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  • #24: Royalties are F**king Stupid

#24: Royalties are F**king Stupid

Also: Google Play Store Opens Its Doors to NFTs

Happy Thursday! Welcome to Ownable, a weekly newsletter on the ownership economy and onchain creators of the new internet. Human-curated & opinionated.

Today's write-up is 997 words, a 3-minute read.

Happening this & next week: NFT Show Europe, EthCC. Full calendar 

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Users signing up for Threads will notice a reference to the “fediverse” when accepting T&Cs. Fediverse (“federation” + “universe”) is a loose alliance of decentralized servers, including from third parties, that can share data among each other. Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, posted: “You may one day end up leaving Threads, or (…) end up de-platformed. If that ever happens, you should be able to take your audience with you to another server. Being open can enable that.” In reality, execution may be harder than Meta thinks - great deep dive here.

Google has updated its mobile software marketplace policy to allow application developers to integrate digital assets like NFTs into their games through its Play app store. The apps must not mislead users, glamorize crypto, or include gambling-like mechanics. The hope is that Apple will eventually match Google’s evolving position by updating its own anti-NFT policy.

Top influencers are launching their own brands to both capitalize on their existing audiences and deepen their relationships with existing fans. This constitutes a very attractive and more sustainable revenue source than ad-hoc brand deals or ads income. Large creators are taking a step further, raising VC funding and bringing brands to brick-and-mortar stores.

Snap is luring creators back to the platform after losing them due to cutting its big creator fund. Now the company is gaining traction with a new Snap Star program that allows creators to earn a portion of revenue from the ads shown between their posts, similar to what YouTube and TikTok are now offering to select participants. The trend: “Creators only have so many hours in a day, and they obviously will spend their precious time where they can get the most bang for their buck

As an “ambassador” for the now-bankrupt FTX crypto exchange, Tom Brady has been paid $30M in the form of FTX stock (major ownership economy vibes but now worthless). His ex-wife was paid $18M, and now both are being sued by FTX customers seeking compensation from celebs who endorsed the exchange. During the boom times, many others endorsed crypto projects, and some of them are facing charges now, including Lindsay Lohan, Jake Paul, Soulja Boy, and Shaquille O’Neal.

Kenny Schachter is an art world veteran who’s been involved in the NFT space. His hot takes: 1) “[NFT] Royalties benefit the people that need it the least. If you’re an emerging struggling, you have no worries about the royalties helping your situation.” and 2) “Art world listens to one thing: the sound of money. And that’s what it’s going to take [to fully embrace NFT space].”

  • 7-Eleven is launching Slurpee Vibe "digital collectible" on mobile.

  • Andy Murray, Wimbledon, Refik Anadol teamed up for data-based NFT.

  • Lacoste is betting on blockchain-based loyalty.

  • Starbucks teamed up with Micah Johnson's Aku NFT project.

  • Sega reverted from crypto gaming plans, calling play-to-earn "boring".

  • Sports Illustrated and Panini are pairing up for football rookie NFT cards.

  • “Onchain” petition to replace “on-chain” in Merriam-Webster dictionary.

  • The 👍 emoji was ruled as a signature in Canada.

  • Content creator ecosystems in web3: The next wave of disruption.

  • Digital fashion dilemma: How to convince people it’s here to stay?

  • Teenage digital artist shines in the world of NFTs.

  • NIL: Instagram announced a female student-athlete incubator.

  • Messaging: Coinbase added wallet-to-wallet messaging.

  • Web2.5: Showtime just dropped its new app for social collecting.

  • Marketplace: Zora network NFTs can now be traded on OpenSea.

  • Subscribing: Mirror signup block is now embeddable on any website.

  • Minting: Transient Labs announced its new efficient NFT standard.

  • Self-serve: 3mint released the Beta of its end-to-end NFT tool.

  • New funding: Sound web3 music, Passes creator paywall.

  • Multiplayer Creation: Unlocking participatory media.

  • Generative AI: Does it need a new blockchain?

  • Phygital: Your next sweatshirt could be hardware for on-chain activities.

In our December forecast update, we estimated there would be 225.9 million social users in the US this year. Now we estimate there will be 228.0 million.

By 2025, the percentage of the population using social networks will be 68.3%, up from 67.2% this year.

TV’s penetration is going the other direction, falling from 69.2% this year to 66.8% in 2025.

The rate of new 2023 US #crypto trademark applications is still off about 66% from 2022.

Jan – June 2023 = 1077 apps
Jan – June 2022 = 3314 apps

Combined sales volume on SuperRare + Foundation in June was 2.1M USD, down 61% from June 2022 (5.4M) and down 96.3% (!) from October, 2021 (56.6M), the peak of the last bull market.

(…) So what caused this slowdown? Existing buyers are illiquid and the space isn’t bringing in new buyers.

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Author Bio

Kuba Szewczyk is an NFT Product Strategy Lead at ConsenSys, helping build NFT tools for creators and brands. He previously worked at Bain & Co. Digital Assets and earned Harvard MBA.

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