👎 Monetise!

Zuckerberg’s metaverse will suffer from 47.5% transaction fees | Elon Musk attempts to buy Twitter | Wikipedia bans crypto donations

👎 Monetise!

This week was definitely something I could have done without 👎. But WHY??

  • Monetising the metaverse: yep, you guessed it... it’s going to be worse than how we monetise the non-metaverse
  • Wikipedia no longer accepts cryptocurrency; nothing has materially changed here, but according to the crypto community, this is unacceptable
  • Elon Musk’s main character syndrome spirals out of control and threatens the fabric of the internet

🦹🏻‍♂️ Turns out he’s NOT joining the board...

...gosh, I wonder, why that might be? Perhaps the answer can be found in these screenshots?

Yes, a few days ago Elon Musk ‘randomly’ decided to give up his seat on Twitter’s board. Let’s speculate as to why:

  • He’s a soggy entitled asshole
  • He wants to continue to write unhinged tweets that are directly about twitter more than he wants to exert his power by sitting on a board
  • If Elon Musk was on a board of directors (literally any board) he might have to start pulling his weight, doing some work, and fulfilling obligations etc — not his style.

🤪 Or maybe it’s because: literally today (Thursday) he put an offer in to buy the entire company. In fact, if the board do not accept this offer, he’s going to ‘reconsider’ his current 9.1% stake in the company.

Ahhh, the free market at work. If Elon Musk wants to buy Twitter in order to let it ‘thrive as a private company’ then I say LET HIM. Any attempts to hinder this man’s genius should be considered attacks on free speech. This announcement has only made Twitter’s stock go UP so it can only be good. Elon works in mysterious ways — it’s best just to let him get on with it and wait for our lives to improve exponentially as a result of his decision-making.

🌌 Try to imagine: a metaverse that is not monetised

Hello, I know I complained about web3 already last week but here we go again. This is who I am. Deal with it (please don’t unsubscribe I love you).

This week, a rather watery article coursed its way through my RSS feed. It’s about how Meta will monetise the metaverse: by taking a 47.5% cut of every transaction made.

Now obviously this is unacceptable, and it once again demonstrates that large platforms only seem to care about monetisation if it’s exploitative in some way: it’s a model that relies on users to generate content (like skins or items or whatever the metaverse will ‘need’), and then do even more work to sell the content themselves, while the platform does nothing but take nearly half of their revenue.

☝️ BUT! Challenging this shitty business model will be very very hard if we continue to imagine (and construct) narrow, uninspired applications for a metaverse. The article I linked above describes metaverses in this way:

“The question is whether the next wave of metaverses, shepherded by the world's biggest social media company, should be closed or open. A closed metaverse is one run by a central authority, where lands and items are owned by the company that built the world. An open metaverse allows people to buy and own metaverse land and items as NFTs, and exchange them for cryptocurrency.”

No no, Daniel Van Boom of CNET — that is not at all the question. Firstly, there are many questions (one of them is ‘why do we need a metaverse?’). Secondly, this logic of ‘closed or open’ is tiresome and rudimentary: it can only be one of these two things, and in both cases it’s all to do with who own the land and what kind of financial products are available to us. Here’s a question that hardly anyone seems to be asking: if a metaverse is just a cool online place to hang out (like gather.town or Second Life or literally any MMORPG), then why can’t it just be that? Why must we add speculative assets to the mix?

I have a feeling it’s because the capitalists have run out of things to exploit in the real world, so now they need a brand new fake world in which they can crowbar even more scarcity into. God they’re so unimaginative. Here’s a cool list of things you could do instead of building a metaverse:

  • Never expressing an opinion about anything ever again
  • Start a Youtube channel about drop-shipping
  • Idk, uh... having sex? Going outdoors? Cuddling a pet? Literally anything

🚫 And finally, why crypto bros don’t like to be excluded

I’ll keep this short and sweet but basically, Wikimedia will no longer accept cryptocurrency donations following a vote from their community. The reasons span from ‘no one was using this donation mechanism anyway’ to ‘it’s bad for the environment’. So yes, very valid reasons.

Of course the crypto community hates this, even though Wikipedia has nothing to do with them and they (as Wikimedia pointed out themselves) hardly donated anything at all. So why do they care? Oh yes because all of crypto is a pyramid scheme and therefore it relies heavily on the continued participation of as many unwitting individuals as possible so that those who stand to benefit will keep getting richer and more notorious.

As we’ve just seen, the NFT of Jack Dorsey’s first ever tweet received a top bid of $280 at auction — the original buyer spent $2.8m thinking he could get a whopping $48m on it when he sold. He was wrong. Because for a sale like that, you need as many people who cared about NFTs in 2021 to still care about them now — they don’t. The game will be over if no one chooses to play.

I hope this week’s Horrific/Terrific has found you at the start of what is going to be an amazing long weekend where you, an adult, win the Easter egg hunts and make children cry.

💌 Thanks for reading. If you’re desperate for more, consider paying me to unlock the gates to the members section, and watch it swell with exclusive and entertaining new content. Hit reply if you have any questions.