Digestible news about the latest developments across the fields of NFT, blockchain and metaverse in China, delivered to you every Thursday.
This week: Xiaohongshu launches digital art platform R-SPACE, Tencent gifts employees special NFTs, NDRC to consider punitive electricity prices for crypto mines, and more.
Xiaohongshu Launches Digital Art Platform R-SPACE
The Chinese social media and e-commerce giant launched its own NFT platform following Tencent’s Magic Nucleus and Alibaba’s AntChain FanPoints.
- Unlike Tencent and Alibaba’s NFT platforms, R-SPACE is not a standalone application but is embedded within the Xiaohongshu ecosystem.
- Xiaohongshu is a popular social networking and e-commerce app with over 300 million registered users, 70% of whom are millennials and Gen Z, and 80% are females.
- Xiaohongshu is known for its user-generated multimedia content on topics related to lifestyle, fashion, travel, beauty, etc., and has been described by SCMP as “China’s answer to Instagram.”
- The platform steers away from issuing tokens and allows users to directly purchase digital art using WeChat or Alipay.
- Although crypto trading is banned in China, R-SPACE nonetheless seeks to make NFT creation and collection social by allowing creators and collectors to showcase digital works of art on their respective homepages. (Blockbeats)
Tencent Gifts Employees 23rd Anniversary NFTs
The 72,000 special NFTs, known officially as “digital collectibles,” were designed and issued by Magic Nucleus, Tencent’s NFT trading platform developer. Zhixin Chain, Tencent’s blockchain-based solutions provider, maintains the digital ledger.
- The series of NFTs were inspired by Tencent’s iconic QQ Penguin. Each penguin NFT is unique and made up of six customizable, randomly-combined parts.
- The digital collectables were issued to those who have joined the company as of November 3, 2021, including full-time employees, graduates and interns.
- The move generated much publicity for Tencent, as employees rushed to social media to showcase the collectibles, with many claiming that these were the first NFTs they owned.
- The special NFTs can be transferred from one blockchain address to another but are inaccessible to non-Tencent employees. (Jiemian News)
China’s NDRC to Consider Punitive Electricity Prices for Crypto Mines
China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) announced that in the next phase of its crypto mining crackdown, it will consider “punitive electricity prices” for some of the country’s crypto mines.
- The country’s top economic planning body might implement this measure for companies that mine crypto but only pay residential electricity prices, according to NDRC’s Meng Wei.
- The NDRC will focus on industrial scale mines and state-owned entities that mine crypto, and is calling on local governments to take care of mining within their jurisdictions. (Coindesk)
Sotheby’s to Announce Live Bidding Increments in Ether (ETH) for Banksy’s Trolley Hunters and Love Is in the Air
The artist’s works will make their auction debuts on November 18 as part of ‘The Now Evening Auction,’ which will be livestreamed across Sotheby’s social media channels, including Discord.
- The move marks the first time that a cryptocurrency will be used as the standard currency for bidding on physical artworks in real-time during a live auction.
- Ether is the world’s second largest cryptocurrency by market value, and a preferred cryptocurrency for the digital art and NFT community, because the Ethereum blockchain is the primary network where NFTs are minted, and transactions are registered.
- While bidding increments (the minimum amount an auction bid must be raised during bidding) for both works will be announced in Ether, the winning bidders can choose to pay the hammer price (the winning bid for a lot at auction, the price upon which the auctioneer’s hammer falls) for each work in fiat currency or in the three cryptocurrencies accepted by Sotheby’s: Ether (ETH), Bitcoin (BTC) and USD Coin (USDC). (Sotheby’s)
Google Searches for NFTs Spike to Record Highs
Google’s keyword search data shows that interest in NFTs has surged to record levels, with traffic beating out search terms pertinent to many crypto assets ranked among the top ten, including “Dogecoin,” “blockchain” and even “Ethereum.”
- According to Google Trends, the site’s tool for analyzing the popularity of search queries across regions and languages, interest in NFTs saw a dramatic spike at the start of the year as Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shot and vintage Ethereum-based NFTs saw frenzied speculation.
- While the bubble initially appeared short-lived, interest began to bounce back in July, before breaking into new highs at the end of October.
- Google Trends data also suggests that NFT search traffic is currently dominated by Asian countries, with China, Singapore and the Philippines topping the keyword’s search rankings.
- China’s search volume for ‘NFT’ peaked between September 5 and 11 this year, following the launch of Tencent and Alibaba’s NFT trading platforms. Government crackdown on crypto in mid-September likely spurred the retracement in search volume since. (Cointelegraph)
Jimmy Fallon Reveals He Owns Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT
Fallon announced on The Tonight Show during an interview with popular NFT artist Beeple that he had just bought his first NFT.
- A screenshot on Twitter indicates that the popular talk show host is the proud owner of Bored Ape #599, one of over 10,000 in existence.
- The Bored Ape Yacht Club was founded by Yuga Labs in April 2021 and consists of unique cartoon ape drawings minted on the Ethereum blockchain. It is one of the most successful NFT projects to date, having already amassed over $1 billion in trading since its inception just seven months ago. (CoinMarketCap)
In today’s (x) of the day section, I’ll be sharing snippets from Naval Ravikant’s “How to get rich (without getting lucky)” tweetstorm. They are more prescient and insightful than the title suggests, I promise. Here are some of my favorites:
“Specific knowledge is found by pursuing your genuine curiosity and passion rather than whatever is hot right now.”
“Judgement requires experience, but can be built faster by learning foundational skills.”
“If you can’t code, write books and blogs, record videos and podcasts.”
American investor and entrepreneur
The one about writing books and starting podcasts (as a means to honing specific skills, pursuing genuine interests, and accumulating social capital) really resonates with me. Since I can’t code (yet), and a book or podcast project seems too ambitious at this point, I am putting my heart into this newsletter, hoping to gain knowledge about a topic that I have a tremendous amount of interest in, and to connect with a group of smart readers who share my curiosity in the topic.
I welcome any feedback on how to improve this newsletter. You can reach me by email at [email protected].