Hey guys, it’s time to wake this forum up I think. BlackPool Core team has started meeting weekly to review the proposals sent by our dear community members.
It’s taken a while, but we now have a solid process to proceed with the reviews.
Without further ado, here’s the very first Community Investment Proposal for Curio Cards.
Please head over here to read the full proposal made by PrivateIdentity
The proposal has been reviewed by BlackPool Core Team on Thursday Sept 9th 2021. The team agreed to put the proposal to vote and would like the input of the community regarding the amount BlackPool shall invest in Curio Cards. As an example, we were thinking of having the following voting choices: 1. “Do not invest in Curio Cards” 2. " Invest up to 5 ETH into Curio Cards" 3. “Invest up to 10 ETH into Curio Cards” 4. “Invest up to 15 ETH into Curio Card”
The discussion is now open, and will be closed on Thursday 23rd of September, as we aim to put it to vote at this date.
Thanks for reviewing this proposal and putting it up to vote. I do believe the four categories mentioned above are good. If anyone from the community wants to ask me questions about this proposal feel free to on this forum thread or more informally in the Blackpool discord server.
Other than the original art there have been airdrops from the original artists to the card holders, although this has been for the rarer more expensive cards. But that has provided additional value to those collectors. This trend might continue and there is a community forming around these cards that makes derivatives, so the airdops of new art might continue.
As @Hazelstar has said the cards are historic collectables, I’ve uploaded an image showing the known project time line for Ethereum NFTs, Curio cards are the first known art NFTs on Ethereum and Curio cards are referenced in the ERC721 standard itself.
Fwiw Gary Vee owns a bunch of them and so do other high profile collectors, so I’m guessing projects that want their attention in the future might give special access or unlockable content to curio card holders.
Great piece, thanks for all the work and putting this together @privateidentity! As feedback I want to provide my comments below, and look forward to your thoughts on them
I think it’s an interesting proposition. Fundamentally the bet is that this is undervalued because of the recent price appreciation in cryptopunks, BAYC, etc. and that price appreciation will come as people discover this is one of the first NFT projects on ETH. I would say this is logical and worth considering, however it is also very obvious.
My concern is that when punks were pumping as an OG project, value buyers would have been looking for other OG projects at that time. Surely Curio Cards would be on everyone’s radar then? So if it’s not appreciated significantly in value during that period there has to be a further underlying reason for that. The question is: what is that reason? I don’t think that is considered in the proposal.
I would say, a lot of the hype has been around pfp projects, which Curio Cards is not. But I do think blind faith that as an original ETH NFT project it will appreciate in value is a weak argument. A lot of the proposal also focuses on Garyvee owning a few of them. I think relying on external “celebrity” pumps is also not a reliable appreciation strategy.
Subjectively, the art isn’t great. The Curio Cards aren’t really “art” and there is no real story to be picked up when looking at the cards as a set (What does a UBS logo with “BTC” replacing UBS, a card of an Apple, and a winking topless man have in common?). Each punk, while different, also looks very similar and recognisable. I don’t believe you have that kind of consistency with Curio Cards, which makes it harder to build a community and drive hype in my opinion.
I look at the discord and its not that active - there’s maybe 10-20 people discussing things out of 4.2k. Why is this?
I would also like a bit more information on the additional drops and other community things that have happened since launch. It seems that in 4 years there should have been a lot that has happened - I don’t get this sense from the investment proposal. Also, if the creators have selectively dropped items to only rare card holders this is exclusionary and not a way to build community & hype. Why buy and own a Curio Card if you community leaders may just exclude you from future drops anyway? The fun thing about an Ape is that owning one not only brings you into this community, but there has been clear and quick new things for that community to ALL participate in (BAKC and MAYC).
Looking at the DAO there have only been 2 proposals (both 5 months ago) and only 30 people voted. Those 30 people own 10-15% of the card supply by the looks. Again, that doesn’t scream “active community” to me.
Looking at supply, it appears there are ~28k cards in active supply. So it is not as supply constrained as other big projects. So you wouldn’t expect as much price appreciation as a punk or ape if there was equivalent hype/demand.
Personally I think card sets are difficult. Sets that become worth something have historically been linked to sports or a game (eg. Pokemon), where owning and trading them has value to users - rather than just being pieces of art.
In summary, I think there are a few things which make me sceptical of the value of this project, particularly community. That is the most important aspect of any project these days, and I’m not seeing a community that will drive a lot of value here.
However, this market isn’t always rational and just being an OG project COULD be enough to move price in the right direction - I just think this is a weak proposition. If any of BP is to be allocated then I would say to allocate a small amount and purchase a 2-3 of the rarest cards and hold for the long-term.
Thanks for taking the time to read the proposal and responding with your questions and comments.
Here is some additional information about Curio Cards.
They were rediscovered in March 2021 and a wrapper was made to list them on OpenSea, so the community formed from that time to now so 6 months.
To allow for effective replies to your questions and comments I’ve quoted you and responded underneath the quote. I hope its clear to all the readers.
I have posted additional resources for any readers to refer to at the bottom of this post. These resources explain the history of the collection and provide sales statistics.
“So if it’s not appreciated significantly in value during that period there has to be a further underlying reason for that. The question is: what is that reason? I don’t think that is considered in the proposal.”
More price appreciation has occurred since the time of writing the proposal, a full set went up from 155 ETH to 560 ETH. Also on October 1st a Christies auction will occur with a full set of Curio Cards.
from the proposal " The biggest potential downside is since this is fundamentally a value investment that the project remains undervalued for longer than anticipated."
“But I do think blind faith that as an original ETH NFT project it will appreciate in value is a weak argument. A lot of the proposal also focuses on Garyvee owning a few of them. I think relying on external “celebrity” pumps is also not a reliable appreciation strategy.”
Price action has revealed that blind faith isn’t required to observe a trend of price appreciation, I bring up Gary Vee as a collector of prominence. Similar to how I would mention Stephen Curry owning an Ape in a proposal I would write about BAYC. The Christies auction is another event of social proof, this makes Curio Cards one of only a few NFT collections to be sold by Sotheby’s or Christies along with CryptoPunks, Beeple and BAYC. Art block pieces are being sold that day too so I think Curio Cards are being associated with other NFTs of proven value.
“Subjectively, the art isn’t great. The Curio Cards aren’t really “art””
Art is subjective Chroma Squiggles and EtherRocks could be considered to “not really be art” as well.
“Looking at the DAO there have only been 2 proposals (both 5 months ago) and only 30 people voted. Those 30 people own 10-15% of the card supply by the looks. Again, that doesn’t scream “active community” to me.”
The DAO is just starting and getting organized like Blackpool is. The discord subjectively doesn’t look that different to most I’ve been in, tough to really know with out actual data to compare. Also the supply concentration doesn’t seem that different to most NFT projects. There are holders with multiple cards that will cause sell pressure if and when the price rises and they sell, once again that’s pretty common. Some of those large 30 holders are the original artists and they are active in the discord.
“What does a UBS logo with “BTC” replacing UBS, a card of an Apple, and a winking topless man have in common?”
The UBS logo to BTC was created by Cryptograffiti and were the designs he would apply as stickers on banks in San Francisco in 2014.
" March 13th, 2014 - Cryptograffiti’s Street Art promotes Bitcoin with Guerrilla Marketing
The intricate pieces include destructed credit cards, modified bank logos, and Bitcoin ads attached to bank buildings and ATMs."
The winking topless man is the first known gif/animation NFT on Ethereum. The cards 21, 22 and 23 are about characters that appear in stories through out the ages. Cards 1 to 10 are about the history of art with the Future card being number 10. All the pieces have meaning and effort in their creation for example cards 27, 28, 29 are physical paintings that are digitized similar to Damien Hirst’s Currency collection.
“The fun thing about an Ape is that owning one not only brings you into this community, but there has been clear and quick new things for that community to ALL participate in (BAKC and MAYC).” “particularly community. That is the most important aspect of any project these days, and I’m not seeing a community that will drive a lot of value here.”
Yes here I agree there could be more activity although the community is fun, I’ve made some derivative work myself based on the cards and posting the image got the most likes I’ve had on Twitter. Anecdotal evidence but it’s a good sign in my opinion.
Arizona Ice Tea bought a Curio Card today so hopefully the community is growing.
This report was written when that card was 0.1 ETH, they bought it for 1 ETH. That was the appreciation that occurred in about 1.5 months.
Your main criticisms appear to be about the community driving the network effects that make a project valuable. The CryptoPunk floor went from $300 to $300,000 from September 2020 to 2021. Curio Cards have moved already and most likely will correct after the Christies auction, but there appears to be long term value in the cards because of their historic nature. CryptoPunks will likely always be at a premium to Curio Cards but as the NFT space grows Curio Cards might draw the interest of collectors who prefer them over Punks and Apes even though this group of collectors is a niche segment.
Good to see the first proposal here. Also good to learn about curio cards. Well done @privateidentity.
I do share some of the same concerns as @jbaker3004. I’m not entirely convinced on the ‘firsts’ narrative, I think the recent doge fractional demonstrated that to some extent. I do accept it has some merits however. Even if only a minority of people consider blockchain ‘firsts’ valuable, this might be sufficient long-term.
I think diversification of Blackpool assets is important (and inevitable). In my opinion, these curio cards are not a bad place to start at all. The main problem I have is that I have zero awareness of the funds available to Blackpool at present. It might be easily accessible and I’ll be glad to be pointed in the right direction.
A further point around governance - I suggest we adopt a decision gating model, DG1, DG2 - via snapshot.
@0x_ql thanks for reading the proposal and taking the time to share your thoughts and suggestions.
" I think diversification of Blackpool assets is important (and inevitable). In my opinion, these curio cards are not a bad place to start at all."
I also share the goal of diversification. For example Axies have corrected in price, so the idea with these assets would be to sell them to buy more Axies assuming we have an increase in value or once the infrastructure is there on AAVE or Bunchy to borrow at a low leverage ratio against the assets to buy Axies. The reason being these cards might have enduring value like CryptoPunks appear to have which makes them a good asset to use as broad NFT market collateral, they just have a much lower floor and total market cap and thus might appreciate more relative to Punks.
" The main problem I have is that I have zero awareness of the funds available to Blackpool at present. It might be easily accessible and I’ll be glad to be pointed in the right direction."
I use the site below to see the total assets under management number for blackpool, currently there is around 15 million.
" A further point around governance - I suggest we adopt a decision gating model, DG1, DG2 - via snapshot."
After reading the voting types on snapshot I believe you are referring to what they name “Ranked choice voting” is this correct? If so I think that’s a good idea.
“Ranked choice voting (IRV)
Each voter may rank any number of choices. Votes are initially counted for each voter’s top choice. If a candidate has more than half of the vote based on first-choices, that choice wins. If not, then the choice with the fewest votes is eliminated. The voters who selected the defeated choice as a first choice then have their votes added to the totals of their next choice. This process continues until a choice has more than half of the votes. When the field is reduced to two, it has become an “instant runoff” that allows a comparison of the top two choice head-to-head.”
Well this is the first proposal and Blackpool’s core competency is gaming NFT income generation. Although there is ~69 ETH worth of collectables already owned. See the link below.
So I think the logic is to start small, we could eventually acquire a full set over time if it makes sense to. Currently the cost of a full set is 807 ETH using the list prices and 570 ETH using the last sale prices. Purchasing a full set for these amounts would be a very aggressive amount to allocate on the first proposal.
My suggestion would be to buy card no 1 the apple card, since it has the history of the 1st. Then the cryptograffiti cards 11, 12 and 13 since they make a subset from the collection. Also card 10 the future would be good since we could buy multiple copies with the idea to sell some to collectors wanting to own the first 10 cards in the future.
But we can do an in depth analysis of which cards are the best to buy at the time if and when the proposal is voted on and passes.
Hey there PrivateIdentity, thanks a lot for your research and for submitting them to the discussion.
As we are approaching the beginning of the vote, let’s define the parameters of your proposal for the vote:
You’ll need to put your proposal to the vote here: Snapshot
Let’s have a multiple choice with the different thresholds: 1. “Do not invest in Curio Cards” 2. " Invest up to 5 ETH into Curio Cards" 3. “Invest up to 10 ETH into Curio Cards” 4. “Invest up to 15 ETH into Curio Card”
I did some research and have charted the card distribution if anyone is interested. 84% of the owners own between 1 to 4 cards, that seems healthy to me. Below is the google sheet with this data and 3 charts of the distribution.
Recommendation: These sellers typically sell to bids within 20% of the floor and is sets - so if you are looking for the perfect entry, wait for some market FUD and let the whole set to dip; then be the 2nd or 3rd bidder.
Excellent research, assuming the proposal passes I think it would be a good idea for you to help with the trade execution if that’s something you have interest in and time for.
I also want to analyse which cards represent the best value. So maybe together we could identify which are the best cards then for example we could put bids 20% below the market on a pullback in the cards. or whatever you determined would be likely to get us the best purchase price.