When Crypto Meets Art: Masterworks, OpenSea, CumRocket
It’s been 12 years since the Bitcoin launch and the crypto industry is gaining more momentum with each passing year. For anyone who has tried using crypto as payment, fiat money may start to seem restrictive and clanky. It seems way easier to make one transaction in crypto that you are holding such as BTC or ETH, and pay for services or buy a product from anywhere in the world. Knowing the recipient will get the exact amount you are sending without hidden conversion or transfer fees. There is also the security of having your transaction record in the blockchain in case you need proof of payment.
This year I have noticed some interesting services that allow using crypto in a new way. In this article, I will take a closer look at the most interesting services that may pique the interest of the weathered crypto investors and allow for other avenues where your crypto can be put to use.
There has been plenty of hype around NFTs (non-fungible tokens) and digital art the logic of which resembles investing in physical art pieces. Now there Masterworks is providing an opportunity to invest in fine art with crypto assets.
Buying an art piece has been a sign of wealth. Only the richest segment of the population has been able to afford to buy and hang a famous painting in their house that costs millions of dollars. Masterworks is the first blockchain-based platform that offers investors to buy shares in famous artworks and become fractional owners.
The pieces displayed on the platform are acquired and curated by a team of professional researchers to produce the best risk-adjusted returns. After purchase, all art is securitized by qualifying it with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Each piece is then held for a period of 3 to 10 years depending on how fast it appreciates in value. After that, the art is sold and profits are shared between investors.
The commission structure is similar to a hedge fund where the service takes a 1.5% annual fee and 20% commission on all profits. Considering the rate of historical appreciation for contemporary art, this still leaves investors with a hefty gain in most cases. Masterworks explains that their main goal is to outperform S&P 500. It seems achievable as contemporary art pieces have seen returns almost threefold of the stock market since the year 1995.
Anyone aware of NFTs knows OpenSea - the largest NFT marketplace. It allows anyone to buy and sell crypto-collectibles, NFTs, gaming add-ons, and other blockchain-based virtual items. It’s a great way not to only make profits on re-selling rare pieces but also to support your favorite digital artist and own one or more of their artworks.
Founded in 2018, OpenSea managed to grow its volume to $3 billion by August of this year. While using OpenSea is free of charge, the platform takes a 2.5% fee for each sale which means they made around $75 million in the month of August alone which is an impressive number for a 3-year old company.
So what’s so special about OpenSea? Well, first of all, it is blockchain-based and every purchase is secured by an Ethereum smart contract. This means any fraudulent activity is nearly impossible to occur. They mostly accept ETH and DAI for payment but you can also use nearly 150 other tokens. Also, thanks to the intuitive interface and simple processes, it is easy to start buying and selling items even for the most inexperienced traders.
Starting your own NFT collection is easy with OpenSea and this platform is definitely leading the NFT industry along with the MetaMask wallet where your non-fungible tokens can be stored safely.
Now this entry in the article is not like the others. Considering a provoking name and 18+ warning on the website, we can guess that the focus of CumRocket is adult content. It allows users to purchase NSFW photos and videos using cryptocurrency. Users can also interact with their favorite adult content creators by chat messaging, tipping, and subscribing to their feed.
In August 2021, CumRocket has also launched BEP-20 token CUMMIES that by now has over 140,000 holders. Don’t get fooled by a silly ticker, this token is powering a large community. It also follows a popular reflection system where for each transaction a 5% fee is charged, 2.5% of which is reflected, and 2.5% of which is burnt. This type of reflection actually allows holders to double the profit if they keep their tokens the longest.
CumRocket is not just promoting NFTs to a wider audience but also is leading the NSFW segment. Earlier this year, the most popular website for adult creators OnlyFans has been hit by a ban by major banks such as Metro Bank and JPMorgan. At the same time, CumRocket is thriving since crypto is decentralized and won’t be affected by any payment processor restrictions. There aren’t going to be any chargebacks, high transaction fees, privacy concerns for either content creators or users.
Considering all of the advantages of having a blockchain-based adult content platform, maybe we will see other popular services switching to CumRocket tokens as a payment soon.
Support Artists and the Arts
While the 3 services we have discussed are vastly different, they have one thing in common: support artists and creators. Whether established painters, trendy digital artists, or adult models: every creation has its own audience that will enjoy and appreciate it. Using blockchain to buy or sell art and subscribe to content provides many benefits such as privacy, security, and low predictable costs. It’s exciting to see where these services will go in the future. A lot of innovations have the chance to be developed while the adoption of crypto and the popularity of these services keeps rising.
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