Someone scrapes pre-launch NFT data to steal and launch their own goblin asses project
June 2, 2022https://t.co/TBsS7DySHQ pic.twitter.com/QNU3aQDVB0
— web3 is going just great (@web3isgreat) June 2, 2022
Cole had a post about Molly White recently, so I’m pretty sure she know what she’s talking about. But, then again… All my goblin asses gone… can the ‘victims’ really be serious about this ‘project’?
— Anthony (@anthpollock) May 30, 2022
… The problem with NFT data is that most of it is coming from the NFT platforms themselves. There’s no way to confirm if what they are reporting is real. And there is good reason to suspect the secondary market doesn’t exist at all — it’s just wash trading, the same money going back and forth between the same people, to pump up the prices.
Most of the activity on LooksRare, a marketplace that launched in January and went on to challenge power player OpenSea, turned out to be fake. In February, Chainalysis reported “significant” wash trading on NFT platforms. Their findings made international news. On May 4, the first day that Coinbase opened its NFT marketplace to the public, the platform had barely any users. This was after Coinbase boasted that 4 million were on the waitlist.
If you accept the NFT market is real, you have to be willing to accept that there are people on the planet who are willing to plunk down $350,000 for a Bored Ape NFT so they can go to a Yacht Club party in New York and a warehouse party in Brooklyn.
You have to accept that Jimmy Fallon, Paris Hilton, Madonna, and dozens of other celebs believe that monkey JPEGs are a good investment — and they weren’t gifted these pricey tokens by friends in the entertainment industry, who also happen to be heavily invested in NFT projects.
If you are still not convinced the NFT markets are fake, let me step you back to March 11, 2021, when all this nonsense first began, when an otherwise unknown artist named Beeple sold an NFT linked to a collage of his scrapbook at Christie’s for $69 million. It turned out that Metakovan, aka Vignesh Sundaresan, the person behind the purchase, had been pumping Beeple NFTs for months.
Not only that, but the sale itself was a wash trade. Metakovan fractionalized a collection of previously purchased Beeple NFTs with a fungible B20 token and used the Christie’s auction to pump up the price of B20 and make millions…
U.S. charges OpenSea ex-employee in first NFT insider trading case https://t.co/keFVZCs5z9 pic.twitter.com/KmYefbgkoX
— Reuters (@Reuters) June 1, 2022
Over on the temporary Jackal-Action site, I had a post about Seth Green’s risible quest to ‘prove the promise of the ape community’…
This seems like a much cooler tv show than his ape sitcom thing
— Desmostylian (@Desmostylian) June 1, 2022
At least it now sells real valuable and tasty goods https://t.co/4qY49zR0v6
— Nouriel Roubini (@Nouriel) May 31, 2022
FYI: Scammers are stealing those Bored Ape Yacht Club avatars in frankly ludicrous numbers.
On the one hand, who cares? On the other hand, who cares?
“I’ll retire to Bedlam.”
– A Christmas Carol
Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)
God can these NFTs just go away already? Let this dumb fad (if it can even be called that, if it seems like few are interested) die
A woman from anywhere (formerly Mohagan)
When AL originally posted about NFTs it all sounded like BS to me, although I was glad to be kept up to date on what the cool kids were up to. It still sounds like total BS, although I have to admit that’s what all the crypto stuff sounds like also. On the principle that you should never invest in anything you don’t understand, I’m giving all of this stuff a hard pass. But thanks for keeping me informed, AL
And it seems to me the pictures being used in NFTs all look like they were created by junior high school boys (or an adult at their humor level). Ugh.
If you’re in Singapore, get your fix of Hainanese chicken rice while you can: Malaysia is banning chicken exports from Tuesday, in the wake of prices here rising because the price of grain-based chicken feed has gone through the roof. I blame Putin.
Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)
No silly, you’re supposed to blame Biden! /s
The NFT thing reminds me of the classic Big Store Con, as seen in the The Sting. A group of actors playing roles in an elaborate scenario all to hook one hapless rube.
Dude in a dim alley in Singapore warily pulls back a lapel of trenchcoat.
“Psst. Hey, buddy. Yeah, you. Wanna buy a breast?”
Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)
That was a pretty funny one, NotMax
@Goku (aka Amerikan Baka): Especially since NotMax pointed out early on Thursday that it was National Rotisserie Chicken Day.
It sounds like BS unless you assume the real purpose of NFTs and crypto is money laundering, tax evasion and extortion. It seems to work pretty well at that.
A woman from anywhere (formerly Mohagan)
@Jinchi: Aha! So that’s what is all about! Now it makes sense :-)
A woman from anywhere (formerly Mohagan)
@Jinchi: Aha! So that’s what it is all about. NOW it makes sense :-)
Don’t understand the point of grain-based chicken feed. “Free-range” chicken we see pecking in the the dirt eat little bugs and what-not. Grain-based feed seems contrived.
We’re talking about farmed chickens here, not free-range.
@divF: why do I always find out these things too late? Eh, it’s just as well, because it’s so commercial these days. When I were a lad, we sat in front of the rotisserie, singing the traditional calories (in Old French, of course). Nowadays, the store decorations and sales announcements go up the day after ED BALLS.
And the BAYC cartoonist is totally ripping off Jamie Hewlett, of “Tank Girl” fame.
Yeah, this will work:
This makes me miss credit default swaps.
Years ago I read something about image files, and it said that each jpeg had its own unique identifier, (was it an EXIF code?), and that changing anything about the file, from color depth to a simple name change, and resaving the file, it would end up with an altered identifier. Anyway, wouldn’t that enable an “owner” to ID their personal file? Or is this how they’re already doing these clever, hostage drama things?
In any case, I still think NFTs are a scam.
This is my favorite article on the entire subject, and cuts to the chase about what they are and when you may actually get some use out of them (though it would be better if they didn’t exist at all)…
NFTs Aren’t As Stupid As You Think (They’re Even Stupider)
@Amir Khalid: The grain shortage will work hardship on people around the world. Have higher grain prices impacted Malaysians, beyond the scarcity of farmed chickens?
I noticed that when Secretary of State Blinken visited countries in North Africa at the end of March, one topic he discussed with leaders was the impending grain shortage. High bread prices are a real social stressor for those countries.
It’s the kind of cockamamie idea that a CEO will think is brilliant simply because he done thunk it up his own self.
Well, the price of roti canai has also gone up. Food prices in general are also rising, even though there have not — yet — been any shortages reported.
@Amir Khalid: Coincidentally, my daughter just made her personal interpretation of Hainanese chicken rice on Wednesday (based on a memory of having it in Singapore). Came out pretty good!
Prices always rise in anticipation of future shortages.
@Amir Khalid: Brilliant, ain’t he? Further down in the article, CEO guy says this:
Shorter DroneCop CEO: “Gimme lotsa money or the kids die!”
And don’t forget the blonde in the bathtub explaining what they were in the “Big Short”. Or was that explaining Collateralized Debt Obligations?
@azlib: Credit Default Swaps and Collateralized Debt Obligations were different things?
Though I’m probably speaking from ignorance; all I understood from the explanations were “We take a big pool of not-good debt, push it through a spreadsheet so it looks better, and collect 10% in fees as we sell it to pension funds.”
@JWR: @Amir Khalid: Original shooter with AR15 can shoot up the taser or tasers (if multiple tasers) but rescuing LEOs have to contend with shooter and the drones.
Sounds like an excellent idea//.
Credit default swaps make sense. After the Enron, MCI/WorldCom, etc. scandals, investors became wary to trust companies financial information. They did not want to buy corporate bonds.
CDS is just a way to insure a party buying corporate bonds that if the corporation goes all Enron, the investor will not be at a total loss. What made this terrible is companies did not just treat this as a regular insurer/insured type of transaction. They did something to turn it into some sort of trade able derivatives, so businesses could over extend on the amount they insured.
Collateralized Debt Obligations were taking mortgages and then turning them into trade able derivatives, so businesses that held mortgages could get quick cash by selling the mortgage to whoever wanted to turn it into a derivative and have more money for new mortgages, rather than waiting years or decades to recover their loan one monthly payment at a time. At some point, no one bothered to check anything about the underlying assets, the mortgage terms (ARM versus fixed), and just figured nothing could go wrong. CDO’s were always a bad idea.
@Amir Khalid: My nephew just reported that the export ban is causing the price of a chicken in Singapore to go up to US$52. No chicken on the menu for a while.
@sab: Not to mention how to get the drones into position, target the right body, and then, whammo! Evildoer eliminated!
See how simple that is?
Star Wars fans: Dudes who are fine with Admiral Hammerhead, but are freaked out by an Asian woman.
@azlib: Margot Robbie:
I’ve said it before. It’s the gold brick con/scam with modern tools that is all it is.
@A woman from anywhere (formerly Mohagan):
They’re mostly created by an algorithm. Think of them as like a computerized Mr. Potato Head, where there are a bunch of different options for each part that can then be assembled on a scaffold. So somebody makes, say, 10 different ape heads, 10 different backgrounds, 15 things they could wear on their head, etc. Then they get a computer program to mix and match to create a whole bunch of combinations that get converted into NFTs. There’s a serious question about whether images created that way are even subject to copyright, but that’s another question. The key is that they’re basically made to be ugly because you can’t create mix and match artwork that way and expect it to be beautiful. They make it deliberately awful so viewers are distracted by the awfulness rather than focusing their attention on how repetitive and formulaic the whole thing is.
Something similar was going on when I visited Singapore, and the relevant Singaporean authorities said something like, “People will just have to buy kampong chicken instead, which everyone knows tastes better anyway.”
Don’t forget the fraud and pyramid schemes! They’re a crucial part of the illegality.
Crypto is very much like mid-level marketing schemes. It only works if there are new rubes to buy stuff off of you, and only a very few people at the top make anything. The main difference is that at the end you’ve got nothing, not even a garage full of ugly leggings.
There’s a long explanation of the entire thing by Dan Olson on youtube. Well worth a watch
@JWR: Let’s see, what is the natural end point of drone CEO’s idea? How about like in Dune where everyone on the Harkonen world has a pull out plug installed in their jugular, so anyone being a problem just gets their plug pulled and they immediately bleed out. I’m sure we can come up with something less messy, like remotely activated and individually identified internally placed poison dispensers installed at birth. Anything except regulate the damned guns.
To be Frank
Signed prints, are those art? Is the value in signature? NFT’s are signed prints brought into the digital age (complete with all the problems of the digital age)
In any case, I still think NFTs are a scam.
The first take, the easy take, is almost always the correct take. And in this case, it is.
One can’t take something of zero value (or even less) and sell it for far more than the cost of the energy it takes to scam everyone that thinks it might be real.
It’s a fake investment, in a fake product, that has zero value to anyone, except to the person conned, to whom it has a huge negative value. NFT stands for Not Fucking True. They told the buyer it was a scam up front. But it’s computers so it’s worth the moon. The scam may be using modern tools to be played but it is as old as humanity itself.
It’s important to understand that banks have been packaging up mortgages and selling them on the secondary market for decades. It was originally part of the New Deal attempt to revive the housing market, and it’s actually a very sensible way of doing things. By combining mortgages from different areas, it reduces the risk of banks going under because the local economy tanks and takes the housing market with it.
Two things combined to make this much worse in the Great Financial Crisis. The first was the interesting idea of not portioning out the risk from the mortgage bonds evenly. Instead, they broke the pool up into safer and riskier portions. People who wanted a higher return and were willing to take on more risk could buy the riskier part, while those who wanted something ultra-safe could buy the safer part.
The really dangerous part was when people created “synthetic” CDOs by combining the riskier parts of multiple CDOs and pulling the same trick. The mathematical assumptions built into the risk models assumed the risk of each bond failing weren’t strongly correlated. When the housing market tanked, that assumption turned out to be terrible: the risks were much more strongly correlated than anyone expected. That wasn’t so bad for the original mortgage bonds, but the mistake compounded with each level of mixing and dividing the risk, so a CDO of a CDO of a CDO was basically worthless instead of still worth something.
Spinoza Is My Co-pilot
@nevsky42: Thanks for linking to that, definitely was a decent explainer and balanced take on the topic (though I was put off a bit by the intro describing the unnamed location in rural AZ as being about where a long-haul trucker traveling from the Port of Los Angeles would stop for their mandated rest after 11 hours on the road — unless there was some massive traffic jam due to an accident on the freeway en route, which yes, does happen of course, driving a truck east from LA for 11 hours should put you well past anywhere in AZ into NM, even TX).
It’s not easy to be a business person and actually have a business that is doing something positive. I know, I’ve owned two businesses. It is not all that easy to create value, most of the time you spend is moving money, selling someone something for a specified amount of money that usually has little relationship to any actual value of the product to the world, what we call the bigger picture. Take NFT for example. It has zero value to the world, but people have this idea that it’s worth a lot, only because they’ve been told that it’s one of a kind and therefore is worth whatever the owner can get someone to pay for it. Think about it this way, if cripto was so valuable why is the price of it in simple dollars, even a lot of simple dollars? The point is that new terms have been thought up to make something of zero value, even though it cost a bundle in energy and computing power to make, and is still worthLESS, AND because of that someone is willing to pay far more than it’s worth, which is nothing. It’s the 21st century version of the miracle potion scam, pulled by someone out of the back of a horse drawn wagon.
When your (the greater your, not the actual your) idea is to combine crap to make money off of crap, it’s a scam. And a “good” scam will make someone(s) money for a while, until the massive flaw takes over (as in your perfect example) at which time, if the scam has actual value, those who go too far lose. If the scam is a pure scam, which has zero value (as in an NFT) everyone losses. A difference in degree, tied to the scamieness.
@JWR: I think you’re talking about checksums, which indeed do offer a kind of fingerprint if a file (any file, not just images). But ultimately, you can just copy it. The checksum of the copy is the same, though. That’s the problem with purely digital assets. They’re copyable.
This is right. A checksum can be used to detect tampering, but not to prove ownership. Some cameras popular with news photographers have plugins that allow them to include a cryptographic signature in the file to show it is straight unaltered from the camera.
NFTs work by creating a kind of digital receipt in a blockchain. The creator of the NFT creates a canonical location for the NFT online, a checksum of the file, etc. to completely specify the details of the NFT. When they sell the NFT to a customer, they record those details in the blockchain together with the financial details. This creates a durable, unalterable record of the sale*. Anyone who has a copy of the blockchain can track who is the owner of the NFT. They can get fancier, but that’s the essential idea.
*This is what blockchain technology is really good for. It creates an effectively unalterable public record. This is a neat idea, but it’s not obvious to me that it’s a good match for a currency.