Anti Viral Memes - An Experiment With Non Fungible Words

in #proofofbrain4 months ago (edited)

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I am continuing my experiments with word-based NFTs (as opposed to plain paintings or drawings) this time on OpenSea. If you're extremely curious, you can just click here to see the collection: Anti Viral Memes.

As you all know, Open Sea is the leading NFT marketplace now, with all the cool and trendy drops coming there on a regular basis. It's based on Ethereum / Polygon, and, being one of the first ones to the market, it had time to iterate quickly and refine its UI / UX, and many other processes.


I am convinced that the rise of NFTs, combined with changes in the mindset of Gen Z, will soon create forms of art that we cannot even imagine now. We're already using way more emojis that I'm comfortable with, apes or punks are considered trendy and worth millions, and people trade images of penguins or frogs for prices applied usually to real estate properties. The shift is clear.

But you know what? It's normal. Just because we are accustomed to a certain type of art, it doesn't mean it was always like this. Art, like everything else, changes, it evolves.

For instance, try to imagine for a second what a movie is. You stare for two hours at a screen with moving shapes, and that's it. Just one hundred and fifty years ago, it was simply impossible to explain this to someone. They simply couldn't understand. The closest form of related art was what we now call theater. With real people, on a stage, and an audience. How can you explain to a person from that time that people will pay money to look at a screen and then once a year even host ceremonies to reward the best moving shapes, with a prize called "Oscar"?

So, what we now seeing forming is something that doesn't exist yet. Many of the forms we see now won't survive, but some of them will. I do believe there is place in this new universe of artistic expression for word-based approaches.

The Anti Viral Memes Collection

With that in mind, I decided to create some cards, with very short pieces of content, all of them taken from some of my posts. Some of these cards have been used to promote my blog on social media, a couple of years ago, so they were already done, I didn't have to create them from scratch, I just applied some minor editing, namely I took out the web site url (not needed in this context). I also made a selection, based on what I thought it would be useful for other people.

The main idea was to create something of a text-based meme, a piece of content that can be used to reply with, on social media, but that will also preserve value in isolation. The need to own it, hence, would have been coming from both directions: social and personal.

I made a very tight selection, and I ended up with only 24 pieces.

NFT Properties

Each NFT has certain characteristics, or properties. In the case of generative art, the most popular is rarity. Since I was minting only one item from each card, it didn't make sense to have a "rarity" property.

But, because I was minting a meme, it made sense to have something like "shareable". By that, I understand how fit for a general purpose that cards is, and how broad the context in which it can be used will be. On top of that, I soon realized I can add a few others, so I came up with: "cringe", "obvious", "weird" and "rememberable".

So each card has a different set of values for each of these properties. This leaves room for a future game, in which these cards can be played, and the result of the interaction will take into account those properties. They may be used in the same collection, like against each other, or they may be used in conjunction with other collections, like associating them with Punks or Crypto Coven.


I have no idea how you set up pricing for this, but I had a thorough look at other collections, and I ended up with a "Goldilock" zone, between 0.07 and 0.1 ETH. To make things more interesting, I put them on sale via an auction, which will end up in a month. There is only one item on direct sale, to set up a floor price for the entire collection.

There is also a separate Twitter account connected with the collection, @antiviralmemes and I already started to post some of these memes on Twitter, just to see how it works.


I have zero, to be honest. It's just a learning experiment, and, so far, I had a lot of fun understanding how OpenSea works and what's the entire process.

Will get back with an update after a month, to let you know the final results of the experiment. Or sooner, if there are relevant developments.

Once again, if you want to have a look at the NFTs, spread the word about them, or who know, be the first one to own some of the weirdest art forms we are inventing, here's the link: Anti Viral Memes.