The $500,000 Meme | M.AD Monday Newsletter

Share Post

There are moments you can spot the beginning of a whole new movement. That first crest of a massive wave. Our main topics today, NFTs and Deep Fakes, are both at major inflection points. And as a creative, you should be aware of what's going on...

 

The $500,000 GIF

Copyright and ownership have always been thorny issues online.

NFTs might be the solution.

An NFT is a non-fungible token—essentially, an unreplicable digital asset. They're part of a blockchain and noted in a digital ledger, like bitcoin (or Doge). But unlike cryptocurrencies, the whole deal here is that the NFT is not transferable. It has value because of its scarcity: in theory, each NFT is unique.

So what's the point? Well, last week Nyan Cat sold for $500,000 dollars.

Or, to be more accurate, the original designer behind Nyan Cat (the iconic pop-tart-cat hybrid) created and sold a special, 10th-anniversary edition of his most beloved creation for 300 Ether.

But it's not a one-off occurrence. Crypto art is a serious trend, as is the wider marketplace for crypto-collectibles. Last year Beeple, a digital artist popular on Instagram, sold more than $3.5 million worth of crypto-art. And recently, the NBA partnered with Dapper Labs (an experience creator of digital collectibles) to launch TopShots, a marketplace where fans can buy the rights to iconic basketball moments.

What's strange, as The Verge pointed out, is that simply owning an NFT doesn't really stop your property being replicated online. Screenshots still exist.

But in a way, that's no different than offline art. There's nothing preventing you from selling a photo of the Mona Lisa (well, besides an angry guard at the Louvre). Except no-one would buy it...because the value is in owning the original. NFTs might finally bring that same logic to digital art.

The Age of the Deep Fake

CreativeBloq dedicated an article this week to a strange and sudden trend on TikTok: dozens of innocuous videos featuring Tom Cruise doing nothing much at all.

What's interesting is that it's not Tom Cruise. The videos are all Deep Fakes. And they're all eerily, unprecedently convincing.

You've probably heard about Deep Fakes. You've probably seen some of the hand-wringing about their terrifying potential. But like any new (and potentially dangerous) technology, it's easy to not think about them...until, all of a sudden, they go mainstream.

Well, to that point, take a look at Mountain Dew's campaign from February, featuring the beloved (and very much deceased) Bob Ross.

Mountain Dew worked with the Bob Ross Foundation to produce a believable digital representation of the late-artist, with a tie-in to the Dew.

It's not necessarily the most impressive example of CGI-reanimation. From Star Wars to James Dean, there's plenty of examples of long-dead actors returning to the screen. But there's something about the mundaneness of a Mountain Dew commercial that seems to hit the message home: we're truly entering the Age of the Deep Fake.

Assets for Creatives

Moving away from the high-tech world of tomorrow and into the concrete world of today: how about a curated list of creative opportunities for young up-and-comers?

Bernice Chao is a Creative Director at R/GA. Beyond incredible work for the likes of HBO, Google, and Sony, she also takes the time to update a monthly list of open internships, competitions, events, and general opportunities for those looking to boost their creative career.

Enjoyed The Read?

Grab a free course brochure

Enter your email and download your brochure of choice. You’ll find all the info you need to jump into a new creative career.

JOIN THE CREATIVE NETWORK

Add yourself to the list of 60,000 creatives getting the weekly Miami Ad School newsletter.

NETWORKING AND INSPIRATION FOR CREATIVES​

Meet creatives and see student work at MADE IN…
(by Miami Ad School

MADE IN Atlanta, June 7

UPCOMING ONLINE EVENTS TO BOOST YOUR CREATIVE CAREER

Getting a Job in Advertising
Thursday, May 2nd: 12:30 EST

Advertising 101 – A Day in the Agency
Thursday, May 9th, 12:30 EST

Cultivating Your Social Content (and Community)
Thursday, May 16th: 12:30 EST

The Power of Design by Hank Richardson
Thursday, May 23rd: 12:30 EST

Strategy today – A Global Perspective
Thursday, May 30th: 12:30 EST

Grads from MAS – Alumni Stories
Thursday, June 6th: 12:30 EST

3 Portfolio Tips to Get You Hired
Thursday, June 13th: 12:30 EST

Advertising, Marketing & AI
Thursday, June 20th: 12:30 EST

Ready for a new career?
Apply by July 2024.

Join Miami Ad School and get paid for your creativity.

  • Learn from the best.
  • Develop your skills.
  • Become who you’re meant to be.

Schedule a Call

This is your chance to meet a MAD career advisor. They can answer all your questions about the application process, choosing a speciality, and building your career.