🏠 NBA Top... Securities?
Foul play in basketball-tech?
gm. Ball is not life. Basketball NFTs are life.
TOGETHER WITH MASTERWORKS
A Banksy got everyday investors 32% returns?
Mm-hmm, sure. So, what’s the catch?
We know it may sound too good to be true. But it’s not only possible, it’s happening—and thousands of investors are smiling all the way to the bank, thanks to the fine-art investing platform Masterworks.
These results aren’t cherry-picking. This is the whole bushel. Masterworks has built a track record of 11 exits, the last 3 realizing +13.9%, +35.0%, and +10.4% net returns* even while financial markets plummeted.
But art? Really? Okay, skeptics, here are the numbers. Contemporary art prices:
outpaced the S&P 500 by 131% over the last 26 years
have the lowest correlation to equities of any asset class
remained stable through the dot-com bubble and ’08 crisis.
Got your attention yet? Homescreen readers can skip the waitlist with this exclusive link.
I’m very excited to announced we’ve received pictures of the Legos mentioned in Wednesday’s poll! Welcome to Lego Launch House!
Shout-out Carson Hart for sharing his Legos! Carson isn’t just building Legos all day though. He’s the founder of Hoppn, a social marketplace for discovering cool new fashion brands. Check it out for cool new clothes.
As for the answers to Wednesday’s polls, storytelling was #1.
“I'll never forget the difference after we added a well designed mock-up. Investors went from slouched and bored to sitting upright and grasping the vision.” Pictures speak a thousand words (but memes speak a million).
Ok today’s poll. I was super shocked when I moved in with my fiancée that she required shoes off in the home. Curious is this common?
Do you require shoes off in your home?
Looking at three startups that just raised. Congrats!
If you want to get your company in front of 20,000+ founders, investors, and operators, let us know! Contact [email protected] with any questions.
I love the NBA, even with KD and Kyrie leaving the Nets. I’m not alone in this opinion, as the NBA is both wildly popular and profitable.
Perhaps nowhere is the NBA’s cultural influence better seen than with NBA Top Shots. These NFTs of NBA highlights have sold for as much as $230,023.
But, as they so often do when it comes to web3, the SEC is here to ruin the party.
Howey Test 🤝 Top Shots
The Top Shot lawsuit debacle began a year and a half ago when a class-action lawsuit was filed against Dapper accusing them of selling unregistered securities.
Dapper responded to the lawsuit with a “screw you” and a motion to dismiss. Unfortunately, the Court has denied this request, claiming that Top Shots satisfy the Howey Test.
For those who don’t know, the Howey Test is how Courts determine if an investment is a security. Dapper was confident Top Shots aren’t securities considering that they are pretty much just digital basketball cards, but the Court obviously disagreed.
So, the case will go on.
Which could be a big “uh-oh” for NFTs.
A Hazy Future
Of all the things that web3 people hate, dealing with the SEC is firmly in the top 3 (along with SBF and Do Kwon).
Up to now, magic overpriced JPEGs have been able to avoid the hated regulatory overlords.
If Dapper Labs ultimately loses this case, this might no longer be the case.
Will that drive NFT innovation out of the US? Will it make NFTs more attractive to institutions? Or are people freaking out over nothing?
Only time will tell.
DJ Spotty Spot
What music does Sam Altman listen to?
We’re about to find out because his army of robot monkeys (OpenAI) is now behind Spotify’s personalized AI DJ feature.
The feature is in beta as of today and I haven’t been able to get a hold of it, but it sounds pretty cool. A “stunningly realistic voice” speaks commentary about the tracks and artists you like.
What does DJ Spotty Spot say though?
Given all the crazy stuff Bing and Google’s AI bots have been saying, there’s a little reason to be worried Spotify’s AI DJ might start saying some weird stuff.
According to TechCrunch, this new AI DJ feature is a combo of its existing AI tech, an AI voice from Spotify’s 2022 Sonantic acquisition, and Generative AI through OpenAI’s tech.
“Spotify says it provided its music editors, experts, scriptwriters and data curators with access to OpenAI’s Generative AI tech in order to scale their insights about music, artists and genres,” wrote Sarah Perez.
Here’s an example of AI commentary.
“This week, Chicago rapper Polo G teams up with Atlanta’s Future for his first release of the year. This also marks the pair’s first collaboration, but they’re united by production from Southside, who has worked extensively with both and is said to be responsible for most of the music on Polo’s upcoming project.”
I’ve been listening to Polo G’s new singles all week and I did not know this. Thank you DJ Spotty Spot!
Spotify has been at the AI forefront for years
Back in 2015, Spotify launched its Discover Weekly playlist. Wow I feel old lol.
They then launched a bunch of other AI-driven playlists: Release Radar, Daily Mixes, Your Time Capsule, Blend and then other ones aimed at specific activities like working out or meditating. Plus they’ve been killing it with their meme-worthy Spotify Wrapped feature.
Curious for someone’s opinion deep inside the music industry, I asked Bruce Hamilton over at Mech Ventures. “I’m interested to see how AI works in that format. I do believe in the next year or two we will experience a hit record created solely by AI,” he told me. “How different will an AI DJ be from their song discovery algorithm? They may be one and the same.”
AI DJs are here now, perhaps AI hits are coming next.
Stat: 57%: The percentage of teenage girls that say they experience persistent sadness or hopelessness. That’s up from 36% in 2011. Is social media to blame? Some people definitely believe so.
Story we're watching: China is telling its Big Tech companies to ditch their ChatGPT plans, criticizing it as a U.S. propaganda tool. If this policy holds, it’s likely that the U.S. furthers its lead in the AI race. The consequences of this? That remains to be seen.
Rabbit hole: SaaS Overload: What’s The True Cost Of Fragmentation? (Frame)
WHAT ELSE IS GOING ON
Meta is internally testing a BeReal-like “roll call” feature in Messenger. BeMeta?
Microsoft is testing controlling robots with ChatGPT. What a great idea with absolutely zero potential to blow up in our faces.
Apple is getting closer to adding blood glucose tracking to the Apple Watch.
Google is asking employees to share desks in order to cut costs.
In 2022, what percentage of graduates got a software engineering job within 8 weeks?
Nervous about doing VC pitches? Go practice your public speaking at a stand-up open mic. Glad this resonated with so many people!
Very bullish on founders who’ve done stand-up comedy
2 of my comedian-turned-founder friends have raised money this month
— Jason Levin (@iamjasonlevin)
Feb 23, 2023
Notable layoffs this week:
Immutable: 37 people (11%)
Synamedia: 200 people (12%)
Camp K12: 300 people (70%)
The best resources we came across this week that will help you become a better founder, builder, or investor.
🎨 Investing in art isn’t just for billionaires. Use this link to skip the waitlist for fine-art investing platform Masterworks. (Ad)
📘 I just read the coolest book: A Hacker’s Mind by cybersecurity pro Bruce Schneier. Schneier describes how people hack the financial system, tax system, and more. Great book for creative thinking.
🤖 Check out the Ultimate Guide to ChatGPT by Justin Fineberg, the ChatGPT Wizard with 125k TikTok followers.
disclaimer: “Net Return" refers to the annualized internal rate of return net of all fees and costs, calculated from the offering closing date to the date the sale is consummated. IRR may not be indicative of Masterworks paintings not yet sold and past performance is not indicative of future results. See important Regulation A disclosures at masterworks.com/cd.