On the 25th of March, a hand-painted self-portrait sold for almost $700,000. This might seem like a lot of money for a self-portrait, and it is. However, this wasn’t any old self-portrait. No, it was created by Sophia – yes, that Sophia, the humanoid robot.
Sophia, we’re told, “interpreted” a depiction of her own face. The final product was sold as an NFT, or a non-fungible token, an encrypted unit of data that’s stored on the blockchain network.
This NFT boom, some argue, is clearly a fad, a gimmick, a bubble – and this bubble is going to burst. Others argue that NFTs, especially NFT artwork, are here to stay. Who is right, and who is wrong?
The Banksy Effect
The world of art is synonymous with the works of Picasso and Da Vinci. But times change, and often in dramatic ways. The likes of Andy Warhol and Banksy transformed the way we view art. Before the latter arrived on the scene, graffiti mostly appeared on subway stations and dilapidated buildings.
Art houses weren’t interested in this particular form of street art. However, this all changed when the enigmatic Brit burst onto the scene. Opinions on street art, slowly but surely, began to change. Not only has the pseudonymous enigma garnered a cult-like following, but he’s also an internationally acclaimed artist. In 2019, Banksy was voted the UK’s most influential artist….ever. The ways in which he has single-handedly revolutionized the global art market is referred to as the “Banksy effect,” and the effect has been a profound one. His most recent piece just sold for $23 million. Most importantly, Banksy’s rise to prominence helped legitimize the work of other artists. The likes of Lady Aiko and Plastic Jesus, for example, are two highly gifted individuals with cult-like followings of their own.
From Banksy to Beeple
On March 11th of this year, Christie’s sold an NFT for $69 million. The collage of 5000 images was created by Mike Winkelmann, more commonly known as Beeple. The sale, unsurprisingly, catapulted Winkelmann into the artistic stratosphere.
The question I ask is this, can Beeple do the same for the world of NFT art as Banksy did for street art? If 2006 was the year of the Banksy effect, is 2021 the year of the Beeple effect?
There is reason to think so. After all, this is the age of disruption. Of all the disruptors in play, blockchain technology, which has the potential to fundamentally change the world of business, appears to be the most significant one. Without blockchain, there would be no cryptocurrencies. Without blockchain, there would be no NFTs.
Furthermore, the world of art is a fickle one. Research has shown that, contrary to popular opinion, we really don’t know what we want, but we are suckers for novelty. What’s more novel than NFT artwork?
The blockchain network gives NFTs an X-factor, a legitimacy, credibility that some critics fail to appreciate. NFTs are more than just pieces of art, they’re also pieces of technology. And new technology has always received its fair share of criticisms and a fair share of ridiculous reactions. If in doubt, feel free to revisit Paul Krugman’s rather unfortunate Internet prediction. But new technology, if embraced by enough people, tends to stick around.
Whether it comes in the form of bitcoin or other forms of digital currencies, the future of money is clearly digital. Why not the same for art?
As currencies evolve in nature, why not art, too?
Aldous Huxley once said, “technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards.”
His point was a valid one, and it still is. Although we are progressing technologically, are we also regressing in other ways? Can NFTs ever be more aesthetically appealing than, say, an original Picasso?
Perhaps not, but Picasso is dead, and NFTs are fresh out of the conceptual oven.
In the techno-evolving world of today, the stuff of fiction is fast becoming fact. From artistic robots to genetically manipulated athletes, we are living in unprecedented times. What’s past is prologue; the internet made blockchain possible, and blockchain made NFTs possible, and NFTs made the latest evolution in artwork possible.
The future, whether you like it or not, is a technological one, and because of this, NFT creations may very well be the future of art.
Price analysis 4/16: BTC, ETH, BNB, XRP, DOGE, ADA, DOT, LTC, UNI, LINK
Dogecoin’s (DOGE) massive rally to $0.45 propelled it to a market capitalization of over $54 billion to make it the fifth most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap.
This lofty market cap comes as a surprise to many since the project has no active developers and is only a meme coin, thus the current rally brings back memories of the excesses seen during the ICO boom in 2017.
Rallies like the one seen in Dogecoin indicate that several traders have entered the fray and are looking to get rich overnight. The only positive sign is that the mania has not spread to other coins. If it does, then the crypto markets are likely to witness a sharp correction in order to shake out the weak hands.
CNBC host Jim Cramer has become one of the first well-known people to reveal that he closed half of his Bitcoin (BTC) position. While Cramer’s selling is an isolated event, it does warn that not all professional investors who have recently turned Bitcoin believers are going to be long-term HODLers.
If the institutional investors rush to the exit, it could cause a huge correction in several cryptocurrencies. Traders should be mindful of irrational exuberance and avoid being sucked into FOMO-driven trades as it’s better to stick to a trading plan and think long-term rather than dream of overnight riches.
Let’s study the charts of the top-10 cryptocurrencies to identify the critical support levels and outline various bullish and bearish scenarios.
The bulls could not capitalize and build upon the breakout of the overhead resistance zone at $60,000 to $61,825.84 on April 13. Bitcoin price turned down on April 14 after hitting an all-time high at $64,849.27 and the bulls are currently attempting to flip the $60,000 level to support.
If they manage to do that, the BTC/USDT pair may make one more attempt to resume the uptrend. A breakout of $64,849.27, could start the next leg of the uptrend that could reach $69,540 and then $79,566.
However, the negative divergence on the relative strength index (RSI) is warning of a possible correction. Interestingly, the price reversed direction when the RSI had reached close to the downtrend line.
If the price dips below the 20-day exponential moving average ($59,427), it will be the first sign that buyers may be losing their grip. The break below the 50-day simple moving average ($55,814) will further cement the view that a deeper correction is likely.
The bulls may attempt to arrest the decline near $50,460.02 but if this level cracks, the pair could drop to the critical support at $43,006.77.
Ether (ETH) extended its uptrend and hit an all-time high at $2,545.80 today. Profit-booking by traders pulled the price down to $2,300 but the long tail on the day’s candlestick suggests that bulls continue to buy on dips.
If the price recovers and the bulls push the price above $2,545.8, the ETH/USDT pair could start the next leg of the uptrend. The next target objective on the upside is $2,745 and then the psychological level at $3,000.
The upsloping 20-day EMA ($2,131) and the RSI near the overbought territory suggest the path of least resistance is to the upside. This bullish view will be invalidated if the price turns down and breaks below the 20-day EMA. Such a move could pull the price down to $1,925.10.
Binance Coin (BNB) formed a Doji candlestick pattern on April 14 and that was followed by an inside day candlestick pattern on April 15. Both these setups indicate indecision among the bulls and the bears. This uncertainty resolved to the downside today.
However, a minor positive is that the bulls are defending the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level at $483.95, as seen from the long tail on the day’s candlestick. The bulls will now try to push the BNB/USDT pair above the all-time high at $638.56 and resume the uptrend.
Conversely, a break below $483.95 could pull the price down to the 20-day EMA ($437). A break below this support will suggest that the traders are rushing to the exit and that could result in a drop to the breakout level at $348.69.
XRP is currently correcting the sharp rally. The bulls are attempting to defend the first support at the 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level at $1.48, as seen from the long tail on the day’s candlestick.
The XRP/USDT pair may now consolidate between $1.48 and $1.96 for a few days before starting the next trending move.
A break above $1.96 could start the next leg of the uptrend that could reach $2.54. The rising moving averages and the RSI in the overbought zone suggest the bulls have the upper hand.
Contrary to this positive assumption, if the bears sink the price below the $1.48 support, the pair could drop to the 20-day EMA ($1.18). Such a move will suggest the bullish momentum has weakened and that could delay the next leg of the uptrend.
Dogecoin’s momentum has been picking up since the past three days and that has resulted in the massive pump today. This shows that more and more traders are getting sucked into the trade due to FOMO.
Usually, such buying frenzies end in a major top formation. After the last bull has purchased, the price reverses direction and the waterfall decline starts. It is difficult to predict a top during such a frenzy but the psychological $0.50 level may act as a hurdle.
The decline after the DOGE/USDT pair tops out is likely to be vicious. The usual 38.2% Fibonacci retracement level may not hold and the pair is likely to drop to the 61.8% Fibonacci retracement level at $0.20.
Traders should control the urge to get into such trades even at the risk of missing out on some profits.
Cardano (ADA) has been facing a tough battle between the bull and the bears near $1.48 for the past two days. Although the bulls managed to push the price above $1.48 today, the bears have been quick to pull the price back below the level.
After the third unsuccessful attempt to sustain the price above $1.48, the bulls seem to have dumped their positions today, resulting in the formation of an outside day candlestick pattern.
However, the long tail on today’s candlestick suggests the bulls bought the dips to the 20-day EMA ($1.28) aggressively. The bulls may now make one more attempt to drive the price above the $1.48 to $1.55 resistance zone.
If they manage to do that, the ADA/USDT pair could resume the uptrend and start the journey toward $2. Conversely, a break below the moving averages could offer the bears an opportunity to sink the price to $1.03.
The bulls pushed Polkadot (DOT) above the $42.28 level on April 13 but could not challenge the all-time high at $46.80. This shows a lack of demand at higher levels. The altcoin has dropped below $42.28 today and the bears will now try to sink the price below the 20-day EMA ($40).
If they succeed, the selling could pick up further as the bulls may rush to cover their positions. Such a move could sink the DOT/USDT pair to $32.50 and then to the critical support at $26.50.
Contrary to this assumption, if the price again rebounds off the 20-day EMA, it will suggest that bulls have not given up. They will make one more attempt to thrust the price above the $46.80 resistance and resume the uptrend.
Litecoin (LTC) is in a strong uptrend. The bears had tried to start a correction today but the bulls purchased the dips aggressively as seen from the long tail on the day’s candlestick. The reversal may have caught several aggressive bears on the wrong foot, which could be the reason for the pick-up in momentum.
The LTC/USDT pair has broken out of the target objective at $307.42, clearing the path for a rally to $374. However, the RSI above 76 signals caution because, in the past, the pair has repeatedly entered a correction when the RSI level reaches close to 80.
The critical support to watch on the downside is the 20-day EMA ($241). A break below this support will be the first sign that the bulls are tiring and a deeper correction is likely.
Uniswap (UNI) broke out to a new all-time high on April 15 but the bulls are struggling to sustain the higher levels. When the price fails to follow up higher after breaking out of a significant resistance, it indicates exhaustion.
However, the long tail on the day’s candlestick suggests the bulls continue to buy on dips. If the buyers can propel the price above the all-time high at $39.60, the UNI/USDT pair could rally to $43.43 and then $50.
On the other hand, if the price again turns down and breaks below the 20-day EMA ($32), several aggressive bulls who had purchased the breakout of $35.20 may bail out of their positions. The long liquidation could pull the price down to $27.97.
Chainlink (LINK) surged above the $36.93 overhead resistance on April 14, signaling the resumption of the uptrend. The altcoin hit an all-time high at $44.33 where profit-booking set in.
However, the long tail on the day’s candlestick suggests that the bulls aggressively purchased the dip to $38.52 today. This indicates that the sentiment remains positive and the bulls are buying at lower levels.
The buyers will now try to resume the uptrend by pushing the price above $44.33. If they succeed, the LINK/USDT pair could rally to $50.
Contrary to this assumption, if the price again turns down and breaks below the $36.93 support, the pair could drop to the 20-day EMA ($34). If this support cracks, the decline could extend to the 50-day SMA ($30).
The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.
Market data is provided by HitBTC exchange.
How The XRP Community Reply To The SEC’s “Shady” Move
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) lawsuit against Ripple Labs, and executives Brad Garlinghouse and Chris Larsen seem to have taken a weird turn. According to the former federal prosecutor and defense lawyer James Filan, the Commission could have allegedly bypass certain rules to its benefit.
#XRPCommunity #XRP #SEC v. #Ripple @sentosumosaba BREAKING: DISCOVERY DISPUTE REGARDING #SEC CONTACTING FOREIGN REGULATORS AND SEEKING DISCOVERY OUTSIDE RULES OF FEDERAL PROCEDURE AND HAGUE CONVENTION. LETTER MOTION ATTACHED.https://t.co/53ytaZCjTi
— James K. Filan (@FilanLaw) April 16, 2021
The SEC apparently is “pursuing discovery” from the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on Ripple. This method is called Memoranda of Understanding (“MOU”) and, according to a document file with the Southern District of New York and Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn, violates the Hague Convention.
The document was introduced by Ripple Labs legal representation and claims the SEC has at least 11 MOU demanding documents from “overseas entities”. The document claims “many” of these entities are the payments company business partners” and about 10 international regulators.
The defense qualifies the process as “improper” and part of an “intimidation tactic” to allegedly reduce Ripple’s capacity to conduct business outside of the U.S. The document said:
Not only is the use of pre-litigation investigative tools prejudicial to Defendants and the recipients of such requests, as described below, it also prevents this Court from exercising its lawful discretion regarding the scope of permissible foreign discover.
Behind the judge’s back, the SEC violated U.S. civil court rules by issuing multiple “MOUs” to obligate foreign govts to obtain files from @Ripple‘s foreign business partners. They got caught.
Read the full letter to Judge Netburn here 👇https://t.co/9P7wIMfTr8
— CryptoLaw (@CryptoLawUS) April 16, 2021
SEC “unjust” advantage in XRP case?
Commenting on the discovery, lawyer Jeremy Hogan said the SEC is placing indirect “regulatory pressure” on Ripple and its partners. Since the Commission is the only party capable of employing said tactic Hogan said:
This is NOT something a “typical” Plaintiff could do and it’s not fair, so Ripple is calling dirty-poker (…). (former prosecutor), this is typical government prosecutorial pressure-litigation, applying pressure not only to you but your business friends as well.
General Counsel for Gala Games Jesse Hynes also gave his opinion and claim it was an “insane” move by the regulator. Hynes highlighted the importance and implication this lawsuit could have for the crypto industry and said:
Shame on the SEC! On the bright side, the SEC is basically admitting that this is a matter of great political and worldwide significance. Can’t wait for that Summary Judgment motion with a major questions doctrine argument.
XRP is trading at $1,64 with an 8.9% correction after an impressive rally in the past days. On the weekly and monthly chart, XRP sits at 55.9% and 255.2% profits.
Trace Network Partners With Polygon And Infosys Consulting For Blockchain Revolution
Beyond Bitcoin, the hottest assets in the crypto markets are those that feature a robust ecosystem that supports several other essential sectors in the industry, such as DeFi or NFTs.
The innovative Ethereum Layer 2 scaling solution Polygon – formerly Matic – is among the most popular and recently partnered with Trace Networks and Infosys Consulting to bring several revolutionary new features to the platform.
Here’s what Trace Networks is all about and why the partnership with Polygon will boost the adoption of the technology.
Polygon Layer 2 Solution Get Powerful Upgrade With Trace Network
Alongside Bitcoin, the other superstar of the crypto world has been Ethereum. However, high gas fees and a struggle to quickly address scalability have made Layer 2 solutions like Polygon even more important. These technologies address key issues plaguing Ethereum throughput and help work to drive inter-chain connections.
The partnership between Polygon and Trace Network will focus specifically on these inter-chain links to remove clunky blockchain data silos. Trace will begin to leverage Polygon’s highly scalable and efficient Layer 2 infrastructure, solving several current crucial blockchain challenges and enabling non-fungible tokens and DeFi capabilities.
Inter-chain links help any blockchain to unlock its full potential by playing to platform strengths and eliminating any critical weaknesses. Trace Network even helps projects access funding from traditional financial institutions.
Trace Network, Infosys Consulting, And Polygon Come Together With M-Setu and Insurechain
The other piece of the puzzle here is Infosys Consulting – a publicly-listed company that connects clients with disruptive technologies. Together with Polygon, Infosys has created M-setu – a hybrid blockchain that aims to make communication between insurance providers easier.
In the traditional insurance sector, there has long been a communication bottleneck that inhibits efficiency. M-setu is a proof of concept that features key benefits of both public and private blockchains. The hybrid blockchain also supports Insurechain – an innovative app that transfers data securely and instantly between insurance providers from anywhere at any time.
Insurechain also leverages cutting-edge solutions like Polygon’s Plasma and Rollups, serving as the inter-link between blockchains and insurance providers at scale.
Unprecedented Traceability And More Enabled With Trace Network
Trace Network enables the generation of NFTs of various products, creating a unique digital on-chain identity. The platform’s inter-link capabilities enable the simple transfer of NFTs and ownership across multiple dApps.
When retail brands make the inevitable shift to NFTs for ownership of luxury items, Trace Network will be ready and waiting to bring unprecedented traceability, transparency, and visibility to business operations worldwide.
Customers of these world-renowned brands will get to enjoy the benefits of blockchain-based ownership, eliminate the fear of counterfeit goods, and much more – and it’s all thanks to Trace Network.
To learn more about this groundbreaking technology, visit the Trace Network official site.
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