If you thought the Ethereum (ETH) co-founder Vitalik Buterin’s recent appearance in a low-budget video shot in the acting couple Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis’ living room was weird, you ain’t seen nothing yet. The crypto pioneer is now set to star as a dead cat oracle who dishes out advice to five living drugged-up kitties…alongside Jane Fonda.
It turns out that the video the trio shot last week was a mere teaser for a wider collaboration that revolves around Kunis’ latest non-fungible token (NFT)-powered project, an adult comedy animated series named “Stoner Cats.” The series is being co-produced by Kunis’ own production firm.
On the official website for the series – which will not stream on Netflix and the like – the producers revealed that only viewers who purchase NFTs will be able to view full episodes. The Ethereum connection will be strong: Not only will Buterin voice a key character, but the entire cast will be paid in ETH tokens.
And that cast is nothing short of stellar: As well as Kutcher and Kunis, both Hollywood A-listers in their own right, Jane Fonda, a two-time Oscar winner and the brains behind that seminal 1980s workout video, will play Ms. Stoner, the dotty old lady owner of the five titular cats whose medical marijuana is what helps the cats get stoned.
The cats themselves will be voiced by Kutcher, Kunis, the actor and comedian Chris Rock and Seth MacFarlane (playing two roles). And Buterin will play the sage-like Lord Catsington, aka “The Spirit Guide.” The producers explained that Catsington is “Ms. Stoner’s oldest dead cat,” who “acts as an oracle, sharing wisdom and knowledge from their illustrious past life with Ms. Stoner.”
Per CoinDesk, Morgan Beller, a general partner at the venture company NFX and part of the “Stoner Cats” production team, the show’s makers made a number of alterations to the script to better suit Buterin’s character.
Beller was quoted as stating that the Ethereum co-founder “doesn’t like cursing and his character said ‘fuck’ a few times.” Buterin “asked if they could change that and they were accommodating,” he added.
Furthermore, as all of the actors will be paid in ETH, the team “had to teach Jane Fonda how to set up a MetaMask wallet.”
The producers added that an inial 10,420 Stoner Cats NFTs would be minted on the Ethereum blockchain, but also stated that at least 50% of that amount would need to sell on the primary market if the season were to be completed.
NFT Craze Explodes: Visa Launches NFT Program
The NFT crazy continues, and the popularity that this section of the industry has seen is on the growth. The latest important player in the game who is making these moves is Visa.
Visa launches NFT support program
It’s been just revealed that Visa is launching a NFT support program to help artists join the digital art space.
Accoridng to the latest reports, the financial services giant teams up with former Major League Baseball player turned NFT artist Micah Johnson.
The plan is to build a program that will support artists who want to use NFTs to sell their work, Visa said in a press release.
It’s been also revealed that Visa will select a small group of creators via an app process and then help them learn about the crypto and blockchain industry.
“We believe that we are at the beginning of a digital renaissance in the world of art and content creation.”
This is what Visa’s Head of Crypto Cuy Sheffield wrote on Twitter as reported by Coindesk. Check out what they said next:
“New technologies emerging in the crypto ecosystem, like NFTs, have the potential to lower the barrier to entry for digital creators across the world to build their own small businesses.”
This move made by Visa comes at a time when a large number of NFT marketplaces have launched in recent months.
Just in case you dod not know, this Tuesday, crypto exchange Coinbase became the latest organization to join the trend.
DappRadar recently noted that the NFT market passed $10 billion in sales volume in the third quarter.
Johnson joined the digital art space in 2020 and is the creator of Aku – this is an animated black astronaut character, and has become the first NFT to be optioned for a feature film.
“Working together [with Visa], we want to arm creators with the resources they need to stay at the forefront of this revolution,” Johnson said in a statement.
Yup Raises $3.5 Million in Seed Funding to Empower Social Creators and Curators
Through the new funding, the platform said it will “develop a new web3-native social media experience, expand the Yup community, and empower curators across the web”.
Yup, a social network for rewarding content curators has raised the sum of $3.5 million in seed funding which was led by Distributed Global, an early investor in crypto unicorns Dapper Labs, Audius, and Solana. The funding round was co-led by other key investors in the digital currency ecosystem ranging from Dapper Labs to LD Capital, as well as angel investors including Danny Zuckerman (3box), Patrick Rivera (Mirror), Alex Gausman (NFTX), and Bill Block (Miramax) amongst others.
Yup approaches social network rewarding in a completely different way. While many related outfits are known to focus their reward system on content creators alone, Yup believes curators are part of an ecosystem that makes the entire social network rewarding. Through the platform, valuable opinions across the web are rewarded.
Users can rate anything, earn rewards for accuracy, and gain status in special topics of interest. Yup can be integrated with most social media platforms and helps in providing a basic universal influence metric. It does this by interacting with the Yup Protocol, which is a decentralized semi-autonomous social consensus protocol that determines the rewards and social value of all content based on users’ interactions with it.
Through the new funding, the platform said it will “develop a new web3-native social media experience, expand the Yup community, and empower curators across the web.” The funding will also be used to complement the platform’s growth which has paid a total of $1.6 million in curator rewards. The startup also noted that it has inked a strategic relationship with the Non-Fungible Token (NFT) community, and has paid out a total of $300,000 to NFT curators, with some individuals earning thousands of dollars in YUP tokens.
Yup Seed Funding: Rebranding the Opportunities in Web3
The Yup seed funding stems from investors’ recognition of the potential opportunities inherent in Web3 for both content creators and curators.
“Web3 offers an opportunity to curate with clear financial incentives and social status. Curation will go beyond blogs and newsletters, where you can tip creators, earn money via curation, and create massive economic graphs. For example, Yup is a curation protocol that provides an opportunity for users to curate and build their influence accordingly,” said Kinjal, Blockchain Capital.
The broad backing for Yup was also dependent on the recognition of the platform’s superior business models, which draws from data-driven open and composable social applications design.
“Traditional social networks thrive on privileged and minimally accessible user data silos. Their business models depend on them. Yup, as a fully open and composable Web3 social network has the opportunity to empower builders and visionaries of the next great social applications,” says Alex Price, who pre-seeded Yup and is currently a Special Advisor at A16z Crypto. “I’m excited to see what kind of feeds, interfaces, and more are built on top of Yup’s fully open social graph.”
Yup is powered by the YUP tokens and the digital currency forms a central part of the platform’s operations.
Polygon to offer passive income generating NFTs, boosting MATIC utility
- Ethereum-based whitelisted NFT collections receive 50% to 250% APR through yield farming rewards.
- Protocols that add a utility layer to NFTs have become increasingly popular with the high floor price of BAYC, CryptoPunks and so on.
- Unreasonably high gas fees pose a challenge on the Ethereum network.
- Analysts expect MATIC, Polygon’s native token, to break out based on recent price trends and utility boost.
The latest trend in cryptocurrencies is earning passive income from NFTs. The floor price of top NFT collections on the Ethereum network, such as Bored Ape Yacht Club and CyberKongz, remains relatively high, making it inaccessible to retail traders.
NFTs become accessible for retail traders through sharding and yield farming incentives
The Ethereum ecosystem is plagued by high gas fees, making it inaccessible for retail traders looking to turn a quick profit by flipping ETH-based NFTs. Several projects solve this problem by offering yield farming incentives on NFTs or enabling fractionalized NFT ownership.
A collective of DeFi influencers, PleasrDAO, popularized the concept of fractional ownership of NFTs. PleasrDAO split the DOGE meme into 17 billion pieces of ERC-20 tokens (DOGE tokens), and an initial 20% of the supply was auctioned.
Projects like Shoefy that add a utility layer on top of NFTs make them ideal for earning passive income through the DeFi toolset of staking, farming and income generation through liquidity pools.
Polygon Studios, the gaming and development arm of Polygon, has partnered with Unicly (UNIC), a protocol that combines, fractionalizes and facilitates NFT trading. The Unicly partnership is focused on helping traders create a revenue stream with their digital art and collectibles.
Currently, Ethereum-based NFT collections offer nearly 50%-250% APR through yield farming rewards. Through Unicly, NFT projects built on Polygon will also be eligible for whitelisting and will receive incentives through UNIC rewards.
The Polygon blockchain powers Unicly’s platform. Iit provides solutions to Ethereum’s gas fee problem and further pushes NFTs on the path of decentralization. This is likely to boost the utility of the network, driving on-chain activity higher.
Analysts at Crypto Maximalist, a YouTube channel that shares cryptocurrency price prediction and analysis, believe that after three recent fakeouts, MATIC is underperforming. The altcoin is likely to roll over like other cryptocurrencies with large market capitalizations such as Polkadot, Chainlink, VeChain and Cardano.
The analyst states that
Once Bitcoin starts to level off, money is going to start to rotate back into altcoins, and Polygon is really gearing up for a big move considering how much it has just been consolidating.