Toilet Apes and other NFT Exploitation (Feat. Ed Zitron) – Crypto Critics' Corner
Bennett Tomlin and Cas Piancey are joined by Ed Zitron to discuss NFTs and why they became popular and why they are so empty. This episode was recorded on February 1st, 2022.
Cas Piancey and Bennett Tomlin are joined by Ed Zitron to discuss NFTs and why they became popular and why they are so empty.
This episode was recorded on February 1st, 2023.
Other episodes mentioned in this episode:
- Episode 94 – A Tale of Two Ponzis: Celsius and Luna, Alex Mashinsky and Do Kwon
- Episode 85 – Celsius Network: A Pyramid of Ponzis
- Episode 79 – Celsius Collapse: Causes, Concern, and Catastrophe (Feat. Dirty Bubble Media)
- Episode 26 – Cryptocurrency Lending is Too Good to Believe
- Episode 82 – NFTs, Frauds, and Algorithmic Stablecoins (Feat. Mark Cuban)
- Episode 107 – Harmony Horizon Exploit, Lazarus Group, and Cryptocurrency Bridges
- Crypto as the Nigerian Prince Email Scam of Radicalization
Other resources mentioned in this episode:
Where to find Crypto Critics’ Corner:
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- Bennett’s Newsletter
- Cas’ Blog
- Bennett’s Blog
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- Bennett’s Mastodon
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00;00;05;23 - 00;00;12;05 Cas Piancey Welcome back, everyone. I am Cas Piancey. I'm joined, as usual, by my partner in crime, Mr. Bennett Tomlin. How are you? 00;00;12;05 - 00;00;13;27 Bennett Tomlin I'm doing pretty good. How are you? 00;00;13;27 - 00;00;22;23 Cas Piancey Guess I'm doing good. I just got through a long drive. But we're joined by a special guest today is Ed Zitron CEO and founder of EZ PR and author of The EZ Substack. How are you? 00;00;22;23 - 00;00;30;23 Ed Zitron I'm doing great. Just another day in paradise. I spent most of the day reading the examiner report for Celsius. 00;00;30;23 - 00;00;33;00 Bennett Tomlin 600 gripping pages. 00;00;33;22 - 00;00;46;06 Ed Zitron It's like 85 pages with like a million pages of notes. It gave me a migraine. I'd go and I got to lie down for half an hour, read about Alex Mashinsky. I watched a bunch of the interviews too, and oh my God, we've. 00;00;46;06 - 00;00;55;13 Cas Piancey Been talking about him for a really long time and Celsius for a really long time. I mean, it was such an obvious Ponzi scheme. I'm glad that's exactly what it's being called right now. 00;00;55;14 - 00;01;02;06 Ed Zitron And also by its own staff. The guy was like, Yeah, I'm a Ponzi consultant. It's like, why would you ever say that as a joke? 00;01;03;01 - 00;01;05;17 Cas Piancey Why would you start a group chat called Wire Fraud? 00;01;05;26 - 00;01;08;07 Ed Zitron That is funny as hell. 00;01;08;08 - 00;01;13;02 Bennett Tomlin Are you suggesting you're not currently in any group chats called wire fraud? Yes. 00;01;13;08 - 00;01;19;06 Cas Piancey Okay. But I'm also not in charge of billions and billions of dollars of other people's money. So, you know. 00;01;19;17 - 00;01;20;17 Ed Zitron That we know of. 00;01;22;17 - 00;01;55;12 Cas Piancey CasCoin toss coin is broke, ladies and gentlemen. Anyway, what we want to chat about today with you is NFT is which I don't know, So you can get us started on this. I know you wrote an article in November of 2021 called The Nihilism and Exploitation of the NFT Industry. You were really, really not into it, despite your ending being something along the lines of even if many of these artists have good intentions, the entire thing is built on bad economics and and bad for the planet type stuff. 00;01;56;09 - 00;01;58;18 Cas Piancey Yeah. Do you want to get into how you feel about it right now? 00;01;58;24 - 00;02;15;12 Ed Zitron Of course. So big background on me. I collect original comic artwork, or at least I did until I ran out wall space. So I am like the exact kind of mark for these things. I should be the person you can sell this to. So for this to bounce off me, there has to be something fundamentally wrong with that. 00;02;15;12 - 00;02;36;23 Ed Zitron And the fundamental wrong with NFT is the same thing as before, which is the present artwork. They're not a great vehicle for artwork and they're not even a particularly good vehicle for anything else. I'm sure you guys have seen the Dookey Dash familiar with Dookey Dash, the wonderful thing for your investment in your bought apes, what you will get is an Ebaums World game that's. 00;02;36;23 - 00;02;38;01 Bennett Tomlin Already been exploited. 00;02;38;01 - 00;02;40;06 Ed Zitron What was it? Oh, good. I assumed it would happen. 00;02;40;06 - 00;02;49;11 Bennett Tomlin Yes, Yes. People have reported exploits that have allowed them to get some of the high scores on it. So it's not even working is like the skill based mint it's supposed to be. 00;02;49;12 - 00;02;53;29 Ed Zitron What did they fucking expect is a terrible web game for a profit seeking entity. 00;02;54;00 - 00;02;55;23 Cas Piancey What was the name of the original game? 00;02;55;23 - 00;02;58;13 Ed Zitron It's basically the game Tempest from the eighties. 00;02;58;13 - 00;03;02;21 Cas Piancey It's such a lazy design and there's no creativity behind it. And I think at. 00;03;02;21 - 00;03;06;16 Bennett Tomlin Least they were open about the fact that it was just purely about shit. 00;03;07;03 - 00;03;25;27 Ed Zitron Yeah, it was nice. Well, who is the market for this? Who is the market? If I was someone who was concussed enough to buy a $150,000 I saw, I was like sitting there telling all my ticket friends, don't worry, it's company. You collapse the workings of great things and then this bullshit comes up. Cool boy. 00;03;26;01 - 00;03;32;23 Cas Piancey But as you said, like, who's spending $150,000 on monkey pictures? 00;03;32;23 - 00;03;39;16 Bennett Tomlin This isn't relevant. But there is one point I want to say, and that's that like the plot, the conception of the game is really stupid. 00;03;39;16 - 00;03;40;18 Ed Zitron So glad you brought this up. 00;03;40;18 - 00;04;05;00 Bennett Tomlin They get this key in this treasure chest. One of the apes has it, then another one somehow drinks it during this party and they realize he drank it. But instead of like, waiting for him to excreted and then just grabbing it out of the toilet, they somehow decide they're going to flush it down and then need to go into the sewers to retrieve it the entire conceit of the game requires every participant to be stupid. 00;04;05;16 - 00;04;24;28 Ed Zitron I've watched this seven or eight times. I hate myself. It is the same monkey who takes an atomic shit. The shit opens a portal through which another monkey comes with a box with a key in it, which is again, too many contrivances already. Then they decide instead of doing anything with the key, they decide to have a party. 00;04;25;05 - 00;04;44;26 Ed Zitron Someone puts the key in a bear and the same monkey. Jimmy. The monkey drinks the bear and then shits it out. And then they go, Let's go down the toilet. I honestly would love to see inside of Andreessen Horowitz. It just sitting there is like the trial of Jimmy the Monkey is like, What? What have you done with it? 00;04;45;09 - 00;04;49;28 Ed Zitron He loves it. He's like, Yes, this is the height of culture. 00;04;50;02 - 00;04;53;13 Bennett Tomlin This was definitely worth $450 million. 00;04;53;13 - 00;04;57;06 Cas Piancey As long as he can sell it for more money, he really, really, really doesn't care. 00;04;57;07 - 00;05;01;27 Ed Zitron He's escaped consciousness like a Final Fantasy and gave Boss. 00;05;01;27 - 00;05;16;04 Bennett Tomlin Guess what you said there, I think gets us back to the question right, is that it's pretty clearly like an expletive in extractive creation. Right. That's not something of creativity. It's people trying to get whatever money they can out of the marks they've identified. 00;05;16;04 - 00;05;39;00 Cas Piancey We didn't do any NFT is obviously, but we had Mark Cuban on the show and he was just very pro NFT and I think our pushback disappointed everyone. Like we had such little pushback. Mostly I think we just don't care that much about Nfts If you if you have pushback, feel free. But it's like it's not my my, it's not what I am excited about in the cryptocurrency space. 00;05;39;05 - 00;05;58;06 Bennett Tomlin No, that's certainly true. I find them incredibly boring. Part of the problem, I think for us in that episode is in my mind, my criticism was implicit in the thing I was saying. It's these NFT is that you would tie to a specific marketplace and then use in this way. So you collect the royalty instead of Ticketmaster. It's like in my mind the criticism is clear in that question. 00;05;58;12 - 00;06;02;24 Bennett Tomlin But I think the way it ended up coming across is, Oh, NFT is Beat Ticketmaster. 00;06;03;16 - 00;06;23;19 Ed Zitron I can see how someone might fumble a bag of logic. There are some people who don't realize Ticketmaster is just an evil company and you are just being evil like them. I think that that's where all the Andreseen money in all the NFT money came from. It was just they and it goes back to Web3 as well, which is they just wanted to try and control the new Internet. 00;06;23;19 - 00;06;48;06 Ed Zitron They thought this would work. It didn't really, because none of them knew about like the seven or eight different guys defrauding everyone. Those guys were season three problem. The point about Ticketmaster is excellent, which is yeah, of course they want to take over that. They wanted that to happen. They were dapper Labs didn't give a shit about fan experiences, they just wanted to take over from Topps and the board stuff. 00;06;48;06 - 00;07;05;17 Ed Zitron Anyone who seriously tried to explain the fucking board age to me. Oh yeah. The board is the next model. No, it isn't. Goddamn, you're not a history of anything lol. In comics I really got off from reading people. Yeah. Let me tell you why this is important. Yeah, you fucking idiot. You are so worried about being wrong that you refuse to be right. 00;07;05;24 - 00;07;09;07 Bennett Tomlin You won't believe how beautiful these the Emperor's new clothes are. 00;07;09;11 - 00;07;29;29 Ed Zitron Yeah, but that was. I wrote a piece called The Emperor's New Blockchain. It was the same shit like the idea of a unique digital thing is not a bankrupt idea. I really don't think so. However, I do not think you need it on the Ethereum blockchain. I do not think you need it on any of that shit. It's not better. 00;07;30;07 - 00;07;45;14 Ed Zitron Oh, you've got a small television. I can look at my jpeg on. Jesus Christ. I'm going to feel depressed every time I look at that. I can't. I must think, Look, I got weird shit by me. I love collecting stuff. I should be the guy, but I'm not. It just bounces the hell off me. 00;07;45;14 - 00;08;03;27 Cas Piancey Well, that's part of my whole thing where I find little reason for me to criticize them because I actually collect coins. Right? Which is ridiculously stupid. Like, they're not investments at all. They're just a bunch of poor decisions. So I'm like, if a bunch of people want to make poor decisions like I can't hate on them that much for it, I'm wondering if you would disagree with that. 00;08;03;27 - 00;08;04;27 Cas Piancey Like that assessment. 00;08;04;29 - 00;08;26;09 Ed Zitron I would say it was harmless if it was harmless, but it isn't. I think millions of dollars of people got conned by cop shop, for example, by all those Wall Street Journal New York Times stories about this guy made $1,000,000 on a LeBron James gif. All these people got conned. They are victims. You can say it's harmless until it becomes something that is a financially manipulated thing. 00;08;27;00 - 00;08;44;28 Ed Zitron And I guess all art kind of is. But there is something nakedly exploitative about the price stuff with NFT. The people who get access to the model is the same shit as cryptocurrency. Regular. It's this thing where the rich just get richer because people use enough things to monetize their influence. It all comes back to raw profit. These aren't a community. 00;08;44;28 - 00;09;07;26 Ed Zitron They are fundamentally, I think they're securities. But I'm neither a lawyer nor particularly bright enough to run the Howey Test, But it really is this deep, meaningful connections cryptocurrency. Even if these were internally removed from the value side, I would have more respect. But something about top shots is really bad too. It's because they become these frothy fucking markets and people get taken by them and it's bad. 00;09;07;26 - 00;09;09;09 Ed Zitron It's very bad. 00;09;09;10 - 00;09;37;28 Bennett Tomlin The most frustrating NFT project to me and I think the reason it was so frustrating is because of how exploitive it was in the way it ended up being covered was Axie infinity, right? Because you had the media coverage talking about how people were earning a living in this game and like where if you reviewed the token, like the economics of the system they were participating in, it was clear that it was not going to be a sustainable way for a meaningful number of people to make a living. 00;09;37;28 - 00;10;00;01 Bennett Tomlin But there was this period where those kind of stories were often run kind of uncritically and I think that probably contributed to more people ending up participating in this system. A system like that that is so clearly designed for exploitation and trying to take advantage of that flywheel to keep people hooked feels a little bit different to me than people making his prints and selling them. 00;10;00;01 - 00;10;08;01 Bennett Tomlin Do whatever people want to pay for them, right? Because like, one of them is like so clearly designed to try to hook people in and keep them connected. 00;10;08;06 - 00;10;10;09 Ed Zitron Axie Infinity is fucking evil as well. 00;10;10;10 - 00;10;17;02 Cas Piancey That's another level. And it's it's fair to bring it up. Plus, getting hacked by North North Korea is not something to brag about. 00;10;17;02 - 00;10;29;10 Bennett Tomlin In the history of cryptocurrency like Axie Infinity fits in so much with what so many of these guys were doing before, right? Wright, Quigley, Antis and Pierce were all running their first digital asset game before crypto was a thing. 00;10;29;11 - 00;10;31;25 Ed Zitron Gantz is in the EverQuest game. Yeah, yeah, yeah. 00;10;31;28 - 00;10;37;14 Bennett Tomlin Who now runs WEX with Quigley? He was a co-founder of Tether with Brock Pierce in them. 00;10;37;14 - 00;10;40;29 Cas Piancey They're all involved in cryptocurrency of course though like, of course they are. 00;10;41;25 - 00;10;43;23 Ed Zitron EverQuest Gold guys. Of course would be. 00;10;43;23 - 00;11;02;03 Bennett Tomlin Yes and like Brock Pierce in that group talked about developing a human supply chain in China that he could use to supply digital assets. And those were the words he chose. And so like when you look at Axie Infinity, it is the exact same ark that these guys have been participating in since before cryptocurrency even existed. 00;11;02;09 - 00;11;11;11 Cas Piancey That's fair. But I also wanted to, because you quickly dropped in the mention of Beeple and suggesting like, well, that's like totally different and it is totally different. 00;11;11;23 - 00;11;14;23 Bennett Tomlin Totally different, marginally different, marginally different. 00;11;14;23 - 00;11;37;23 Cas Piancey But I do think that that Beeple moment got the attention of every everyone that was so much money, even if it wasn't really or if it was all insider bullshit. And I reflect on it. I'm like, There's no way that sells for that. If he tries to sell it right now. Right. And none of these things that remember Justin Sun bought that the like Jack Dorsey's first tweet for $1,000,000 like that, that's worthless. 00;11;37;23 - 00;11;52;21 Cas Piancey Now, I assume that is worthless. Like who's going to buy that and spend that much money anymore? That did get to get the attention of the world. And it probably brought in a ton of people who otherwise wouldn't be interested, including artists who got duped in stuff. Right? 00;11;52;26 - 00;12;13;16 Ed Zitron Yeah. And I think that it was just a false gold rush. And the problem is there are several bits to this. So the concept of a nonfungible token over here in a vacuum, not necessarily a bad thing, but it does not have to operate any theorem or any of blockchains. The problem is that digital artwork I do not believe is a thing I don't know. 00;12;13;16 - 00;12;39;21 Ed Zitron They they really badly wanted to try and connect Fortnite and kids being conned into buying costumes in the adults being condemned to buying shit artwork. And I'm just not sure anyone really understood what was happening over here in the first place. I've never enjoyed it personally, but like it's clearly a very good game and people exist in that world and socialize within that world and thus the things they are buying or to interact with in that world that has absolutely no relevance to any NFT. 00;12;39;27 - 00;12;57;06 Ed Zitron Because remember, the fundamental experience with every crypto game is dog shit. And Alexis Ohanian brought this up as well, this concept of, Oh, you want to own your game, you want to own your stuff, but gamers don't care. Ask all gamers, though. Oh, do you want to own whatever you have? No, no one cares. No one gives a shit and it's just profit seeking. 00;12;57;08 - 00;13;16;23 Cas Piancey I think it's been like a major failure, honestly, on like, on the NFT front in general, because they've accidentally admitted by saying it was play to earn, which just was like, okay, so you're not interested in the gameplay, really. Like you're this is a strategy job. Yeah, it's a job. And this is like about luck and loot. Like, it's just it's a cash grab, like obviously. 00;13;16;26 - 00;13;34;29 Cas Piancey And so they're like, okay, that was a mistake. We shouldn't call it play to earn. Like, I don't know what they've diverted that name to, but as you're saying, as if, if you're, if the principle behind it is oh there's going to be a token and that tokens value is going to go, it has to go up like if the token is always going to go down in value, no one's going to be interested in your fucking token. 00;13;35;07 - 00;13;51;12 Cas Piancey So no, the token has to always go up in value or if it's NFT is like, what good are the nfts? If they go down in value, it shows me that their cards aren't interested in a fun game. I I've spent God knows how many hours playing Stardew Valley playing Kerbal Space. 00;13;51;12 - 00;13;53;25 Ed Zitron Program, a connoisseur. Oh no, I respect that. 00;13;54;27 - 00;14;06;06 Cas Piancey And but I don't like you said about about EverQuest and wow, it's like, I don't need an NFT to love this game. What is the value proposition, actually, you know, like, what are they trying to do? 00;14;06;06 - 00;14;25;22 Ed Zitron I know this one now, Alexis said this one sound good with him about Twitter on Twitter Psycho. So he was like, Well, don't you want to get rewarded for your time invested in the game? The reward is the enjoyment I get out of it. Have you ever had fun that? 00;14;25;22 - 00;14;29;02 Bennett Tomlin Yeah. I was gambling once and won some money and that was fun. 00;14;29;20 - 00;14;48;17 Ed Zitron We live in Las Vegas. Trust me, if I want to just gamble money, it's 15 minutes away. If I choose a specific casino or like if I want a particularly worrying one, you want the biggest one. And if these are bullshit there, I've not seen a goddamn. I've not heard anyone talk about NFT here. I've lived it two and a half years. 00;14;48;18 - 00;14;51;19 Bennett Tomlin Wasn't there an NFT conference that was in Vegas last year? 00;14;51;19 - 00;15;12;02 Ed Zitron If think of something, it happened here. Both events and conferences in general. Well, just think of it like this. This town is built to exploit people legally, and that's very important. You can always walk away. The con is that you can do it anywhere. The con is not that you are forced to. In fact, there are big signs there. 00;15;12;03 - 00;15;31;14 Ed Zitron If you've got a gambling addiction. The NFT community, similar with Web3, is just so fucking pushy. It's hollow. Culturally, it lacks. None of these people have an appreciation, right? I'm not saying I do either, but like the share behind me, for example, I like Eric Tan. Three pieces over here and then there's going to the Stone Age poster. 00;15;31;14 - 00;15;50;05 Ed Zitron I have those because I like looking at in fact, that last one is appreciated by like 950 bucks. Don't care, never selling it because I like looking at it. I don't think any of these people talk about liking anything. If they were enjoying it, if it seemed genuine, fine. I know people who are fans of things that are painful and awful and onerous and waste of money. 00;15;50;09 - 00;16;10;03 Ed Zitron Chicago Bears, for example. But it's this thing where there's no joy, there's no real loyalty. It's a loyalty to a plan almost. It's not like these people are collecting and being like fucking. I love looking at this shit. I love looking at my my artwork. I really do. I take great joy in it. I can tell you a little story about every fucking one of them because I genuinely enjoy it. 00;16;10;10 - 00;16;20;21 Ed Zitron If you have things around your house and you can't talk about them, can't tell a story concept, what a meaningful that's a problem. You think any of these people have like a meaningful story about a Jimmy the Monkey? 00;16;20;21 - 00;16;36;09 Cas Piancey I don't, but I do think that there is this is I guess this is my pushback on this, just because you mentioned sports and I think it's like a fair analogy for some of the shit that I see on Twitter, even like the Bears like or let's use a better example in like the Chicago Cubs. 00;16;36;12 - 00;16;37;18 Ed Zitron I was just making fun of them. 00;16;37;23 - 00;16;56;14 Cas Piancey Yeah, yeah. But here, let's continue in the Chicago realm. The Chicago Cubs streak of not winning the World Series, some ungodly number, right? But like, I think a part of being a Chicago Cubs fan ended up being like, we can all be losers together and isn't this great? Even when these NFT is if they go way down in price? 00;16;56;25 - 00;17;12;03 Cas Piancey I do see like a sense of community on Twitter where like and I, they love using that term, I hate using it, but I do see this sense of like them bonding over it, meeting each other, hanging out like maybe you don't ban it. Maybe you'd maybe you guys disagree. 00;17;12;06 - 00;17;15;13 Ed Zitron No, no, I don't disagree. I just think it's hollow. 00;17;15;16 - 00;17;24;17 Bennett Tomlin Have you ever looked at the pictures of board eight meet ups? Like for dudes in cargo shorts and a board, a t shirt sitting at a hotel bar? 00;17;24;18 - 00;17;43;07 Ed Zitron They all look like they want to die. And not like I wish they didn't. But you think about it. You walked into that room and your best case scenario is you have to tell people, Yeah, I made a lot of money because I bought the right picture of a monkey. Worst case scenario, you're like, I paid a quarter of $1,000,000 for a picture of monkey. 00;17;43;14 - 00;17;47;12 Bennett Tomlin I had all my monkeys hacked last week because I wanted to make them sparkly. 00;17;47;21 - 00;18;02;08 Ed Zitron Imagining splaining that to someone normal. Yeah, I lost half a million dollars because I clicked the wrong link. And also, what did you lose? Like beatclub now? No one was a monkey with its mo it I the other one was monkey with a pirate hat. 00;18;02;10 - 00;18;04;21 Bennett Tomlin The third one was a monkey wearing Nazi regalia. 00;18;05;06 - 00;18;12;25 Ed Zitron Yeah, that one was the Nazi imagery monkey. And the supposed one was just a picture of a barrel of oohs that I had planned to put on one of the other monkeys. 00;18;12;25 - 00;18;14;10 Cas Piancey My rocks are gone by. 00;18;14;10 - 00;18;34;06 Ed Zitron Three rocks are all my rocks that got my picture of a fat penguin is also gone. But that's the thing. Imagine someone seriously talking about these things and being like, Yeah, fuck yeah, let's talk about penguins. You know, give a shit, fuck you. I'm sorry. I just do not believe for a goddamn second not a single one of these people looks at these things and is like, Oh, yeah, that's so cool. 00;18;34;09 - 00;18;39;22 Ed Zitron Like nothing about money. These things are ugliest. Shit, I've not seen a nice one. Even people's artworks, dog shit. 00;18;39;22 - 00;18;40;26 Bennett Tomlin I'm not a fan. 00;18;42;07 - 00;19;01;23 Cas Piancey Here's my question because like, I was obsessed with Pokemon as a kid and man, that's been like the greatest cash grab in video game history. I don't know. They're all ugly, they're all stupid. But it is something fun and enjoyable about the game, but it feels very similar in in the way that it's. 00;19;01;23 - 00;19;20;00 Ed Zitron Constraints where it's different. No, it's it's like what I said with Fortnite. What does Pokemon actually come back to? A very good trading card game and a very good series of games. They remake them, but they fundamentally improve on a theme other than the latest one, which apparently very buggy. But they basically build off of a successful core. 00;19;20;00 - 00;19;25;29 Ed Zitron And they're ugly and weird, but they're cool and there is a reason you like them because you use them in battle and they do stuff. 00;19;25;29 - 00;19;26;22 Bennett Tomlin And they're fun. 00;19;27;01 - 00;19;49;22 Ed Zitron I get the comparison, though. I actually understand it because there is like the assumed cultural ephemera. But think about it. Where's that for the border? Because this company is you guys take what, for? 50 million. What have they done the shit out? Toon Ash Ketchum is technically 97 years old and he just won the Pokémon League. He doesn't age. 00;19;49;22 - 00;20;05;18 Ed Zitron No one's asking why. I've been following Ash in his very long life without aging for many years, and that's quite meaningful. I spent Pokemon games when I was in my teens. I still play them now. I'm 36. What can I do with a bored ape? What can I do with a pudgy penguin? What is the meaning behind them? 00;20;06;06 - 00;20;28;07 Ed Zitron What is the fundamental story that you can tell about one of those without mentioning money? Because that is the big problem with talk shows. You can go, Oh, this is a one moment in a very long basketball game that I likely did not even acknowledge when I was watching. It made no sense with baseball. And they came up with that way too late, way too late. 00;20;28;09 - 00;20;46;28 Ed Zitron The one game, it kind of made sense whether they spoke up. I would understand if in most NFT art was like really weird and cool, like it was like interactive and you could like monkey around. It was kind of like a slick built in like unity or what have you Unreal Engine that was like in a thing that you could like manipulate that. 00;20;46;28 - 00;21;11;01 Ed Zitron To me, it's kind of like a science museum thing that would be cool. A picture of a goat dressed as Pharrell Williams does not interest me. And it also doesn't mean anything. It's procedurally generated, isn't it? Or not? Procedurally, it's just like, generated 10,000 times. By definition, it isn't really that unique. It is a shell wrapped at the same shell in most cases. 00;21;11;07 - 00;21;16;06 Ed Zitron And I realize there's more than just the PHP ones. Also, you could buy so many keys there. 00;21;16;17 - 00;21;21;13 Bennett Tomlin I mean, they're nominally is, but like in terms of dollars in the market, there's not a lot. 00;21;21;16 - 00;21;51;21 Ed Zitron No, most of them are just like they just they just pop things. Is boiling culture down to nothing. It really is my real conspiracy lunatic theory is that NFT and things like that in crypto in general took hold because of the death of religion in society. I'm not religious personally, but people are more disconnected. It's harder finding a community and people are more desperate, cost more to live in this country, and most countries, especially America, go broke. 00;21;51;21 - 00;22;12;27 Ed Zitron Medical debt. It's truly a tough time growing up here. And on top of that, you suddenly have this place where it's like, you can buy into this and you'll be rich in the future. And there's a bunch of people who will always kind of appreciate you. They're all trying to lie to themselves, too. And I know that sounds like a joke, but I really don't mean it like that. 00;22;12;27 - 00;22;27;25 Ed Zitron It's a support group for a bad decision that all of you make so that you can keep making them together. And I think that is really what pisses me off with it. The economy is really what what makes this so evil, and that's why there's so many people as well. 00;22;27;25 - 00;22;43;14 Cas Piancey I think that that goes much deeper than strictly nfts or cryptocurrency, unfortunately. Like I do think that oh yeah, the gamification of finance, if not a wake up call for hopefully American society, then too late for American society. 00;22;43;29 - 00;23;16;22 Bennett Tomlin I made a similar point, not directly alluding to religion, but talking about how many of the people who end up attracted to cryptocurrency broadly are these kind of disaffected people who often, for well justified reasons, feel as though their lot in life is unfair and their prospects for advancement are limited. And so being promised that this is unique, new, innovative and can help you advance in society, will you feel accepted into a community is a compelling pitch for people who are in that situation. 00;23;17;15 - 00;23;36;25 Ed Zitron Is the description of a cult. It is how cults operate. It was not a deliberate call. I do not believe Satoshi was there being like or like Vitalik Buterin. I don't think he was you. I do love when people are like, Oh, look at vitiligo. It's like they'll have to. He's not a pretty feller. I'm sorry, he's not my type. 00;23;36;25 - 00;24;07;07 Ed Zitron But the thing is, these fellows, there are like cult leaders within this that are naturally growing, and the only reason they're not growing more powerful is because everything went to shit. Because some of the cult leaders weren't very smart. But the big personality, even the cult of personalities within this industry, way beyond just if these and web3 are so, so rotten, the whole pop imagery thing is fucking religious culture. 00;24;07;09 - 00;24;30;08 Ed Zitron Is it symbolism? Is it is semiotic how it is really bad. Like, had NAFTA kept going up, we would have had like a fucking shooting or something. I genuinely think that there is a quasi religious thing that could have grown from unifying finance like this is so, so fundamentally bad. Like I said, I live in Vegas. Look at what even the chance of winning money does. 00;24;30;08 - 00;24;57;13 Ed Zitron The people here. Imagine if you added a gambling club where all your gambling friends went and no one at the casino told you couldn't all sit at the table and show each other your wallets. But this is not a place that encourages congregations of people other than at the table and only at the table. I just I'm kind of glad everything crashed because I really think and if these could have been they could they could be very dangerous in the future if they ever grow this kind of speculative value again. 00;24;57;14 - 00;25;04;05 Cas Piancey Well, I mean, that's that was that's my next question for you. I assume you don't think this is like the end of Nfts or do you? 00;25;04;09 - 00;25;24;29 Ed Zitron I think it's the end of the massive speculative value for a few reasons that I'll get back to the main one, which is the crypto. Everything's kind of falling apart with great talent. I think we're about to see a mover going up. It's going to go right back down. But the thing is, with NFT is the speculative value grew from bought apes bought apes were meant to be the next Marvel comics. 00;25;24;29 - 00;25;45;10 Ed Zitron You were meant to be buying into bored apes or abort ape adjacent product you were meant to be buying into the next Marvel Comics, and each one of these would be worth $150 Million. And there's going to be TV shows about them. That was what was meant to happen. What's actually happened is you Collapse has proven to be painfully uncreative, just lacking in any fundamental vision or plan. 00;25;45;25 - 00;26;07;22 Ed Zitron It has become so obvious that you collapse, had no plan and doesn't really give a shit what has happened with bored apes other than the insane other side. Say all that for a game that's never coming out. Let's be completely honest. Let's be honest. The side never coming out. If it were based on Dookey Dash, do you really think either side a full game where you can connect your energy? 00;26;07;22 - 00;26;41;13 Ed Zitron You see that one popping up? No, I doubt you will go under, but I doubt the value is going to stick to your point earlier. Better? Yeah. Are NFT artwork these other than PSP? It's like a PSP crash. Everything crashes and crashing. No one cares. No one cares about this fucking sewer pass. I guess it costs $4,000 to play the toilet game, but like last year that would have been 50 grand and there would have been a fucking CNBC story about a 14 year old who was selling them to people because he bought a house with the money he'd stolen from his grandmother. 00;26;41;13 - 00;27;00;20 Ed Zitron Like it has no fundamental reason to keep existing respect to top shots. They still keep them fucking that chicken, but I just don't see how any of these businesses continue because they're not businesses. In Pokémon's case, Pokemon has a game. There's something that you come back to with Pokemon, so even a bad Pokemon game is still a Pokemon game. 00;27;01;07 - 00;27;27;06 Ed Zitron Pokemon trading cards. If you get a card you don't want, it's still usable in the game. There is still a fundamental reason there. But also the biggest problem with NFT, I one of them, let's be honest, is they really have gambled very hard about how much people care about unique people care about one of 500 pure unique. At that point, the value becomes basically a million or $0. 00;27;27;06 - 00;27;47;21 Ed Zitron It doesn't. It's based on what the market will pay. And I can go make artwork. There's certain I like to offer items, for example, which would sell for a couple grand, depending on what you're looking at now. I'm always doing a cover. You don't know might be 500 bucks, but those are decently established and they're not 50 grand or 150 grand or 250 grand unless you're looking at like shit. 00;27;47;23 - 00;28;04;12 Ed Zitron I'm trying to choose an example. A Dark Knight returns anything from that's worth like a quarter million, but that's because it's one of the most famous comics of all time. Why is a monkey picture worth quarter of $1,000,000? It isn't. And when you remove all the money because that's what you have to do to think, is this going to last? 00;28;04;12 - 00;28;19;28 Ed Zitron Nothing. It doesn't operate with anything. It doesn't the NFT game doesn't work. There's nothing really cool you can do with entities that you can't do with like a phone. All I can do is take it on the blockchain. Oh great. A slower and worse version of the thing I already hate. Great. Or oh, you get a digital collectible because you bought a ticket. 00;28;19;28 - 00;28;39;22 Ed Zitron Who gives a share? I'd rather have some crap on my desk. I really would. I love collecting like funny little things like that. One of the most meaningful things I own is a foul ball that my friend caught by me a Dodgers game. I remember that because I remember where it was. That to me is the meaning of artwork and are on collectibles. 00;28;39;22 - 00;28;47;12 Ed Zitron And no, NFT seemed to have anything to do with that. None of them have any memories. None of these things feel even close to that. 00;28;47;13 - 00;29;05;23 Cas Piancey Don't you think that like accurately describe some of the biggest artists of the past several decades, even like, don't you think Damian Hirsch Artwork has no soul, but like, you know, Eli Broad, his homie is willing to pay millions of dollars for it and then, man, that value for all of Damian Hirsch's work goes up significantly more, right? 00;29;05;25 - 00;29;07;24 Cas Piancey Like it seems like the same. 00;29;07;24 - 00;29;08;00 Ed Zitron People. 00;29;08;00 - 00;29;11;18 Cas Piancey Correct? Same power play different different league. I don't know. 00;29;11;18 - 00;29;34;29 Ed Zitron Except it's the entire industry. You can't buy cool cheap NFT artwork because it does not exist. I haven't seen anything like I really haven't. Give me something. Show me something. Prove this to me. I would love to be wrong. I love finding new things. I'm open minded, but it's been years of this dog shit. Yes, I was working on a company the aggregated NFT is when CryptoKitties was still around 2019. 00;29;36;01 - 00;29;54;03 Ed Zitron Still we're still putting crypto. The cats had sex and they laid an egg. What the fuck are you talking about? I don't care. What is this? What is this other cat? The looks kind of like I got cats already. I know that's not how they work, trust me. But also there's so many weird ways that art can be done in real life. 00;29;54;13 - 00;30;02;10 Ed Zitron And you have all the power of the internet. And this is. Is this nothing? Nothing, nothing, nothing at all. Nothing. 00;30;02;10 - 00;30;21;04 Cas Piancey When Mark Cuban was on the show, he specifically mentioned Nfts as what was it for resell in college textbooks? Yeah, we didn't push back on this. This is why I'm like, our our listeners hated us after that episode because our pushback was just so trivial. We were like. 00;30;21;04 - 00;30;31;09 Bennett Tomlin My pushback at the time was like, Yeah, it makes sense that the publisher would try to do this so that they can own more of the secondary sales. That doesn't mean it's good for the consumer. 00;30;31;09 - 00;30;48;22 Ed Zitron So you had two different good points that you made in the worst possible way to be a fuck. Yeah, so good. Because you're right. Yeah, of course the publishers would love that. They'd love the ability to own a little bit of your textbook forever. College textbooks are a huge scam, but yeah, the right way to put it was. 00;30;49;00 - 00;30;56;22 Ed Zitron So you want to find a different exploitative measure, but someone like that would never actually crumble. He would just. He would dance around the question until you just gave up. 00;30;57;00 - 00;31;09;06 Bennett Tomlin You mentioned CNBC a minute or so ago. Do you have any thoughts and what kind of factors drove some of the breathless media coverage of NFT clicks? 00;31;09;14 - 00;31;14;15 Ed Zitron It's true. I'm clicks. This artist made a quarter million dollars. 00;31;14;15 - 00;31;22;09 Cas Piancey Why were so many people interested in that stuff? I guess is like the next question there. It's just everyone wanting to make money. Yeah. 00;31;22;09 - 00;31;35;11 Ed Zitron FOMO, huh? People were desperate to feel like the future was here and they had some fucking handle on it. Because if you take out all the crypto share, well, they're going to. They would buy Treasury bonds. Fuck no. Like, really? How are people how are normal people making money? The Treasury. 00;31;35;11 - 00;31;42;29 Cas Piancey Direct, by the way, I try to show that, you know, they're selling NFT is I'm showing I'm showing Treasury direct. 00;31;44;11 - 00;31;50;17 Bennett Tomlin Get you ten grand a year worth of I bonds. Nothing more exciting than I bonds. 00;31;50;17 - 00;32;18;09 Ed Zitron But that's the thing reality is boring and slow and crypto allowed you to understand reality in a kind of enhanced, stupid way. Felt right because I'm people a lot of people when you say I tell you this doesn't make any sense, they're like, Yeah, but stocks don't either. And it's like, okay, well, kind of, but no. And also, if any stock did anything they were doing here, a lot of people would be in trouble, like jail. 00;32;18;09 - 00;32;24;02 Cas Piancey I think we have examples of that with like AMC. Like that's that's when I think about the gamification of. 00;32;24;05 - 00;32;42;28 Ed Zitron That was I have a I I'm full scale like Jade Helm conspiracy the theory on that shit I do not buy for a fucking second. The retail investors drove GameStop and AMC. I just do not do it. I think a few people jumped on it and some hedge fund was like, What? Fuck yeah, dude, there's momentum. 00;32;42;28 - 00;32;57;11 Bennett Tomlin Hedge funds who saw it? Probably start moving and read the game and thought, Hey, there might be a squeeze here. Because you're right, Reddit deep value or whatever his name was, is not moving most markets. That's just not the way markets work. 00;32;57;15 - 00;33;07;17 Ed Zitron Markets don't work like cryptocurrency. You can't just have enough force unless you're a fucking hedge fund. I won't make my customers 2% this year and you're going to lose your house. 00;33;07;23 - 00;33;32;16 Bennett Tomlin I think there's kind of an interesting analogy in AMC there because again, you saw a lot of the media coverage frame it as these little guys taking on the big system. Right. And what really happened is most of the retail investors who saw this going up did not get in right at the beginning of it going up, but got in once the media coverage of it going up started before it started going down. 00;33;32;16 - 00;33;34;27 Ed Zitron Which I'm sure the hedge funds had not prepared for. 00;33;34;28 - 00;33;56;18 Cas Piancey How does the media avoid the pitfalls of covering a topic that one they know will get clicks to that is going up and showing no signs of the trend breaking, right? Like how how do you counter that? I guess we push back on stuff like that, but like, how do you push back and still get the clicks? How do you push back and still get the attention? 00;33;56;18 - 00;33;59;01 Cas Piancey And ad sales, I guess would be the question, do. 00;33;59;01 - 00;34;22;20 Ed Zitron You really need those clicks that bad? That is where it's that it comes down to a very basic moral thing. If you do, perhaps you're in the wrong bit, perhaps you have a problem because CNBC and I'll hammer the but I have friends who work at CNBC. I love them, but the shit they did with Celsius, the shit they did with NAFTA and the shit they've done with workplace rights is offensive and immoral, immoral, immoral. 00;34;23;14 - 00;34;39;11 Ed Zitron They should know they're doing it, but they did it for the clicks. And because in some cases they did it for the hate clicks. It's the same reason that the Telegraph. I don't. I think this may have actually been hoax, but perhaps the Telegraph will do. Like this 28 year old bought a house when he was 25. How do you do it? 00;34;39;11 - 00;34;59;20 Ed Zitron And he got like 50 grand from his parents and also given the house, I think those are written specifically just to piss people off. And I feel like there is a degree of that with the NFT. But also I have this prevailing theory that the media was terrified of being wrong. Again. 2017 I believe Kevin Roose at the New York Times wrote, I was wrong about Bitcoin before. 00;34;59;27 - 00;35;23;16 Ed Zitron Well, he makes sure he makes the same problem twice, but I believe that there is a coterie of journalism is genuinely scared of making the wrong negative call and not being a hater. And I think so many of them got humiliated because they had full scale emperors book in their can. Balls are out the entire time and they're it's like looking good, sir. 00;35;23;27 - 00;35;45;19 Ed Zitron Fantastic. Because the emperor was given the money and traffic. I'm not saying anyone was paid off I'm just saying the clicks were coming in and also everyone appeared to kind of agree. And then there were a few people on the side, me included, people you find fathers like no matter, this kind of doesn't look great. And have you checked out one fundamental? 00;35;45;21 - 00;36;09;24 Ed Zitron No, it's fine, I worry about it. Kate Rooney on CNBC was interviewing like a banking executive once, I believe on CNBC 2021, and he was like, Look, if someone's giving you 6% return like these crypto banks, I really just don't know how they're doing. It really went well. It's because they're lending to institutional investors and it's like, Holy fucking shit, you. 00;36;09;24 - 00;36;15;11 Bennett Tomlin May not know this as the institution, but the institutions are getting money from these. 00;36;16;03 - 00;36;33;03 Cas Piancey There's always two answers to these. It's like, Well, we have an arbitrage and two where we're getting we're borrowing and lending to institutions and it's like, so neither of those answer my motherfucking question. Like you said nothing to me just now. 00;36;33;04 - 00;36;34;13 Ed Zitron How is it profitable? 00;36;34;14 - 00;36;39;18 Cas Piancey Arbitrage. What Arbitrage? Tell me the arbitrage. Show me the magical arbitrage. Well, no, I can't. 00;36;40;10 - 00;36;42;05 Ed Zitron That's a proprietary algorithm. 00;36;42;16 - 00;36;45;26 Bennett Tomlin It's a it's a super secret algorithm that keeps our coin stable. 00;36;46;04 - 00;36;50;25 Ed Zitron It's just a blow to my, like, another blow to guy emailing another guy. 00;36;51;16 - 00;36;55;11 Bennett Tomlin It's three dudes in a signal chat called wire fraud. That's what. 00;36;55;11 - 00;36;57;27 Ed Zitron Celsius was. It was just people emailing each other. 00;36;58;07 - 00;37;01;19 Bennett Tomlin This is an existential risk. I think we're Ponzi. 00;37;01;19 - 00;37;03;16 Cas Piancey I mean, isn't that FTX? 00;37;03;17 - 00;37;19;29 Ed Zitron Rob, though, afterwards was so stupid, but at least he'd like built something. SBF So sorry. I just he is FTX now, that's his hero name, but he he built like software and stuff. That was if you look at as you and I stuck my head in the toilet of Celsius all day. 00;37;20;00 - 00;37;20;12 Cas Piancey He didn't. 00;37;20;12 - 00;37;21;17 Ed Zitron Know there was no. 00;37;22;00 - 00;37;22;11 Cas Piancey SPF. 00;37;22;19 - 00;37;38;05 Ed Zitron But okay, I'm saying some something function. Someone built something Celsius literally appears to be a way they took money in and they basically created the thinnest possible financial rails and then they were just like outsourcing everything to some of the dumbest people in the world. 00;37;38;05 - 00;37;42;25 Cas Piancey I think you're just described in Alameda Research as well, to be quite honest. 00;37;42;26 - 00;37;45;07 Ed Zitron Okay. That that also is very fucking funny. 00;37;45;08 - 00;37;53;12 Cas Piancey He was taking customer money and giving it to Alameda Research like that. It was. Yeah. Yeah. It was just the same fucking thing. It was exactly the same in Celsius. Like, I'm not saying. 00;37;53;12 - 00;38;02;28 Ed Zitron Have like a software lab. To be clear, they're both deeply evil and I hope they rot in the worst jails. But Celsius is like Alex Mashinsky investing in the worst. 00;38;02;28 - 00;38;08;26 Bennett Tomlin Things like FTX did have a at least moderately functional exchange. There's just a gap. 00;38;08;26 - 00;38;10;29 Ed Zitron Yeah. Looking for an out of sorts. 00;38;11;06 - 00;38;35;06 Bennett Tomlin Yes, like, but some people, especially the retail users who seem to not have fully appreciated what an exchange was supposed to do, had a tendency to think FTX was better or more unique than it really was. Like the large scale traders who tended to use it had complaints, the matching engine. And we know there were issues with the liquidation engine based on how like some of the positions Alameda ended up in. 00;38;35;13 - 00;38;38;20 Bennett Tomlin So like they built something, but it was still flawed. 00;38;39;20 - 00;38;53;23 Ed Zitron To put Celsius though it was so much money because and to be clear as best FDA expert that people I'm not complimenting them. I'm saying they're just reading this all day. There is a guy who made this company called Kei fired. 00;38;54;24 - 00;38;56;20 Bennett Tomlin Jason Stern. We've talked about him before. 00;38;57;26 - 00;39;09;12 Ed Zitron That story made me laugh because it was like Mashinsky was like, Yeah, I lost money on him before, but that's how you know, that good is like entrepreneurs always lose. Suppose it's just like. 00;39;11;03 - 00;39;20;07 Bennett Tomlin What were you trying to find the trader who blew up their last fund because they went to the school of hard knocks and? Definitely will not do that again. 00;39;21;05 - 00;39;31;21 Ed Zitron Yeah. This guy. No, he's. He's learned his mistakes. He's learned from his mistakes, which he made immediately, which straight away they were like, Hey, did you take any money? It's like, Yes. What? 00;39;31;23 - 00;39;39;12 Cas Piancey No, guys, I think you should really tone it down. You guys are talking about Alex Mashinsky, who is the inventor of video IP. 00;39;39;12 - 00;40;08;13 Ed Zitron Is this how we're talking? Oh, my God. Every time I think about this stuff too, I just get really annoyed. Even a year ago, I wasn't this agitated by it. But now I think when I read the fundamentals, when when I thought like a year ago, when I was like, this is probably all broken. But I didn't think it's going to be completely broken, scammy, but also so dumb, So God damned stupid, so Doofy Oh, well, let's talk on wire fraud chat. 00;40;08;16 - 00;40;18;07 Ed Zitron Let me just hop on WhatsApp onto the crime group. What the fuck are you dipshits doing then? Any of you think, okay, what if we get caught not single goddamn one of them. 00;40;18;13 - 00;40;20;16 Bennett Tomlin They're greedy and not as smart as they think. 00;40;20;16 - 00;40;27;11 Ed Zitron They're awesome. None of them were like, I'm going to take 50 million in cash and go to a non extradition country or die. 00;40;27;11 - 00;40;29;02 Bennett Tomlin Well, have you heard from Sam Trabuco? 00;40;29;19 - 00;40;30;21 Cas Piancey And that's true. Yeah. 00;40;31;07 - 00;40;36;06 Ed Zitron Go is gone. Respect, man. If you're going to be a criminal, off of you go. 00;40;36;11 - 00;40;49;15 Bennett Tomlin Why are these journalists asking where I am? I'm going fast over the water. Yo, that really should have been a warning sign like three weeks before going. That's when the report that's in your book, it was like, what do? You mean I'm out of here? 00;40;49;15 - 00;40;51;05 Ed Zitron Where am I? You'll never know. 00;40;52;13 - 00;40;53;12 Bennett Tomlin Stop asking. 00;40;54;01 - 00;40;58;04 Ed Zitron You stop asking because this account will blow. By the way, fuck you. 00;40;58;04 - 00;41;22;13 Bennett Tomlin A one thing I noticed during the NFT boom was there was a lot of really half assed Fortune 550 projects, Pepsi doing a random NFT drop, Mercedes doing an NFT collaboration. Do you have any thoughts on what drove these companies to not only launch NFT but do it in a way where it seems like they didn't actually even care whether the project succeeded? 00;41;22;21 - 00;41;29;15 Bennett Tomlin Is it the same? Just don't want to be wrong. Better to plant a flag out there and say We tried this like avoid it. 00;41;29;15 - 00;41;53;12 Ed Zitron I will tell you exactly how this happened. Call from executive. What's an NFT item? No. Great. Cool. So we're doing a ghost Busters movie. You want 1000 little marshmallow guys? I don't give a shit. They're going to make us money. Probably not. Okay, click. I don't think I have to. And so the marketing department was probably told Do this as cheaply as fuck. 00;41;53;12 - 00;42;12;23 Ed Zitron Impossible. I want this to be light because when this goes wrong I need to not have spent much money on it. And also they were kind of gambling that they'd be worth a lot of money either every single movie dreams of doing like a revenge of the Jedi style thing where the post is worth money. They all they've all been dreaming of that for years. 00;42;12;28 - 00;42;32;02 Ed Zitron They all The Revenge of the Generals. The old title of the Jedi is two different collectible, not collectible, two different posters they mothballed. Long story short, worth a lot of money. You remember when Star Wars episode one came out, so they did the toys in the same shape as the old boxes. So they tried to make it kind of symbolic. 00;42;32;07 - 00;42;40;27 Ed Zitron They were just trying to like had to make some fucking money off of their sound and then it didn't work. And they when all gives a shit, Ubisoft was the funniest one that no one cares. 00;42;41;00 - 00;42;42;10 Bennett Tomlin I forgot they did that. 00;42;42;10 - 00;42;43;03 Cas Piancey Yeah, me too. 00;42;43;03 - 00;43;02;12 Bennett Tomlin I totally forgot Ubisoft did that NFT initiative and like there was a bunch of people on Twitter who were like, This is the future. All the gaming companies are going to come in after this. If Ubisoft is done it, and then like they quietly abandoned it or something like three months later, I mean Coinbase, Coinbase, NFT Market, which they invested $100 million in a building, is done. 00;43;02;12 - 00;43;12;03 Bennett Tomlin Like what? No volume. And it just came out that no longer will creators be able to drop new collections using their market. Nice $100 million of investment. 00;43;12;03 - 00;43;14;00 Ed Zitron How do they cost $100 million? 00;43;14;00 - 00;43;15;27 Cas Piancey Remember the board eight movies they were going to do? 00;43;16;00 - 00;43;19;24 Bennett Tomlin How was met? It lost $23 billion. Building the metaverse. 00;43;19;26 - 00;43;35;08 Ed Zitron I don't know, man. I just. The whole thing's just so damn exhausting. I just get so confused. Like, I'm like, who thought this was a good idea? And I've realized that no one did. No one thought about it for a second. No one thought like, is this a good idea? Will this make money? 00;43;35;08 - 00;43;36;07 Bennett Tomlin Some people did make. 00;43;36;11 - 00;43;37;20 Cas Piancey Some people did make money. Yeah. 00;43;37;22 - 00;43;38;29 Ed Zitron The worst people. 00;43;39;05 - 00;43;40;27 Cas Piancey Yeah. Marc. Marc Andresen. 00;43;41;02 - 00;44;07;12 Bennett Tomlin One of my favorite moments, like in the Bored Ape saga, that to me feels like the bored ape story in a microcosm was when Seth Green bought or obtained, let's say obtained several of the board and fees and announced his intention to make a TV show with them and then got phished and lost all of his eats, had actually committed to doing the thing that like you guys had pitched as what it apes was going. 00;44;07;12 - 00;44;09;20 Ed Zitron To be, then lost the copyright to it. 00;44;10;14 - 00;44;14;23 Bennett Tomlin Because it's supposed to be tied to the apes like the license to use it. 00;44;14;23 - 00;44;17;17 Ed Zitron But then it's turned out it isn't. Now it is not die. 00;44;17;18 - 00;44;28;08 Bennett Tomlin That's that's what writer Ripps maintains, is that it's not actually tied to it. And I can't I can't deal with that case. So that's as far as my knowledge on it goes. 00;44;28;09 - 00;44;34;13 Ed Zitron If I was a judge, I'd just be like, I don't I meant to be open with murderers and share argue about you go. 00;44;34;17 - 00;44;42;02 Bennett Tomlin Next person who says the word ape is being held in contempt of court. And that's my rule. 00;44;42;02 - 00;45;03;09 Ed Zitron It's funny because the tone is probably the wrong word, funny the other kind, but it's just I'm trying to think of a symbol here. I have not heard a compelling argument, not one I really am. I've not heard one person who can explain the value beyond some times Rolexes are worth money, and like. 00;45;03;09 - 00;45;24;21 Bennett Tomlin Many of the collectible markets that end up having some kind of value like Rolex are very intensely Manipur plated, controlled, whatever, by the central party creating the asset. Yeah, like that's the reason Rolexes have a resale value is because there's limits on like the circumstances in which they can be resold and how many new ones are created and things like that. 00;45;25;11 - 00;45;46;09 Bennett Tomlin The reason diamonds are valuable, even though, again, there's basically no resale market in those two because DeBeers is very controlling in how many they release it in the market and how many are available and things like that. And so like even when they point to some of these things, they're using it in this way where they try to pretend it's community owned, community controlled, something like that. 00;45;46;14 - 00;45;52;21 Bennett Tomlin But things they're alluding to are always created and controlled by these powerful central entities. 00;45;53;01 - 00;46;22;03 Ed Zitron And also, diamonds are not worth that much, like diamonds are not a high margin business. And also they have a fundamental that has been crushed by the forces of capitalism and then international laws around blood diamonds and the Guia, they are heavily controlled. And I think and if these are because it turned out like 90% of volumes like ten days, it has the appearance of being a natural process without actually being one every one of these is beholden to the value of a theory. 00;46;22;03 - 00;46;36;28 Ed Zitron More bitcoin that they're so obvious was creating so many of them. So many of them were scams. It's like, I wish it was something cool. I really do. I would love some cool digital shit, but this isn't it. None of this needs to be decentralized. Nobody cares for. 00;46;36;28 - 00;46;46;13 Cas Piancey What it's worth. Volumes are up a little bit. This is going to be the counter to this is that volume is as big now as it was like about a year ago or so. 00;46;46;13 - 00;46;55;05 Bennett Tomlin I guess I love that you're still man version of their argument is, look it, it's a cockroach. You can't kill it. No one wants it there, but it's alive. That's it. 00;46;55;19 - 00;46;57;13 Ed Zitron That's right. That's actually true. 00;46;57;22 - 00;46;59;26 Cas Piancey Yeah. Ed, any other thoughts? 00;46;59;26 - 00;47;09;08 Ed Zitron I am all out of them. I think I've ejaculated every thought I have on this subject. Now I need to go and throw myself in an icy lake. Thank you for having me last. 00;47;10;19 - 00;47;12;11 Cas Piancey Night's Final Pod podcast. 00;47;13;25 - 00;47;16;24 Bennett Tomlin AC Lake is still more pleasant than discussing NFT. 00;47;18;17 - 00;47;21;14 Ed Zitron Yeah, pretty much.