Welcome to Talk Money Weekly - where I cut through the noise and curate the best money-related topics from the web.
This week we launched Episode 6 of Season 3- "Big Bets on Big Tech with Alex Kantrowitz."
Alex Kantrowitz is a journalist, author, and the founder of Big Technology, a one-person publication focusing on the biggest names in tech: Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft. Before he struck out on his own, Alex was a reporter at Buzzfeed News. On this episode, we dig into his decision to bet on himself as a creator. LISTEN NOW.
📈 Markets & Business
What's Are NFTs and Why Are They Selling for Millions?
Ok, I'm going to take a stab at this. An NFT is a non-fungible token. This means that it cannot be replicated, it cannot be divided into pieces, and they are rare. In this example, Youtuber Logan Paul, dropped an NFT in the form of digital art. Think about them as digital collectibles. In the physical form, art and other collectibles (basketball cards, Pokemon cards etc.) have similar features. The more rare and popular they are, the more value they have. You purchase an NFT using a cryptocurrency like Ethereum, and you can bid on them like an auction, or buy them off their owner.
This has been blowing up over the last few weeks, with tons of people dropping NFTs. Logan Paul has been known for collecting Pokemon cards, which also has exploded recently. Now he's made the transition in creating digital collectibles, and people want them. Part of it is the hype around making some money while some are actual collectors. Very similar to how people collect art, sneakers, action figures etc. My friend collects vintage Patagonian vests and now they are worth a pretty penny now.
When Will We See the Next Crash?
Now, just like any new massive bull run, it's usually followed up with a crash. This happened with Bitcoin several times, where we saw Bitcoin crash 90%. In 2017, we saw this with ICOs, or Initial Coin Offering, when everyone and their mother were launching new cryptocurrencies. NFTs are crypto assets, just like a piece of art would be an asset. Most will crash, while some may keep their value. We did an episode on the ICO crash last year. Listen here.
Examples of NFTs are Crypto Kitties and NBA Top Shots. Crypto Kitties are literally digital cats. Each cat has a unique identity and is one of a kind. Remember Tamogatchis? It's kind of like that. NBA Top Shots are digital NBA cards. Imagine if you had a basketball card, there were only a few of its kind, and the card was footage of Michael Jordan shooting a game-winner. That's what NBA Top Shot is. They release "packs" as digital collectibles.
I know this sounds nuts, but I do see this becoming more of a thing in the coming years. Just like a younger generation views Bitcoin as digital gold, we could see these digital collectibles be a way for younger people to be collectors.
The Future is Digital
We can sit back and roll our eyes, or we can just pay attention. I'm 36, and it's been hard to keep up, but I realize now that there's a group of kids that grew up with smartphones and social media. Once crypto becomes easily usable, we could start seeing a massive shift. Right now, besides being able to buy Bitcoin with Coinbase, crypto is quite technical, and this will change over time to make it easy for anyone to use. As they say, Coinbase was the first "killer app" in crypto. They made it easy for anyone to buy bitcoin.
There Will Be a Place for Both Physical and Digital Collectibles
I can relate to this. I'll probably dabble with digital collectibles just to have a fresh take and keep my finger on the pulse. Personally, I love the idea of collecting physical collectibles. Remember when vinyl made a resurgence when music when digital? I imagine that physical collectibles will only increase in value.
AOC Raises $4M For Texans
Whatever you may think of AOC, she does care about people. She knows how to use her platform for good. Imagine in just a few days she was able to raise over $4M for Texans who've been suffering from the terrible weather conditions. AOC gets what the future looks like. She speaks to a younger generation. She knows how to use social media and emerging platforms. While Ted Cruz was off on an attempted vacation, she was there for Texas, and it's not even her state! It's awesome to see.
That's all the news from this past week! If I was to make this newsletter into a Youtube show, would you watch it?
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