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Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable?

‘Social Token’ is the new buzzword. Many celebrities, musicians, and content creators are being onboarded, and tokens are being launched in their names. What value do these tokens hold? Are they here to stay? Do they truly serve the fans? Do they at least serve the content creator? With these questions in mind, I dove […]

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‘Social Token’ is the new buzzword. Many celebrities, musicians, and content creators are being onboarded, and tokens are being launched in their names. What value do these tokens hold? Are they here to stay? Do they truly serve the fans? Do they at least serve the content creator? With these questions in mind, I dove in to find out more.

I found a platform called Fyooz that markets itself as “social money for creators.” I found their platform to be well-organized and used by some popular artists. 

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 4

Lil Yachty’s token sale launch on Fyooz was hyped and sold out in twenty-one minutes and forty-one seconds. However, when we talk about Lil Yachty’s token being sold out, we need to look at the total investment size. The total investment in Lil Yachty’s token was about $305k, which is possibly the largest on this platform.

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 5

The total investment size of other artists’ tokens is significantly smaller. A $283 market cap with 37 tokens in circulation is too small to benefit anyone. An artist cannot support a token in their ecosystem if it was sold and held this little. Also, they will not be committed to keeping token holders entertained. 

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 6
Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 7

What is the purpose of such minimally held social tokens? Is it a fun experiment, or is it supported by a functional ecosystem? 

I decided to look at another platform – Roll

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 8

On Roll, I found quite a few social tokens (even tokens with larger market caps). 

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 9

But when I tried to see the list of all markets, I ended up here:

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 10

Roll has integrated ezDeFi for trading/swapping tokens. However, some parts of the platform just did not work. Another issue is that most of these tokens belong, not to artists, but to other platforms that facilitate artists. I found very few actual artist-based tokens on Roll, and most of the tokens had neither description nor details. When I looked these tokens up on Roll and Google, I still could not find any details. Should I invest in a token with no details? I better not. 

Social Tokens: Are They Truly Valuable? 11

This token, for example, lists its supply and other specifics. But what is this token about? What is the token’s website? Is there a whitepaper? What are the benefits provided by this token? As a potential investor, I am lost. This is the same case for 95% of tokens on Roll, while the remaining 5% provided only 3-4 lines of description: still an insufficient amount.

Roll may be a platform that can help facilitate the creation of a token. However, as it lacks the essential infrastructure to bring the tokens to life, it’s nothing more than that. It’s like an “ERC-20 token generator” that can create a blank token. There is much more to creating a sustainable ecosystem than just creating a token.

So let’s move on to our next platform: Rally.

Rally is better than the two platforms we discussed above. 

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Every coin in Rally has a description, a log of activities, and the gist of all details one would require. It’s clear, simple, and to the point. Rally also has a detailed FAQ and Wiki that are both very helpful. Rally allows content creators to create their tokens and use them as they see fit. As their wiki says, “With this tool, it’s ultimately up to the Creator to use Creator Coin responsibly and respectfully with their communities.”

While Rally is a great platform for content creators to create and launch their tokens, it does not solve the inherent problems with social tokens. It does not prevent the creator from abandoning his/her token nor create an ecosystem that ensures a commitment between the content creator, the fan, and the platform. The value and utility of the token are left to the content creator. These two issues will lead to many dead and/or inactive social tokens. Nevertheless, the Rally platform does a good job of facilitating a token creation segment with a $RLY backing mechanism. Funds spent on the token turn into $RLY. $RLY backs the social token and creates its value dynamically. The technology is great and the ecosystem is open. A good start, but the onus lies with the content creator.  

In 2020, due to restrictions on normal life, social tokens provided an alternative or additive way for creators, artists, and brands to connect with their fan communities. Once the foundational concept evolved, artists like Akon, Ja Rule, and Lil Yachty all announced their social tokens. The NBA’s Spencer Dinwiddie and Japanese superstar soccer player Keisuke Honda also launched tokens. 

With this much social token activity, why are the prices of social tokens not skyrocketing? Why are the market cap and tokens in circulation too tiny for it to be practical? The answer is this: for social tokens to boom, better frameworks will need to evolve. Decentralized autonomous organizations may assist with this. The structure must be on multiple levels, as platforms must bind, but also add value. Artists need infrastructure to help them flourish. At the same time, artists need to be committed to their audience. Sticking to the commitment is important for sustaining the social token—for the artists, fans, and the platform. 

Where are we now in this ideal set-up? Far from where we wish to be.

Virtual engagements and livestreaming are nothing new. Many artists experimented with platforms like Patreon or tried to double down on monetizing their social media platforms like YouTube and Twitch. Performers now have the opportunity to monetize their popularity through social tokens that made the leap from crypto circles to consumer audiences. 

Fans and performers alike discovered inherent biases behind various platforms’ decisions to censor content. Big social platforms rake in huge profits and often give creators the raw end of the deal. In addition, creators can be de-platformed through unilateral decisions made by the platform.

Actual valuable creations are being made by influencers using social tokens to help their existing community-building efforts. Some have deployed personal tokens on apps like Discord to enable token-permissioned chats and channels. By integrating tokens into their existing communities rather than duping their fans into investing in third-party token projects, these creators are adding value to their brands and proving the usability of cryptonomics. 

Creators are excited by the idea of using their token to build their economies and interact with fans on their terms. Blockchain takes the decision-making process out of the hands of large platforms and puts it in the hands of creators, their fans, and community members. It’s up to the creators and their communities to decide how the creator’s social token will be used and valued. 

This seems like a fine idea, but there are a few hitches. For one, artists or performers are mostly non-technical. I expect celebrities like Logic and Maisie Williams to create their own currencies, shifting the narrative from ‘which creators are launching tokens?’ to ‘what they are doing with their tokens?’. Grading social tokens on their usability and utility is the key.

I’ve noted that almost a good portion of the social tokens are based on experiences. If those experiences are integrated into the social token platform, it will make for a very sustainable and committed ecosystem. Yes, Rally allows artists from Twitch, YouTube, Twitter, etc. to create tokens, but unless a bridge is created between the social token platform and content creation from the artists, the token is not viable in the long run. 

With this in mind, I ran into ZapTheory–The Social Money Platform–which helps create social tokens like every other platform. But what really differentiates them from every other platform listed above is that ZapTheory has an ecosystem that includes a separate yet related company, ZapLife–The Ultimate Livestreaming Platform. What makes this relationship even more exciting is that both ZapTheory and ZapLife are represented by a social token called ZapCoin. I was amazed at the setup where the fans actually sustain the whole infrastructure through their direct participation with the content creator on both of those platforms. In fact, the fans turn into content creators themselves as they engage in a dynamic way with celebrities and influencers. 

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The token holders of ZapCoin have the opportunity to vote and influence the future direction of both platforms, such as what features to build out and even how to structure the revenue model.  The artists are committed to creating exclusive content, events, and engagement for their participants. On ZapLife, there are virtual gifts via in-app purchases, and the ability to cash in on them creates an earning potential for both the artists and the participants. Unlike Instagram Live, Facebook Live, and other social media platforms,  participants can ‘go live’ and ‘be’ in the event rather than just passively viewing and commenting. This can sustain the value of the social token for token holders, and encourage the artist to regularly create content.

To recap, ZapCoin has two platforms: 

  • ZapTheory – helps artists launch their social tokens, and investors can invest in the growth of the artists via incubators referred to as “wombs”.
  • ZapLife – people can participate and feel they are part of the action by viewing and co-creating music, content, and dance.
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Jim Jones is currently one of the prominent artists on this platform. Unlike other platforms explored above, the social token page has all the information a fan or an investor needs to decide.

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The best part? It allows US investors to join the opportunity as tokens created on this platform pass the Howey test and are designed and engineered to be in compliance with SEC regulations. Every token buyer needs to engage on the platform with prescribed actions to unlock the tokens and ensure effective community engagement. 

Both the artist and their fans participate in the activities like a live party. Fans can log in to the ZapLife app to participate in a live performance of the artist, and even send or receive virtual gifts. 

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While some of these features are not currently live, it’s expected to be released in the coming months. Overall, it paints a promising future for social tokens, if they can keep up to their commitment to developing the platform.

This arrangement allows for three levels of interaction for the performer and the fan base.

  • Structure
  • Process
  • Community

These levels help to sustain the system, which allows consistency in giving what the fans want. Thus, artists have a revenue model and fans ensure that the artists are committed to their craft. 

After reviewing various players in the social token sphere, I realized that creators, artists, brands, and their fans need to focus on the long-term value-creation and partner with platforms that aim to build richer solutions for community management and monetization. I picture a great year for social tokens where influencers will tap crypto to engage their fan bases with a live streaming party, in addition to token-permissioned chat, voice, and video functionality.

As more developers get in on the action, DeFi enthusiasts will develop the financial infrastructure needed by celebrities to bring their fan bases into crypto. Social tokens will go down in history as a bright spot of 2021, and may perhaps serve as the catalyst for mass adoption.

What are your experiences and expectations with social tokens? How do you see it evolving over time? What other platforms do you think should be part of this review? How was your experience with some of these platforms? What’s your favorite social token? Send me a shout-out on Twitter with your views: @KarnikaYashwant.

Blockchain

Amid Rumors Of Dumping Its BTC Holdings, Elon Musk Maintains Tesla Hasn’t Sold Any Bitcoin

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Amid Rumors Of Dumping Its BTC Holdings, Elon Musk Maintains Tesla Hasn't Sold Any Bitcoin

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Elon Musk has been dragged under the bus by countless bitcoin proponents as the price of the flagship currency continues to take a downward movement. Bitcoin dropped 20%, sending prices to $45,000 as of yesterday.

As of publication, Bitcoin imitates analysts’ predictions that the asset could continue to dip for the most part of this week, and with Bitcoin now trading at $45,065 at press time, their analysis remains valid.

BTCUSD
BTCUSD Chart By TradingView

The Bitcoin selloff continues

Asides from the “bearish” tweets from Musk, which to many is simply just the Billionaire’s expression of his dissatisfaction with Bitcoin, Bitcoin could sustain more losses if Tesla sold its remaining Bitcoin holdings.

Following Tesla’s announcement, onlookers spotted a Bitcoin transfer of 19,259, worth over $872 million at press time. Analyst William Clemente observed that the transfer time coincided with Musk’s tweet, hinting that Tesla may have indeed called it a day for Bitcoin.

Musk reveals Tesla’s $1.5 billion holdings still intact, prices soar

However, Musk has recently cleared the air on whether the Bitcoin holdings are still under Tesla’s belt. In what could be considered the most recent positive tweet from Musk on Bitcoin, he wrote “To clarify speculation, Tesla has not sold any Bitcoin.”

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Some excited Bitcoiners are holding on to the news as a sign that Tesla has not lost all interest in Bitcoin, despite Musk’s tweets that Dogecoin is a superior asset to Bitcoin. On the other hand, skeptical Bitcoiners are convinced that in a matter of time, Tesla will pull through with its Bitcoin sale.

Recall that Elon Musk teased that this could be the case, given that Bitcoin proponents have continued to critique Tesla’s decision. Shortly after hinting that Tesla might give up its $1.5 billion Bitcoin holdings.

However, Bitcoin has since surged by 7% since Musk’s clarification on Tesla’s Bitcoin holdings.

Bitcoin doesn’t need Elon Musk

Meanwhile, analysts’ who heavily bought the dip have insisted that Bitcoiners pay no mind to the bear market.

In unison, key players agree that “Bitcoin doesn’t need Musk. Rather, Musk needs Bitcoin.” It is unclear where the market is headed going forward, but the sentiments from top Bitcoin proponents similarly claim that the bear trend is only temporary, as Bitcoin is still yet to bottom.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://zycrypto.com/amid-rumors-of-dumping-its-btc-holdings-elon-musk-maintains-tesla-hasnt-sold-any-bitcoin/

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Blockchain

Live Dealer BTC Casino Games – What Can I Play?

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Discover if you can play live dealer casino games at leading crypto casinos using Bitcoin and other options with our guide.

In many ways, Bitcoin casinos can offer virtually the same experience as a conventional online casino. This is terrific news if you are thinking of making the jump but are concerned about missing out on games, promotions, and other services. Where do live dealer games fall, though? As only a handful of software providers have committed to introducing cryptocurrencies into the accepted range of currencies for their games, are cryptocurrency casino players set to miss out on playing the hottest live dealer games around? We have had a look, and we have got an answer.

Can You Play Live Dealer Games with Cryptocurrencies?

In a word – yes. Admittedly, not every casino software provider has taken to cryptocurrencies. Many Evolution Gaming live dealer games can be played at cryptocurrency casinos, but you may not be able to “wager” using BTC on some of them. Instead, your Bitcoin deposits will be converted into US dollars for gameplay. It is the same story for many of the smaller live casino software providers out there, too. However, you can certainly expect to play live dealer games at cryptocurrency casinos, even if you cannot wager with them. There are, of course, one or two providers who go one step further and do permit BTC wagers.

Which Software Providers Allow This?

Ezugi is the leading casino software provider to approve Bitcoin as one of their games’ accepted currencies. Ezugi has made sure that you can deposit, wager, and withdraw using BTC on many of their most popular titles. Naturally, you do not have to do this if you choose to play at a cryptocurrency casino that accepts FIAT currencies, as you will be able to wager using FIAT options, too.

What Types of Games Can I Play?

There are several types of gambling and casino games that you can choose to play. If you merely want to play live dealer games at cryptocurrency casinos, you will have an ample array of all the most popular games, ranging from baccarat to blackjack, roulette, table poker and money-wheel and game show titles. Alternatively, if you pop over to Ezugi’s collection, you can also find dice games, lottery-style titles and even keno games, and these can be played using Bitcoin.

Top Casinos Offering Live Dealer Crypto Games

To make the most out of playing live dealer cryptocurrency casino games, you need to find a top site offering them. However, we would advocate that you choose a casino that also accepts FIAT currencies alongside Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency options. Sites such as BitcoinCasino.io fit the bill rather nicely. The main reason for choosing to do this is that you will have access to a full array of games from many live dealer providers. This way, even if you cannot play live casino games using BTC, you can still use FIAT currency options to enjoy an ultra-realistic, live-streamed casino gambling experience.

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://www.livebitcoinnews.com/live-dealer-btc-casino-games-what-can-i-play/

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Blockchain

Galaxy Digital report details Bitcoin consumes less energy than banking and gold.

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Galaxy Digital has released a report on Bitcoin energy consumption, detailing how it consumes less than traditional financial industries and the value it can bring. The analysis uses several calculations to ascertain how much energy the Bitcoin network uses and how it stacks up against the banking and gold industries. The authors also noted that the energy usage criticisms are not usually applied to traditional industries. 

Bitcoin’s annual energy consumption is estimated to be 113.89 TWh/yr.

Galaxy Digital report lauds Bitcoin for being transparent, while incumbent companies are opaque and don’t often disclose their energy footprint. The authors accept that the Bitcoin network consumes a great deal of energy but assert that this is exactly what secures the network and makes it so robust. According to Galaxy Digital’s calculation, the annual electricity consumption of Bitcoin is estimated to be 113.89 TWh/yr. For some perspective, the energy consumption of always-on devices in the US is 1,375 TWh/yr — 12.1 times that of Bitcoin’s consumption. 

The total energy consumption of the gold industry is estimated to be 240.61 TWh/yr.

For the gold industry, the analysts took a look at all of the processes involved, including those directly emitting greenhouse gasses, those indirectly emitting them, and emissions stemming from refinement and recycling. Multiplying the total 100,408,508 tCo2 in emissions with the global IEA carbon intensity multiplier estimates the total energy consumption of the gold industry to be 240.61 TWh/yr. The analysts also noted that the consumption of the gold and banking industries is hard to estimate because of a lack of data on energy usage. This makes it difficult to “have an honest conversation” about Bitcoin’s energy use. The report estimated the banking industry’s energy consumption to be 238.92 TWh/year. Earlier, Tesla announced to discontinue bitcoin payments citing environmental issues.  

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://coinnounce.com/galaxy-digital-report-details-bitcoin-consumes-less-energy-than-banking-and-gold/

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