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We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Program

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Avatar for Faybomb
Written by   5
4 months ago

Today was supposed to be a big day. Less than a week after the announcement, the Nas NFT drop was so close I could taste it. I can't lie, I've been looking forward to it since the announcement. With “Meet Joe Black” blaring in the background, palms sweaty with anticipation, I logged into my Royal.io account at roughly 12:30p this afternoon. All seemed fine. There was a Nas video clip as a looping page background and a timer counting down the minutes and seconds until the drop for “Ultra Black” NFTs would be live. Within 15 minutes, all hell broke lose. It started with a Royal branded error slate popping up with the words “uh oh.” I kid you not. It looked like this:

Frantically, I tried to log in on my phone’s Metamask browser. Suddenly my password didn’t work anymore.

Shit.

This prompted me to check out the Royal Discord server where I quickly found hundreds of others explaining similar issues. I’m not a huge Discord user as Murder of Crows can attest, but the level of engagement in the Royal server was so intense it was nearly impossible to read anything. Shortly after 1p, the Royal team announced in the Discord that the drop would be delayed until 1:30p while they worked on a website fix. A 30 minute delay turned into a several hours delay with plans to try again at 8p tonight. This would be an hour before when the second drop was supposed to launch.

At 2pm, the team began it’s Twitter Spaces AMA session where they brought on Nas, VÉRITÉ, 3LAU, and a bunch of other people to do a virtual victory lap to celebrate what I’m sure they imagined would be a successful sellout when they originally scheduled the call. Inexplicably, they didn’t cancel the AMA session while they got their website back online.

It was, frankly, hilarious and somewhat surreal listening to them sort of congratulating themselves for changing the world without having sold a single damn NFT yet. The session lasted about an hour. In that call, Royal said the website crashed after 137,000 US users alone tried to log on. The servers couldn’t handle the traffic and the meltdown ensued. Following the end of the session, we got the news that I had been expecting all afternoon; the drops were postponed. The new date for both Nas drops is now January 20th.

Good, bad, & ugly

The ugly is obvious. I can’t comprehend how the team at Royal didn’t know that traffic would be what it was. I’m not a web developer, so I don’t know what level of traffic should be normal before servers start failing, but I feel like they should have known better given how large a following a highly successful mainstream artist brings. This isn’t someone with a couple independent singles and a million total streams. It’s friggin’ Nas, guys.

The bad? Cancel the AMA for the love of God. Don’t preach to me about how you’re changing the game and empowering creators until you can actually display that you can do it. Okay, I’m done kicking their asses now.

The good: the demand is bonkers. There are 760 total tokens for “Ultra Black.” 137,000 people trying to get one of those means users today had about a 1 in 200 chance of scooping up one of these things even if it worked without issues. Not great odds. The demand is real.

Do you doubt my music NFT thesis? Still need convincing?

Royal did an airdrop

To give you an idea of what these Nas NFTs could do from a “number go up” perspective, we can actually look at what 3LAU gave his early platform users. When 3LAU announced Royal several months ago, he promised a surprise for winners of a referral link contest. The 333 users who provided the most referrals to the site were airdropped NFTs of a 3LAU track called “Worst Case.”

Opensea data as of 1/11/22

Those 333 NFTs now have a floor price of 2.85 Ethereum. That's the equivalent of about $9,200 per NFT. Again, this is very much the “number go up” speculation we’ve seem throughout crypto and NFTs for years. But these ones are unlike anything we’ve ever seen before because the represent a share of royalty rights. They are literally a cash flow asset living on a public blockchain. The volume traded is over 280 ETH. 2.85 might be an absurdly high price, but it isn't a fluke.

Nas and 3LAU are established artists that are probably as big right now as they are ever going to be. If there is still more fanbase growth for them, it’s probably going to be a decelerating rate. I want to find the artists who nobody knows about today but who could break servers like Nas tomorrow.

Today I told paid subs the platform to look at. Tomorrow, I’ll share my biggest artist bet. Don’t forget, you can still get access to these ideas right now if you’re not a paid member. 25% off for a full year while supplies last.

Get 25% off for 1 year

What would the devil on your shoulder say? Probably something like, “do it. Gamble.” How about the angel on the other side? Probably something like, “do it. Support independent artists.” You only live once and you can’t take it with you.

Disclaimer: none of this is investment advice. Everyone talking about NFTs could be digital hocus pocus money charlatans, myself included. Do your own due diligence and allocate your investment capital according to your own personal risk tolerance. Digital trinkets and shitcoins are probably all going to zero.

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Written by   5
4 months ago
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