Cover photo

Introducing: Thumbs' Uploads

Something old, something new.

Hey friends

So I had an idea.

A Little Preface

In the first issue of the revamped, now-monthly newsletter, in February, I announced my reasoning for turning to this medium, and what readers could expect:

This a place to share the content I create, why I create it, how I fund it, and all the experiments I do along the way. It’s also where I share content recommendations; something that I take very seriously.

Looking back at that issue is fun for me because it's so clearly the seed of what would come later. I'm proud of it, as I'm proud of what it still to come. But we'll get into that soon enough.

That first issue was fiercely critical of Elon, someone who, in my younger and more vulnerable years, I deeply admired, but who now I find repugnant. In that piece, I highlighted some of twitter's design vulnerabilities and foreshadowed a number of the issues we would later become all too aware of:

twitter has the power to censor any tweet and suspend any account

twitter’s algorithms can be tweaked to amplify or deamplify (aka shadowbanany content those in charge so choose. and…

non-verified users (those who don’t pay for Blue or receive another form of verification) are deamplified automatically creating an asymmetry of access

 twitter’s direct messages are not end-to-end encrypted and thus readable by twitter employees and anyone who hacks the company

Fortunately, as the dumpster was set ablaze, and smoke obscured the hopeful vision of what twitter might become, new horizons came into focus in the distance. Experiments in decentralized social protocols like Mastodon, Farcaster, Bluesky, and Lens each yielded some positive results and created a fragmentation which at the very least undermined the centralization risk previously posed by twitter's dominance.

And, more importantly for the purposes of this particular creative outlet, we entered a renaissance of long-form written content (in this instance I mean "long-form" by comparison to the few hundred characters common on twitter and its clones).

My own long-form (read: verbose as fuck) content developed its own niche readership, and on Mirror, where you're most likely reading this, paid content collecting took off, helping to provide a compensation for my efforts and develop meaningful connections between fans, content, and creator (yours truly).

I’ve reinvigorated my lifelong passion for writing and I want nothing more than to keep this going. I'll speak to what’s next for Thumbs Up at the end of this post but first I want to get back to what this issue, and issues like it, dubbed Thumbs’ Uploads, are intended to be:

A New Content Catch-All

I'll keep posting to twitter for as long as I need to, as well as to a variety of other feeds, ranked below by how much I use and enjoy them:

Like twitter, these all serve two purposes for me as a content creator. They are a place to network with others, building relationships, and having discussions. And they are distribution platforms for my content.

The latter is what I'm hoping to explore with these new content updates. I want to establish my blog (or newsletter or whatever you want to call this thing you're reading) as the de facto place to come to find my content; a hub to all other things I make, no matter where they are hosted. Not unlike how my Bento provides a directory for my various links, I want this to be a springboard to my creative expression, wherever it may be found.

So while this has taken much the form of a standard newsletter, just know that future issues are intended to be more concise, focusing only on content. I'll leave the big ideas for the Update.

Speaking of content...

Check Out My New Videos

In my last hurrah before the PoolTogether Growth Team dissolves, I created not one, not two, but three new videos! Exploring the YouTube Shorts format of 1 minute or less vertical videos (inspired of course by tiktok's and Instagram reels' success), I created some new tutorials.

Each of the three videos aims to demonstrate the ease of participating in onchain prize-savings with PoolTogether V5 thanks to the openness of the protocol and thus its interoperability with a variety of tools. In the videos I demonstrate swapping directly into the prize token with Rainbow wallet, zapping into it with portals.fi, and depositing via an app interface (Cabana.fi).

The videos are available on YouTube, embeds below, and collectible as NFTs on Tape.xyz, a part of the Lens Protocol ecosystem.

How to Swap Into PoolTogether V5 In Under 1 Minute! (Collect on Tape)

How to Zap Into PoolTogether V5 In Under 1 Minute! (Collect on Tape)

How to Deposit Into PoolTogether V5 In Under 1 Minute! (Collect on Tape)

You can learn how to perform all these same tasks on desktop in my full length video from late last month:

Getting Started With PoolTogether V5 (Collect on Tape)

So that's my new video content, but I've also been working on something else for a while and it’s finally ready to announce.

A Subscription Built For Web3

Before, I get into it, let me start again with a bit of backstory...

I'm a big believer in the patronage model. I've written extensively about how it's the most honest way to fund creative work, the most effective approach to monetizing niche content, and the best method for developing collaborative relationships between fans and creatives.

I used to use Buy Me A Coffee, a sort of "Patreon Lite" creator platform with in-built blogging, payments, and communication tools. When I pivoted from writing about frugality and deal-hacking in early 2021 to exploring cryptocurrency and blockchain, I quickly became "radicalized" by a belief that the best way forward was to go all-in on on these technologies, using them wherever possible — while often still being forced by network effects to rely—at least in part—on web2 technologies like twitter.

I saved up some money I earned from making content to pay a talented artist to create a real, physical clay animation to be used as the visual for my patronage NFT. I wrote all about this in the post “The Next Chapter: Non-Fungible Patronage

That NFT project was an experiment and I knew it was unlikely to yield a financial return. In fact, I've never even broken even on the expense of paying the artist a fair price and deploying the contracts to Ethereum back when no one was minting NFTs on L2s. That said, I'm tremendously grateful to everyone who has minted one so far, and it will remain possible to mint (on OptimismZoraBase, or Ethereum) until at least the end of 2024.

When Hypersub launched, I knew I had found the next iteration on what I'd been trying to build with Hey Friends! (the aforementioned patronage NFT project). So I spent some time planning and finally, yesterday, I launched my new patronage project, an ongoing "subscription" of sorts called Subs Up.

Subs Up is a way to become a monthly patron for the term of your choice by choosing how many months to support for and minting the corresponding NFT. It's paid with ETH on Optimism mainnet and each month is priced at 0.0042 ETH, or about $10 at today's prices. It's not a streaming payment and currently there's no way to pay by credit card, but that may be in the works so stay tuned.

To learn more click the link below

Subs Up is built on Fabric, a suite of tools that allow for really unique web3 native experiences. Back in October, I tried out their crowdfunding platform to raise money for a laptop. Unfortunately, the campaign was unsuccessful, but fortunately I did still manage to raise funds in other unexpected ways that you can read about that in the December issue, “Thumbs' Update: Pillars of Support

Despite the campaign not being successful, I was incredibly impressed with Fabric's approach, UX, and with the helpfulness of the developers. I'm just as excited to give Hypersub a try and, as always, I'll keep my expectations low, underpromise, and (aim to) over-deliver.

Wrapping Up

That's it for this issue of Thumbs’ Uploads. What do you think of this concept? Let me know on Farcaster or any other network, and please share this and other posts. You can also collect this post on Mirror or Paragraph to let me know that you enjoy this kind of content and want to see more. And with the new collector rewards and referral rewards rolling out on these and other platforms, it might not be the worst idea

Having said that, maybe I should leave you with another quote from that first issue of Thumbs Update:

Nothing in this newsletter (this or any future issue) is financial advice.

Until next time,

Thumbs Up


If you enjoyed this blog post, consider collecting a copy. It's like tipping and receiving a unique digital collectible as a receipt.

You can also become a monthly supporting patron to unlock special perks on Hypersub

And for the privacy minded patron, I accept anonymous tips with Zcash to my shielded address:

zs17a2mhl6xeu56cqqeqync9kddyg8gggcy6253l5evjdyw8l8j8f60eg40exr4wk27hnvfgkkgnju

Loading...
highlight
Collect this post to permanently own it.
Thumbs' Update logo
Subscribe to Thumbs' Update and never miss a post.
  • Loading comments...