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Best of Season 1

Best of Season 1

2022-02-2322:21

In Episode 12 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) wraps up season 1 with the best moments of each episode. If you're just joining the Islands' community, this is a great episode to hear summaries of each episode to see which ones you'd like to go back and listen to.This season TZ and Alexis talked with Justin Aversano, Keith Grossman, Noah Davis, ThankYouX, Bobby Hundreds, Betty from Deadfellaz, Farokh from Rug Radio, Mike Dudas, Jacob Martin, and Evan Keast. You can find each episode linked to Spotify and Apple down below.Season 1 Episodes:Episode 1: Alexis Ohanian - Cofounder of Reddit, Founder of 776. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 2: Justin Aversano - NFT artist of projects like Twin Flames. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 3: Keith Grossman - President of Time Magazine. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 4: Noah Davis - NFT Specialist at Christie's Auction House. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 5: ThankYouX - NFT artist of projects like Frequency. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 6: Bobby Hundreds - Cofounder of Adam Bomb Squad and The Hundreds. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 7: Betty - Cofounder of Deadfellaz. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 8: Farokh - Founder of Rug Radio. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 9: Mike Dudas - Founder of LinksDAO. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 10: Jacob Martin - The NFT Attorney. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Episode 11: Evan Keast - Cofounder of Doodles. Listen on Spotify, Apple, and for everywhere else click here.Come build The Community Platform for web3 with us!🤝  Islands is hiring if you or anyone you know wants to help build the NFT community platform for the next era of the Internet!🌊  Join our Discord to chat about the podcast or anything else🐦  See you on the bird app: follow Islands and 776Islands Team 🏝
In Episode 11 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis (@alexisohanian) talk with Evan Keast aka Tulip, who is one of the co-founders of Doodles. Evan has been a part of the NFT community since almost the beginning as he worked at Dapper Labs before starting Doodles with Poopie and Burnt Toast. In this episode, TZ and Alexis dive into Tulip’s story to learn more about how the Doodles team came together, what is coming next for the project, and why Doodles is not CC0 right now.- Timestamps -1:32: How did Tulip get into NFTs?4:35: How has the NFT world progressed through multiple crypto winters?7:17: What is happening as more talent from different backgrounds are moving into web3?13:34: What about Doodles resonated with so many people and cause it to be successful?15:22: How did the Doodle team come together?21:45: Why is Doodles not CC0?26:38: How much of web2 community and company building is Doodles bringing into web3?27:35: Where does Tulip see Doodles in 5 years?29:22: How working at Dapper Labs helped with launching Doodles.30:58: What Tulip loves about Doodles.31:54: What projects or communities inspire Tulip?35:25: If Tulip was stranded on an island, what NFT would he bring?- Mentions - Jordan (@poopie) Scott (@burnttoast) Crypto Kitties (@cryptokitties) Gods Unchained (@Gods Unchained) Axium Zen (@AxiomZenTeam) Projects that inspire Tulip/What he is keeping an eye on Axie Infinity (@axieInfinity) Coinbase NFT (@Coinbase) OpenSea (@opensea) Rarible (@rarible) Foundation (@withFND) SuperRare (@SuperRare)' Come build The Community Platform for web3 with us!🤝  Islands is hiring if you or anyone you know wants to help build the NFT community platform for the next era of the Internet!🌊  Join our Discord to chat about the podcast or anything else🐦  See you on the bird app: follow Islands and 776Islands Team 🏝
In Episode 10 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis (@alexisohanian) bring on the NFT Attorney, Jacob Martin (@thenftattorney). Jacob has had one of the best 2021s in web3 as he turned $5,000 into a sizeable 7-figure portfolio by flipping NFTs and being a part of certain DAOs. Jacob came onto the show to share how a 26-year old lawyer is one of the leading law experts in web3 with only 2 years of traditional law experience, what he looks for in projects, and what he believes 2022 will bring for web3.- Timestamps -1:47: How did Jacob get into NFTs4:33: Why Jacob’s startup didn’t work7:69: Jacob’s crazy 202115:51: How being a lawyer helped Jacob find good NFT deals20:17: America’s renting vs owning culture22:07: Transitioning from Lawyer to Investor24:29: Ready Player DAO24:35: Red DAO32:06: Experimental DAOs are the future.34:57: The issues with credentialism42:12: Which NFT would Jacob take onto his Island?- Mentions -Ready Player Dao (@ReadyPlayerDao)Red Dao (@Red__DAO)Cryptokitties (@CryptoKitties)CryptopunksVeefriends by Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee)Dapper Labs (@dapperlabs)Evan Kearst (@evankearst)Jordan Castro (@poopie)Scott Martin (@burnttoast)MeebitsSquiggle (@squiggles)Come build The Community Platform for web3 with us!🤝  Islands is hiring if you or anyone you know wants to help build the NFT community platform for the next era of the Internet!🌊  Join our Discord to chat about the podcast or anything else🐦  See you on the bird app: follow Islands and 776Islands Team 🏝
In Episode 9 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg), Alexis (@alexisohanian), and Mike Dudas (@mdudas) talk about how Links DAO (@LinksDAO) was created in 18 days. Links DAO is reimagining the country club by creating a modern-day golf & leisure club. TZ, Alexis, and Mike dive into the specifics of how Links DAO will work, how Links DAO will break down the barriers into the previously exclusive sport of golf, and even dive into the complicated legal side of setting up a DAO.- Timestamps -0:00: How did Mike get started in NFTs?7:08: How Links DAO launched in 1 month9:22: How does Links DAO aim to be inclusive14:56: How do you decide what decisions are made by “the people” vs the core team?20:12: How do you build a team that builds a DAO?22:34: Don’t YOLO the legal side28:24: How does Links DAO work?34:29: What NFT would Mike bring on his island?- Mentions -Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee)AJ Vaynerchuk (@ajv)Flyfish club (@flyfishclub)Links DAO (@LinksDAO)Bored Ape Yacht Club (@BoredApeYC)Constitution DAO (@ConstitutionDAO)Come build The Community Platform for web3 with us!🤝  Islands is hiring if you or anyone you know wants to help build the NFT community platform for the next era of the Internet!🌊  Join our Discord to chat about the podcast or anything else🐦  See you on the bird app: follow Islands and 776Islands Team 🏝
In Episode 8 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis (@alexisohanian) chat with Farokh (@farokh), Founder of Rug Radio (@RugRadio). Rug Radio is aiming to become the first ever decentralized media company. In this episode, Farokh shares his journey building communities online, why Rug Radio is important to him, and why memes are so important in web3.- Timestamps -1:08: How did Farokh learn about NFTs?5:11: Why does Farokh spends hours on web3?7:48: When did a Community Manager role becomes an actual job?9:30: Why Farokh left law school for community management12:40: How has community changed from platform to platform?14:56: The tactics that Farokh uses to build community20:08: How does web3 respond to the grifters and scammers?23:14: What does Farokh want to be known for?27:18: The rise of memes29:22: What does it mean to be “rugged”?32:34: What is Rug Radio?39.55: What would it take for Farokh to go back to clubhouse?47:38: What NFT would Farokh bring onto his island-Mentions - Gary Vee (@garyvee) Elon Musk “memes run the universe tweet” Jack Dorsey (@jack) Paul (@pdavidson) Logan Paul (@LoganPaul) Fvckrender (@fvckrender) Victor Mosquera (@victormosquerar) Fewocious (@fewocious) ThankYouX (@ThankYouX) JN Silva (@JNSilva_) Buster (@BusterScher) Greg Mike (@GREGMIKE) Mel (@belikewater893) Come build The Community Platform for web3 with us!🤝  Islands is hiring if you or anyone you know wants to help build the NFT community platform for the next era of the Internet!🌊  Join our Discord to chat about the podcast or anything else🐦  See you on the bird app: follow Islands and 776Islands Team 🏝
In Episode 7 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis (@alexisohanian) chat with Betty (@betty_nft), co-founder and “Horde Mother” of Deadfellaz NFT collection. Deadfellaz is an NFT project consisting of 10,000 “undead NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain.” In this episode, Betty shares how she assessed the risk of launching an NFT project, how we can continue to break down barriers in web3, and why building an anonymous team is the future.- Links and References Mentioned in This Episode - Boiz (@BOIZ_COLLECTION) Boss Beauties (@BossBeautiesNFT) CryptoStacys (@cryptostacys) clevergirls (@CleverGirlsNFT) raptorcity (@raptorcitynft) Goosebumps Galactic Agency (@GSA_nft) Boring Bananas (@BoringBananasCo) Crypto Covens (@crypto_coven) Cool Cats (@coolcatsnft) - Timestamps -1:35: Betty’s superhero origin story8:13: Why is Betty “anonymous”?12:02: How can we continue to take down barriers for marginalized communities in web3?14:26: Betty’s Favorite women based artists/projects18:00: Why NFTs are the way that the average person can be an early-stage investor24:10: How does Betty manage her time?27:23: Betty’s advice for future NFT projects34:44: What is it like to work with an anonymous team?39:21: What’s your desert island NFT?- Mentions - Psych (@psych_nft) Lirona (@iamlirona) Priyanka (@priyankap_patel) Amy Woodward (@amy__woodward) fatbaby (@NftFat) India (@indiaweston) Leon Lee (@leoneeart) - Highlights -*How Betty got into NFT’s*When Betty first heard about NFTs, she got excited but was scared to engage  Like many people, Betty spent time absorbing and learning as much as she could about the space. Her “professional” work was in the corporate creative productive industry so she understood the art side of NFTs right away. Betty’s husband, Psych, was the one who jumped right into NFTs and after seeing all of the projects the Psych was working on, Betty was hooked. “I was like, I mean, we've worked in creative production together on a corporate level for really amazing brands for years, so the production side of it is something that we do anyway. And having been involved in the communities and things I was like, let's just do our own (NFT).”“The idea for Deadfellaz just came really organically. We love horror, and we had been discussing like the fascination with zombies across pop culture and how it brings so many people together and I think that people love spooky stuff.”*Why Deadfellaz had to succeed*Betty and Pysch’s backs were against the wall“And it was like, you know, we either throw ourselves into this and it works or it doesn't work and so though that was like the fire, obviously, we have three children, it had to work. And the more we just sat down, it was like, it is going to be amazing.” NFTs give anyone a chance to make a name for themselves, no matter what situation they find themselves in. Even though the “real world” was slowly falling apart around Betty and her family between the Australia fires and COVID, they found their community online and have built an amazing project around it. *Anonymity and Pseudonyms may be the future* Betty considers herself semi doxxed. She has always been called Betty by all of her friends, but it is technically not her legal name. She chose to be anonymous because she wanted to separate her corporate persona from her online one as some corporate clients can be confused between the two. But what most people don’t realize is the safety of building a brand behind a pseudonym. Betty and Psych have 3 kids. as they moved into a space where there is a potential of a lot of money, they wanted to protect their family as much as possible. “It's like the second identity, this alter ego that they can't have their colleagues or clients knowing about. And I'm seeing this happen more and more as people want to spend more time in web3.” And on top of all of this, anonymity allows the ability to eliminate (or strengthen) potential biases and take down barriers that are prevalent in web2. Examples of these potential barriers are women entering male-dominated industries, the BIPOC community, LGBTQ+, etc. Betty is one of the thought leaders in this space and wants to make sure that the same issues in web2 don’t make it into web3. “We all have that responsibility, it shouldn't just be me and a handful of other women and gender diverse people and people of color and indigenous people fighting for themselves, it needs to be everyone.”*Investing in NFTs is like early-stage investing*Alexis: “I look at these projects, and it's the vibes of the creators. It's their intention, their thoughtfulness, certainly the art and the thoughtfulness of the product. But then it's the community and who here has the sort of minimum viable community to do something that I think will be special in 10 years, not in two months, or 10 hours, but a decade?” If you want to be an accredited investor in private markets, currently you have to either have a gross income exceeding $200,000 in each of the two most recent years or joint income with a spouse or partner exceeding $300,000 for those years. This law creates barriers that don’t allow most individuals to participate in private investing. But NFTs break these barriers down because like for Deadfellaz, all you needed to get involved in the project was .025ETH and hit mint before it sold out. *Building a team in web3* As of recording, the Deadfellaz team was at 26 members including 3D artists, copywriters, project managers, narrative designers, Decentraland developers, and more. Most of this team is anonymous and Betty believes that she may never even see some of her mods even though she’s worked extremely close with them since the beginning of the project. “The trust is there from the work that people have produced and the validation of their association with other people, like our Decentraland team, we've never met them. We've never seen them.” But how do you pay anonymous people? Betty has the information for about 70% of the people on her team, but the rest are just usernames and wallets. Most teams and corporations aren’t ready to embrace certain aspects of web3 culture like paying anonymous people, but this may be one of the key reasons for Deadfellaz success... with fewer barriers comes better talent that allows Betty and her team to build better and faster than other projects. “I think that leaning into those web3 quirks, part of what's gonna bring longevity for our projects because we really trust in the world that we're building in. We're not building a web2 brand, and slapping a web3 label on it like we are intrinsically web3.”*Betty’s goals for Deadfellaz in 5 years?* Betty wants Deadfellaz’s original holders to be empowered and have their lives changed. Deadfellaz will become a household name that is cemented in pop culture. “Sometimes I wake up and I'm like, “am I dreaming? What's going on?” You know, I check my Twitter, DMs, and emails. And it's just, it's craziness to me what's going on, but it's real life. It's happening. So yeah, just along for the ride.”“I'm going to keep pushing as hard as I can because I think that really special things will happen if we do.”*If you were stranded on an island what NFT would you bring?* Since Betty is bringing herself, she will be bringing her Deadfellaz pfp by default and choose to bring Psych’s Deadfellaz pfp with her for company. But she did consider bringing her cool cat. “Oh my god. I love my Cool Cat too. I was actually just looking at cool cats before like, I need to buy another Cool Cat”
Ep. 6: Bobby Hundreds

Ep. 6: Bobby Hundreds

2022-01-0542:16

In Episode 6 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis Ohanian (@alexisohanian) chat with with Bobby Hundreds (@bobbyhundreds), founder of streetwear brand The Hundreds. Bobby is also the creator of the Adam Bomb Squad, an NFT project consisting of 25,000 pieces each related to the history of the Hundreds company. In this episode you’ll hear about the similarities and differences of building a streetwear company versus an NFT project. You’ll also learn about why community and durability are so important to building a brand, and whether Bobby considers The Hundreds to be a successful brand after 18 years in existence.- Links and References Mentioned in This Episode -  About the Hundreds What NFTs Can Learn From Streetwear The Hundreds Blog This is Not a T-Shirt by Bobby Hundreds Beeple Sale The Robots - Timestamps -2:00: Who is Bobby Hundreds?04:50: How did Bobby move a web2 company into the web3 space?09:09: What is most important for the Hundreds?12:40: Community and its importance to brand building.17:00: How did Bobby first get into NFTs and what helped him understand them?22:00: How does building the Hundreds compare to Adam Bomb Squad?26:05: Why projects become cash grabs.32:34: How will The Hundreds maintain a brand quality in a decentralized world?39:50: Desert Island NFT- Mentions - Trevor McFedries (@whatdotcd) Dee Goens (@dg_goens) - Highlights -*Web2 and Community*“I didn’t want to be in the stage, I wanted to be on the floor, in the mosh pit with everyone else, and the microphone gets passed around.”Bobby didn’t have the tech knowledge at that point on how everyone could participate and rise up together. So he was doing it from within their brand and other brands trying to establish their community.“If there is any web2 company that I feel is sympathetic to what is happening in web3 and decentralized, but really embodies that spirit. I think it’s us” Bobby literally wrote a book on building brands around community. What really makes The Hundreds function is the community. Their entire company is based on community. “In telling someone else a story we are telling a little bit of ours” It was never about The Hundreds being the winner. It was about telling the story, which is why they invested so heavily in collaborations. Their mindset was that they were all part of this ecosystem together. “As the tide rises, we lift all the boats together.” They were doing it in the industry and now they are doing it through the community. A lot of established brands are looking at web3 and are scared because they have a lot to lose but for Bobby it’s inspiring. “To think that every single day I might lose this company entirely to the community is electrifying”Bobby wants to get to a point where he can completely lose himself to the community and everything is entirely decentralized.“All signs point in that direction. They’ve tried so hard to make it the other way for the last 10-15 years and it caused a lot of distressed and made me unhappy.” Bobby has lived with this guilt because he has been convincing young people that they aren’t enough unless they have a product. A simple consumer to business brand never sat right with Bobby even when he was a kid. He felt like he was a walking billboard for someones company. *Community and Ownership*“We’ve always endowed upon the community this sense of ownership, they’ve always felt like they own this brand.”People buy brands for community, identity, and because they have a sense of ownership.“When young people are getting our logo tattooed on them, it’s not that they are a fan of me, they feel like the brand belongs to them.” Bobby is constantly promoting the brand as a community. Their consumers support and represent The Hundreds not for Bobby but for themselves because they feel like the brand belongs to them when it really doesn’t. Bobby wants The Hundreds community to feel like the brand belongs to them and actually have a sense of ownership. *Becoming Immortal*“As an entrepreneur if people are alongside you saying ‘I don’t work for you, I am not your fan, we are all in this together we are all equally invested’ I feel invincible.” No matter how many people have been invited we are all in this together. In Bobby’s opinion, when Steve Jobs died he thought it was a problem because Apple’s entire brand was centered around one man. This got Bobby thinking that when he is gone, will his brand also be gone. For some people they want their company to go down with them to show how great they were. But that is not the case for Bobby, he wants his brand to live on forever. “What the brand is and the community is, is very special and unique in history and I don’t ever want that to die.”That was a concern of Bobby’s, he worried about what would happen to the brand if something were to happen to him. Now he doesn’t have to worry about that because of the community.“I feel like the brand is immortal because it’s not just me, it’s not just these community members, it’ll get passed onto generations. The technology lives forever so the brand lives forever.“*How did Bobby first get into NFTs and what helped him understand them?* This time last year there was news about Beeple’s sale. Trevor McFedries (@whatdotcd), who has been a part of The Hundreds for a while, tweeted about the Beeple sale. The Beeple sale didn’t make sense to Bobby, and it scared him. At first he got really mad about it, the number was so big at the time. Then he became curious. *On brand building*“Brands require time and discipline, passion and patience, and the ability to maintain that passion long term.”A lot of projects today are “fast rise fast demise” and that never ends well. Bobby has seen it multiple times in the fashion industry when he sees brands have a lot of hype and take off for a few months but eventually die.“I’m not interested yet in calling Adam Bomb Squad a brand. I call the Hundreds a brand because we have been around for 18 years and to me, that’s still not nearly enough.”*Building for the long term* The streetwear era of Bobby’s generation was very cash grabby and short term. Bobby wanted the Hundreds to be like Levis, they never took outside money, they wanted to move very organically and authentically. Bobby believes that a lot of people, in the NFT and Brand space, don’t intentionally build for short term. They think you are supposed to move fast and take the money, which does look cash grabby but they didn’t go into it with that goal. He believes that people think the hard work only has to be done before the drop is released and they don’t realize the hard work if after the drop. With NFTs, Bobby didn’t understand the hard work that would come after you drop until he got there. Once he got there he realized he was really starting at zero but he was used to it because he had been doing it for years with the Hundreds. “I’m accustomed to this lifestyle. Where 24 hours 7 days a week I am pouring myself into the project, and constantly innovating and adapting.”*Being selfish vs building a team* For Bobby, the Hundreds started as a very selfish project. Most founders start their company because they feel their voices aren’t out there, they don’t see themselves and their passion represented. So they stand up and start building. Bobby felt like the world needed his art, and that it needed to be represented. “I started this project from a selfish point of view, as a creator and artist.” Bobby’a business partner, Ben, told him he needed to hire someone because he was holding them back. Bobby refused to have someone else create his art to keep it pure. It took Bobby a while but he started hiring designers to build a team. The work is still to this day never held up to the standards he wants. “As an artist, you are never going to get the results you want or 110% how you would do it because there is no one else like you. You hire people to work with you not for you.” The people you hire are just collaborating and designing pieces of what they interpret of your art. Bobby didn’t appreciate the help until years later when he realized that the project is really not about him. “You project is not about you, it left your mind and entered the universe.” People that support your projects, don’t necessarily support you. They support the brand. Bobby compromised with the team on a lot of the clothes in a way he would never design it. But that made the brand stronger, because it is a mosaic of Bobby’s vision and all the other talented people. “The kind of clothes I want to design by myself is awful, thank God I have a team.”*Hobbies*“Your job as an artist is to make the world look better, that’s why we have art. It’s not for you, it’s for everyone.”If you want to work alone and not take anyone opinions then do it as hobby*Desert Island NFT*Bobby wrote an essay that he minted earlier this year called The Robots. The moral of the story is about how humans need our imperfections to heal each other. Robots, on the other hand, are perfect and we always think we want perfections.“I’m not proud of because it sold for $10 million like a crypto punk or because I sold 25k like Adam Bomb Squad. I’m proud of it because it means something to me.”
Ep. 5: ThankYouX

Ep. 5: ThankYouX

2021-12-1725:39

In Episode 5 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis Ohanian (@alexisohanian) chat with ThankYouX (@ThankYouX) in Miami during Art Basel. ThankYouX, also known as Ryan, is an artist whose work blends both art and technology. Throughout the episode you'll hear about how this intersection of art and tech is playing out, what's possible for a new generation of artists, the future of digital fashion, and more much. You'll also hear about Ryan's journey diving into NFTs and what his future plans are.Big thanks to Melissa (@melissa), Marya, Lulu, Kenyatta, Unrvld, and the 776 team for helping to put an incredible live event together. - Links Mentioned in This Episode -  Cryptopunk #8998 DAWN by Victor Mosquera - Timestamps - 02:25: How did Ryan get into NFTs?04:15: When did Ryan see "the Matrix" and what convinced him?05:08: What gave Ryan the conviction to dive in?09:45: How is Art Basel different this year with new artists than previous years?12:25: Alexis's experience with web2 vs. web313:58: What helped Ryan understand blockchain?14:13: What's the traditional art world like for an artist?15:29: NFT communities16:00: What's coming for NFTs?16:20: What is Ryan up to in Art Basel?16:45: Next generation of artists18:20: More about digital fashion19:25: NFTs as a technology24:45: NFTs and Virtual Reality26:35: If you were stuck on an island which NFT would you bring?- Mentions - ThankYouX Chris Mortimer 3LAU JN Silva logic Troy Carter fvckrender Baeige Tim Kang Blake Kathryn Greg Mike Justice Laub illestraeter_ REO Puks Daria.Pekh - Show Notes -*Ryan and NFTs*How did Ryan get into NFTs?Ryan comes from the digital art world but loves tech. He was kind of into VR and 360 a couple of years ago, but there wasn't any distribution for it so it faded away. "I have always tried to figure out how to marry my paintings with digital stuff" Last September Ryan got sent a few links about NFTs by his friend Chris Mortimer (@slidestream). Chris told Ryan that NFTs were going to be his future, so Ryan dove right into the space. A couple of weeks later Ryan met 3LAU (@3LAU) and they started to talk. 3LAU helped explain NFTs more.  Ryan then met his good friend JN Silva, who was deep into blockchain and helped explain a lot of the backend. They both felt like they didn't fit in the space. 'The Matrix moment' Last December Ryan had his first NFT drop and they were selling out fast. His wife was pregnant and napping so he couldn’t make a lot of noise but he was freaking out. "I just thought wow, this is the future."The conviction"I am constantly looking for a marriage between art and tech. I really truly was diving into it. I consider founders of tech companies artists because they are creating something from nothing."Ryan was just searching for that bridge between art and tech and NFTs is that bridge.*NFT Artists and Basel*Punk vibes for NFT Artists?"This is now becoming a mainstream moment where some of those punk bands are signing to a major label and are taking off."Ryan comes from the street art world. People would make fun of him for doing what he was doing, but now they are asking Metamask questions because they want to get into the space too.How is Art Basel different now than it is most years?"There is way more traffic now."Ryan gave a talk at the Design Miami Fair - a very respected event during Basel week. He said 90% of people in the audience were not NFT people and they were all trying to learn what NFTs are. "Our goal in the NFT space is to make it as welcoming and non intimidating as possible.""The art world is very intimidating, and they treat you like you don't belong. With web3 we have the chance to show people that they do belong, and they are welcome."*Benefits of NFTs*Traditional Art vs NFTs Ryan went to a Troy Carter talk where he spoke about how in the traditional art world they will find an artist, and kind of manipulate the artist's work without their consent. The Museums, the auction houses, the galleries, will manipulate and control the artists market.  They will have one person buy out the whole show, so they can sell out and then the artist only gets paid once. After this, the traditional art world will blow up the pieces and the artists will get pushed to the side. "Maybe the artist sells his piece for $10,000 but the auction house is selling it for $100,000. But the artists isn't seeing any of it."At the talk, Troy was talking about how artists could get royalties using crypto. When Ryan got home later, he began to write a contract that said if they bought one of his pieces, whatever resales happened, Ryan would get a specific amount. "I saw that and thought it was genius. It's true if you have a sale whether it's lower than the primary or not you still get paid"CommunityWhen an artist gets to engage with their community the game changes. The artist is now in complete control of what they create."The fact that you have a community and you all make money together, it becomes this unofficial business where you are all cheering for each other it's amazing"*What's coming?*Digital Fashion"I think digital fashion is going to be one of the big avenues"  You are already seeing it with crypto fashion week and the metaverse. People are going to be buying more digital clothes for their avatar. A lot of high fashion houses are getting in the game of crypto and NFTs.  "Anyone who thinks that a brand doesn't belong in NFTs, doesn't belong in NFTs"NFTs as a technology like the blockchain system for payments, has been proven to work. Even though this is not art related, it goes to show you how the tech behind NFTs can be used in other industries. "I think that in the future everyone will interact with the blockchain in some fashion"Future plans for Ryan Ryan has a gallery right now in the design district called Unfold that's sponsored by Opensea.  Ryan has a lot of established artists participating in his gallery.  The artists are Fvckrender (@fvckrender), Baeige (@baeige1), Victor Mosquera (@victormosquera), Blake Kathryn (@blakekathryn), and Greg Mike (@GREGMIKE).  They also have a lot of up and coming artist in the NFT space like Good Energy(@goodenergyart), Reo (@ReoCragun), Puks (@puks_kmotion), and Daria.Pekh (@dariapekh).  "...being a door opener not a door keeper."Future of Artists"I wanna see the next generation rise and how they will help the whole system and help the following generation up"How can we help artists create more?"I don't think you should convince people to be artists, that puts the money first, you have to be willing to make 0 dollars"  As an artist you really have to believe in what you are doing. Tech founders are like artists because they can create something from nothing. The difference between founders and artists is that founders are not going to be spending 100 hours a month creating something just because they have to. An artist has to create, there is no other option. There is currently a barrier of entry to the underprivileged community that can’t even afford an iPad.  Illestraeter (@illestraeter_), aka Tim Kang, is one of the biggest collectors in the space. He started a company called Seven Grants which covers the charge for people that can't afford minting. "How do we get those kids in the community, how do we get them iPads? How do we get them free online courses for cinema and all these programs that get them into the space?" The real question isn’t how do we get artists away from this so called stereotype of being an artist is not a real job. The real question is how do we make NFT art more accessible to those that can’t afford technology.If you were stranded on an island what NFT would you bring?His old cryptopunk that he no longer owns, #8998. The second one would be Victor Mosquera DAWN.
Ep. 4: Noah Davis

Ep. 4: Noah Davis

2021-12-1034:27

In Episode 4 of Probably Nothing TZ (@TZhongg) and Alexis Ohanian (@alexisohanian) chat with Noah Davis (@NonFungibleNoah) of Christie's. Noah is the former Head of Online Sales for contemporary art at Christie's, but is now primarily focused on NFTs and crypto related digital art projects. Noah discusses how he first got into NFTs, and how he was able to convince a 200+ year old company to begin auctioning NFTs this year. TZ, Alexis, and him also discuss a bit of art history, how NFTs align incentives between artists and curators/collectors, and the future of smart contracts in the art world. This wide ranging discussion shows how NFTs are starting to bridge both the fine art world and the crypto community.Links Mentioned in this Episode Beeple's first Christie's auction MakersPlace NFT NFT Now Christie's x OpenSea Timestamps00:30: Noah Davis intro01:20: How did Noah convince Christie's to get into NFTs?02:30: How did Noah first get into NFTs and what helped him understand them?04:20: What is the future of NFTs in the art world?06:50: Art Basel NFT prediction?11:30: What was the internal process on convincing Christie's to do a project with OpenSea?14:08: wen christie's dao?16:12: What was the process like of promoting Beeple's sale on Discord?19:40: What is "absurdist post-war French theater" and why did he study it in school?24:00: Secondary sales in a world of smart contracts28:40: Future hope for artist and smart contracts29:50: Working with artists compared to working with collectors32:48: Noah's experience in the NFT space33:34: If you were stranded on an island which NFT would you take from your collection? What about anyone's NFT collection?Mentions Beeple - @beeple Tom Sachs - @tom_sachs Damian Hurst - @hirst_official MakesPlace - @makersplaceco NFT now - @nftnow collector 33 - @33NFT Justin Aversano - @justinaversano Superrare - @SuperRare Joshua Davis - @JoshuaDavis fewocious - @fewocious  Punk 4301 Show NotesWho is Noah Davis? Specialist at Christie's in the contemporary arts department with a focus in NFTs. He started working on NFTs in March with his intro to NFTs during the first Beeple @beeple sale. Getting into NFTs and bringing them to Christie'sHow did Noah first get into NFTs? "NFTs really found me." Before he was head of NFTs at Christie’s, he was the head of online sales for contemporary art. He was in the office last January to see an IRL piece of art for an auction. His colleague, Megan Doyle, brought an NFT opportunity to his attention. She had been contacted by MakersPlace for a possible NFT consignment, and asked Noah if he would be open to putting an NFT in his sale. Noah barely knew about NFTs. All he really knew was that Beeple sold his NFT at Nifty Gateway for $6 million, and that NFTs are a new asset class running on a blockchain foundation. What drew Noah into NFTs, beyond the art, was the promise of decentralization and the things that blockchain can do.  "We are heading towards a future that will have a foundation in blockchain. You can either end up with the state run dystopian future or you can build one yourself." Noah wants to see a future where there is a decentralized metaverse that is owned by the people for the people. If he can help do that within Christie's, a 200+ year old company, that could be really significant. Bringing NFTs to Christie’s In the first conversation Noah had with Christie's they mainly talked about cryptocurrency.  Noah knew that some of their top clients were into crypto. He believed that NFTs were the perfect opportunity to jump into the space. The fact that it was ephemeral wasn't daunting to them. Christie's has sold dinosaur bones. If they can create some kind of excitement around an auction, Christie's will find a way to make it work. "I am really grateful towards Christie's for lending me such a long leash." NFTs have been reliably profitable for Christie's. They are now approaching $120,000,000 in total volume for the year. It's going to be 5% of their turnover. For the first Beeple sale more than 90% of applicants were not previously known to Christie’s. Although this was more the NFT community and Beeple's community, Noah will continue to set the stage for artist to showcase their work. How did Noah's college degree in English with a focus on Absurdist post war french theater play a roll in Noah's love for NFTs? The absurdity of selling an asset that doesn't physically exist was extremely attractive to him.  "I think a lot about the theater of the absurd in the context of NFTs. What really drew me in was how counterintuitive NFTs are to the standards of the 21st century contemporary art world." Noah never felt like he completely fit in. He was sort of put off by the pretentious vibes in contemporary art, and how people tend to take themselves too seriously. Eugene Ionesco's play, The Bald Soprano, plays a huge role in understanding Absurdism.  The story behind the play is that one day while Ionesco was learning French and English, he was reading the textbooks and thought it was absurd that they were trying to teach him family dynamics. This then lead him to believe that the foundation of language is super shaky and unreliable. In the play, The Bald Soprano, nothing makes sense. It is indebted to people that question the moral and aesthetic values, at the time, by way of absurdity. "Ionesco would love NFTs." NFTs and ArtWhat is the future of NFTs in the traditional art world?In the traditional art world, you will see a lot more adoption from contemporary artist who dabble on digital media.  The more mega blue chip galleries that jump into NFTs, the more inspired artist will be to take the leap. To understand and overcome that stigma of NFTs as a step below "intellectually speaking" what contemporary art normally is, is a very challenging medium to master. "As more artist embrace this, we will see really dynamic projects coming forward and new amazing 1 of 1 art work from amazing talented bluechip artist."  Right now people like Tom Sachs (@tom_sachs) and Damian Hirst (@hirst_official), are the only real Fine Artists from the blue chip world that have mastered this. They are playing by the rules of the NFT space, but they are speaking directly to a crypto native audience. However, there will be artist that enter the NFT world, play by the old rules and somehow succeed. It's going to be a difficult bridge to build and the needle has really only been threaded once successfully with Christie's auction of Andy Warhol NFTs with the Andy Warhol foundation. They tokenized digitally native works that Andy made for the amiga computer. Art Basel NFT prediction?There will be a base line of friction from two different worlds. That's good because those sparks is where you get something creative.  “There will be a lot of chatter around NFTs for sure.” Christies is collaborating with NFTnow during Art Basel to host an event. They have built a, 2400 square foot, space in a bank building and repurposed it as an art gallery. Superrare and Collector 33 will have a presence there. “To see all this art, in this environment, is going to be interesting because we haven't really nailed the exhibition component of NFTs yet.” They have learned a lot and they are going to be applying all of it in Miami. You need to correctly activate the immersive quality of some of these artworks. Christie's and OpenSea sale? So far all the NFT sales Noah has conducted at Christie's have been off-chain, and because they are off-chain it is hyper manual.  All of the movement of the tokens are analog and payment is pretty clumsy. "It's like we are operating in this new dimension, but we are still pushing the buttons and pulling the string from the old one." This is their first collab with Opensea, if it goes well there is no reason why Christie's should auction their NFTs off chain. There will still be a place for traditional auctions, like the Beeple (@beeple) one they recently sold. But, if they are selling an ether rock and they are marketing that to a crypto native audience they can't get away with off chain. When's Christies DAO? "The idea of a DAO is an incredible thing." As much as Noah is really fighting to push things forward. There are things he wants to be really careful with. Like building in the metaverse and thinking about airdrops. Regulation is going to catch up with us and until these unknown areas are become more defined. There's no reason for a corporation like Christie's to dive in the front. NFT space and ArtistsWhat was the process of promoting Beeple's sale on Discord? Noah wasn't really involved in the promotion of the first Beeple sale.  At the time he was going more of the traditional media route, and still learning about NFTs and crypto. "The first time I heard someone refer to Ethereum as ETH, I took a beat and I had no idea what that meant, I didn't know what it was. I bought my first Ethereum in April." Noah didn't join Discord until after the Beeple sale. Because he hasn't used social media in a long time, he was very cautious. Justin Aversano (@justinaversano) invited Noah into Cryptopunk's Discord channel to promote the sale of a Cryptopunk that Christie's was having in May. He felt like he didn't belong there. He felt like he was the corporate salesman. Now he has his ens name in his username. But it took the same push to get him on Twitter too. Noah was so scared, his username was "Noah the Poser". Secondary Sales in a world on Smart Contracts. The first big contemporary art auction took place in the 80s.  The artist themselves were at the auction, and they accosted the seller because he bought the photos for $1,000's and he was selling them for $10,000's. "There was an intense animosity at the moment between the artist and the collector because it felt like it was deeply unfair, and it is." There are certain places in Europe that already have a resale royalty, and California was really pushing for this too. Noah strongly believes that artist should absolutely have these royalties.  With NFTs and blockchain, the artist and the creator have complete control over this. "The blockchain doesn't care. What you tell it to do, it is going to execute it. It is never going to make a mistake"If you program it with protocols that are fair, those will be the rules forever. Right now is the time to make sure that these rules make sense, are fair, and are equitable. Artist should own their smart contract, and have their own independence so that they can never get duped. That kind of responsibility and independence is very admirable. It is the way forward. Manifold is behind a lot of artist's smart contracts. Their philosophy is that artist should own their own smart contract. Working with artists "I love artists. I like to make art when I am not working for Christie’s." Noah used to only get involved with the collectors or estates, and rarely with artists. Unless they were complaining, which is reasonable.  When contemporary art comes to auction it is usually not under the best circumstances. There's an industry term referred to as the "three D's". Divorce, debt, and death are the three major driving forces that bring contemporary art to auction. You are starting from a place of negativity. Working with artists, however, is all about positivity.  Noah feels such an incredible bond with the artists, like Beeple. He's made art with Fewocious (@fewocious) and has had lunch with Joshua Davis (@JoshuaDavis). "I hang out with these guys and it just feels right." Before he felt weird and almost felt like the enemy. Now he feels like he is helping these artist tell their stories. "The NFT space is magical. Everything I felt frustrated with in the contemporary art world is not at play in this space." If you were stranded on an Island and you could only take one NFT from your collection or any collection, which would you take? From Noah's collection, he would take his CrypToadz or his Deadfella. From any collection, Noah would take CryptoPunk 4301. It's from the collection of Sov.eth. It's a wild white hair with VR and pink lipstick. Noah was glowing while he was talking about this.
Ep. 3: Keith Grossman

Ep. 3: Keith Grossman

2021-11-2601:02:171

In episode 3 of Probably Nothing TZ and Alexis Ohanian chat with Keith Grossman, President of TIME. They talk about Keith's personal journey into NFTs and how he brought such a new technology to such a traditional and timeless brand. Keith shares some remarkable stories about the power of the web3 community, and TZ and Alexis answer some tricky questions from Keith about the future of brands, sponsorships, and media. The group discusses web3 and web2 comparisons, especially with Reddit, and talk about where web3 is headed. This episode is definitely worth your TIME ;)Links Mentioned in this Episode TIMEPieces Nyan Cat sale World's Smallest NFT Timestamps01:09: IP in the NFT space02:30: Reddit vs web304:15: Mr. Splashy Pants06:00: Ownership09:00: The Power of POAPS11:00: How did Keith convince Time to do an NFT?15:15: Why did Keith drop a 1 of 1 collection and begin to accept crypto as a payment at TIME?18:59: Long-term vs short-term thinking23:25: How did Keith get to where he is?27:15: Where should Keith take TIME Pieces?28:50: What has Keith learned in the past five weeks?29:45: Keith's craziest web3 story35:08: Rewards for kindness in web336:08: Keith's tricky question for Alexis and TZ38:15: Alexis's response41:25: Your identity and PFPs - why someone would turn down $9.5 million for their PFP NFT43:40: How did Keith get into NFTs - especially as a boomer ;)?48:20: NFT Art vs. PFP50:35: What are three things Keith would suggest to a new person getting into NFTs?55:20: If Keith was stuck on an island which NFT would he bring?
Ep. 2: Justin Aversano

Ep. 2: Justin Aversano

2021-11-1052:54

In Episode 2 of Probably Nothing, Alexis and TZ dive deep into conversation with Justin Aversano about his journey with photography and NFTs. Justin is a prominent photographer, the creator of Twin Flames NFT project, and co-founder of Save Art Space. His NFT projects have already totaled millions in dollars in sales in less than 12 months. Justin talks to us about how NFTs have forever changed the art world and explains the importance of community in his art. You'll also hear about his strategy as an artist and entrepreneur and the stories and meaning behind all of Justin's projects. Links Mentioned in the Show: Twin Flames Justin's Website SaveArtSpace Timestamps0:30: Introductions02:00: How did you get into art?03:41 How did you first hear about NFTs? What got you excited about the space? What were you doing before NFTs?07:18: What were the insights on how to mint and what to mint?09:15: What was the strategy around having 100 items and how did you think about the rollout out around working with auction houses?12:40: There are 83 unique owners for a 100 item collection. How did you think about that?15:00: Could you share how you approach building community, and what you've learned about it so far?16:46: What are the royalties you are taking on Twin Flames, and how are you thinking about reinvesting your royalties back to the community?18:07: How do you think photographers will be displaying photos in the coming years?21:08: I want to understand the billboards and why you build them25:34: Tools in building a community26:02: The importance of hanging out IRL27:02: Artist, Creators, and the next generation?28:40: Discussion on patronage and how it impacted Renaissance paintings of Jesus32:32: If a talented photographer wanted to launch their own project, what advice would you give?37:20: How do you define an artist?40:50: Justin's mom and the birthday project
Alexis Ohanian, Founder and Former Executive Chairman of Reddit and VC firm Seven Seven Six, and Tiffany Zhong, Founder and CEO of Islands join forces to create your go-to NFT podcast. In this episode, we start with the question of the hour: What are NFTs and why do we love them? You'll hear things like why Twitter has become a zoo, and why NFTs could be the future trust fund. Alexis tells us stories of his younger days at Reddit and compares it to the growing NFT world. Tiffany keeps us updated with everything new and trendy in the space. Throughout the episode, you'll have many "ooh" and "ahh" moments and learn, and laugh a lot (we hope!). By the end, you'll be on the edge of your seat waiting for the next episode. But it's Probably Nothing. Sit back, relax, and enjoy our first episode!
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