Music has been a significant part of our daily lives. Even those working at home are using music to elevate their performance and not feel the stress of their professional work. The Husl.io is a blockchain project on legacy music with the hope that an entirely new music economy can be born. This is where Brian Hazan brings his vast investment knowledge. He firmly believes that the music industry is more than ready for the disruptive power of blockchain and the transparency of NFTs that will revolutionize the industry for creators, fans, and influencers to connect. He emphasizes that creators are hard workers who deliver excellent results and focus on adding value to things through appropriate tools. He also shares insights on brands that are consuming our lives and how we embrace them and invite them openly. Tune in to learn more about how to get discovered, connect with fans, and earn money!
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Brian Hazan Of HUSL – Connecting Creators & Fans In Web3, Plus: Samsung’s + Theta NFT Partnership, Coco-Cola Friendship Day NFTs, Fractional CryptoPunk, And More…
Our guest’s first CD purchase came full circle when he was able to collaborate with one of the artists he first admired.
Also, how big brands like Coca-Cola and Samsung are moving head first into NFTs. All this and more on this episode.
Don’t forget, we put together a little soiree called NFT a few months back that brought out thousands of the world’s most innovative doers in the NFT space. Head to 2023. NFTLA.Live to get on the whitelist for tickets to our bigger, bolder, better, but also as intimate and impactful event happening in Los Angeles, March 20th through the 23rd, 2023. See you there.
Our episode features Brian Hazan, Cofounder of HUSL, the platform that is revolutionizing the way that creators interact with their fans, utilizing blockchain technology. An eighteen-year veteran of the financial services industry, Bryan’s past roles include Smith Barney, JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, and HSBC in various VP roles. It brings his vast investment knowledge to The HUSL as well. Throughout his career, Brian has worked with both private and institutional clients to evaluate and advise on both public and private investments.
Brian has been involved in the management and advisory of several startup ventures in the food and beverage industry as well as the blockchain space, with over $2 billion in lost royalties in the past few years. Brian strongly believes that the music industry is more than ready for the disruptive power of blockchain and the trustless transparency of NFTs. HUSL is a new platform that is going to revolutionize the NFT world and the way fans, creators and influencers connect.
Brian, welcome to the show.
Thanks for having me.
Brian, this is quite the vision you have here for HUSL and HUSLVERSE. We know it’s gone through various iterations and has evolved meaningfully. You guys are still early in your existence. We know the potential here is massive. Let’s start, though, at the beginning. Let’s talk about the origin story. How did this concept come about?
My partners and I, five of us, came together. My partner, Matt Schellhas, is our CFO. He’s got an extensive background in everything Hollywood from the red heart carpet hosting onto E! Channel to working as a VP of Finance for the Jim Henson studio. He’s also worked in commodities, owned, operated, and sold those businesses as well as worked within the market making. He’s got a vast background as it relates to everything crypto and everything finance.
Next, Jason is Hernandez, who’s our Chief Operating Officer. He’s also an exceptional talent. He’s got nearly twenty years of experience, leading cross-functional sales teams at places like Wells Fargo and JPMorgan, where he and I met in our professional lives. Also, Sapphire Adizes, who is our Chief Innovation Officer.
As a musician, he’s somebody that has an accomplished career. He’s performed at the Kotor music festival in Europe. He’s performed at places like Lincoln Center in New York City. He’s also got millions of views on some viral saxophone videos that you should check out as well as several hundred million streams on Spotify in his own right, working with people like The Chainsmokers and Kanye West, amongst others.
Rounding it out is our Founding CEO from Baja, who’s a real estate attorney by trade and an advisor on numerous crypto projects, including property. He’s somebody that’s exceptionally connected and well versed in also everything Web3 and blockchain. He’s an exceptional resource. It was mutual friendships and career paths that brought us together.
All creators in Web3 are always looking for two things, problems that blockchain can solve and ways that we can improve blockchain. The genesis of HUSL came from looking at the space and thinking, “Why is it that no one’s meaningfully crossed over to the mainstream? What is it that’s going to bring the next 1 million, 10 million, or 100 million users into the Web3 community and into blockchain?
Lo and behold, in the fall of 2020, NFTs hit the scene. They weren’t a new technology, but for the first time, they hit the scene in a meaningful way. We began to see some celebrities and big influencers doing some pretty meaningful NFT campaigns, companies like Top Shot and otherwise that were working in the space with more of a broad, ranging appeal to collectors around sports and otherwise began to emerge.
We were all NFT collectors, fully immersed in this space. We looked at NFT technology and said, “Where can we do the most disruption? What areas of business entertainment are NFTs most likely or most ripe to disrupt?” It was music. There were billions and billions of dollars and lost royalties over the last few years.
A stat to round out that idea that jumped out at me and was the genesis of the project is, in doing some research, we had learned that in the past few years, nearly 46 million instances of creators not being paid properly. It’s due to silly things like wrongly, missing, or, encoding on the metadata differences between the way that different performance rights and royalty organizations or collecting and recording the data on who should be properly paid for different works and music we’re missing.
Connecting Creators And Fans: We’ve incorporated many elements that allow creators to position their works, whether it’s YouTube videos, and be rewarded through a play to earn or compete for attention type model, which allows them to share their art with the world and be compensated for it.
There’s got to be a better way. We all know about NFT in terms of their trustless transparency, ability to pay creators instantly, the ability to create for royalties virtually in perpetuity based on the transfer, and the sharing of different music was something that we thought could impact the industry in a meaningful way. We set off to build what was one of the first music-centric, music-only NFT exchanges out there. From there, that snowballed into creating a user platform where all creators have the ability to upload music onto our site, besides some of the bigger celebrities that we curate. That was the genesis of our story and it has evolved over the last few months.
I love how you point that out. I’m a musician and I’ve been a musician at different levels. I’ve submitted songs to royalty music libraries. They find placements and get you royalties. I’ve played in venues. It’s this perennial problem that’s been around for a while. We value things music quite a bit, but it seems we don’t because it’s hard to track and monetize what’s going on. It’s this ethereal thing that floats through the air and magically touches our souls.
It’s obvious, though, that if you go to a bar or venue and you have a party and all of a sudden, the music stops, everybody wants to go to a different party. They’re not going to settle for not the coolest music. “We’ll put on this royalty-free track that somebody made that’s some music or something.” No. People want good music and it helps them have a great time. It is so valuable to people. Making sure that we track that value is so important.
A question here is about how The HUSLVERSEs incorporate music NFTs entertainment into the metaverse. In your background, there is a picture of The HUSLVERSE map going on. For the reader at home, you can check out the YouTube video to look at that or go to their website. How do you bring together all of these elements, the music NFTs entertainment, into the metaverse?
Music is the soundtrack to our lives. To your point, what’s a party with no music? What’s a college football game with no fight song? What’s a movie with no score? We tried to make sure that we kept music as the central theme of everything that drives our universe. Within our metaverse, The HUSLVERSE, we’ve broken down our map into 4 distinct quadrants, 1 being a land of art and fashion, another being of sports, a land that focuses on Hollywood entertainment, and finally, a land of musicians.
We have created a number of cool immersive games and play-to-earn economies within each of these that follow a theme and help users work through and understand the hustle that drives creators to work harder than everyone else and be successful. We have incorporated a lot of elements that allow creators to position their works, whether it’s YouTube videos, musical works, or fitness routines for fitness influencers.
They would be rewarded through a play-to-earn or compete-for-attention pipe model which allows them to share their art with the world and be compensated for it. Vice versa, users or our visitors can also work to be compensated for their attention. It’s an interesting dynamic that we’ve created. It’s the first of its kind and something we’re excited about.
As an aside, as you list off the different things that you’re integrating there, music and entertainment, so on and so forth, as we’re building NFTLA, I’m like, “That’s almost exactly in alignment with what we do with NFTLA. We take the aspects of NFT that align with that cultural force in that part of the world. That’s cool.
As consumers of content, what is it that’s captivating our attention? It’s those things. With our experience in networks, we felt squarely in the center of all that. We wanted to make sure that we could bring it to our users and help connect Hollywood, the world of music, the world of entertainment and sports to the blockchain in an immersive high-fidelity way that kept music as the central backbone of it all.
It’s been great to fall along with your journey since we originally had Varun on the show a few NFT New Yorks ago. You guys have done a lot since then. We got beta coming up. What should we expect there?
We’re wrapping up the white list for beta participation. That’s something that we’re excited about. We’re going to allow the first 50 to 100 users into The HUSLVERSE. We’re going to go through some routine stress testing. We will allow the community to use some of our various features and test our spatial audio. We’re going to have some cool network events, limited-run concerts, and different things so that those early users can test everything. We can get a good sense of throughput bandwidth and make sure settings and everything are optimized before we open it up for a broader release later on in September 2022.
I’m sure, as you’ve done so far, there will be a good amount of iteration as you learn and, more customer development, and get to dial everything in. Coupled with that is the second round of land sales. What are the details there? When does it go live? How can our readers participate?
We can look through our first land sale back on March 31st, 2022, and had a quick sellout. Land traded at the price of 2,500 HUSL at the time, which was plus or minus $2,500. Our next iteration, our next land sale is slated for the early middle of October 2022. She will hammer him down a date, but more news to come on that. That’s going to be exciting because, for the first time, users will have the ability to, once they purchase land, build on it immediately. That is something that a lot of our early users and participants are eager to do. We’re excited about that and to see what they build and build with them.
In terms of that dynamic, every virtual world operates a little bit differently. What can you tell us about how that land ownership mechanism works? What utility is there in owning that land, royal fees, ability to control exactly what’s on there or not, to put it in, or to take it out? How does that all work?
As a landowner, you’re going to have the full ability to craft that land in the image you desire. We’ve got some pretty interesting, pre-fabricated buildings and designs that players can use and also some ad hoc building tools that will allow people to leverage those creator tools and build things. They’re exceptional. It was important to us when we were building out and creating a thought process behind
The HUSLVERSE to create something that was modular because we wanted to entice and incent creators and designers of 3d immersive spaces to bring those to The HUSLVERSE. All brands of creators are going to have the ability to create, bring, and market their own virtual wearables and virtual items. Landowners have the opportunity to create quests post games.
Landowners are going to be rewarded not only for the attention that they capture or captivate, by the experiences, how many and how long people spend enjoying those experiences, but also go collect royalties from a rake that comes from a small percentage of all transactions that occur across The HUSLVERSE.
Those are the primary ways that people leverage their land, but they also have the ability to rent that land to other users that aren’t landowners. That experience can be open up to all. Anyone can compete in quests and split the bounty of their rewards, whether it’s NFTs that they find or points they earn with that person they rent inland from. It’s an immersive 360 economy.
Jeff, I love the prefab house component because I always feel a little reticent to buy land in the metaverse because a lot of work goes into building land. I have a great appreciation for artists and technologists that have the time and capability to do that, starting with a prefab structure that’s dope that I can further tweak over time. It takes some pressure off.
Some of the prefab tools that users are going to have access to are things screens. They can upload their own content and host movies and music videos, and play their music for others. We’ve got interactive features, boom boxes and things that allow people to travel around the world, captivate attention, and grow communities by playing their music in this unobtrusive, un-annoying way. They are utilizing our spatial audio technology where it’s almost in real life at a concert where you can only interact with the people that are arm’s length from you. It’s not a noisy, cluttered experience like some of the video games we played.
It is so important. I don’t even know that a lot of these metaverse plays are doing a great job at it. That is attracting the type of person that already inherently loves to create and add to things, giving them the appropriate tools to do that. I love that you’re so aware of that and focused on that. The world of fashion is also something that’s integrated into The HUSLVERSE.
We’ve had the good fortune to interview some cool people in that space on this show and know that there are exciting things going on, inside and outside of the metaverse and engaging with NFTs and blockchain. What would you say is The HUSLVERSE fashion and why do you value it enough to make it one of your focuses?
Connecting Creators And Fans: One of the most incredible things about the metaverse is creating your avatar. So we’re excited about that. And we’re looking forward to seeing what creators create.
I think that fashion is central to art. As we look out at the NFT community and the metaverse community, fashion alongside music is going to be the driving theme, owning items, wearables integrating music technology and blockchain technology into real-life physical items. Also, showcasing those skills of those creators and some of those different fashions within the metaverse is going to be critically important. There have been some successful fashion shows. Decentraland had success with some initiatives that they have run. Fashion was central to our metaverse. We built out a number of fashion catwalks and virtual retail experiences.
We’re proud to announce one of our first fashion partners Vulcan Forged’s Global Conference in Greece, back in June 2022, was DKNY. It’s been a humbling and amazing experience working with them, learning from their team, what drives retail, what things are critical to them, and what brands like DKNY expect or look for in potential brand partners and metaverse partners in terms of the capabilities that they want. What are the analytics and the data that they need and being able to pair that with things are cool like music play-to-earn gaming experiences, and how brands that have been around for decades that have fans or consumers that span multiple generations? How do they connect with this new generation of Web3 metaverse consumers?
We believe that, in the future, the same way that everyone has an Instagram account, a Facebook account, or different social media, and the same way that corporations and fashion brands have websites, that we’re all going to have 3D virtualized environments and retail presence within one or many metaverses. Being able to accommodate those fashion brands and create cool retail experiences where people can not only try on and shop for virtual items but also check out and buy those real-world items from the brands they follow or wear.
It was critical to us. There are lots more to see and lots more to come in terms of what’s going on. In the land of fashion, we’re going to be hosting a number of fashion shows. We’ve got a number of creative designers that we’re going to be showcasing and breaking to the world. We’re excited about that part of The HUSLVERSE more than some others because one of the coolest things about the metaverse is creating your avatar either in your image or some fantasy image, the wacky and cool ways that people dress their avatars. We’re excited about that. We’re looking forward to seeing what creators create.
I know DKNY had been around for over 30 years. That’s no easy feat to stay relevant in fashion. They have done a great job at that. It’s great to see brands like this jumping in early to the metaverse, trying new things. With that type of collaboration, I’m sure you guys are going to learn a lot from each other. That would be a great panel at NFT LA.
Let’s have you and DKNY in the mix talking about your first few months of dating, what you guys figured out along the way, and whether you’re going to get more married or not, but at least it’s going to be fun. I’m curious, what else is on your roadmap? You’re not starting small, so there’s got to be other big things to come.
DKNY is an incredible partner. They are a forward-thinking brand and we’ve learned a lot from them and continue to learn a lot from them. That’s great.
I can’t help but extend the metaphor and imagine marriage or dating. DKNY’s trying to dress you and you want to wear like, “This is what I want to wear,” but it makes you look so good. Everybody’s like, “Where did you get that outfit?” “DKNY made me wear it, but it’s cool.”
They’re incredible. Their team is creative and they have worked closely with us to create not only their NFT drop but the backbone and fundamentals that drive our retail experience in The HUSLVERSE. They have been an amazing partner. In terms of what else is in store for our roadmap, what we’re excited about beyond the fashion partnerships, the opening up of the beta, and then, later on, the full release of our metaverse is going to be our immersive play-to-earn arcade.
We’ve got some mobile games that are coming in the pipe. One that I’m excited about is a rhythm game that is going to allow anyone that owns our music NFTs. Those can be feature drops from some of our biggest celebrities like Busta Rhymes, Styles P, Keith Murray, or even some of the amateur uploads from some of our creators in the community.
You will be able to take those NFTs, play ball-bouncing rhythm games, and play-to-earn different experiences from those creators. That is something that we think is going to further connect creators, celebrity musicians, and amateur musicians to new fans and otherwise. Something that we’re excited about is that arcade functionality and the ability to reach people on mobile, which is going to open us up to scores of new users, which is great
Fashion is central because it’s an art. In the NFT and metaverse community, fashion alongside music will be the driving theme of owning items, integrating music, technology, and blockchain technology into real-life physical items. Click To Tweet
To round it out, our generative music studio is something we have been feverishly working on for the better of the last few months. It’s like the Wizard of Oz. It’s been held behind the curtain for a while because it’s something that we wanted to get perfected. We’ve seen some incredible developments around generative music within the Web3 space, and some pioneers that have led the way have inspired us.
We’ve got an incredible collection. It will be an avatar collection that will be the first native avatar collection of The HUSLVERSE. They’re called HUSLrs. Each HUSLr avatar comes with its own unique generative beat. We’ve teamed up with a number of rockstar producers. We’ve got DannyBoyStyles, who’s got a number of Grammys. He’s worked with people like The Weeknd. I believe he produced his last album. We’ve got Nipsey Hussle’s producers, Mike & Keys. They work with Snoop and virtually everybody on the west coast. They’re incredible.
Sapphire, my cofounder, and also Pvlace and Gunboi, a producing team, they’re part of 808 Mafia. They’ve got incredible accolades and a dozen billboard number ones over the last few years alone. Between them and our talented team of developers, we have been able to create incredible generative music technology. We’ve got a drop coming out. That’s going to be a collaboration from those four. We’re excited about it. We’ve got Styles P, who’s come in and recorded on those beats as a proof of concept for buyers that these are great beats out of the box.
Working with these producers individually, when they sell instrumentals or they collaborate on music, their beats, fetch anywhere from $10,000 to $50,000. Each one of the buyers of these NFTs is going to get that beat. They’re going to get the complete stem pack used to create those beats. They will have full commercial rights and otherwise create a share on YouTube published commercially. We’re also going to have a cool giveaway where we’re teaming up with CoinMarketCap to give away some land and some HUSLrs and airdrop that styles P iteration or song written over those generative beats to everyone that signs up.
There’s going to be a prize for everybody, not a bad third prize. It’s a free mint from Styles P. it’s this unique, high rarity, generative collection, but it’s something that we’re excited about. I’m looking forward to expanding on that generative studio and allowing producers in the future to leverage the tools we’ve created to create their own collections similar to how we allow musicians to create their own works and upload them on our platform.
Brian, you guys got so much going on, man. This is great. Speaking of inspiration, though, where do you look for inspiration in the Web3 space?
There is so much inspiration in the Web3 space. It’s in the art. It’s in the code. It’s in the collaborations. When we look at inspiration, it’s not even so much to copy what other people are doing. How do we emulate that but make it our own? How do we partner with these guys? How do we create a more inclusive Web3 economy where it’s not necessarily a competition, let’s say, metaverse versus metaverse or music platform versus music platform? How do we work together?
That’s also been a tenant of The HUSLVERSE. How do we create tools and software so that it’s easily accessible, easy for creators to build on our propositions, or easy to integrate different prop partnerships into? That inspiration’s everywhere. We’re always looking to partner with amazing new creators and tech partners to help drive and push the boundaries.
We draw inspiration from so many different places, including projects like the HUSLVERSE. Thanks so much for sharing all of that with us.
As I strolled through the holes of NFT LA, talk about inspiration. We met partners, perusing the conference exhibition hall. It’s everywhere.
We do appreciate that. We want to shift gears a little bit, though and get your personal take on some questions that we do. It’s a section we call Edge Quick Hitters. There are ten questions. Short, single-word responses are what we’re looking for, but we might dive in a little bit deeper here or there. Do you want to jump in on these?
Connecting Creators And Fans: A rhythm game will allow holders to anyone that owns our music NFTs. Those can be feature drops from some of our biggest celebrities.
Yes. I look forward to it. Let’s go.
Let’s do it. Question number one, what is the first thing you remember ever purchasing in your life?
I remember saving up money for a CD player. Some of these young guys don’t even know what that is. Back in the day when we had those in the ‘90s, I remember having enough money from a birthday, Christmas, or whatever it was for the CD player and a couple of CDs. I still remember those CDs. I’m going to shout out those artists. It was Busta Rhymes that come, full circle. It’s an incredible opportunity to work with him. It was Busta Rhymes, House of Pain, and Wu-Tang Clan. That was cool. That CD player was my pride and joy.
Question number two, what is the first thing you remember ever selling in your life?
Small cards, probably. It’s funny when you think about it. Those trading cards from back in the day draw a lot of parallels to NFTs in terms of their provenance, collectability, and so forth. They’re baseball cards.
Question number three, what is the most recent thing you purchased?
You have to ask my wife. I’ve got kids. It probably wasn’t something for me.
Question four, what is the most recent thing you sold?
I can’t even remember. I’m a hodler.
Number five, what is your most prized possession?
It’s also a sports collectible. Back in the ‘90s, while my dad could still write Muhammad Ali’s autograph on a calendar, it was an image of that classic knockout standing over Sonny Liston. At the time, Parkinson’s was setting in, but he was still able to scribble his name, and that Muhammad Ali autograph is something that’s cool and important to me.
Question number six, if you could buy anything in the world, digital, physical, service, or experience, that’s for sale, what would it be?
One of those Rezvani tanks. I don’t know if you guys have ever seen those, but those things are incredible.
What is that?
They’re an automaker. They make these supercars, but they also have this incredible $200,000, probably, even more, SUV that you can get bulletproofed out. It’s one of those doomsday SUVs. It’s cool.
We got to look at that. Jeff’s going to replace his. What do you have, a Jeep or something?
I do have a Jeep, but I used to command a ton of combat tanks during my time in the army along with Bradley Fighting Vehicles. I dig the fully armored approach to things. That’s cool.
I’m a Jeep guy, too. This thing is next level.
Question number seven. If you could pass on one of your personality traits to the next generation, what would it be?
Question number eight, if you could eliminate one of your personality traits from the next generation, what would it be?
It’s a tough one. Maybe being so serious. I tend to take things seriously. I think that the world’s a beautiful place, life’s short, and the next generation shouldn’t take itself too seriously.
Connecting Creators And Fans: Our generative music studio has been something we’ve been feverishly working on for the better part of the last six or seven months.
Question number nine, what did you do before joining us on the show?
I listened to some new unreleased music from Keith Murray that I’m looking forward to sharing with the world. I just got some new music in from Keith and it’s awesome.
Question ten, last one, what are you going to do next after the show?
I have got kids, so I’m off to soccer. I’m always excited to watch my kids grow up and get involved in sports, collecting, music, and everything else. That’s great. That’s what I’m better off doing.
That’s Edge Quick Hitters. Thanks so much for sharing with us. We do appreciate it. Eathan, what do we got in the world of hot topics?
Let’s talk through it. First up is Samsung partnering with Theta Labs for an upcoming Galaxy NFT ecosystem. They signed an MOU with partners, including Theta Labs, to operate this ecosystem for its new range of Galaxy mobile phones. A little quote here says, “Samsung Electronics is promoting consumer experience innovation that connects non-fundable tokens in the online virtual world to real offline benefits.
We heard about it quite a bit in this episode with Brian. Heavy-hitting people with deep experience in traditional technology and business are diving in and trying to make interesting new things happen with NFTs and integrating that with what’s already going on. It’s surprising who steps forward first, but maybe not a surprise at this point. We’ve seen a lot of interesting people step in.
Big brands are making it happen. I was on the Games Fed YouTube live earlier. We were talking about that. There were some questions from the viewers about, “How do big brands make that transition? Who is out there working on NFT integrations?” My answer was, “It’s all of them. If there’s a big brand out there with a big following, product-market fit, been around for decades in many cases, they’re thinking about it. They have people thinking about it, if not acting on it already. They tend to be slower moving than, say, a lot of the folks that are crypto natives or startups in the world of crypto, but they’re out there mixing it up.
I noted Warner Brothers a lot in the entertainment world. They were with the Cow Drop and their presence at NFT LA, but so many others like Fox Entertainment with Crapopolis and all these other big brands are making things happen. I’m not surprised to see that from Samsung sung and the integration in Galaxy. A massive option is most likely not going to come from a world where people have to go open a crypto wallet. It’s going to come from a world where it slides seamlessly into their life. They don’t even necessarily know that what they’re interacting with is an NFT. It’s a thing that they like and it provides value and utility to them. These are the initial steps I see that are going to help us get to that next step.
Theta Labs was one of our speakers at the last NFT LA on video streaming. They don’t get talked about in the mainstream too much, but from the talk they did and knowing them from the industry, I’ve expected them to do deeper stuff like this. This is a big deal for them. This is like a Trojan horse to 100,000 new users for the Theta network.
We were talking earlier with Brian about unique collaborations and this one jumps out at you as a not-so-obvious but cool collab between a next-generation video platform and a next-generation phone platform doing something unique together. This is stuff that makes me excited. When someone’s in the elevator with me and sees the Edge of NFT hat and, “Isn’t the Edge over the cliff?” I’m like, “No, there’s a lot more coming.” This is another one of those examples.
Before we move on from this one, a couple of observations are coming to me which is it’s Samsung. We’re not hearing this happening with Apple phones. Maybe there’s something going on, but I haven’t heard much going on with Apple, which makes me think about Steve Jobs. People always wonder, “What would be going on if Steve Jobs were still around?” It’s almost like he got rid of flash or something before anybody else. He was edging out these existing technologies aiming for the future. Who knows, he might have been diving feet first and deep into NFTs with Apple?
The other thing came up in a conversation with one of our teammates, Aaron, who is helping us with social. He’s in Canada. We were talking about Blackberry. Blackberry is a brand that’s still around but has taken tons of hits. It would be fun to see Blackberry jump in and do something cool with crypto and NFTs, especially since they’re known for security.
What do you think, Brian? Any insights on this one?
Blackberry is interesting. Blackberry no longer makes its own handsets anymore. I want to say they sold or they licensed that security technology that made them the go-to choice for corporate America for so long. Hearing this news about Samsung, Samsung is a company that has been open to exploring blockchain technology, which is exciting. They were the first to integrate the TRON wallet a few years back.
I’ve heard a lot about these new television sets that will be integrating NFT technology, allowing you to display, purchase, sell, and different things. Samsung is a forward-thinking tech company. It’s always exciting to see the hardware makers, the brands that are already consuming our lives, embrace the technology, and invite it openly. It’s great.
Should we hit the next one, guys?
Let’s do it.
This one is maybe similar in some ways. I almost feel like jumping into a fresh new bed at the hotel, but finally sinking in, settling, and then getting comfortable with all these new developments and big brands settling in. I’ll hit right to it. Coca-Cola is celebrating friendship day with its NFTs on Polygon. Reading that out loud makes me think back to us starting this show not that long ago and not necessarily expecting things like this to happen so soon.
The story goes that they’re creating generative NFTs. The NFTs are created by Tafi, an avatar-creating company. They’re one of a kind in the truest sense and they’re shareable. The bubbles inside a Coke bottle inspired the NFTs and they were airdrop to digital wallets of existing Coca-Cola NFT owners. There are already some existing owners. The collectibles come with functionality like shared reveal or each NFT will be revealed after being shared with a friend. That’s fun. It’s nothing like celebrating friendship.
A similar story there, folks are figuring out how to incorporate it into their communities. These are already big massive communities and big consumer bases. They have a leg up from that perspective. These are fun ways to get people involved. I do think that the biggest things are going to be the things that people don’t realize are NFTs are something cool that they like and utilities that they would like straight up and that it happens to be an NFT is beside the point. It’s the underlying value they’re getting from it. That’s how these big brands are mostly going to make waves. It’s cool to see them jumping in, testing the waters, and iterating.
This is another one where I go into a second-order relationship. Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger are huge investors in Coca-Cola. They’re not foolish on apparently publicly on NFTs or crypto at all. One of their biggest wins in all of history is jumping into this space. I would love to hear if there’s some board root conversation where Coca-Cola is trying to be talked out of it by Charlie Munger and Warren Buffett.
Connecting Creators And Fans: They are exploring blockchain technology. These new television sets will integrate NFT technology, allowing you to display, purchase, sell, and do different things.
Probably not. “Let the kids play,” is probably with their disposition.
The last one is a slice of the CryptoPunk NFT is to be split into thousands of pieces. This new campaign intends to give a wider base of NFT investors a stake in some of the most valuable NFTs by fractionalizing ownership and reins city accessibility. This is Unique Network. NFT infrastructure running on the Kusama and Polkadot networks will split the ownerships of one CryptoPunk to more than 56,000 addresses that have signed up for a share.
Campaign offers users a chance to participate in what has become a highly siloed environment. As Unique Network CEO, Alexander Mitrovich explained in this statement, this represents the exciting moment for interoperability with our fractionalization of CryptoPunk #3042. We’re held in a new era of NFTs that are accessible, interchangeable, and can be shared across chains and add a fraction of the cost. It will be interesting to see what happens there. CryptoPunks is a huge property.
Fractionalization was an early concept in the NFT space that’s been talked about for a while, but I don’t know if it’s become as ubiquitous and relevant as it was once hoped to be. It’s a cool idea to fractionalize ownership, but you need a certain use case where you have a high demand for something that can be easily fractionalized. This might be a good use case. It will be interesting to see what the demand is and how the value of these fractions plays out relative to the market value of CryptoPunks. I, for one, had higher hopes for fractionalization as a utility in the space and I hope that this brings some additional value there.
You wonder if there’s any analog here to stock splits. These things try not to be treated as securities. That’s interesting territory to talk about, but there is that idea going back to the Charlie Munger and Warren Buffett world, a stock split doesn’t do anything to the value of the stock. It splits it up into pieces. I could see a case here that it adds value because more people can get involved and adds liquidity. It’s a question of how much value that might add to any individual, CryptoPunk or the collection in general.
The thing that started running down on these things is so pure collectibles for which there’s still and will continue to be a space in NFT land. We talked about baseball cards earlier. There’s a place for just pure collectibles and NFTs. Create them in a format that’s even better because you got provenance. You can understand the ownership, history, authenticity, and ETH.
All those are transparent to you as an NFT holder. You get in corporate utilities later, but we’re talking pure collectibles. Those are the ones where there’s the opportunity for clear fractionalization and co-ownership of things like that. It gets tricky when you start talking about the utility-based ones. How do you share utility? How do you split the utility? You use Gary Vee’s NFTs if you’re going to Veecon. Who gets to go to Veecon if you’re all sharing the no-way gnome NFT? How does that work? I’m sure there are ways to work around that stuff, but it does seem like this is geared more toward NFTs that are primarily collectible in their value.
Zach, our co-lead over at Edge of NFT, was on Twitter spaces. I was listening to it with a partner of ours multiplied. They were talking about how there’s this word out that you don’t have to hold the NFT to get into the NFT party anyway. It’s like the get in the board eight party because you know when it is and nobody asks you to prove what’s going on. There is the issue if you keep showing up someplace where you don’t have a ticket.
People will start to notice and they will ask you to get one or kick you out entirely. Jeff, it almost seems like then they have to create a DAO to manage those types of utilities. “We raffle off being able to access an event or some park.” It gets a bit complicated and requires more involvement from the individuals who own the fractions.
Brian, does the world of fractionalization intersect with anything in The HUSLVERSE?
Hopefully in the future. Fractionalization is one of the coolest concepts around NFTs for a lot of reasons. Most notably that it could potentially, in the future, put creators and fans on the same side of the table in the sense that, “Let’s apply it to music.” If someone could sell incremental pieces or fractionalized pieces of a particular album or a particular track, sell that and have this army of hundreds or thousands of fraction owners or partial owners of this song. Now they become stakeholders and promoters. It could be a valuable tool for some amateur creators and some of the creators that we haven’t heard yet.
Connecting Creators And Fans: Samsung is a forward-thinking tech company. It’s always exciting to see the hardware makers. The brands are already consuming our lives, embracing the technology and we are inviting them openly.
Unfortunately, that murky regulatory waters or environment around, “Is it a security or not? Are you directly benefiting from the work of someone else? Is that the only thing holding that back from being the next big rage in space? There are some firms that are doing that with music. Certainly, with this CryptoPunk story, that’s occurring already. When that becomes more mainstream, we’re going to see a lot more participation and music push NFTs to the fullest of their capability.
When there’s a revenue stream there, that’s then being split in different ways. That does make sense beyond the world of collectibles.
That’s also one of the coolest use cases, right?
That’s the coolest thing you could do with them. The industry’s moving there. I’m excited to see it moving out
We appreciate you joining us. We’re excited to have our readers that don’t know about HUSLVERSE jump in and follow everything. You’re doing so many exciting things on the immediate roadmap here and also for the future. If folks do want to follow you, Brian, where should we direct them?
Check it out. There are exciting things to come. Word on the street is we got a little giveaway that we’re doing. That’s going to be five plots of land in The HUSLVERSE. More details to come. Keep an eye out on our socials for that. It’s very generous of you, Brian. We appreciate that. Everybody, get in the mix on that and you will have a stake in this amazing future that is the HUSLVERSE.
We’ve reached the outer limit of the show. Thanks for exploring with us. We’ve got space for more adventures on this Starship. Invite your friends and recruit some cool strangers. They will make this journey all so much better. How? Go to Spotify and iTunes, rate us, and say something awesome. Go to EdgeOfNFT.com to dive further down the rabbit hole. Look us up on all major social platforms by typing EdgeOfNFT and start a fun conversation with us online. Lastly, be sure to tune in next time for more great NFT content. Thanks again for sharing this time with us.
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