CoinMarketCap and Nansen looks at the most exciting events in the NFT space — from Elon Musk's swipe at Bored Ape NFTs holders, to DeGods buying a stake in Ice Cube's BIG3 basketball league.
Here’s a rundown of some top NFT news over the past week.
NFT Market Not Collapsing But Consolidating
First, a look at the overall NFT market.
Elon Musk Trolls NFTs, Calls It ‘Kinda Fungible’
“As much [as] I admire your work I’d like you to remove your PFP that I created for our Sotheby’s sale. Or you credit me,” Bouhanna tweeted. “Happy to send you the original file minted with the buyer approval.”
Musk has a long history of trolling people and sharing memes on Twitter. Notably, his support for meme coin Dogecoin sent the price of the cryptocurrency flying. His latest attempt to poke fun didn’t go unnoticed as many prominent members of the community reacted to the fact that Musk may have just grabbed a Bored Ape promotional image.
Regardless of Musk’s intention to troll the BAYC community, his little show had a positive effect on BAYC’s native ApeCoin token. The price of ApeCoin spiked by 20% in the hour following Musk’s new profile picture.
Kraken Opens Waitlist For Its NFT Marketplace, Promises Zero Gas Fees
Months after CEO Jesse Powell teased about an upcoming NFT platform, cryptocurrency exchange Kraken has opened the waitlist for its NFT marketplace, Kraken NFT.
VanEck Debuts Its First NFT Collection, Issues 1,000 Digital Collectibles
Holders will join the avatar called “Hammy” in an adventure through the past, present, and future of financial policies. Commenting on the initiative, VanEck’s Community NFT Co-Founder JP Lee said:
“Our NFTs will all feature eye-popping 3D avatars and narrative-style videos that will help create a real sense of story and spur discussion, debate and community. Our character ‘Hammy’ is going to be an outstanding guide for anyone interested in seeing the past, present and future of finance unfold.”
The company hopes to demonstrate real-world utilities for digital assets through the VanEck Community NFT. Notably, the NFT will grant its holder some unique perks, including exclusive invitations to in-person and digital events, as well as early access to the firm’s digital asset research.
“We’ve designed the VanEck Community NFT to function like a digital membership card,” said Matthew Bartlett, a project co-founder. Holders will have access to “the insights of an inclusive community of digital assets enthusiasts and investors.”
The collection has been divided into three categories - 750 “common,” 230 “rare” and 20 “legendary" NFTs, with rarer items offering more exclusive perks.
As per announcements, individuals who sign up for the project will be airdropped a pre-reveal NFT in the first week of May. The NFT will include “a meme that is tied to the storyline of our Hammy character, a fictitious representation of Alexander Hamilton.” However, holders would receive a final and more detailed version towards the end of May.
Meanwhile, VanEck has warned against trying to receive the collectibles with the intention of selling them. The company’s NFT site emphatically says the collectibles “have no value and are not intended by VanEck to ever have any value. ... You must not attempt to obtain an NFT from VanEck if you plan to sell or transfer it.”
NFT Minting Bots Knock Out Solana Network For the 7th Time This Year
Your guess is as good as mine.
The Solana network was down for about seven hours, starting on Saturday night. At about 8 pm UTC, the network was bombarded with a record-breaking four million transactions or 100 gigabits of data per second. Recall that the Solana network can theoretically process around 50,000 transactions per second.
“Validator operators successfully completed a cluster restart of Mainnet Beta at 3:00 AM UTC, following a roughly 7-hour outage after the network failed to reach consensus.”
“Today Solana mainnet-beta went down partially due to botting on the Metaplex Candy Machine program. To combat this, we have merged and will soon deploy a botting penalty to the program as part of a broader effort to stabilize the network.”
To forestall future occurrences and possibly discourage botting, Metaplex revealed that it would implement a 0.01 fee on wallets that attempt to complete an invalid transaction. While this move will likely affect regular users with failed transactions, the company argues that such transactions are “typically done by bots that are blindly trying to mint.”
The network downtime didn’t come without consequences as the price of Solana’s native SOL token fell by nearly 7% to $84. As of press time, SOL was trading at $87.
DeGods NFT Project Buys Stake in BIG3 League
DeGods is set to acquire a majority stake in BIG3. The Solana-based NFT project will be purchasing all of the top-tier NFT ownership stakes in Killer 3s, one of the teams on Ice Cube’s 3-on-3 professional basketball league.
As per earlier announcements, each of the 12 teams will have 1,000 NFTs split into two categories - 25 "Fire" NFTs priced at $25,000 apiece, and 975 "Gold" NFTs going for $5,000 each.
Over the past week, the top Solana NFT project announced that it was going to buy all 25 of the Fire-tier NFT ownership stakes in Killer 3s. As an added perk, DeGods NFT holders will have up to 500 “whitelist” spots to mint Killer 3s’ Gold-tier NFTs.
As for the benefits of holding the Fire NFTs, owners will be able to exercise more influence and control over the team. Notable, Fire NFT holders can vote on who will be the team CEO, president, and VP, in addition to using the IP rights to create team merchandise upon approval from the league. With DeGods holding all Fire-tier NFTs in Killer 3s, it will effectively have full control over the team.
Following the collaboration, Killer 3s will incorporate a DeGods patch on their game jerseys. DeGods branding will also be displayed on the scoreboard and within broadcasts.
“This is probably the most fascinating experiment in the entire NFT space right now,” said DeGods founder Frank in a release. “It’s cool because owning and operating a basketball team is a dream for millions of people. Now, we get to make that dream true for our holders.”
Meanwhile, in a video message posted to BIG3’s Discord server following the purchase, Ice Cube shed some light on the idea of letting NFT communities control stakes in teams. However, the league is not expected to follow the same approach for every other team as the wider public will also have a chance to purchase some NFTs.
“We thought about this: should one community own a team like that? And the answer is yes, especially if it’s the right community,” he said. “The league needs these communities, and these communities want to come in and grow the league.”
Later this month, BIG3 will hold fractionalized NFT sales for team ownership stakes, ahead of the league’s fifth season in mid-June.