The Problem With NFTs, Dan Olson

This is being shared widely so I watched the whole thing. The person clearly wants to say everything about NFTs and blockchains is bad, and that always runs me the wrong way.

I made some comments in the Fission chat.

The pitch that starts with just speculation and boring examples — isn’t a great start for saying anything is balanced.

Saying that NFT use cases around speculation – which isn’t interesting to me personally – are the only use cases.

So if he said, hey, there’s the cool project done by turning songs into a DAO of collective ownership, eg. Jonathan Mann’s Song A Day

Yeah, it’s also not really correct? Bitcoin has a problematic culture, include POW part, and then he says all Ethereum and anyone else doesn’t know anything about the economies they are trying to better

Which, also, is not true – but you’re not going to find the people who are working on UBI projects, equality, or anything else, if you’re looking to hack on the entire space

How can Ethereum help with UBI?

There are dozens of projects experimenting

Here’s some background on Circles UBI that my friend Rosano was recently asking about Artist Residency with Circles UBI

Yeah, he hacks on MetaMask, like they’re idiots, and then segues into the next part as if it’s literally MetaMask that wants to put medical records on the blockchain (which is clearly a bad idea)

I really really really wish these things weren’t just basically a way to make people angry

Also, this is a long discussion, but “digital scarcity” is … not quite the same thing. The art remains broadly available – usually on IPFS – and proof of purchase, membership, or other things

Yes, some things are based on rarity or collectables, which are mostly around speculation. That’s a thing that people do. To me, boring, and a lot of the other use cases are much more interesting.

I am watching through this whole thing. It’s well made, down to dismissive tone, and he’s trying to convince / explain that this is all bad.

He’s not wrong about a lot of things, but this seems designed to support the outcome that is bad bad bad.

e.g. I’m getting to the DAO part. A DAO can be understood as a co-op, kind of.

He hacks on healthcare LOL (super important for Americans, certainly)

Except…that’s one of the DAOs that I’m most interested in. It’s a freelancer DAO called Opolis that handles payroll and benefits, including healthcare, for freelancers

J, I appreciate you sharing this, btw – it’s great to go through something like this and go … yep, and here are some counter examples. I could probably find examples that support many of his points, too!

His DAO voting structure isn’t the only one. 1 person, 1 vote (like a co-op) is an option.

Yeah, I totally agree with him, we don’t want systems that are worse. There are a LOT of people who are (rightly!) extremely angry and really, disappointed, in a lot of this shit


I agree with you that it is designed to be polarizing. And unfortunately that seems to be part of the recipe to get views in the media.

And I won’t comment on the dismissive nature of it because not everyone is awful in crypto.

But, overwhelmingly I agree with the FOMO mindset of the investor and shill and pyramid nature of NFT projects as a whole, as well as the fact that blockchain and these financial vehicles opened up so many new ways to scam people.

I also agree that, at least in my experience from a few years back, the technology just wasn’t fit for purpose for the vast majority of the use cases that people were trying to apply it to such as identity, voting, healthcare or financial records for both technical reasons as well as general privacy reasons.

And I don’t want to get into transparency VS privacy debates. But, I believe that There’s a time and place for both and it should be an opt-in or opt-out decision, because unfortunately there are bad actors in the world and you should have the choice to expose your info or not. And that shouldn’t come with the penalty of not being able to participate at all based on what you choose. Things in the real world just aren’t that cut and dry, to be able to make sense for everyone unanimously.


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