China’s Metaverse plans: Decentralization not required

Experts say that China’s corner of the Metaverse is likely to evolve very differently to other international markets and that decentralized infrastructure may not be part of the game plan. The Sino Metaverse seems likely to repeat what happened with the web. When the internet first went mainstream in the 1990s, many people theorized that it might accelerate democracy in China. NewZoo’s 2021 trend report “Intro to the Metaverse” claimed that the Communist nation’s distaste for decentralization won’t necessarily deter it from participating in the Metaverse, but the experience may…

UN approves NFT standards initiative led by Tencent

Chinese entertainment conglomerate Tencent has been approved by the United Nations to lead a project exploring the creation of a standard technical and security framework for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) . The project, dubbed a “technical framework for DLT-based digital collection services” will be the world’s first U.N.-approved standards initiative for NFTs, according to state-owned local media. The U.N. agency for information and communication technologies, The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approved the project, which is expected to complete an initial draft by the end of 2022, according to a report from…

Tech troubles as Samsung debuts Galaxy S22 phones at Metaverse event

Samsung has unveiled its new range of Galaxy S22 premium smartphones at its virtual Samsung 837X space in the Decentraland metaverse. Over 100,000 users attended the “Samsung Unpacked 2022: The Epic Standard of Smartphone Experiences” event in the first 11 hours since it launched on Feb. 9 at 1:37PM UTC, making it one of Decentraland’s most experienced destinations to date. The South Korean multinational electronics company showcased the new Galaxy S22, Galaxy S22 Plus, and Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra on a screen in the Samsung 837X space’s “Connectivity Theatre.” Metaverse-averse…

What is a Yat and why are people paying $425K for emojis?

Will emojis become the Web3 version of a username? That’s what Nashville-based tech startup Yat believes and with 160,000 sold worth a combined $20 million, it seems plenty of ordinary people agree. A Yat is a string of between one and five emojis that can be used as your digital username, website URL and as a payment address for your digital wallet. It’s sort of a cross between a nonfungible token (NFT) and domain address — though not all Yats are tokenized. “Yat lets you use emojis as your universal…

‘Comedic rapper’ charged over Bitfinex hack laundering out on bail

New York resident Heather Morgan, 31, claims to be many things: “a serial entrepreneur, prolific writer, irreverent comedic rapper, and investor in B2B software companies with high growth potential.” But her LinkedIn bio doesn’t mention anything about her alleged capability to help launder hacked cryptocurrency. Yesterday morning, FBI agents arrested Morgan — or was it her rapper alter-ego Razzlekhan?— and her husband Ilya Lichtenstein for allegedly conspiring to launder crypto connected to the 2016 Bitfinex hack that saw 119,756 Bitcoin (BTC) drained from the crypto exchange. The pair have strongly…

Binance and YG partnership will prioritize sustainability

A new partnership between global crypto exchange Binance and South Korean entertainment company YG will see the two companies strive for a more sustainable framework for future NFTs collaborations. YG manages a number of notable Kpop stars including BLACKPINK, BIG BANG, and WINNER. The Feb. 8 announcement stated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will reportedly give Binance access to develop digital assets based on the IP (intellectual property) associated with these artists. Although the two companies didn’t provide any specific details for any upcoming NFT collections, they did confirm that…

Crypto exchange FTX.US to give away Bitcoin as part of Super Bowl ad

Cryptocurrency exchange FTX.US will be giving away free Bitcoin as part of its upcoming advertising campaign at the Feb. 13 Super Bowl LVI. However, the amount of Bitcoin given away has yet to be determined because it will depend on what time the ad runs on the East Coast. For example, if the ad runs at 8:50 PM, the Bahamian-based exchange will give away 8.50 BTC ($374,000 at current prices). But if the ad is aired later in the game — at 11 PM for example — the giveaway will…

A quarter of people will spend time in the Metaverse by 2026: Research

By 2026, 25% of people will spend at least one hour a day in the Metaverse for work, shopping, education, social, and entertainment purposes, according to new research. The Feb. 7 report by technology research and consulting company Gartner found that in anticipation of this migration to the Metaverse, brands are already building the infrastructure to allow their users to replicate their lives digitally. According to Gartner Vice President Marty Resnick, brands will need to collaborate in order to unify the Metaverse as their users continue to demand virtual, interactive,…

Protesters migrate to crypto fundraising platform following GoFundMe ban

Truckers protesting the COVID-19 vaccine mandate in Canada have turned to Bitcoin-based crowdfunding platform Tallycoin, following a barrage of mounting political pressure from all sides that culminated in GoFundMe axing their “Freedom Convoy Campaign.” GoFundMe pulled the campaign and $9 million in donations with it on Feb. 4 in response to reports of violence, which it claimed broke its terms of service. Initially, donors needed to apply to have their funds refunded. However, following a flurry of criticism, the platform backtracked on Feb. 5, deciding it would automatically refund donors…

BuzzFeed backlash after ‘doxxing’ of Bored Ape Yacht Club founders

American Internet media and entertainment company Buzzfeed has revealed the identities of two of the four original Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT collection founders “Gordon Goner” and “Gargamel” as being Greg Solano and Wylie Aronow in real life. Journalist Kate Notopoulos authored the Feb. 4 article, which was entitled “We Found The Real Names Of Bored Ape Yacht Club’s Pseudonymous Founders.” Notopoulos was able to uncover the pair’s identities by search the publicly available records of Yuga Labs, the company behind the collection. Yuga was incorporated in Delaware with…