As Bitcoin edges closer to US$25k once again (at the time of writing), we quickly catch up with some crypto news… and who’s been saying what.


Former JPMorgan man Raoul Pal talks up NFTs

Raoul Pal, the CEO of financial media and education platform Real Vision, has shared his deep belief in the potential of non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

In his latest “Adventures in Crypto” video posted to YouTube, the former JPMorgan exec, waxed lyrical about NFTs, and Web3/crypto as a financial revolution more broadly, for nigh on an hour.

During that 60 minutes, possibly the idea that resonated most was his analogy of NFTs to “high-end property”, which he said often outperforms markets when economies recover. Pal believes the best NFTs (e.g. CryptoPunks, Bored Apes, XCOPY) could do something similar during crypto bull runs.

“So I can take my ETH and put it into a JPEG, an NFT. But why?” posited Pal, adding: “Well, because much like high-end property – and think of a Punk as a high-end property in London or New York or Hong Kong or whereve – when the economy starts booming and people have more money, they tend to buy expensive high-end property.

“And it tends to outperform the rest of the market. And I think the same thing will happen in [the] ETH economy.”

Pal also noted that: “Humans are ridiculous and we love to socially signal stuff.” And ever since he got into NFTs in a much bigger way last year, he said he’s allocated about 10% of his ETH holdings into “premium NFTs” such as CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club.

In a great explainer of NFT use-case capability, the ex hedge fund manager broke down the smart-contract functionality that NFTs possess.

“Now what’s interesting about the smart-contract element of an NFT is the fact that it kind of allows for the settlement mechanism to be automated in code and resolves without the need for a third party so you don’t need the courts, the lawyers, the notaries and the accountants.”

Essentially, NFTs are unique digital identifiers that can’t be copied. They enable, Pal said, the ability to transfer value via blockchains and automated smart contracts.


More reactions, more crypto news

Kevin O’Leary – a Canadian investor, Shark Tank TV show presenter, former FTX spokesguy and part-time Binance hater – has urged crypto exchanges in America to fall in line with regulation compliance if they want to “stay out of the way” of Gary Gensler’s rampaging SEC.

O’Leary was talking with TraderTV Live yesterday and noted that US lawmakers are “fatigued” over crypto implosions but are ready to be ruthless with non-compliant actors in the industry:

“You got to get on board with regulation, you got to stay out of the way of Gensler at the SEC and other regulators,” said O’Leary. “Those hombres ] in Washington are not happy. FTX poked the bear, the bear is awake, and it is pissed.”

O’Leary also said this, describing AI as “the next big thing” for circling vultures in the world of venture capiltalism:

Tim Berners-Lee, the godfather/creator of the World Wide Web, aka the Internet, aka the time-sucking machine you spend about 10 hours on a day, thinks buying crypto is akin to gambling. And that’s due to their speculative nature.

“It’s only speculative,” Berners-Lee told CNBC’s Beyond The Valley podcast. “Obviously, that’s really dangerous.”

Fair enough. It’s pretty hard to argue that crypto isn’t a risky investment. And, you know what, we’re not even going to try.

• The boom in Bitcoin Ordinals, which as we’ve covered with Kraken’s Jonathan Miller, are non-fungible assets “inscribed” onto individual satoshis on the Bitcoin blockchain, has created a surge in NFT activity, according to a CoinDesk article. Per Dune Analytics data, more than 154,000 Ordinals inscriptions have been created to date.

• And in further Ordinals news, a developer has ported, or adapted the open-source Ordinals project for another PoW blockchain – Litecoin, sometimes referred to the “silver” to Bitcoin’s gold 2.0.

As reported by Decrypt: “on Sunday, software engineer Anthony Guerrera launched the Litecoin Ordinals project on GitHub after forking the GitHub repository for Bitcoin Ordinals posted by Casey Rodarmor in January.”

This Ordinals thing is becoming a bit of a beast. Here’s a reminder of what they are, and why Miller thinks they’re a reasonably big deal and represent “playful innovation“.