Buckle in, the future's not bright
That's all terrible David, you're right!
In the meantime, check out my new exclusive NFT collection: Rare Farriers
David, I am 100% with you. It is human greed that will kill us all. It's not the artists who are greedy, either: it's the people with far more money, who refuse to pay what a thing is worth, but always want a bargain. That's how they got rich in the first place, isn't it?
I've been trying to tell a friend about the damage her bitcoin speculation is doing. "But I'm only dealing in small amounts: I'm not actually mining. its the only way I can make money".
Let's bring in Universal Basic Income to help our artists.. Let's raise the highest tax rate to 60%.
And while were at it, let's insist that all our Internet accessible devices have an app built in, that tells us how much carbon our activites have used each day. Most of us squander out of ignorance, not malice.
PS. I agree with you about children, but 45 to 20 years ago, when as an adult I was choosing not to have them, I was frequently subject to unpleasant attacks about my choice, by far and away the most ironic one being that my choice was selfish!
Hi David, I'm a big fan of all your work going right back to Nightline. Glad you're jumping into the murky world of distributed ledger technology of which cryptocurrency and NFTs are one use case.
I operate the largest cryptocurrency exchanges by volume in NZ. So that makes me both an expert on the topic, and, of course, biased. I'll try not to put you and everyone else to sleep so I'll bullet point:
-Bitcoin and Ethereum both use energy-intensive methods of verifying transactions that were designed before they were popular.
-There are many other blockchains designed to solve this problem by using a fraction of the electricity, but they haven't had the same update as Bitcoin or Ethereum
-It only used to cost a few cents to process Ethereum transactions but ETH has become a victim of its own success, running at or near 100% capacity for the last couple of years.
-Changes are being made right now to ETH to change the way transactions are processed to a less energy-intensive mode, increase capacity, and bring costs down. Cryptocurrencies evolve through time in response to needs and voting by users.
-Many of the reports on energy usage by crypto-only tell half the truth. Crypto mining follows the lowest-cost energy around the world, usually where there is unused generating capacity. That's why almost no commercial crypto mining happens in NZ because we have higher electricity prices.
Lastly, the main driver of surging cryptocurrency prices is the exact same thing causing asset bubbles all over the work including housing in NZ and equities everywhere. Sustained low-interest rates and unprecedented levels of monetary and fiscal stimulus. Money is flooding markets and there are few places to earn interest, so there's more money chasing fewer assets and everything skyrockets.
Energy usage isn't the fundamental problem with cryptocurrency and blockchains (and in fact anything else that uses a bunch of electricity). The problem is energy usage that relies on energy generation methods that burn fossil fuels and create greenhouse gases.
Wind and solar are cool, but battery physics have a long way to go before we can solely rely on them to run the world.
The sooner the world realizes that nuclear fission reactor design and nuclear waste disposal are engineering problems that have been solved, and that nuclear power is the only real way for us to quickly stop using fossil fuels, the better.
So much irrational fear out there of nuclear anything. It's not perfect free energy but it's almost ridiculously better than fossil fuels, and human civilization is going to need *some* sort of steady power generation method to back up renewables for the foreseeable future.
But it's politically unpalatable. Even the Germans, the world's most pragmatic race, are ditching their fission plants.
I'd love to see you write a piece on the topic, David ^_^
It's just melting my brain just reading this. What a horror show we are!
So I've been reading this book - SPQR by Mary Beard - which is a pretty comprehensive history of Rome recommended to me by a bunch of people at /r/history. It dates right back to 500BC or thereabouts and covers the following 1000 years. Probably naively, it's made me realise that humans were always shit people; more specifically, there's always been a sub-set of the human population hell bent on destruction for personal gain. There's plenty of positive things that came out of it - the early stages of democracy, currency, certain rights constructs - but pretty quickly, relatively speaking, that all eroded in the name of power hungry autocrats.
It's pieces like yours here David that make me convinced that only are we *still* shit humans, our time is limited. Or rather, we're cementing that fact daily as quickly as we can in the name of greed. Chances are I'm long gone from this Earth by the time we suck this bitch dry but it's honestly destroying any last shred of hope for humanity that I had and is making me wonder more and more what the point of this all is. Without significant change that is quite simply not forthcoming without a radical shift, the greedy minority will doom whatever percentage of the population that cares or is at least neutral about it all.
Thankfully it's cat pictures keeping me going at this point. Thanks, as always, for your work; it's enlightening and always interesting.
So this "Our greed, our need to “own” things, and our inability to see the bigger picture." which also makes me despair, reminds me of that episode of How To with John Wilson, which touches on people who own original artworks (Van Goghs, Picassos, and so on) who keep the original safely locked away in storage because it's valuable, and pay for a perfect copy to be on show in their house. I *get* wanting the valuable one because people like to own things that may one day be used for their value, but really what we want (hopefully) is the beautiful picture which makes us happy when we see it in our house each day, and so why not just get a print from the museum and look at that?? I mean, if we break this down to what art is really for - the provision of pleasure through aesthetic appreciation, say.
I think all this exploitative and nonsense money-making for the sake of money-making is puke-making.
I'm just waiting for the creator of the bread falling over video, Random Kingdom*, to tokenise the video so I can buy it as a christmas gift for David.
*Check out their other smash hit video: "Banana Falling Over!" https://youtu.be/FbkCynrzVhE
ouch, my brain hurts....... :-O Being a slightly older generational, I guess it may well be outside of my frame of reference. I will persist, however, because, y'know - know thine enemy etc.
Yep... All a big scam - https://amycastor.com/2021/03/14/metakovan-the-mystery-beeple-art-buyer-and-his-nft-defi-scheme/
Oh god is right. I'm conflicted too. Sad, because it's good to see artists get paid. What a horror it is. Given the value of one ETH buying NFTs is a reasonably wealthy persons game, the chances of it stopping are minimal. 29 years ago I was 20 years old, fervent green supporter. I harassed everyone. Back then in 1992 Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace were saying we had 10 years to turn this shit around. No-one cared. Not even a simple thing like recycling, lightbulbs and not using disposable/single use plastics. They found it inconvenient to change. More people are on board with the simple things these days, that's great, but very little changes where big money and investment is involved and the industries they invest in. We will die, every species, this planet, will die because some humans are obsessed with wealth. Humans suck.
A very active thread David... For better or worse you've opened pandora's box! There are many fantastic narratives to be found in the DLT/crypto world. Good, bad, and just plain weird.
This all makes me want to sculpt in 3d and overthrow the rectangular interface.
When I read things like this I always think of the lyrics from Roger Waters' Amused to Death track...
"And when they found our shadows
Grouped around the TV sets
They ran down every lead
They repeated every test
They checked out all the data on their lists
And then the alien anthropologists
Admitted they were still perplexed
But on eliminating every other reason
For our sad demise
They logged the only explanation left
This species has amused itself to death
No tears to cry no feelings left
This species has amused itself to death"
Seems we are, and always were well on our way to something like this.
The discussion in here is blowing my mind! Sometimes when I read about crypto I feel like I am slowly drifting into understanding it less and less, and becoming a little more unhinged along the way!
What worries me (and I might be totally off the mark because this is waaaay too technical for me!!) is that could NFTs become a way of committing cyber crime? For example if someone was to ever share intimate photos in a relationship could they be then sold as NFTs, either sold back to the owner for financial gain (for non celebrities) with the threat of sharing them elsewhere, or actually sold to buyers (more celebrity centred)? I might be totally wrong but it just seems like it could end up making life very difficult for some people!