There’s more to Web 3.0 than crypto. Like any of the best paradigm shifts / en masse awakenings in our cultural history, the Age of Aquarius brings with it absurdity, curiosities, and apocalyptic technology in equal measures. So we aim to bring you more than just the news you couldn’t be bothered to seek out yourself. We give a spooky, disembodied voice to the viral scams, moral panics, hot girl metaverses, and everything else important on the Internet.
Chad & El Prof
(Price changes reflect past 7 days as of *|DATE|* @ 4:20 PM EST.)
The second coming of the anti-Chad
Women today make up less than a quarter of the crypto space and account for a mere 16% of the NFT market. web3 baddies is on a mission to change that. Open only to female, nonbinary, or femme creators, the DAO consists solely of anti-Chads. Being one myself, you’d think would turn me off to the whole thing. But my self loathing tendencies win out per usual. The ‘hot girl metaverse’ is where it’s at.
The web3 baddies are part of a wider push toward gender diversity in crypto:
- Women in Blockchain Talks is a female-focused space to demystify the blockchain sphere and encourage diversity within it.
- Women Rise is a forthcoming campaign to bring 100,000 women to crypto adoption by 2022.
- Boss Beauties, an NFT collection with a similar goal, was displayed at the New York Stock Exchange last month.
Cryptocurrency is significantly equitable and diverse compared to, like, the actual economy. But both have their problems. Although almost half of crypto users are people of color, only 4% are black women. And, of the Top 10 NFT Artists in terms of sales, only one is a woman. (One who spent three sorry years of her life fucking Elon Musk to boot.) Still, much like it holds the potential to distribute wealth equally among races, crypto presents the possibility of ending the wage gap, too.
So, if you bear closer resemblance to the picture on the left, not the right:
- Join the interest list for web3 baddies.
- Stay woke.
- Get a dope bucket hat.
- Your sense of style is not atrocious. Congrats.
Another Tuesday, another disappointment, with the top collection on OpenSea not even striving for coherency. Well, as it turns out, that’s kind of the whole point. El Prof proceeds to put in the work where Artvatars failed, breaking down the artistic and moral failings of these pieces in great detail. Thank him by reading the full piece.
Satanic Panic 2.0: TikTok Witch Edition.
This weekend, there was a genuine tragedy in the music world. 8 people — 2 minors, all below the age of 30 — died in a crowd crush at Travis Scott’s Astroworld festival. Not quite as existentially depressing, but still up there, is the response to the event.
I’m obviously not talking about the inevitable outpouring of support for the victims or the gem of a human being that is Roddy Ricch, nor even, on the opposite end of the spectrum, the garbled PR nonsense Scott and the Kardashians spit out in defense of their consistent negligence. Since my focus here is not on the moral failings of man, but on how it manifests on the Internet, I’m talking about something much weirder.
Multiple groups have co-opted the tragedy as a talking point in their own arguments. Fox News affiliates have turned it into an opioid crisis thing, hyper focusing on a few incidental rumors of ‘spiking’ at the concert. (Slang for stabbing people with drug needles, which, as an Occam’s Razor enthusiast, I’m pretty sure didn’t happen to each one of the hundreds injured in a literal stampede.) Even more disheartening is the response from the fringe.
Several high profile conspiracy theorists — sadly very much a thing in 2021 — have decided that this mass casualty event is irrefutable evidence of Travis Scott’s devil worship. Yes, the Satanic Panic of the ’80s is back, only this time perpetuated by ‘baby witch TikTok teens shilling their paid astrology readings after each polemic’.
Irrefutable evidence, presented on Twitter by reputable sources such as ‘Daniel The Reformer‘, apparently demonstrates Satan’s use of false idols to corrupt our children. This argument is historically rooted in racist objections to music popularized by black musicians — in the 1950s, rock and roll was attacked by Southern Christians as both ‘devil music’ and ‘congo rhythms’ or ‘savagery.’ Its renewed use to criticize a hip hop artist is unfortunate but unsurprising. As for the parallels pictured above, almost every religion and belief system contains the concept of ‘cyclic existence‘ — patterns playing out in human culture, behavior, and iconography, either because of cosmic karma or because we have 99.9% similar genetic content and don’t live in a vacuum.
So, no, I don’t disagree with @SoooHeavenly that, consciously or sub, ‘everything is a ritual’. In the grand scheme, we’re only a few thousand years removed from Incan capacocha and Celtic wicker men. And, as a friend of mine put it, casualties from an hysteric rush to get closer to a leader with little regard for human life does resemble ‘textbook tribal sacrifice.’
But following it up with a link to book a consultation feels opportunistic at best, and indicative of the way in which Internet personalities — incentivized by a.) selling a brand and b.) having an opinion on everything — are as corrupt and false as idols come. We don’t need to look to supernatural forces to understand this tragedy. In a culture that prioritizes excess and ego above all else, it was and remains an inevitability. If you, like me, consider Satan a metaphor for our inherent selfishness, then yes, Astroworld was as devilish as they come. As is the Internet. As are we.
SQUID HODLers be like
A Squid–Game-inspired cryptocurrency, covered uncritically by mainstream news outlets such as the BBC, turned out to be a pump-and-dump in which the scammers made off with over $2m. My takeaway here is less that crypto scams abound — been known by now — and more that the media is so desperate for constant coverage that reckless, under-researched reports circulate widely, often with destructive results.
So, when we take the time to dig deep and expose a scam, you should listen. Which is exactly what El Prof has done with the ‘feed America’ videos that went viral this week. He uncovered a shady nonprofit spreading the message of food insecurity with ties to Germany and China. Run-of-the-mill NGO scam or Russian front designed to delegitimize our national myth and destabilize a global hegemon? You decide.
- Prime yourself on the Museum of Forgeries ‘anti-NFT project’
- The guy who got famous for writing about / being a ‘pick up artist’ will write a Bored Ape’s debut novel, because duh
- Here’s a better explanation of moral panic journalism than I could ever give
- This blue ball of an article from inside NFT.NYC makes the whole thing sound even sadder