Tokenization of Culture

I recently listened to an interview with Gary V where he talked about the tokenization of culture and how it would be the next big wave in crypto.

I didn’t understand what he meant but it stuck with me.

With RECUR announcing the launch of NFTU, a digital marketplace for collegiate sports collectibles, I now understand what he was talking about.

What is culture?

It’s a personal question and everyone will have a different response. For me it was growing up a college football fan. It was memories of titans as they walked past me on the way to the field from the locker room. I was lucky that my dad understood the value of proximity and took me down to where the players passed by.

For me, culture is old Aggie football posters on my bedroom wall.

Quinton Coryatt was my hero

For others is could be their favorite movie, book, their first concert or a CD cover. The Blink 182 album cover for Enema of the State comes to mind. Regardless of what you or I believe culture to be, now I understand what he meant.

Enema of the State, Blink 182 (1999)

Culture is a reminder of our past. We are creatures of nostalgia and naturally cling to our past. The tokenization of culture allows creators to be compensated directly for their work. Their creation we’ll gladly pay for out of a longing to recapture what we felt in that moment.

Now an athlete can be paid every time his highlight is sold. Imagine if every touchdown of Johnny Manziel’s career was sold as an NFT. And every transaction paid him a royalty in perpetuity. Or if Vince Young’s Rose Bowl highlights were sold to the highest bidder.

The NFT represents a complete shift of power from the platform to the creators. The same is true for artists, musicians and authors. Everything that could be a poster or a video clip can now be made scarce and monetized by creators.

The gatekeepers have been removed.

Now imagine how this flows through to the average person. It incentivizes us to create. The aggregation of power in the industries of sport, music and art is dissolving. Individuals are more empowered than ever to contribute their voice. Their compensation will be dependent on their ability to create an audience.

Decentralization of Culture

Communities will be narrower and more widespread. The era of monoculture is over.

We can now raise money for projects and companies from our communities allowing the value to accrue to the community, where it belongs.

And who do we have to thank for this? Not RECUR or it’s founders, not Gary V, nor Ethereum… but bitcoin. Bitcoin is responsible for the spread of decentralization.

Bitcoin is the trojan horse taking down legacy institutions from the inside out. It introduced the idea of decentralization, the idea that’s spread like a global wildfire. Without bitcoin, Ethereum wouldn’t be able to take down the banking industry via DeFi. Without Ethereum, creators wouldn’t be able to create NFTs, bypassing legacy gatekeepers.