Mint Season 6 episode 1 welcomes MP, co-founder of JPEG, the NFT curation layer of web3. She’s been working in the blockchain space since June 2017 and has consulted or worked for projects such as Polkadot, Gnosis, Melonport, Ethereum Community Fund, Golem, Akropolis, Concourse Open, Avalanche, and other grassroots and established projects on the Ethereum ecosystem.
In this episode, we talk about NFT-curated registries and how she’s building web3’s cultural landscape through the JPG curation network.
In this episode we discuss:
- 00:08 – Intro
- 06:23 – Crypto Innovation In Europe
- 10:33 – What is JPEG?
- 13:56 – What are Token Curated Registries
- 20:54 – How Do You Quantify the Value of a Specialist?
- 25:42 – Challenges with Building a Token Curated Registry
- 28:23 – Are there any Bootstrapping Incentives to Ensure Trust and Quality in the Curation Process?
- 30:21 – Use Cases Leveraging JPEG’s Protocol
- 35:06 – How Creators Make Money using JPEG
- 37:05 – How to Solve Web3’s Metadata Problem
- 41:44 – How Should Creators Think About On-chain Data for Building and Monetizing Community in Web3?
- 44:49 – Outro
I hope you enjoy our conversation.
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MP. Welcome to mint, thank you for being on. What is going on?
Maria Paula: Hi, thank you for having me. How are you?
I’m feeling good. I’m stoked to have you a part of season six on all thing’s creator economy and where blockchain data fits into the picture. So, I think a good place to start, MP is how did you get your start into crypto, let alone web three, we can start there, and we can work our way forward.
Maria Paula: For sure. So, my starting crypto was basically because I needed a job. It was very simple. I was working in luxury before. And I wasn’t really comfortable with the way that I saw business was, yeah, happening in luxury. And I quit that job. And I really needed another job to pay the rent. And one of my friends, he was working at a tech company, I didn’t know which kind of tech and I went to meet my friend and his boss, because I was part of a sort of like a big sister program. So, I took one of the kids that I was watching, to learn about technology. And this guy taught him how blockchains work. And I was like, this is incredible. I’m really interested, I already knew about Crypto, everything. But I thought this guy was explaining it really well. And turns out the guy was the founder of Ethereum, Gavin wood. So of course, he knew his deal. And from there, I was like, actually, I loved everything that, you know, this guy told me, I told my friend, I’m Argentinian. So, I could see a lot resonating with me with regards to transparency, and traceability and you know, all like parallel economy that was able to, you know, help us, you know, overcome inflation.
So, I told my friend, and I told him to let me know, when there was a job opening. And a year ago, there was a job opening, I started as an assistant, didn’t last very long there because I was already senior when I started in 2017. And I started developing my career with polka dot at. First, I worked there until 2000, and early 2018, where I fell in love with Ethereum community, and I started applying for Ethereum jobs. Then shortly, I started working for Gollum, which is one of the oldest Ethereum projects. And from there, they gave me a lot of freedom to start discovering my own path. And my own path had to do with also studying here in Berlin, a nonprofit for a, to organize hackathons. And the hackathons usually, because I’m very interested in arts as well. Had to have a cultural element. So that’s a little bit of what led me to NFTs, and it was a hobby until and I wrote a couple of papers on the topic as well, because I’m a researcher, and it was really a hobby. You know, it was something that I did out of fashion, until come 2020. I was still writing the second paper, struggling to sort of update it. And I realized there was like some shifts happening in the NFT sphere.
So, I told my co writers, they were like, oh, yeah, but you know, I know that let’s see what happens. And then I kept thinking, I was like, I have to take all this knowledge and start a business. Because it would be such a shame. So, I met Trent, or the co-founder of jpg over Twitter DMS. He’s a defi guy. I’ve been in defi as well. We had art in common. And he DM me, we started exchanging like cool artworks. And then he was like, hey, I want to start the gallery, want to join? And I’m like, of course. And that’s also how I met the other founder, Sam, you know, I still had a job. So, I worked two jobs for about a year until I, you know, got confident enough to start working full time in my own business. And that’s where I am right now.
So how has the industry changed you think since when you initially got started around the 2017 era to where are we now, 2022?
Maria Paula: So, the first thing is the obvious thing. When I started everyone knew each other by first name, you know, we were like what? Hundred and, you know, everything was very personal. And you know, if you had any problem with the platform, you would go straight to the founder because you know, usually that was like the kind of, you know, feedback loop that was a, that existed. We were just like a few of us. And, of course, you know, with regards to tooling, it has evolved so much, and in such a rapid pace, that you’re not able to really to track down anymore, the progress. And you’re also not able to track down anymore the, you know, the new products that resemble others that are, you know, like, sort of sub forex and everything. So, it’s really interesting, you know, the thing, the fact of the matter is that in 2017, and in 2018, we are, our dream was to hit mainstream with our apps, the apps that we were building that were decentralized, that were self-sovereign, and all the nice things. And I really couldn’t have expected that a crypto would go mainstream thanks to NFTs propelling that. And that’s a really big, not change, but a surprise, a positive one, because the apps that we were building were clunky, are still clunky, we needed an easier product, we didn’t think it was NFTs. But here we are.
Crypto Innovation In Europe
It’s actually crazy. Because another question I have for you is you are in the Berlin crypto scene. And the European crypto scene differs from any other crypto scene worldwide. When I got started in 2017, I had this like, this itch to scratch to try to figure find work in Europe as well. I didn’t end up going to Berlin, I was hanging around like in Switzerland and studying over there for a little bit. And the Europeans are just built a little different, I would argue, how do you kind of like make sense of all the innovation, all the activities, specifically in crypto at Berlin? And what does that energy like?
Maria Paula: So, I am, I’m born and raised in Argentina. So, I guess I’m also really different than, you know, Americans, Europeans. But, yeah, I’ll try my best. So of course, you know, here we have a strong word like violence. But that doesn’t mean that Europe is not innovating. Europe is also a little bit more bureaucratic with regards to innovation. And because of the European Union, you know, they, so everything goes a little bit slower, I would say. But there has always been something really positive about Europe is that it’s a union, like everyone knows. But this union allows you to, you know, be very flexible when you start you know, a new project and new technology with regards to you know, where to set up your business. Because, you know, regulations differ. There’s like some overarching ones, but they differ country to country. And there’s a lot of like an even you know, if, for example, Switzerland is a completely different story, and you will know it because you were there, we still have a lot of 3d. So, you know, everything is easy for us.
Switzerland is exceptional, because with regards to crypto projects and innovation, they are the place that basically started it all with regards to regulations. It’s a fantastic place, there’s a contour name called sook. And sook, was the home of the very early projects, including Ethereum, which set up there because of the favorable conditions, both regulatory and for tax reasons as well. And sook has a fantastic, has found a fantastic business and it is aware that they are fantastic ground for innovation. So, everything in Sook caters the crypto business in a really good way. So, you know, you have the best lawyers there that are you know, have been with Ethereum from the start. And they are the same lawyers where I can go if I need something or if I need to start my business because you know, the relationships have been built. And we also have the bank you know, several banks and management companies and you know, like everything, it’s basically a place to set up your blockchain in a box project. So that’s really good.
But I do agree that you know, because Europeans tend to have a better, I want to say better, better is such a bad word, a different, we’re like balanced than Americans. And you know, this regulatory stuff that tends to be very bureaucratic, like then it does go slower. That’s something that Europeans won’t like to tell you, but I’m not, you know, I’m Argentinian. So, you know, I’m going to tell it to you, and how do I start it? And how do you feel it? Basically, I more on the side of working very hard. And it’s just in my older years in blockchain that I started taking weekends, for example. So, yeah, I just don’t sleep like the rest of you.
What is JPEG?
That makes a lot of sense. I would argue the same thing when I was working and studying over there. The work life balance was completely different than that, of let’s say, I don’t know America in the States. But enough about Europe really quick. Okay, I want to talk more about you deciding to try to build a business in web three and falling back on the gallery business, right? Token curated registries, which is a lot of the foundation of JPEG. So, I think this is a good starting point to kind of introduce JPEG. And what is JPEG? Like what do we need to know about JPEG? More specifically also, what is your role at jpg?
Maria Paula: So, I am the co-founder of JPEG. I also do the communications, I do operations, I do a bunch of different things. Trent is stronger on product, and some the other co-founder, he’s stronger on what’s artistic advisory because he’s straight out from the art world into crypto. So, you know, we have different roles, but we sort of complement each other. So basically, JPEG is an NFT curation protocol. And what does that mean? That we are building infrastructure, a cultural infrastructure to support the whole NFT ecosystem. So, what we’re building right now is, first of all, we have an interface that the user facing one that allows people to go into JPEG and curate their own exhibitions with NFTs they own. And with NFTs they don’t own generally, they don’t own them. You can also set up your own storefront as well. And you know, do a bunch of different things, because it’s basically a customizable space. I love Squarespace, where you can create many things with NFTs.
But the cool thing is what happens underneath all of that every JPEG exhibition is stored permanently on our web. So, the on-chain exhibition history, and that which is on chain provenance history, becomes a very important data point that we’re hoping is a primitive for the NFT space on the other spectrum of JPEG, but it’s a, you know, it’s similar, and it’s totally complimentary. But it’s a different piece of technology, or the registries. And the registries are basically groups of entities that are crowd sourced by people. And that can be ordered by you know, a particular topic, for example, you know, SKobe NFTs or a, you know, super rare NFTs, and, you know, this kind of ordering that’s going to be crowd sourced, this is not shipped, the exhibitions are shipped already on live for a year. And registries will come very soon, by the way. So, all of these will start to create, you know, new primitives and new, you know, ways of seeing NFTs, of stratifying, the space of discovering the NFTs. And, you know, we hope we will create very interesting data sources as well for people to you know, inform their work.
What are Token Curated Registries
So that’s why I wanted to feature JPEG in season six, because a lot of season six are primarily it’s about blockchain data. Okay. And we talked about blockchain in season five, a little bit across different speakers in different guests that were on. But I wanted to have you on specifically because I think there’s something interesting going on behind token curated registries, and I’m trying to understand what role do they play in the creator economy at large? What’s your perspective on that?
Maria Paula: So maybe a little bit of background on token curated registries for the people that have not heard of them. Yeah, basically, curated registries. We didn’t invent them. They weren’t for NFT’s as well. They were invented in around 2017 probably. And the first used case was for verification of an ERC 20 tokens back then, you know, it was the NFT, the ICO boom, and everyone was minting cheap coins. Everywhere was very messy, people didn’t know what, which ones were fraud, which ones were good, which ones had, you know, stable development, they didn’t know anything at all because research was also very confusing, as it has always been. So, this idea of token curated registries came about and token curated registries for NFT’s for ERC 20, I keep on confusing was a basically lists of tokens that were a, you know, where people would have to stake another token that was native to the TCR. And that staking would ensure the person was a good actor, and that was submitting a truthful information. Of course, you know, in a highly speculative market, where any, we’re the only thing that matters, and now we have found out that it’s not all about the tech, but it’s all about, you know, numbers going up or down, when there’s a market and the token will continue living. So, there was not really a used case for ERC 20s and TCRs. But there is a very solid use case in NFTs. Why? Because NFTs are actually very versatile objects, they’re cultural, they’re financial, they are anything you want them to be, you know, they can be perfectly titles, they can be, you know, essays as well as, you know, mirrorly thinking of a doing? And all of these creates, you know, an endless supply of NFTs, and where do they all go probably to open sea, without correct indexing, without correct metadata. And everything, you know, is impossible.
It’s a mess
Maria Paula: Yeah, it’s a mess. So that’s where we come in, hoping that, you know, we deliver these lists that serve as primitives, and that people can actually use them. How can you be able to use them within the creative economy? That’s a great question that I look forward for people to identify, because I think that the best way to discover your product market, is actually when you know, when people start interacting with your tech. But some of the more practical used cases that come to mind are for example, are you a curator, and you’d like to create an exhibition and find out, you know, a particular NFT, find several NFT’s that might be interesting to your practice, but it’s not possible to find them on open sea, or, you know, you’re looking for NFTs from a particular period of time, from a particular they that, you know, something happened in crypto and you want to see what NFT is accompany that event or, you know, you want to surface the NFT is from a very prolific artist that has been seen throughout several platforms, and it’s impossible to find otherwise. So, there’s many used cases. In you know, people can also use them, you know, who uses a discovery and archives with regards to the traditional art world. curators, of course, as I mentioned, critics, other museums, researchers, basically, anyone that’s a, that wants to do research needs to serve themselves from archives. And so far, we don’t have those, registries actually provide you with that during that.
So, if you look at like web two registry, so companies like Google and Yelp, they do a great job at curating a list of their search results or restaurants. But why is there a need to decentralize this process?
Maria Paula: So, first of all, we are building web three. And we think that Google is, you know, it’s not something done, we want to mimic, everything is closed source. You know, they also, God knows what they actually do to your brain. And you know, it has not gone so well, for humans and web two, right? Data management is also you know, another market. So, I think it makes sense because first of all, registries are crowdsourced, so there’s no algorithm, dictating, the test making and the archiving, you know, it’s other people like you and me, that are interested on pushing the space forward. So that creates a, you know, there’s always a certain bias on everything, but that creates a better one. And then for sure that, you know, having everything traceable on the blockchain or on a decentralized database that’s visible to all is helpful for many reasons. But, you know, I guess he talks about the point that information, at least in my opinion, and in the opinion of a lot of people in web three, should be free and openly accessible. So, you know, we believe the same a JPEG, so we’re building a all-transparent infrastructure that will be open source, or to, you know, continue adding positively to the space. And yeah, I guess it’s about knowing what lays underneath and having control. And that already makes it better.
How Do You Quantify the Value of a Specialist?
I agree, I think there’s a beauty behind being able to curate something as a community. And having like aligned incentives and doing that type of action is something that we’re not strangers to in web three. And we’re seeing these used cases kind of being applied across different activities. I think TCRs are no different. And I want to ask you, based on a tweet that Vitalik Buterin, kind of set out or published in November of 2018, he basically tweeted that TCR designs should take more care to accommodate the value of specialists in information gathering. How do you actually design a system while considering those accommodations? And two how do you quantify the value of a specialist for example?
Maria Paula: That’s such a great one. You’ll have to send it to me later on?
Maria Paula: Because I haven’t thought about that Twittering in many years. It’s excellent. Actually. The first thing is that we don’t hope to close our TCRs to specialists. I think that the TCR is off before for ERC 20s may be needed, you know, experts in crypto economy, and experts in you know, software development to understand you know, what was a good token with regards to the technology that it was supporting or not. We think that we can crowdsource that expertise from people that have a genuine interest on pushing the NFT space forward from people that believe, like us that NFTs are cultural objects and should be treated with the gravitas they deserve. And furthermore, we’re also not building monolithic registries, but we’re allowing people to create their own. So that should help. Another important thing is that obviously, we will have some sort of governance system for people to be able to vote, which registries should be created, which registries should not, which is spam, as well, because you know, spam will happen in you know, with the state of the NFT ecosystem, if they’re dropping shitty NFTs into your wallet all the time, we will also get spammed, everyone will get spammed.
So, we really need to ensure that there’s a proper reputation and governance system, to make sure that the people that are a, you know, curating these lists are not only good actors, but also, they’re just not bots. So yeah, I guess that’s a, that’s the part of, you know, the expertise and the part of rewards. You know, I guess that will come naturally. So far JPEG. Of course, we have a flirted with ideas of, you know, having a token to incentivize people, but so far, we really want to test if these curating thing and this, you know, register creation thing, and the governance is something that people will need a noose before introducing any kind of incentivization because otherwise, you know, we will get to the place where a lot of doubts are right now, which is really unfortunate, where, you know, people join the Dao and expect immediate retribution for like, either minimum tasks and we don’t want to, you know, create that we learn and some of us are part of Dao as well. And we learn from that, and we believe that, you know, there should be another way and Daos are also learning for what it’s worth, you know, they have strengthened their measures with regards to contributions and everything.
So, with that being said, why don’t you think NFT registries will sort of undergo the same downfall as ERC 20 curated lists?
Maria Paula: because NFTs are much more rich in you know, by their own right, you know, they can be so many things, they definitely need to be archived, they definitely need to be ordered as well. And there’s much more, I would say that from 2017 to now, there’s so much more fraud and forgery, as well. You know, NFTs can, you know, a lot of people have fallen into buying, you know, an NFT, that, you know, was just a JPEG with a different NFT, where, so, you know, they need a lot of infrastructure to support them. And we weren’t ready for this explosion that we have right now.
Challenges with Building a Token Curated Registry
What are some of the major problems that face I guess, JPEG when trying to build an NFT base, TCR? Like, what are some of the more most notable obstacles that come to mind?
Maria Paula: The first obstacle that comes to mind is that no one has ever done this before. At least not with NFTs. So that’s pretty hard. You know, and also adapting the early, you know, the early prototypes and ideas of TCRs into, you know, our ecosystem, and making it simple, first and foremost, because it was like, back then I didn’t understand TCRs. And probably now I also don’t and adapting it and making it easier and more playful, and making sure that people are really gonna, you know, understand the whole purpose behind our registries, I think that’s the main challenge. Obviously, designing any kind of governance and reputation system is a very hard challenge. Because first of all, you don’t want to end up with something that resembles web two, if you design a wrong governance system, you can always fix it. So that’s great. But you can’t really fix toxic traits that you’re growing on people. So that’s, you know, creating, making sure that we’re not creating bad habits. It’s a really big discussion point in the team.
And with regards to the technological challenges, the more like nitty gritty challenges, I wouldn’t be able to speak for my colleagues, I’m the one that’s not them. But I think and having been on teams that have built things that they have never built before, before in my previous jobs, I think that it’s always, it’s always the same, you know, like it takes longer than expected. There’s a lot of like, micro pivots going on, where you always have these doubts, whether people will use it or not, whether what you’re building makes sense. You always, you know, like the challenge of having things sufficiently decentralized, or progressively decentralized, is a lot of philosophical questions that have to do with the core tenets of web three, and how to build without sacrificing UX are, you know, all the big questions and challenges.
Are there any Bootstrapping Incentives to Ensure Trust and Quality in the Curation Process?
When it comes to creating incentives, what kind of bootstrapping incentives are in place for jpeg to ensure like trust and quality in the curation process?
Maria Paula: So, none for now, but none because we don’t want to start with the wrong foot. You know, we learn from that from Daos. But however, people are already using JPEG for professional purposes. You know, we have seen art fairs were being set up on JPEG. We have seen professional, incredible galleries as well, you know, incredible NFT six exhibitions that have been in Miami vassal. And so, there’s like a really good user base that understands that, you know, we need culturally infrastructure and we’re very happy to take on JPEG and to choose us for their incredible projects. And we have incredible people in our community that are constantly trying to surface content, whether it’s for you know, writing their essays, or whether there it is for showing their expertise, or joining a conversation without owning the NFTs. We always have people that are really wanting to create things with JPEG. So, we don’t think that that’s going to be hard and to be honest with you, you know, like incentives can be retroactive. Everyone has learned that starting with uniswap, with the uniswap Airdrop in 2020. So, we expect people to be curating to be honest, just because they will expect the retroactive compensation and that will most likely happen. Also, we will have reputation points which are not money. But they mean a lot for people.
Use Cases Leveraging JPEG’s Protocol
Yeah. So, by gamifying, the system without really introducing token rewards just yet. I can also see, based off looking at JPEG site, there actually are really high-quality curator on there. And I really appreciate the format of curating certain JPEGs and certain NFTs, but also creating like thought provoking, like written pieces around them, right? So, if you look at some of like the curators that you highlight in their pages, I think it’s actually really unique, it almost feels, I don’t want to say like blog esque, but it has that museum, elegant vibe to it, for the product itself. And that also, after seeing that it got me thinking like, you can absolutely use the infrastructure that you’re building to build a more web three NFT Pinterest, for example, right? And create like this more of like a gallery feed, right? Just using the metadata that you guys are kind of like are orchestrating and whatnot. I want to talk more about applications, because I think the most exciting thing for me, hosting this podcast is trying to understand, okay, there’s infrastructure, but the real use cases are going to come when people build on top of this infrastructure, right? You mentioned a few use cases in the past, we just brought up like a web three NFT Pinterest, what are some of the more not obvious use cases or applications that you’re excited to see, a founder or group of people experiment with using the JPEG protocol?
Maria Paula: Very excited about anyone that’s able to leverage JPEG for, to inform their practice and to make money and to get better at their job, you know, and just, you know, to have it as a tool, you know, a portfolio would be very exciting when it comes to artists. As a matter of fact, some artists have already been, you know, ordering some of their, like, very early works, using JPEG, and then, you know, they list them through Sora, so they can sell them in JPEG as well. I’m very excited about anything that, you know, allows people to use JPEG as a Canvas, as a portfolio, you know, a blogging platform, why don’t you? Which is something that our community manager, William, has been doing really well. I’m also excited about people that think out of the box, and, you know, they can order their, you know, collections of essays, for example, on JPEG or, you know, there’s property titles being created with NFTs. So that’s also possible. There’re use cases with NF T’s and decentralized science that will need NFTs to you know, maybe record a particular, you know, components of the research. So, you know, anything that serves to support all of that, without needing for them to use, you know, Squarespace or a blogging platform, that’s fantastic. I’m really looking forward to seeing more people do stuff with the data, with the exhibition data. Just to give you an idea, when you’re actually checking out a Sotheby’s or Christie’s NFT auction, you will see that they do a really good job at a, you know, establishing all the provenance. In NFTs they do a little bit of a shittier job with that, because their provenance is not very interesting. But if you have time, go and check the amazing work that they do with traditional art, provenance. It’s incredible. It’s a story. So, we hope that we were able to use this on chain history of provenance that we’re building because from JPEG, and this already happens, we were able to see when it was minted, who owned it, who bought it last, and who curated it as well, you know, and the more times you curate it, the more times you know, the provenance grows. So, all of that is invaluable data that an auction houses that I’ve been there for a very long time have monetized and do very well. So, we’re looking to see other people you know, like, include these kinds of like precious data into their business as well. So really anyone from trading analysts to historians?
How Creators Make Money using JPEG
Got it. So, what actually tends to be like the business model for that type of creator? So, if I’m a curator or if I’m a historian, like, how would I actually monetize something like this? What does that look like, and it may vary per crater, but I’m hoping maybe you can give some examples.
Maria Paula: For sure. So, the first one that comes to mind is the art advisor, I don’t know if you have ever heard of an art advisor, basically, they are people that go to high-net-worth individuals, and they tell them what to buy. And these people already know a lot about the history of a particular piece. There are our advisors in NFTs, good or not, and they’re very, but I think that we’re gonna be able to make their job easier. Another, you know, another one is the NFT archeologists, we discussed this in our little thing before, basically NFT archaeologists are focused on early NFTs, and probe proto NFTs. And their job is essentially to look at the documentation online. Social media forums, or Reddit is a really good one. And a lot of time looking at ether scan, to find out when things are minted, and when things are transferred. But they only focus on the digging aspect, you know, on I found these ground, now I’m selling it to you for a and you know, I’m making a deal, you know, to get a premium, the advisors also get a premium for you know, their advisory services. And so, we hope that we’re a, we’re gonna be able to add more contextual data as well, to both. And, yeah, I think those are really good examples
How to Solve Web3’s Metadata Problem
They’re solid examples, because there’s a little bit of a curator and all of us, I’ll reference like music NFTs, for example, which are really, really hot right now. There’s a lot of collectors that like to find the early artists that then they then recommend it to their friends to kind of buy, right and to co invest with and co collect with. And I think there’s a level of provenance that’s required to kind of analyze to understand what makes a music NFT more valuable than other music NFTs for example, what makes one artist more valuable. So, there’s already a lot of that happening, right. So, from what I understand JPEG is actually building the foundation, the tools to enable a more efficient system, right? To have more confidence in your curation. So that’s really cool. And I really aligned with that, because I feel like I play a certain role in trying to understand the music, NFTs that are out there, and the music artists that are out there, even like the digital artists that are out there, too. So that that makes a lot of sense. But I know a lot of platforms that are let’s say, building in the music, web two music landscape. And I guess also in the NFT ecosystem. In general, there’s an underlying problem, which you also talked about earlier, MP is the metadata problem, right? And trying to kind of like make sense of all the noise on chain. And this is something that I talked about with, I think it was Eric Ripple head of data at Zora. He’s like, maybe there needs to be some type of like, blockchain consortium of some sort, where we create standardization for how people write their smart contracts, or the entire infrastructure that kind of pertains to everything that’s happening behind the hood. What is your kind of point of view on how to solve this metadata problem? What does that really look like to you?
Maria Paula: There’s a really fun meme about standards that, you know, once you create one that everyone wants to create their own, so they actually don’t ever work. I just wanted to mention that meme. I actually do believe in standards. You know, I worked previously with a or a no computer scientists’ team. And I do think they’re helpful. I do think what Zora proposes and also, you know, the Herculean efforts that they have been doing to index NFT are going to be, you know, really like are already extremely necessary. But anything about building standards and creating consortiums will affect the NFTs that we’ll be creating from that point onwards. And of course, we don’t even know that whether those standards are going to happen or not. There has been attempts on Ethereum, it’s very hard. You know, people end up like chasing their own selfish interests. But I believe that instead of a, you know, like, if the standards don’t work, actually building infrastructure like a JPEG or like Zora. And understanding the concept of a, you know, public good, infrastructure as public good is going to be really helpful as well. Because Zora is also working retro actively to try to, you know, better index. And, you know, to try to sort of fix that metadata by indexing in a better way. And we’re working on creating a different strategy, but towards the same goal. And, of course, you know, I would love to have standards, but they take a lot of time, they take a lot of coordination. Humans are not great at coordination. I don’t know if you know. So, and, you know, sometimes when the coordination is incentivized that also doesn’t go quite right. So, I’m more optimistic about teams like Zora, and a JPEG building, you know, public goods that everyone can use, that are decentralized, that are open source, and that are accessible to everyone. And I guess that people will want to contribute, because, you know, like, web three should be, you know, if you’re contributing to web three, if you’re getting money from web three, if the creator economy of web three has actually benefited you, then it might like you might as well give something back by, you know, being an active contributor, not only an extractor, because what it’s not about monetizing, but it’s also about like, building in, you know, collectively.
How Should Creators Think About On-chain Data for Building and Monetizing Community in Web3?
I love, I love that. I think that’s a mic drop moment. And that leaves me off to my final question, okay. We’re at a state right now, where a lot of creators they’ve already minted, their first, either their, at least their first NFT. Of course, many haven’t even touched NFTs yet. But for those who have touched NFTs, who’ve started building an on-chain community, a collector base, maybe they’re approaching their second drop, how should they be thinking about on chain data as a way to further grow their community, potentially monetize your community, and just kind of like outlive this bear market that we’re all in, what do you recommend?
Maria Paula: I think everyone should try to educate themselves about the platforms that their minting on, that’s the main thing, it’s not, you don’t have to think as a creator or about on chain data, because it’s already hard enough for you, as a creator to, you know, do your work. And I think it’s very unkind to put all the responsibility on the creators hands, the platforms should do much better, you know, what happens with, for example, provenance in platforms, like nifty gateway, where it’s very opaque, even if it’s Ethereum, you know, cannot happen, and people can see that already, you know, you as a creator, if you’re minting on nifty gateway, you can already see that, you know, you can’t really easily find your NFTs, you can’t go to Open sea so easily. And you know, like, find your creation, so you should pay attention because how the works are tracked, how the information is readily available on a website, whether it’s ether scan links, open sea links, you know, the way that they work, you know, if the platform is open source or closed source. Everything you know, that’s what you should be looking, if the platform that you are working with has your best interests and the interests of your work first, then, you know than creating a closed garden because the problems happen when people can’t see things. When people come see there, where are their images stored? Where is the music store, where you know, where’s the transaction that certifies that that was bought by a legit collector and not by you know, like, you know, the marketplace and many other things? So, if you choose the platforms that are open source, decentralized and that are accessible and easy to everyone with regards to information, I don’t think you have to think about the you know, we’re on chain data per se. If you think about it, that’s great, but you don’t have to.
Okay. I think that’s a great place to end off. MP, you rock, keep at it. We’re gonna have to do this again sometime soon. But before I let you go, where can we find you? Where can we find JPEG, show it away.
Maria Paula: So, JPEG is JPG, Jpg.space. That’s our website. The Twitter is really hard because we decided to go with underscores and it’s insane that we did it, but I love it. So just go to our website, a jpg.space. And if you want to find me on Twitter, I am quite active there as well. I am @MPthereal MVP. It’s an old one. I don’t run like that. And that’s, that’s about it.
Amazing. Till next time.