for a greater experience versus the easier experience. Yeah, I mean, what's really funny is an article just got posted on NPR today, and it's got six songs and you can listen to them on 128 320, and lossless, and you basically it's like a quiz you can choose which one you think is the lossless one, and as an audio file I'm sitting here with my nice monitor headphones and I only got three of the six. Right. I don't think I don't think the average listener, with just average headphones is going to care.
I just don't, I don't see
Let me let me just jump on that a little bit I'm actually I think Jeffrey might have something to offer too but, like, one of the things that I'm wondering about when it comes to high fidelity audio is more to do with anticipating spatial audio augmented reality. You know, virtual experiences whether it comes to movies or other things like that like basically once you start to open up more of those channels, you can do more interesting things from a music perspective, you know, which is sort of more generally accessible, and you can also sort of cross sell into this is a more dynamic gaming experience, you know, a more like just spatial audio is exploding. And I know that, for example air pods have their spatial audio mode, so part of this I think is actually motivating the industry to move towards trying to experiment and do higher fidelity things because it requires higher or more capable hardware. And so if you're in the business of selling silicon, let's say you want to get more CPUs out there into more products and devices, then this becomes one of the avenues to actually do that. Jeffrey
oh yeah sorry Hi. So yeah i mean i think that it's a it's it's an interesting time for that because on the one hand I feel like over the last few years, I've like audio quality has mattered to me less, which saying that out loud, kind of, I guess hurts, hurts to like you know like I, I was one of the, I was one of the people who was like, I'm definitely not going to buy air pods because they're just crappy Apple headphones with better wireless. But then like the convenience factor got me, and then I got hooked on it. And then, once I stopped. I guess worrying or even thinking about the audio quality at that point, it just became a non issue, and like I mean I have Sonus in my house and like you know that that sounds good, but honestly, if there was an extremely high quality string going through that or something that's just pretty decent. Like, I don't know that I would be able to tell the difference anymore, and like I so and i agree with you, Chris. I think that like, I think that all of this stuff is kind of like setting up for the future, I don't know that the value proposition is in like, oh, people, people want a higher audio stream I see it as like making room for the ability to do those things, and I totally agree. I think spatial audio and, you know, and particularly for gaming and things like that. I see that being more of the space that that's for then just like I really really really want to listen to an extremely high quality version of this song that I could listen to.
Yeah, I mean one more, just one more thought we'll get to the next clip, you know, I wonder if this also has to do a little bit with focusing on the artists, you know I watched a good amount of the stream on event that Spotify put on today, and some of it, some of its so much of it was predicated on currying favor with the creators. And so if you're a creator and you're putting all this effort into highly technically produced content, and then it gets to your fans and you know your perception as the creator is that it's being downsampled to like the lowest possible you know rez just to get across the wire. And that actually you off. And so from a competitor perspective, you know, maybe it's just that Spotify and others need to provide that higher bandwidth, you know format, in order to please the creators and get them to believe that you know they're going to have a tighter relationship with their fans or something like I don't really know. Maybe it's. There's so many different ways this could go and I agree that it just feels like the value prop isn't quite there yet but maybe we're looking at this from the wrong stakeholders, and that's the thing. Okay, so great. That's the first the first segment again, just a reminder, if you guys want to jump in the live chat. That's another way to engage that's a tech meme dot live. I also remember that I have, actually.
Again this is all experimental, the full length clips from the Techmeme Ride Home show, and I've posted them as audio tweets on my profile. So if you go to twitter.com slash Chris Messina, it's my pinned tweet, all the full length audio from which the segments that I'm going to play are available for you to listen to and of course if you want the entire podcast. I'm sure Ryan would love that. But just to provide that whole completeness. Alright so we're gonna dive into the next topic right now.
I think there's one more that we can go into about Spotify and about their advertiser business and about podcasting and lots of good stuff. But we'll hold it for now. Let's go and talk about let's get a little meta because it's not clubhouse unless you're talking about clubhouse clubhouse
Clubhouse has announced that it has added security safeguards, and banned a user. After some clubhouse audio and metadata from clubhouse rooms was found on a third party website, quoting Bloomberg, an unidentified user was able to stream clubhouse audio feeds this weekend from multiple rooms into their own third party website said Rima vana say a spokeswoman for clubhouse. While the company says it's permanently banned that particular user, and installed new safeguards to prevent a repeat, researchers contend the platform may not be in a position to make such promises.
So, the two things that I Well, I mean, first we're sort of doing the opposite, just to be clear, we're actually piping audio into clubhouse we're not piping it out unless again Simon is doing that from otter but regardless, the thing that I found most interesting about that clip was the fact that clubhouse now as well clearly they are they're hiring for the very most important roles as the thing grows but Brian what's your take.
Yeah, I think they have 18 people or less at this point. Chris You and I both spoke to a person that is of interest yeah so yes that. Yeah, that is very involved in poking at things like this and what they said to us was, yeah. Anyone can do this, it is wide open. At least it was a week ago, when we spoke to them. And I, you know, in then that was the thing that I quoted in the show from Alex Stamos where it's like it's just an open API anyone can do this. I think that, you know, the thing that I quoted and said today was like, if you, I don't know I don't know how people think of social media at this point I think people are more sophisticated I always think that or I'm, I'm, I'm giving people too much or too little credit but like, if you think that any room here is private. Number one, you do know that everyone's listening. And then number two like anyone could be, you know, I use the in the room where it happens analogy in the show today like like anyone could be here. You know, nonpreferred could just be like writing down what we say. So on the one hand, for the purposes of. Is this a secure system. If you're in China, using a VPN if you're in Hong Kong or whenever is this good for you to be in here. I don't know about that. But then number two, it's sort of the other thing where it's like, if you, if you think that what happens on the internet stays on the internet, then that's your, your naive. I don't know Chris What do you think,
well you know it's funny, didn't didn't zoom higher Alex Stamos. So there's a little bit of a competitive vibe, you know going on there and
there is that and then and then the quote that I read today was from whatever his thing at Stanford, you know react, or whatever. Yeah. So, I,
I will I will take the things that you've said and say, Yes, okay. I think that's all fair and I would agree with that you know if it's if it's on the internet. Sure. I to me what I think is a little bit more. In this question of people sort of aurat like there is. Let me see how I can put this, it feels like clubhouse as sort of a gravitational planet is pulling lots of people towards it. And there are a set of people that have a certain set of skills for, you know, building things that are filling in the gaps that where clubhouse has not been able to either has not been able to, or chooses not to build certain features or functionality, you know, like, what Austin is building for example as the back channel is a great example of someone you know from the sort of ethos coming out and saying hey I can solve this problem I'm going to build something that serves the community. Right. There's also something else launched today on product called die recon. And this is probably one of the most interesting examples of what I'm thinking of, because in this case, they've kind of invented the equivalent of what I would call club house Connect, where, and I don't really recommend anybody in this room, going and using this but, you know, teach their own. You're all sort of grown as humans, I hope, and if you put in your phone number. Basically, a token will be sent to your phone, and then you provide that token to dr Khan, and then they can basically act as you know what that allows them to do is to offer a bunch of moderation tools and stuff that clubhouse, you know, either hasn't built or doesn't expose. Now, on the one hand, that's great. On the other hand it's completely insecure and it's allowing some third party to essentially act as you on the service which could result in you getting banned, and all sorts of other things. But what this show is is that because for us is not either decided to build their own platform, or to open up an API, people are finding out ways to get around it, and whether this is good or bad, it's hard for me to say, I just remember the early days of Twitter, and how they sort of had this, give or take push pull relationship with their broader developer ecosystem, for better or worse and eventually went south and the speed at which clubhouse has gone through almost every successive generation that other social media platforms have gone through. I mean literally they're, they're going through this with in less than a year. You know, if you think about when clubhouse sort of launched it's not really even been a year yet, so the fact that they're there i think is super interesting. And whether you want to evaluate this purely from a security angle. I, to me that's not the most interesting thing to me I think it's more the sociological stuff in terms of whether or not those third party apps, either hurt or actually help clubhouse in its position in the marketplace.
Hey yeah thanks pretty sure to Brian, certainly care about that stuff a lot, actually, Chris was mentioning something that just went up on Product Hunt and he did us the honor of hunting our product yesterday. We're passionate about people having privacy and the ability to consent to the sharing of their data or or not consent to it, and one of my concerns were called house is the growth hacking method that they took to get a hold of everybody's contacts in order to allow you to send out a single invite. I think that, that, that choice that they made that design choice which is very clearly conscious and intentional makes a really concerning comment on where they're going, not just what their security but with their privacy designs in that in order for me to invite a single friend I had to give access to my entire contact list. Then, when I invited one friend and said, Hey, 20 other people are already connected to rob. He definitely be a good person to add, so it's very clear that they're harvesting this building these shadow profiles that other social media organizations have in the past, and using that to help drive their growth so it's not surprising to me that there's their security flaws but I think it's more than just the usual move fast and break things thing, I think it's I think it's an intentional choice to to rigorous or to just avoid any rigor and privacy or security.
I agree that people are like, and people keep asking the question, why are you asking for my contacts. And that question has not been answered yet, and people keep waiting for the question to be answered. But, you know, maybe Richard and Chris you too. Give me the history of that like every app I don't know,
I just like you're like you're like, do you want to survive or not. I mean, frankly, to me that's, and by the way I say this like with, you know, respect and deference like, you know, Richard but, like, I've rarely seen a social app survive and thrive. That doesn't play fast and loose with your social data, essentially, if you go to a mall and, you know, you're looking for your friends let's say you're a teenager or something, and the mall has to sort of ask you permission for every single one of your friends, and you can say yes or no, You're not going to go to that mall. So, I feel like the the real failure of whether it's the open web, or just social platforms in general, is the ability to create some let's say non contact based way of identifying your friends I mean it's a social security number, you know, essentially as our as our phone number and we're using that to locate your friends if there was some other privacy preserving way to do that. That was also super super easy, then that would sort of address the needs on both ends of the spectrum, but ultimately a social app I mean like, I guess it is comes down to how you can see what clubhouses, and if you conceive of clubhouse as a network, then the only thing that the network needs to do is to create nodes and connections between those nodes. And so, anything else has failure. So I guess what I'm trying to figure out, or to see is an example of a social platform that becomes wildly successful that does, or takes this sort of privacy preserving approach that you're suggesting.
I think it's a fair point. I mean even if you look at the ones that have matured into being more respectful of privacy, the way that they got there was certainly not that LinkedIn harvesting out your contacts from email and and so on. It's think, I think it's I think it's possible at this point I think by observing the observing the methods and the failures of others in the past to look at a way to see consent, and to, to ask for invites to be sent without having to have identifying data get collected and maintained for unknown periods of time by later parties,
it's so sorry like I was so I would add to two things to this equation, right. So first, path, was one of the ones that only like claimed to be privacy preserving but limited your friends to 150 people. Now, they and others, and of course they had lots of Facebook DNA in them. harvested the address book, In order to find your friends, and as a result, I believe, of the way that they harvested it and I don't know if the data was leaked or whatever happened. Eventually, Apple in a subsequent iOS update added the prompt that asks, Do you want to share your contact information with these apps, because previously. It just happened, automatically, so that consent was added over time, but it's not at the granular level, for example, that photos, the photos permission is at least built in iOS right in Iowa and I don't know if you've ever used it, but I can't figure it out, like, essentially, you have the ability to choose, you know, to not share your pics or whatever like through the photo picker play. I mean, you have to go in and sort of choose individual photos every time. And then there's like some least that lasts for like 20 minutes, and then it like asks again. You could imagine doing the same thing for your contacts, but the problem with that model is that unless the service knows all the people who you are friends with or connected to it can notify you and follow up to say by the way so and so is here you know Brian just when the service, do you want to go greet them. And that's one of the core ways that the service grows so I get like I really want to like believe you know like like exe file style like that, it is possible to build a privacy preserving social network, but I just never seen it done they just seem to be anti social in the end. And so while I think it's worthy to criticize and critique. White House's approach. I also just don't know what the alternative is, you know, if I were for example investing in an alternative that wanted to be privacy preserving. I'm not sure what I would tell them in terms of like you know growth hacking if I really wanted them to survive.
Chris. I'm going to I'm going to ditch the third one that we had today. I want to I want to go to Dispo. Yeah, because the two things we're gonna do for the rest of the show are even though they weren't discussed today on the podcast, they're all anyone is talking about in Silicon Valley right now.
And first Dispo because you know we have one of the greatest product minds of his generation here in Paris, to talk about this foe. And I am curious for your take on this vote and the way that I put it last week. I was quoting from a piece that was bullish on Dispo and saying that it was almost the anti Instagram.
Yeah, but that's something we haven't used yet, right but based on what we're hearing about it what are your thoughts of that as a product and getting traction and things like that. Yeah, so, so let me, let me, provide what I understand of this product. Okay so, so Dispo essentially you know is short for disposable, as in like disposable camera. And the idea okay just you know imagine, let me let me try to go analog and i'm gonna i'm curious like how many, how many generations on the cross in this example and how many people will actually run out of this versus not but imagine you go to some you know party. And let's say there are interesting things that are happening there or people are getting you know a little bit out of their minds. And there are a set of disposable cameras that are left around the party, and people take photos throughout the night. Now of course you're not going to get them.
What's the word they used to use these to expose the film or something developed, they wouldn't like to develop the film that night right because you know everyone's gonna be wasted or something. And so eventually basically you know the film gets developed, and then the photos are seeing after the fact and oh my god did I really do that and oh my god that person did that does that person like oh that's really interesting so this sort of concept is to try to bring people back into the moment, and to spend more time kind of around each other and, you know, engaging in human things that humans do you know to each other and to capture those moments, using this disposable, sort of, you know, film concept with images that only appear the day after they've been taken. And essentially, there's a shared kind of role, if you will. And that's kind of like the the real. I don't know if I'd call it like an innovation, but the, the concept. And so you have a bunch of people who are let's say you know at the same party at the same event and you get everyone's different perspectives on what happens. And then the very next day, everyone gets to see what happened, and they're kind of, you know, developed in a way that, you know, has a little bit of an Instagram, you know varnish to them or something. That's a concept. Now this idea. Go ahead.
Well I was gonna say that the interesting thing to me was, it would be. You're not curating you're not giving your best Insta face to the cameras you're not taking the picture immediately. Yes, thank you yes yes so
the other aspect of mechanic. Is that not only can you not see what you're shooting through the viewfinder well you can see what's being shot through the viewfinder but it's a little bit more kind of, you know, shoot, take the photo and then forget about it, as opposed to let me take this photo okay give me 15 minutes I need to edit it, I need to manicure it I'm going to crop it I'm going to put it through visco and like 500 filter things and I'm going to upload it, it's going to be like you know beautiful and perfect, even though it's going to stories which will disappear in 24 hours. The whole idea is that you're basically adding time to that processing process to keep people more in the moment. So rather than getting on their phones and getting sucked in. They kind of take the photo and then they move on, like we used to do. Again, when there was like the development process so that again is that sort of fairly capture what you're saying
yes exactly it. The idea being that, as opposed to being at the party, and then taking the photo and then going off in the corner for 15 minutes. You take the photo, and then you find out later, and maybe it's great and maybe it's not and like it's but but the key to me was, it's like the being in the moment part where you're in that it's not just the curation being the most important thing. It is also getting you back into actual life, if we can hopefully soon get back to actual life.
Right. So I think there's another like useful thing to point out, which is a generational attitude about the way that we use our devices, right. So David dobrik, who is a YouTube influencer he's 24, and he's sort of you know of that era, if I think back to when Instagram was getting started, I think you know Mikey and Kevin, maybe you know were 27 or something you know they were sort of like in that era where you go to these like house parties and you see a lot of your friends kind of getting sucked into their phones, you're like, Man, This sucks like this alien party like why don't even come here we should just send like a zoom call or something. So, there's sort of a generational pushback that I think is happening to some degree, because people are becoming less and less. I shouldn't say people but like, it feels like there's an awareness of what these devices do to us and how they take us out of the moment. And this is a way of fighting back. Like I said, this isn't a new idea, like there was kind of forget with the name that I tweeted about it or someone tweeted about it. You know there's been several other attempts at this sort of shared roll delay processing concept, but this is a generation that sort of grew up with Instagram was kind of the photo internet. And so they're pushing back on the mechanics and the manipulation of that product by saying, actually, we're going to arrive at a similar set of outcomes in terms of media and assets from the experiences that we have, but we're gonna forbid people from actually diving into their phones while they're actually still in the moment. And that's I think what's really interesting about this from like a cultural perspective, to me it's a little bit like how snapchats UI in the beginning was so foreign because it was a full screen camera and you had to swipe left right to like navigate it. And that was so authentic. Right. But one of the reasons why that worked was because young people would show each other, how to use this thing, and they were so motivated to connect to each other, that they would get through those hoops and hurdles that would actually keep the Olds kind of like off that platform. So in
a way, display is not the same thing. And not only that, and this is the point I made on the show was. It seems to be with social media more than anything else like it is almost and, and I hope this isn't too precious but like you know how your, your tastes and music can only last like five years, and like the generational turnover of what we used to think about in the 20th century in terms of like music and tastes and movies and clothes and things like that.
So far, at least for the last 25 years in social platforms like every new platform is almost a reaction against the previous ones on the page you can see that, you can see that in tic toc if Dispo is going to be a new thing you can see that in Dispo, in reaction to what the older and olds. The Olds now are the 25 to 35 Instagram post, or even tik tok folks that the younger generation is like we are going to be in reaction our behavior is going to be in reaction to what the older cohort is doing and that is what I find absolutely fascinating.
Yes, I totally agree. So is there anybody that wants to come up and talk about that one because we might shift into the other topic pretty soon.
And again, just to reset the room a little bit reminder that this is the tech meme sort of ride home podcast experience where Ryan and I get on and we kind of talk about the day's news but then also go a little bit deeper into other stuff that we're seeing today, we have a back channel at techmeme.live if you want to go and leave some comments or questions.
That's possible. Or if you want to raise your hand and come up and say something. Brian's kind of managing that. But yeah, I just, I needed it like I guess the question is Will. Will it either sustain it. There's, there is a little bit of a network, I again because I haven't tried it yet, you know, sadly, so I got like an invite. And then, the test site was full and then I guess it blew up in Japan, and then, you know, they got to their 10,000 user limit or something and so that's kind of like where it's at. I do wonder if it will actually persist, because it doesn't. I mean when you have to have like, kind of, I guess, like the. I don't know if I call it the time, but the occasions,
right and re shooting stuff. You kind of, you kind of have to be young, you kind of have to be out and doing things.
Yeah, I hope everyone understands we're not like annoying taking some new whatever here but Peter I did want to ask you if you wanted to speak to this because you've been product at a bunch of places so if you had any thoughts. Peter on Dispo.
Oh, I actually never had access at this point so I've never even tried it, you know, by the time I checked all the pets like it was too late. But, I love this pattern of going back into kind of authentic expression and not kind of like living in an overly filtered existence. So I think it's definitely a good trend to have.
So I've actually been, like, I'm in like the new version of Dispo. And, I mean, I think that the community side of it I haven't really figured it out quite yet.
I'm not like I'm not sure how people see each other's photos all that well I'm sure if anyone here has worked on it they're cringing, but like,
Listen, these guys, I know,
Oops, wrong button
to try again.
I'm sorry, to kind of get kicked off for a second.
But I think, I mean I think the most important thing, that's, that's happening is that people are building products that are pushing up against. Like, what, I guess. We are other people who build products assumed to be sort of like decisions made already. Right.
And, you know, I'll
tell you like my I have a, I have two young kids and I take more photos of them on display now simply because I can't hand them my phone afterwards because there's nothing for them to look at. And like, because, taking a picture of them on any other thing is the entrance into spending all this time looking at pictures and going through stuff and in their minds the way photos work is immediate feedback,
that's that's that's so good.
So like, yeah, so it's actually it's actually nice to make like seeing them go okay I guess I'll just do it tomorrow, and particularly when I, when that happens in the morning and we're sitting at the, you know, we're having breakfast and I'm like hey do you guys want to see the photos from yesterday. And then they're like oh cool like, you know, It's just a different experience and it just makes me realize that like it really wasn't that long ago that we were shooting with cameras, you know, and like, it's not, I don't, I think that this boat, and other apps like it, are going to chip away at what we believe to be like things that are like I was saying,
you know already
concluded this is the way things are. And you know whether or not dispose is going to be the one, the you know the quote unquote anti Instagram. I don't think there's going to be any anti name the giant company
think what it's going to be is like lots of little like scratching away at the armor and making people realize that you can actually do it a different way and and nothing's set in stone so you know that's the part that's exciting for me is that I don't understand it. That's what I like about a lot of what's happening on the internet right now. Like, I don't understand it but that's great because it reminded me reminds me but I was 19 and I didn't understand it either and it led me here. So like,
you know, I'm excited to see to see
on those barriers and be like, it doesn't have to like meet, maybe the internet doesn't have to be social, like, who
knows, you know.
So, like, we're gonna get into some good I don't really understand in a second
time is gonna say, speaking of love and
I do want to I want to I want to like add one more thing because I really love what Jeffrey saying for two reasons. One, what I what I do every day.
I learn to walk, and I'm walking down the street, and I see this, I think it was a family, or like two adults, and there was a little girl, she was probably like three or four, and they had a dog, And literally, they walked by a wall where there was like you know some, it was actually a nice coffee. And like the kid instinctively posed, and the parent instinctively was compelled to pull up the camera. Like, it became such a i don't know i i used a gift this morning, of, because there was like a little bit of diversion but like there was there was like, there's this GIF where this kid is kind of like petting the dog that's going poop. It's like, you know, good, good dog for going poop probably because the parents, you know, kind of reinforced the kid going poop right so like, Oh, this is what you do like someone's going poop it's like you say good. In a similar way, like, like kids at a young young age are so used to posing for parents taking these photos and I've seen it through many many many children. Right. It's like a camera like a phone comes out and like the kid instantly is like smiling and like oh not taking a photo right now they're like okay and then move on. It's like Pavlovian. So, what Jeffrey is describing, you know, with his kids, he can say oh this is a Dispo which, you know, that's like the name for it or something. becomes like, Oh, I know what that means, that means, this is I'm not going to get instant feedback on how good this photo looks, and then I have to take another one. It means, you know, dad's gonna take a photo, and then the camera goes away and then I can move on with my life. So, breaking that pattern is so powerful and so interesting, and it feeds exactly I think from a design perspective, like the like it grows, or regrows, the kind of opportunity space to create products that we used to think, you couldn't do. Because, and this is the second point I was gonna make that we kind of believe that success has to look a certain way, based on the way that success is looked up, up until now. So you have to be creating another Instagram or like why even bother, or you have to be creating another Snapchat or why even bother. But that's not actually how the mastery of media happens. Instead you get so good at manipulating media to be expressive, or, I don't know, whatever you can like do amazing things with it, that it frees you up to experiment and to try things that are so low cost that you could build like 10,000 dispose and that actually is the business. It's almost, you know, in the way that Snapchat has fashion itself as a sort of camera company, you know, they are figuring out what it means to have the ability to capture the world and then to manipulate it, and they haven't stopped with just like the snap app there's a whole bunch of things that go on in that space so anyways, I find that super interesting. And we will pause that conversation about digital now and again if you have other questions or thoughts you can leave it on techmeme.live. But now we're going to switch into a much bigger. Much more transformative but also probably TEDx more confusing at least for me, conversation about crypto and NFTs and crypto punks, and all this crazy stuff that has been blowing up with a clubhouse and the Twitter's and everywhere else so that Brian.
Why don't you walk us into this morass Yeah. Well, listen, you want to talk about not being generational like figuring out like okay I know what this technology is, I know what the next technology after that is I know what the next up, but but now I am I am beyond everything. And Aaron, if you're if you're still awake, I'm teeing you up, because the whole reason. First of all, you know, I've, I've been involved in crypto for about seven years here in New York and then the, the, the coin talk podcast kept me into crypto when I got bored with it. And then I think Aaron and J. Got a little bored of crypto as well, but they've come back. And so, this is all meeting up the idea of the whole reason I know about NFTs non fungible tokens, is because of Aaron and the coin talk podcast. And so, Aaron.
What have you bought recently.
Well, I will say, Actually, I spent the most money on art that I've ever spent this month, I purchased two hash masks for a net cost of, like, three or $4,000,
Can you explain for the audience and specifically me what the hash mask is.
So I'll describe the experience of how I ended up with these hash masks which is you go to the site you often with a meta mask wallet, and they're sold sequentially so I think the first ones were point one eath and then the next tranche was point three, by the time I bought their point nine eath, and I think people ended up paying as much as five or 10 eath for the last few, but the price you paid in no way defined what you got. It's a set of 16,000 unique NF Ts, which were distributed randomly and
sort of like a random pack of baseball cards,
exactly like a random pass of baseball cards, there's one hologram gold foil card, there's a bunch of common cards. And so once people saw them and it's a little bit hard to describe them but they're created sort of combinatorially from like different art layers. So, some of them that have different traits of rareness are worth more money I think there's ones that have gone for several $100,000 now. There's also an index fund of common ones where if you want to, not actually own it anymore but own exposure to it. You can deposit your hash mask into this index fund and get a token called mask which tracks the baseline price of common hash masks, of which I on to one of which is now deposited in this index fund.
Okay, okay. Before Chris gets into this because he's gonna let me, let me do the, the, I went to a liberal art I got a liberal arts degree.
I do have a liberal arts degree Yes, exactly.
So you know the the Walter Benjamin piece, the work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction. Okay,
I do, we may have the same degree.
And probably, and so the point is is that on a basic level, what we are saying here is, there is a Mona Lisa and the move that you have to go to and it's very disappointing when you actually go through the crowd and you stand in front of it. Sure, versus the Mona Lisa that's on the napkin in the Italian restaurant that you go to now.
Yeah, or Google image search, probably the most viewed Mona Lisa in the world, like the first Google
Exactly, exactly. So, on some level. Are we basically either giving the finger to Walter Benjamin or solving his, his agita in the sense that, in the age of not even mechanical reproduction digital reproduction. We are giving scarcity and Rarity and I don't know sexiness or two works of art, is that what this is on a base level in the liberal arts. Well,
I think that the question of the Mona Lisa is kind of interesting because, you know, the Mona Lisa is endlessly reproduced. Most people who would say they've seen the Mona Lisa have not actually seen the Mona Lisa they've seen a digital reproduction of the Mona Lisa. So, we're kind of starting to talk about the divide between having a unique thing in your wallet, and someone else being able to see it on the internet, and whether that's the same thing,
right, because, because if you own this digital piece of art, you are the one that is allowed to say you can see it or not, I own it from this period of time to this period of time it's also, it's almost like being the person that puts the gates in the loop. Yes.
Additionally, like Were you a baseball card, kind of child,
100%, Ken Griffey Jr rookie card
yes so me and you are hanging it's sometime in the late 80s. And, you know, I've got the conseco rookie card, and I like show it to you and you look at it, and then you give it back to me because it's mine. The fact that you've had like free visual access to the baseball card in no way is complicated. The fact that it's my baseball card so I actually think they like the fact that they're on the internet and you can own them. It's actually not that strange, once you try it a few times.
I feel like I'm kind of new to this space, but I feel like the Mona Lisa analogy kind of breaks down a little bit, because you know people, people may be similar to what you just said but like people are buying tickets to see the real Monalisa in a loop. If I on a fee is still visible to most people right like that people can just browse to it and like see it, curious what you guys think about that.
Yeah, let me let me jump in and provide a little like context I have no idea like how much, how many people in the room have a sense for kind of what we're even talking about, because I think what we find ourselves doing oftentimes is trying to draw analogies to things that sort of came before, and especially in this case, when we're talking about an adjacency to cryptocurrencies or something that is enabled by the blockchain. you know instantly we have to talk about, you know, finance and currency and all these other things which, you know, not only trigger a lot of people's like you know sort of shame reflex but also it's just kinda like what is this stuff that you're talking about. And so of course going to draw the analogy to baseball cards and comic books and things like that, I think, you know, get to some of the way because we're also having a conversation about art. So I think the reason why the NFT conversation is so interesting is because it brings up all these kind of bubbles on undiscovered areas again I don't know like I like, I have this civilization to kind of map in my mind right now and there's so much dark space and it's like super fun to like explore it. and to bring some light to these parts of the world, but to do so we have to be, I think, a little bit more intentional about our biases and be like, Oh, you know like, if you've never seen snow before you might be like, Oh look it's like white sand, it's like, well it's not white sand it's actually water and so it blows your mind up a little bit cuz you've never seen it before you've never experienced you don't know what the phenomenology like is what you're seeing a lot. So, for those who are sort of just joining. I guess like the the point would be to say that. Thanks to the Ethereum blockchain and protocol, essentially what we're able to do cryptographically you're using, let's just say math, and actually maybe Jeffrey jumps in and like tells me that I'm wrong or something but. And as a result, if you take what's happening in kind of like the the cryptocurrency space, or we're talking about the movement of, you know, financial instruments around to buy things and exchange, you know, things of value. Art is another form or way of storing some value but also there's, there's the aesthetic aspect where there is the the Creator, and the person who's actually making the art, and what's been really hard to figure out when it comes to the internet and the digital world, is that if you make a copy of the bits that represent a graphical image. Well, you essentially can copy it perfectly. You know from one to another. And, you know, it doesn't actually erodes the viewers experience of the content. And so, you know, how can you actually add, or create value on something that is infinite. You know, like there's no scarcity in that. So, what a cerium kind of allows people to do is to explore and play with artificial scarcity, by saying actually there's only a certain number of these ether, you know token ins or, you know, IDs, and we will associate a certain, you know, unique ID with a piece of art, and will sort of register that in a blockchain. And if you go and you look up the address in the blockchain, it'll say oh it's associated with this piece of art. And then, that allows you to do a bunch of other things. So, I feel like that's kind of a complete form on like that feels like the high level thing that people are exploring experimenting with the only
part I'd add to that is that it's not just art, it's a lot of like gaming items 100%.
Thanks to yeah media. I think can be can go through this pathway. Maybe I'll put it that way.
Yeah, i would say everything that you can imagine people would sort of do with this form of digital uniqueness that would be their orientation point for for NF Ts. So like if you're a gaming person you probably more likely come to it, like in game items that are portable across metaverse experiences.
Right, so, so let's let's let's pause there because that we can we can circle back around to the actual the, you know, workings of like the tokens and NFTs and getting them and creating them and selling them and let's see what's going on in the marketplace. The reason why I was excited to have Jeffrey here was because Jeffrey worked at a company called threadless, and threadless was one of the early kind of internet pioneers, that allowed artists, you know, it was very much an early, I guess contributor to either the passionate economy or the creator economy, letting artists sell their, their work through all sorts of goods, primarily t shirts. And so, I think one of the problems that we're trying to solve or at least what's being argued that NFTs are extensively aiming at solving is how to get artists paid in an infinite medium where scarcity, only exists. If you try to sort of retrofit it into this infinite space. And so, I guess, you know, if Jeffrey still here would love to. I would love to just hear you kind of your take on this, given your, maybe exposure to, you know, art, through the internet arrows.
thank you. Yeah, I mean, I guess like that's sort of the lens that I've been looking at this, through I mean, I should say upfront that I have no idea what I'm talking about. When it comes to this stuff, generally, I have space. I have learned, I have I have learned in the last like two weeks. So you know i mean like what I what I want to do is take a month off of work, and just like be a nerd, but I have to be a parent, and like so I have to like, you know, maintain, but I think that like. I mean, I. The, the, sort of like technology side of it is really is largely over my head, but like the, the parts of it that I think that are the most interesting are sort of like the communities that they can meet that this can immediately support. Like, I think that the reason that art is so big right now with NFT is because it makes it makes sense, because it every time the art changes hands, the creator gets paid and talking about that
I can unpack that because it's super important.
Yeah, so like, so basically as far as I understand it, the way that it works is that the person who like somebody mints. You know somebody, somebody meant the NFT, and then you know they sell it, and then basically there's a smart contract built into there and some percentage of and I think that that's variable, basically says that any, any future purchase of this item to creator gets a cut. And that is like, so that that alone is huge. You can see how like in a very small way, you know like you could sell a million gifts, right, like, that's like that's cool. But the thing is is that there's a, there's immediately value being added where artists are able to are able to one get paid, but I think there's a number of things going on. I mean, in a lot of ways I think that like the pandemic has been this kind of like Black Swan event for so many things I mean, like, people are stuck at home. People like our, you know like, wanting to be creative money is a problem like this is there's just so many things that created the perfect storm of everyone's jumping on this because you can't leave your house anyway so you may as well make some digital stuff and then mint them out and you know start. And again, like I'm talking over my head here but like, I've never so like on Instagram like I pretty much only follow artists and one skateboarders, but like, I've never like in the art community, it is blowing up just as much as the tech community is on Twitter about NF Ts, they're just talking about different stuff, because at the end of the day the artists are like holy, we can make money. Like, it's just a new way to make money and I think that like, as long as there's people willing to make these transactions you know like that's the like when this all first started I was like, oh cool people are selling gifts for $1,000, and like, because everything costs like one coin. It was like, I don't have like I didn't get into aetherium early enough to have the value gain, to be able to sit, to be able to just toss around whatever I wanted. So, but it's like there, there's real money involved, it's happening fast there's a lot of excitement around it and like people have time. So like, why not invest their time into it. There's nothing to lose. So like, it's just really exciting watching it happen and you know and then there's there's people who are talking about all this is gonna, like, we can get around capitalism because of this and we can get around this and there's just like everyone who is an expert in anything is starting to figure out their way that this can work for them. And it's like, I just feel like the whole world finally got it in the way that people got crypto like five years, however many years ago, when people were talking about it and when I like muted crypto on my Twitter timeline I was like okay I don't care. Like,
like it's been five years and people have had all this time now to develop and meanwhile you weren't part of those conversations and now it's like, oh, it's everywhere.
Yeah, yeah, you know, and it's okay i mean like but that's. I'm happy to get into it at the part that interests me the most, which is, which is artists and artists communities, and people being able to support themselves doing things they love, and nobody gets over more than anybody on the, on the internet and artists, because everything is stolen so much, and you can't prove who's is what, and like, there's just the fact that you can say hey I made this, and you can prove it. And that proof exists forever on the internet. I mean, I look like there's, there's so many things that this could become the basis of like, Okay, well you can go back to an internet where you don't have to, you know, where everyone can be in pseudonyms because really at the base of it it's all connected to an actual identity that is completely. You cannot mess with it, but like you can abstract on top of it because it's safe, sort of like at like at the lowest levels, if that makes sense but it's like there's just so there's so many things that can. It seems like there's so many things that can be done with it.
Ya know, no, but it's just really exciting watching from the side of the people who are benefiting from all these transactions happening because it's fueling the whole marketplace, which is great. So let me let me, let me ask you something specific like your background experience. You know given, like the things that you did with us. I guess what I'm curious about was what the perception of artists had of, you know, the internet, during that era, and what it was like to work with them and to bring a lot of those artists who if I recall correctly I mean, you know, we're fairly kind of either internet averse or kind of anti technology, or just, it was like really really like heart rate, so it feels like there's a generation of artists who now are growing up in an era where they're using all digital tools where they're used to marketing themselves through social media and social platforms, and it's just an obvious kind of adjacency if they've grown up in an era of, like, infinite abundance to suddenly realize, Oh, you can actually bring back scarcity and then that's gonna make the things that I create, not only, sort of, at least the perception of having things that are more valuable, but then I can sell them and so. So one of things I want to point out in terms of like another space that we can learn from. I think is what's happening you know to go back to the top of the show like Spotify, in a Spotify is a closed ecosystem. And as a result, the Spotify measures, each play of a song or a track, and as a result of their ability to count. They can then pay artists, some portion of a penny from memberships, you know for membership fees and dues, right, because they have that closed ecosystem. They're able to track this. Now what we're seeing in the NFT world, is that this is a decentralized system. And when a piece of art that is registered in the blockchain gets transferred from one address to another, essentially saying this address owns it Oh, now it's been transferred over there and this amount of ether has kind of made that transaction happen that the artists then can actually derive some benefit from from that because of a smart contract that is embedded in that NFT. And so rather than having a Spotify for art. Stand up, which doesn't make sense because I actually tried to build us in 2014 with a product that I was involved in called NeonMob. And the problem actually there was another one that I was involved in too called detect and we were building a 4k digital art display. Around the same time as edition, art, which is another thing to look back on and these are all pre NFT stuff. And the problem that we kept running into is like well what creates the value of this artificially scarce resource because the moment that I can look at it, you know, to the point that was made before that value that has been essentially consumed by the other person who looks at it it's not an artifact it's not an asset.
But just as you know I can listen to a song on Spotify, and then my membership fee ends up being funneled into that artists in a very you know very small amount but when you have millions of people doing it, then it sort of adds up. We're now applying a similar type of artificial scarcity, or counting system to digital art but in a decentralized way. And I think the number of things that are kind of in this is like so inside out world, but I think you're totally right when you say like this can form the foundation of so many new types of exchanges that hadn't really been possible here before.
Yeah, I think, I think, Jeffrey your point about making money like helping artists make money is interesting because I think it also, if you think about it also helps the fan, make money too, because it lets the fan, have an ownership stake in the creator's art. And if the overall MCU market goes up or the creator becomes more famous that the fan can like resell the FDA for more money right so I think that's like the very first time, where the fan and the Creator, both the both of their interests are aligned. There's an extent. Yeah, I think,
I think that's super like that is really super interesting and the. Another piece that I find very interesting of it is like, at some point, the chain of ownership is going to have its own unique value right provenance
because like I can think Jeffrey on this at certain points. Maybe that edition is worth more than, you know, the one iota something.
Absolutely. And what happens if you know the person like some random person who then later on becomes some super famous person, and then that just sort of like inserts, somebody big like into that existing chain, and then suddenly that just changes the perception of the value of it. So like, there's so many pieces to that where you can. It's like different people can find it valuable for different reasons. But it all kind of it all kind of like ends up being money, and like that part I think is, I mean, honestly, I think that's probably the most interesting part for most people is that they're like this, there, there is a way to get my stuff out there, and there's a way to get compensated for it, and I get credit, like most people are like, my guess is that artists will be like, I'm happy with, with credit or I'm happy with money but they often don't get both and like this is one of those things where it's like possible suddenly where you. You can have both, and you can have it online where everything can be stolen. So like, it's. I do, I do think that there's something you know like really like really interesting sort of like buried in that, in that chain of ownership,
totally okay so I guess the very clubhouse thing but I'm gonna reset the room a little bit and then we're gonna open it up for a little more conversation.
So again, this is the tech meme experience and basically every, I don't know how often, but we we sort of have conversations about the news of the day and we find a few things to go a little bit deeper on so we are now in the point of the conversation where we are talking about NFTs sort of from I would say an educational learning out in the open. None of us are well, I don't want to speak for everyone but I'm certainly not an expert on this stuff and so we're trying to have conversations about where this stuff goes, what we can learn from kind of what's gone before, and where these things may go next. And where are the opportunities. One thing that I would request as people come up, is to, and I don't do a good job of this and a horrible example but try to be brief in whatever question or comment you have to offer. Don't be self promotional and try to keep it sort of centered to the group, and that would be awesome. So with that, Ronan. I knew they were a big either proponent or just, you know, I've seen you in a bunch of rooms about entities. Where were you coming in from this and what you excited about this stuff.
Oh man, that was like the best question you could have asked because you said that you were involved in NeonMob, and I've actually been a NEO MMA player for quite a long time I actually run the NeonMobsters group on Facebook, there's like, you took it over, I started that group.
NeonMobsters. Yeah, I started No, I started. Google Plus I'm sorry yeah my note.
Sorry I definitely
took over for me I've been doing that.
No but yeah so like, I actually got to the space through the tops apps and then through the top apps I found neon mob, and then through those I found quid. And I've been doing that for, I don't know, six years now. And then through tops I found out about the GPA drop last May. So I partook in the GPA drop in May, literally two and a half hours after I got my wisdom teeth pulled. So that was a fun experience.
So you're using a bunch of words and I just wanna make sure everyone's on on board here So talk a little bit about you know drops, and about how that kind of happens how you find out about them, you know, and just so people have a little bit of background to the NeonMob app, you know, again it's been out there for a little while, you can check it out at NeonMob.com. Essentially, it allows you to collect digital art cards that are artificially scarce within the NeonMob universe, these are not NFTs they're not registered on the blockchain. They are essentially rendered artificially scarce, based on sort of database rows in a, you know, back end, and mob runs, but you can collect them you can trade them. there are there's not serial numbers but there's numbers in the cards, and there are different rarities of each of the different cards so it's just like you know you can imagine Pokemon, or what was it called wizards, whatever the Magic the Gathering. So you know like Beanie Babies, I mean these these concepts are not necessarily new but in the digital space they are so but Rona what I want to hear from you is kind of like this concept of the drop, and you were like how you found out about those things because you go from the mob and tops, which to me are kind of, you know, mainstream ish platforms for collecting, you know, digital artifacts to a world where these NFTs start to appear. So how did that happen.
Exactly. Yeah, so, so a drop. Yeah, is basically when the release takes place, and the first release that Topps had on the blockchain was May of last year, and May of last year, they dropped Gbk, which was the OS one which is original series one it's a literary recreation of the original series, is that they released back in the 80s. And that was dropped on the wax blockchain. So something you'll find out in the space quickly is that there are multiple blockchains, and they're kind of their own ecosystems. Essentially, kind of like new compared to platforms. So, yeah,
so are they are they mostly on a theorem though right
yeah so Ethereum I would say like has like the most eyes, and it's the oldest it's been around the longest as far as blockchains and NFC collectibles go. But wax is is a growing blockchain it's very big, and then you got flow, which is NBA top shot, and I think that most people have probably heard of NBA top shot.
That is on flow blockchain that the creators of flow and top shot are the creators of crypto kitties, which are one of the original NFTs in the space. So, yeah, so basically you've got different platforms. I kind of came in through wax and then I spent the next two weeks learning about all of them, and everything and how the technology works and what like the products were and then I found you know crypto art and then it just it has been this snowball effect of being a digital collector understanding, like how people can value, digital assets that don't have ownership right like NeonMob is a site that's been going for a long time now, and it's actually seeing a resurgence right now because they implemented like a membership plan.
And, but it was essentially a free to play game for me I played it for years just to click
Launch membership like yesterday or something right
was a while ago so it's been around for a little while
but what they've done is they've, they've started kind of just iterated on it right and so you get like different perks and stuff they're kind of tweaking that all the time. But I think I've got over 20,000 cards on the market at this point, I'd love Neo mob. It's such a great app and I really like wish that it had the blockchain built into it.
Listen to me, that was my one project that I really wanted them to do. They're like, Man, this blockchain stuff I don't even know what you're talking about this is like in 2014 No, well you know what's sad is I felt like NeonMob, really was like on this trajectory to be like really big and then all of a sudden it just lost steam and like there was a community manager that was like very involved in our Facebook. Yeah. And like and so and then it just thought I don't know anyways. But yeah so naturally I understood the space like and then why it works because it just I've seen people drop $25,000 in the tops app over a weekend. And that's nothing, and when that app is deleted. It's all gone. They don't own anything there's nothing left. Unlike here, when you're dealing with the blockchain. And your NFTs are backed by that technology. So it's definitely a game changer. Beyond just glad to like hop in and then all of a sudden dude I had to fanboy for a second about somebody who was involved with the team at the mob because yeah I love the product. Yeah, that's a very small world that's pretty amazing though, it's, I apologize, I didn't mean to read it for your Facebook group I did start the mobsters group on Google Plus, which of course is now defunct so you'll be able to find that anywhere it's, you know, probably some backup server, you know, Google wasteland but whatever.
Okay, awesome. Well thank you for that. We've also got up here. Well, let's see, yeah so so and is up here we've got see no pattern I guess Chuck, thank you for having your alternative name in there. What would you guys like to contribute.
Well speaking of Google Plus in its disappearance. One of my concerns right now for this. This new wave of NFTs although it does feel slightly different than what was happening several years ago is, you know, so I think, you know, one of the issues obviously is you know what blockchain are is are you building your own and, and how stable is it and, you know, frankly, you know, I'm thinking about portability of these art objects off of chains that get abandoned. We saw a lot of that, you know, three, three or four years ago.
a lot of really earnest and very forthright efforts, but, you know, extremely immature technology. And, you know, one of the things that I want to see solve before we put my name on it is a really serious approach to digital identity and how that's going to work in these systems so it's not just don't get me started right so it's not just you know, NFTs for artwork. It's really how are you handling the art test as well you know in terms of a cryptographically secure environment. So my questions and I, I'm really looking for, you know, the best people to talk to him about this is you know i i i feel that, you know, we need to solve that problem and all that to be able to get everybody paid including the audience. And so it's essentially a system which can track all derivatives right. And that is something that NFTs are really doing and I love this concept of going back to the original artists so I don't know if that's a clear question but that's what I'm thinking about, well, just to sort of. Okay, let's see, first of all to reset the room a little bit and then I do have a comment on that because I think you touched on a bunch of really interesting things from a historical perspective, and then it kind of dovetails into what the blockchain kind of allows for first again just this is the tech beam experienced. Every so often, Brett and I get together we talk about the knee the day's top news stories, then we kind of like go deeper into a bunch of topics that we're seeing as being trending or super interesting. And so right now we are in the part of the conversation where we were talking about NFTs specifically as it relates to art to art, artists, remuneration to the creator and passion economy, and then kind of like where this stuff has come from, and then you know extensively you know I heard Jason Calacanis say this, the other night and I thought it was a very useful framing which is, you know, if you just believe that this thing will actually work. What does that lead to and what does it allow us to do. So, we'd love to see hands from folks that want to contribute, we'll get some more folks up here and again, if you can keep your your commentary just you know quick brief.
Again, I don't do a great job of that but I invite you to demonstrate to me how to do it. And also try to resist any self promotion or just, you know, keep it on topic, and a room centric, that would be great. The thing I wanted to add to what you're saying, you know, one, I find the idea of tokenizing myself, you know, to be kind of interesting, you know, from an identity perspective, I did a lot of work in identity, digital identity earlier in my career specifically working on things like open ID, and a lot, you know, and that also was something that I was hoping to sort of weave into like NeonMob. NeonMob could be one marketplace, in which artists could sell their work, but of course if you have distributed or decentralized identity or portable identity, where you can sign into one or more of these marketplaces, that essentially you can accrue reputation. And you can accrue fans and all these different contexts and so actually going back to something that I guess he's not here anymore maybe Richard was saying earlier, you can sort of find the people, or find the the artwork like you know maybe there's a set of work that I distribute to one marketplace. And then I distribute a set of my other work to a different marketplace. But if you're just a collector of my work, then maybe you can participate in multiple more marketplaces, and find my work no matter where I happen to publish it. And so that creates a whole bunch of new dynamics and interactions that I think are interesting. One of things that you mentioned that I think also fits into this, and there's two aspects that I think are worth, you know, thinking about and pursuing, and one is, whether you look at like how GitHub creates a participatory environment for people to publicly kind of share and commit, essentially to different repositories or projects, and then get credit for be blamed for the work that he did that has very interesting elements or similarities to sort of a blockchain. So not only do you get provenance, but you can maybe see modifications or alterations over time. And then there becomes almost like a chart or tree of all the contributions that have been made of different artwork and so if you think about that from a mean perspective. And I've actually I think I've seen a couple examples of this where there's sort of a seed, or someone creates an original piece of art, and there's all these different variations and actually Koji, there's a platform called Koji that does this, that that you can actually invest in reinterpretations of that artwork. And again, a very similar kind of way to SPN, or CVS or any kind of versioning system. And if you were able were able to give attribution within that system to these contributors then you could actually, they rate their participation, but okay I'm gonna pause myself for now. Billy has come up, Billy What would you like to contribute.
Man did I wasn't I wasn't expected I really was just hoping just to listen and I see you got me up as Speaker but uh i'm actually artists just kind of like diving in that space very strong strongly. I'm looking to kind of like pioneer the space in the music field and operating in a very avant garde type of way, in the urban space of music. So it's going to be new and I think you know I'm gonna be trying something different. So I'm looking to kind of bring you know like a lot of my graphic cover arts to my project that I conceptualize and made myself are very contemporary, you know, I think they can really live in a space so I've been experimenting with starting out with just you know I know super rare is pretty basic. But, you know, starting there and then as a platform called flow. I'm in touch with the CEO is going to be rolling out this summer. And I feel a curated platform that's obviously it's going to be similar very similar to super rare but they're obviously going to be having some artists, musicians in there it's kind of higher level independent artists they're trying to show proof of concept that there's a space for music and art that kind of lives in that space to exist, other than just Spotify or it just kind of be under what the labels, the way the labels kind of determine, we value our music and art.
So, that's kind of a question that I have, and Chris you've, you've delved into this more than me. But like as I'm as I'm going through all of the links that we made for the show notes for this. Like, it is kind of meme stuff that I'm seeing it is sort of visual stuff that I'm seeing is there is there room for other stuff. are you seeing stuff like music blowing up or like, I mean, man. If we're talking about like art, like, could there be like, like, almost a performance art experience like. Is there a way to 100% in the meatspace like NFT like an actual experiential thing. There's so much you can do here, you know, yeah. ticketing exactly scarcity. There is a link that I just put into by the way the back channel for this room is techmeme.live, you can just go there. If you want to just like leave a text question or comment, you know, that's sort of multimodal, you know, multiplexing. And there was an artist named blauw, which is three Liu for those who have a hard time spelling that he is putting out his next album, through NFTs and he's doing a drop in two days so using that language learning used. Right. Essentially, fresh, I don't know if it's tokenizing fresh realizing whatever like the album, and allowing fans to basically buy pieces of it, which then they can resell. So again, if he's able to make money, or a percentage of those sort of, you know, pieces that he's putting out there in limited quantity, and suddenly those things get resold now this becomes a way for you know any kind of artist whether you're a visual artist a musician, or if you're both, you know, if you do like, for example, housy was on the Spotify stream on event today, and she is so interesting how these two worlds are shaping up because she's creating art, like, you know, actual art because she's a visual artist as well. And then she's creating what are called.
I guess canvases. So, these are essentially the Spotify is take on stories. And so you can go and you can see kind of artists exclusive work on housing profile on Spotify, but the fans can't own any of that, because their economic model is all about you having a membership to Spotify and then you go into the space of Spotify, and then you access that exclusive content. Whereas, what Billy is talking about and what Blau is doing is essentially saying you know what I'm going to be my own kind of record agent, I'm going to actually have a relationship directly with my fans. I'm going to give them early access to things. And if you are one of those people that essentially buys you know some of my NFTs, then maybe you know two weeks from now or two years from now, I send a message out to all the owners of the initial drop of this album, and I'm gonna do a special concert just like the value of these things can accrue over time and actually collect interest in a way that a lot of digital goods just can't do it for clarification for what for clarification from a bow did he actually already did the unreleased song or album rather he did that last month, and then what he's doing this week is he's doing like a new drop, where he's going back and it's the for like the three year anniversary of his ultraviolet album, and what they're doing there is they've got like a bunch of tiered access and like you can fall into tiers depending on like how much you bid on the different items available and then whatever tier you fall in will basically, excuse me, result in what you're, you're, you like get out of it, and then like if you fall into the tears and NFTs have songs attached to them, have different rarities, but it's pretty cool like and then like the top the very like top person will get an actual like Platinum version of the album which is really really cool stuff like that.
Yeah, I got a question bro, because you can like you know a lot about law situation. Do you have any clarity of how he created leverage in that space is he is he is he already separate from music or, like, Are you familiar with how he created leverage in that space to be able to be kind of, you know, successful kind of I,
I kind of question, you
know, kind of, when I dive into this space which will be this month, the month of March actually just, I have my fan base I have a really good fan base that I can drag over you know and kind of ignore us you know as far as when my own coin base, you know, kind of incentive and then you know leveraging that to go back into, you know, whatever route I want to go, whether it be, barium or just whatever cryptocurrency but as far as like living in a space like super rare or any of the other platforms, and then
I can answer that like real like succinctly allows a Yeah, because a buddy of mine. He's awesome. And this goes to all artists and all creators and everyone just coming into the space right now. What Blau did was he came into the space, he learned about the space, he learned about the technology. He put his hands down and his knees in the dirt and he he grinded with the community, and then through that he made connections in your network and yes he's an artist and yes that did help. But what made him so successful was that he put in the work and if you look blouson all the time all day and he is giving people free knowledge and really good knowledge about how to approach this space and be successful.
throw him a follow it's three ELL a you. He's got his job coming up this week, there's going to be clubhouse rooms all week about it he's going to be in him he's glad to answer any of your questions.
room last night Ronen that went till 230 with with Gabrielle Leighton, there was some incredible conversations about NFTs that embedded.
You know gaping holes in the NFTs as well like and Blau was on that, and I think what's really an end so it was actually the co founder of Patreon. And if you look at it, even Todd Rundgren in the 90s when I was publishing his stuff was doing was doing something called paid patron that.
Now, he had his own followings at that point and so he could leverage that. But you're early enough Billy and this you know this craze about NFTs right now might fade again and come back in another three years. But you can, you know, I would just say, figure out which one of the platforms actually feels.
You know, super comfortable to you and that you relate to the people who are actually doing the builds and you're not late, and you'll be able to leverage their publicity.
Yo, thank you.
Yeah, I would say that, that one. Why is he so successful. I think two stories pretty easy to explain. First of all, is like a true artist. And second of all, he was like in the space when there was no light on the space. So I met him like first time I think 2017 in Korea. So you can imagine that was like nearly like four years ago. And he was like traveling on a global scale and he was connecting with a lot of people in the crypto space, because I'm assuming he's a crypto person himself as well. So it was not just the attraction because I think it just developed you know like like the NFT space is a space in the crypto landscape, like, four years ago there was nothing or no space for creative people. And there were creative people in the crypto space but they have no outlets at will. Once the NFTs are popping up that's basically where all the creative people in the space found an outlet. And for you personally it's like, At the moment I think we have a very high attention on this space. And I think it will, more or less, drop in a couple of months, but as Anne said we are still early so like, you need to stick to the policy that you need to stick to the idea. And if you're in that space for the next three to four to 10 years if you're single I contend that horizon, you will definitely have your chance of having success.
Also fractional ownership songs, if you look at a company called best be Tz. It's actually one of the co founders is pretty prominent here on clubhouse and that's Wolf and lion. And when they launch. Fans invest in particular, musicians, songs and then, own a piece of that song in perpetuity so the song went really viral and well. The fans would enjoy that. But that was I think 2017 that I was on a panel of we will launch their, their platform but you know in the US some things were harder to implement so simply because of our laws here and x us it was a little bit easier.
Alright, so I want to take this opportunity to I guess I want to hear from from Chuck and then Jurgen I brought you up, and then we'll probably close up a room. Again, this is the Techmeme xperience and we are here talking about the day's top news and then going deep into subjects that Brian and I happen to see blowing up on Twitter clubhouse wherever else we're just trying to understand stuff.
And so we appreciate everyone who's here today and of course you can check out the back channel today tech meme dot live or you can go to my Twitter profile. Chris Messina and you can see kind of the earlier stories that we were talking about an eclipse that came from the Techmeme Ride Home podcast.
But before we wrap up, I just want to I want to hear from Chuck give him a chance to say something and then Jurgen, you came up as
well. And I know you're
deep into the NFT world.
Now that you guys want to offer some
thoughts. Sure, Yeah, I, I was just in here to listen I saw my old friend and my kind of first mentor, Jeffrey kalama cough in here so I popped in. And, yeah, I don't have much to offer from the technical side of things so much as the community and the creativity. I guess from. I don't know just almost just the sort of the personable side of this has been really fascinating to sort of experience the last couple months, I've been, you know, running a design studio in Chicago since 2004. And when I was 18 is when I started it and just, you know, there's been certain things throughout that time on the internet that have sort of held people together. You know, and sort of galvanized communities, early on for me that was a lot of the really early internet design forums and news sites like anybody remembers like k 10 k and design as kinky and surf station and and all those types of sites. It was, that was a huge, that was a huge thing for me and then there was yay Hooray, which of course Jeffrey was, you know, part of that crew and I actually got hired on as threadless is fifth employee packing t shirts, as a way of simply to try to I was just a kid in the suburbs I had no money, no college degree it didn't go to college in the end. And yeah threadless hired me to pack t shirts I met Jeffrey there Jeffrey gave me a job doing. He passed me on a job doing flyers for a club that I wasn't old enough to go to in Chicago called Smart bar, and that was kind of the first glimpse into what it would come to mean to find interesting ways to connect with other people. You know like i said i literally, one of my shirts was picked one of the first 100 shirts ever printed on threadless and that's how they got to know me, and I just kept kind of knocking on doors and, and, you know, getting to know these guys and so anyways to bring that full circle I just, you know, just looking kind of at some of the people in this room right now like you know again Jeffrey really I still consider him to this day to be, you know, an incredibly important person in my life and in my career and then Josh Davis as well as in your PlayStation. I mean, I discovered Josh's work in the computer lab in my independent study art class, like junior year of high school. And it became pretty, pretty clear pretty quickly that you know I was starting to sort of identify, you know, kind of my tribe, as it were, and then Jeff Kraus, who's one of the person who's here in this room right now has been kind of, you know, just an incredible artists to follow I met in Michigan and it was all this kind of rambling is just to say that over the last, you know, two months that I've just kind of been exposing myself to the space as someone who's been kind of in the art and design community on the internet for about 18 years now this is by far been the most kind of drastic and quickly moving sea change that I've experienced in a way where it's really sort of taken over the conversation for better or worse it's, it's all anybody's talking about but at the same time, it's, it's been it's been quite, quite cool, I guess it's just in simplest terms to put it to reconnect with some of these old friends, and make a lot of new ones and at the end of the day, to me that's a net positive and I'm just excited to, you know, just sort of begin and start to meet people, kind of a new ways because of, because of all of our collective interest in creativity at the end of the day, so that's my monologue.
Thank you. I like that I think it's super useful, actually, like, because I think where I'd like to, maybe, wrap the room is to get a sense from your perspective, especially like with Ronan up here, you know, and other folks in the audience, like what I feel like like that like the blockchain obviously didn't exist, you know, 2004 or five, seven, etc. That is an enabling technology, just like the social web kind of was back then. So we're seeing a step function, difference in what is possible now by introducing, like, what that technology enables and, from your perspective, you know, looking back, and then sort of maybe projecting into the future, you know, 1015 years you know unless that's uncomfortable. You know what do you what do you really hope for for this generation, that's just getting started like if you were to sort of have a conversation with yourself, but you were reincarnated and you're sort of like that you were back then. Now, the things that you would say hey look like I was like amazing and like there's monetization and all this other stuff too, like, here's the things that you're not thinking about that usually should that are gonna make a huge difference. You know, moving forward.
Sure. Well I mean I think right now I'm seeing a lot of artists probably rush in and be attracted to the idea that there's, I mean it's been a rough, rough year to say the least you know there's a real human side to this I think we're all very caught up in the, the splash Enos of this all. And I think that's okay i mean there's a reason that, you know, I mean everyone's, you know, saying Israel Gold Rush it's early blah blah blah. That's true. But there's a real human side and people have been struggling, people have been getting laid off people are you know who normally are doing great. I mean I think about musicians, almost, frankly, more than a visual designer just because, you know, they're their primary source of income is suddenly last year just been devastated and so this is a really exciting new opportunity and so I guess. That said, is to kind of actually do what I did when I was first introduced to this space, which that's to give the credit was by D. Go ins from Zora back in November. And then another friend of mine David Allen who's a tattoo artist actually who was kind of the one who introduced me to crypto in the very first place. I just took a couple months to just learn, I'd really felt intimidated by it, I felt like another language I felt just way over my head.
And I would just tell people to just like, slow down if, frankly, this is going to have legs in the way that everybody who is getting into it seems to think it will have, then it'll be there for you when you're ready, and you don't have to rush right this second and try and catch the wave now or face, missing out. You know, I think that there's a long, there's a long game here. And there's, you know, the way that I'm hearing people talk about it is it has a massive potential and if that's really true. It'll only get more refined and become, you know, just more robust and a better community and, and hopefully cheaper for people to get in gas fees, things like that. So yeah, I think that's what I would tell the younger person is just kind of like, you know, Pace yourself a little bit and don't make things to try to make money that's really the number one piece of advice is to, you know, don't you know don't define yourself as success because someone bought your work on there. You know, and that goes for anything, I think, is where your intentions live so that's, yeah I think that's what I would probably probably say, all right, well thanks thanks for asking me too I appreciate it. Yeah. I mean, I think, like, part of part of what this show does is it sort of is on the bleeding edge of what's happening. You know, Brian is in there, checking out Techmeme everyday, finding the best stories, and then sharing that with his broader audience, but then I think for me what I find valuable and useful is to put it into some context to say look, there are a lot of these things that we've been trying to do for some time, and it either hasn't been possible and hasn't been the right time, or you know, just like cultural needing to, you know, culture needs to shift and change to open up to make these things available and I think the last thing I would say about this is sort of bring it full circle to where we started talking about Spotify and the whole stream on event that happened today. Like, what Daniel from Spotify sought to do, way back when he got started was essentially to create a platform that would enable this type of, kind of, you know, creator and artists monetization. And he went about it using the tools that were available at that time, did something, you know, very different than you know what Napster had tried to do, but both of those pressures were actually necessary to get us to where we are now. And so in a similar way, you know, there is going to be like the Spotify event, and a team that gets started whether it's super rare or wearable, or azura, or foundation or any of the ones that are out there like building these things, I think you're right like now is the time to learn and to explore and to try things and to just, you know, build as Andreessen said. So anyways, with that, we're gonna close out this room, thanks again everyone for showing up again if you want to drop some some comments at Tech meme dot live, we'll probably be in there for a little bit longer, otherwise you can find me and Brian on Twitter, and will that we will probably be back here, maybe on Wednesday or later this week, but thanks everybody. I'll talk to you later. Thanks.