December 31, 2021       /       Unchained Daily       /       Laura Shin

Daily Bits ✍️✍️✍️

  • Shark Tank “shark” Kevin O’Leary said he could increase his crypto holdings to 20% of his portfolio.

  • Ontario’s securities regulator released a statement clarifying that Binance is no longer registered in Ontario.

  • MicroStrategy purchased $94 million worth of BTC during December.

  • SEC commissioner Hester Peirce is looking forward to more NFT use-cases in 2022.

  • Nexo, a crypto lender, is partnering with Three Arrows Capital to provide NFT collateralized financing on its platform.

  • Salvadorans are now reporting that money is vanishingfrom their crypto wallets.

  • Cryptocurrency was the number one topic on Reddit in 2021.

  • Senate aide Corey Frayer was selected as the senior advisor to the SEC on crypto-related issues.

  • OpenSea froze $1.9 million worth of Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs once a collector said his assets were stolen.

What Do You Meme?

What’s Poppin’?

Fixing Axie

After an exhilarating 2021, it seems that Axie Infinity, the play-to-earn NFT gaming darling, is ending the year on a rough note. December has been an especially brutal month. For example…

  • The price of Axie Infinity’s native token AXS is down roughly 30% over the past 30 days, marking a $2.4 billion decrease in market cap from $8.8 billion to start December down to $6.4 billion to end it. SLP, the token that is “earned” by playing Axie Infinity, took an even harder hit, dropping 50% over the past 50 days – and, therefore, taking an even larger bite out of the already decreasing earning potential of many Axie players.

  • According to journalist Collin Wu, data from Nansen shows that daily active addresses on Axie are down more than 70% from its all-time high in July. (To be fair, the data also shows that Axie Infinity has over 300,000 daily active addresses and ranks as the third most used dapp in crypto on DappRadar.)

  • Axie Infinity has yet to crack $2 million in daily revenue since December 7th, according to data from Token Terminal. This comes after generating over $2 million in revenue every day between July 4, 2021, and December 7, 2021. In fact, over the past 180 days, Axie Infinity has averaged daily revenue of over $6 million, marking December as a severe outlier.

On Twitter, Arca COO Jeff Dorman, whose company “has been very involved in the $AXS ecosystem,” outlined a plan to address Axie Infinity’s slipping performance indicators.

Dorman points to the net issuance of SLP, which has seen over 50% of its supply minted since November third, as the main issue for Axie Infinity’s stagnant growth. In essence, an inflationary SLP token decreases demand for in-game purchases (because SLP has less buying power) and scholarship programs.

Notably, Dorman offers multiple tiers of solutions to help “dampen the supply curve” of SLP. Short term, Dorman believes that implementing a variable issuance for SLP would be helpful, along with tweaking ecosystem incentives to be more long term, rather than having heaps of SLP minted early to juice projects like Ronin, the blockchain Axie Infinity runs on, and Katana, a DEX on Ronin. Medium-term, Dorman thinks making SLP the base asset for Katana is an excellent way to create demand for SLP. Long term, Dorman believes that allowing users to make in-game purchases with SLP would be helpful.

Transforming SLP into a token with utility is crucial in the eyes of Dorman. Such a shift in tokenomics would make “clear” the value prop of each token in the Axie Infinity ecosystem:

  • “$AXS = governance token with a claim on treasury

  • $RON = protocol token (full tokenomics not yet known, but expect valuation to center around TVL and fee generation)

  • $SLP = utility token required throughout the ecosystem”

In conclusion, Dorman wrote, “Axie is a gaming ecosystem. Economic incentives aside, the primary goal is for the game itself to be fun. These steps help the ecosystem reach that point in a smooth fashion. Stability is key in maintaining both the interest & trust of all parties involved.”

Recommended Reads

  • Albert Wegner, a managing partner at Union Square Ventures, on why web3:
  • Crypto trader Jordi Alexander on ponzinomics:
  • Cinneamhain Ventures’ Adam Cochran on his 2022 crypto thesis:

On The Pod…

Why NFT OG Mitchell Chan Has Released Just One Project This Year

Mitchell F. Chan, who released one of the first NFT projects on Ethereum back in 2017, discusses his projects, making art on a blockchain, how NFTs are transforming the traditional art world, and more. Show topics:

  • Mitchell’s art career before NFTs

  • how Mitchell was inspired by Yves Klein’s 1950’s work ‘Zones of Immaterial Pictorial Sensibility’

  • the story behind Mitchell’s OG NFT art project: ‘Digital Zones of Immaterial Pictorial Sensibility’

  • what the traditional world thinks about NFTs

  • who is collecting NFT art

  • the story behind Mitchell’s 2021 NFT project: ‘LeWitt Generator Generator’

  • why Mitchell has not minted any more NFTs this year – even though the market has been on fire

  • whether Mitchell thinks NFTs are changing the art world (hint: he thinks yes)

  • NFTs and the financialization of art

  • why Mitchell can empathize with some of the backlash about NFTs coming from the traditional art and gaming industries

Book Update

My book, The Cryptopians: Idealism, Greed, Lies, and the Making of the First Big Cryptocurrency Craze, is now available for pre-order now.

The book, which is all about Ethereum and the 2017 ICO mania, comes out Feb. 22. Pre-order it today!

You can purchase it here: