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i need a beautiful woman to explain runes to me

a critically acclaimed weekly consumer crypto roundup


I write this newsletter to you from a vaperetto on a venetian canal. This past weekend I took a little jaunt to venice (italy) for the plot aka the Biennale and the Bright Moments Finale. This was their final leg in their 10 city tour, after collaborating with over 100 digital artists, and it was truly such a beautiful multi-day artistic, cultural, and culinary experience. I'm leaving Venezia feeling very physically full from the sheer abundance of little treats but also very grateful & privileged to be part of this wonderful community. Next stop- venice (california) for FarCon & FREE WIFI! Here's some highlights from this week in consumer crypto.

xx c

"For the first time in crypto, there is a clear path to hundreds of millions of monthly transacting users. It won’t happen for any of the hardcore crypto reasons like “democratizing finance” or “decentralization”. It will happen because the upcoming crypto UX is 10x better than web2." -Kyle McCollom on Why Crypto will 10x Internet UX

Last week, Bitcoin’s fourth-ever halving went live! These fresh fungi tokens, created by Ordinals inventor Casey Rodarmor, have sparked considerable enthusiasm and builder energy around Runes as well as DeFi and NFTs for Bitcoin. Crypto the Game finished a dramatic S2 with Player #733, a collective that will donate its 80 ETH prize pot to Tornado Cash's legal defense fund. The Optimism Collective announced that they're allocating 10M OP to reward Superchain builders. Highlight launched creator rewards and minting with $DEGEN. Sofamon launched its Eigenlayer collection. USDC supply on Base is printing. We're joining Backdrop as a partner for their Boost Program and will be watching for top projects to join our upcoming cohorts. You can use Decent to swap cross-chain between any ERC-20 on the Superchain instantly and all Zora tokens including $enjoy are now available. There's a new Hats x Jokerace extension that lets you easily grant roles and powers to Joke winners.

Internet Explorers is a weekly rundown live stream where extremely online individuals broadly explore (romanticize, even) new consumer internet experiences.

Live & online Fridays at 10am PT / 1pm ET.

Runes lore

Runes are a new protocol bringing fungible tokens to Bitcoin at the halving. BRC-20s (an unofficial token standard designed to roughly approximate ERC-20s) have existed using inscriptions but they're janky af and inefficient. Runes is lightning compatible, allowing transactions to use this faster, more efficient system. "Runes were built for degens and memecoins, but the protocol is simple, efficient, and secure. It is a legitimate competitor to Taproot Assets and RGB." They are introduced into Bitcoin through etching, where each rune is uniquely identified and has specific properties. The immediate popularity of Runes largely drove an otherworldly surge in fees. There are a bunch of pre-rune ordinals promising holders rune tokens that have been running up hard. But in typical fashion, there's some sus stuff happening too.

A little novelty goes a long way...

Across the board, we're seeing downward trend on some of the more recent airdrops. Sure some of it is a general exhaustion with tokens and a consolidation period, but it also points to a larger issue of lack of novelty and innovation within the way these tokens are being distributed to begin with. It's likely social distribution mechanisms have a very short shelf life. Teams should structure tokens in a way that allows for iteration, innovation, and new narratives. If you're building something, think about how you can evolve social distribution rather than just copying what's working right now or what's worked in the past.

Wen marketing?

Last week Ben Roy initiated a convo around the need for better product marketing and storytelling in the Farcaster ecosystem and within onchain social products more broadly, which prompted a fascinating debate. Dan Romero believes the product should be driven by how people use that product and the founder’s job is to define and shape that. This lead to some really interesting back and forth around product marketing vs. ecosystem development, how much of the marketing should be shifted to the community and its users versus lead internally, and what constitutes a partnership that's actually effective. There's a ton of nuance but it's worth a read imo.

Watch the full episode:

We're excited to announce FREE WIFI on Saturday, May 4. Join us for an exotic unconference style exploration of /CONSUMERCRYPTO during FarCon in Venice, CA. A full day (and night) of festivities including workshops, panels, product activations, drinks, art, music, enjoyment, sunshine. A Seed Club Production brought to you by our friends at Slow Rodeo, Archetype, Zerion, Boost, $Enjoy, and more! Apply to join us.

We're hosting FarCon’s Welcome Party on a rooftop in Venice Beach on May 1st!!! A curated, multi-day experience, FarCon is designed to convene, connect, and celebrate the driving forces behind Farcaster's ecosystem. Join us.

Overheard on Crypto Twitter

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