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Thursday, March 25, 2021

Padres’ Fernando Tatis Jr. to Release Limited Edition Memorabilia NFTs in April

I’ve read two articles and listened to two podcasts about NFTs and I have absolutely no idea what they are or why people want them.

San Diego Padres superstar Fernando Tatis Jr. is getting into the NFT world with the announcement that he will release three limited-edition pieces in April.

Tatis announced on Thursday that he is working with Impossible Brief to put together his NFT collection:

Per MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, Tatis’ NFT collection will consist of “three open edition pieces available for a limited time, one limited edition baseball memorabilia themed piece and an ultra-rare, one-of-one.”

Tatis has emerged as arguably the face of Major League Baseball through his first two seasons with the Padres. The 22-year-old finished fourth in NL MVP voting last year after hitting .277/.366/.571 with 17 homers and 45 RBI in 59 games.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 25, 2021 at 01:55 PM | 38 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: fernando tatis, jr.

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   1. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: March 25, 2021 at 02:29 PM (#6010091)
Sounds like something Topps tried about 20 years ago called eTopps.... you could buy, sell, or trade ownership of a card you did not have possession of, but you could see an image of online. Topps kept the physical inventory in a warehouse and would ship them on request. It limped along for about a decade before Topps pulled the plug on creating any more new cards for the platform. I thought it was dumb then, and I think it's dumb now.
   2. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: March 25, 2021 at 03:07 PM (#6010109)
* Ziggy doesn't look closely at headline, reads it as "Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr. released", wonders what the hell happened *
   3. Walt Davis Posted: March 25, 2021 at 05:06 PM (#6010156)
#1 ... no, NFTs are something much "bigger" selling for outrageous prices. I understand the notion that there's no way to tell the difference between an "original" digital file and a copy and therefore burying some secret/undecipherable bits in there guarantees it's an original. So I can see how if Annie Liebovitz takes a digital photo of Beyonce and you're a collector, you want the "original" and that might be worth a lot of money (assuming Annie Liebovitz celeb photos are still a thing).

Now I'm like Retro though and I'm still not sure I get this but then I don't think the few things I've read about them have done a decent job of explaining things. Anyway, it sounds to me like people are paying big money for trash just because it's got a NFT buried in it -- i.e. a standard bit of digital rubbish that is "unique and therefore rare" just cuz it's got a secret code in it as opposed to something like a work of art that is (a) desirable as a work of art and (b) worth a LOT more if it's an "original." Y'know, something like "here's a photo of a naked Tatis rolling around in $360 M of cash" should not be worth a lot of money.

But y'know, prices is prices and if somebody's willing to pay it.
   4. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: March 25, 2021 at 05:47 PM (#6010168)
If we use the blockchain to point to some JSON on a random site then we can pretend that digital content is now no longer ubiquitous. People have lost their minds.
   5. Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: March 25, 2021 at 05:55 PM (#6010169)
This is one way to make back some portion of the money he'll pay to Big League Advance since their earnings are only tied to his MLB contracts.
   6. caspian88 Posted: March 25, 2021 at 06:16 PM (#6010171)
Basically, NFTs are an investment product reliant on a continual stream of people willing to pay for NFTs so that they can sell them to someone else.

You're not purchasing any tangible thing - you're purchasing the rights to a digital certificate issued and managed by a company that you can either brag about owning, or that you can sell to someone else so that they can either brag about owning it or sell to someone in turn.

Jack Dorsey, for example, sold the first tweet as an NFT - but of course, the buyer doesn't actually own the tweet. They own a digital certificate that is, in theory, tied to the tweet, and which is managed by a company (in this case, a private company named Cent, based in either Los Angeles or San Francisco). The digital certificate contains metadata that include an image of the tweet, the text of the tweet, the date the tweet was posted, and a "digital autograph." The buyer can't actually do anything to the tweet - Jack Dorsey could actually delete the tweet from Twitter, without any recourse for the owner of the NFT whatsoever. The company that holds the platform used to generate and sell this NFT allows you to bid on anyone's tweets, as long as they're public (they're so established and reliable that their official FAQ is actually on Google Docs).

So, you don't own anything physical, and what you own are the rights to a digital file that you can sell to someone else (and, importantly, you can't sell it for money, but rather for a cryptocurrency called "Ethereum" that you can buy for actual money), assuming someone wants to buy it.

Basically, its a pyramid scheme for people with more money than sense, and the people managing the scheme (which is perfectly legal) will get rich off it, and the people who got in first will get rich off it, and eventually it either turns into a fixture or someone winds up holding an empty digital bag. Of course, this should be patently obvious to anyone with the slightest lick of sense, and so it should be all fun and games, except that the very act of "minting" an NFT uses several hundred kilowatt-hours of electricity, pretty much at a minimum, as does transferring the NFT, all of which require the entire blockchain (essentially the electronic ledger of transactions) to be recalculated to verify integrity (that is the entire point of a proof-of-work blockchain, as used by Bitcoin, Ethereum, and so on - you prove that you expended a certain amount of computational capability, which necessarily requires the consumption of a certain amount of electricity).

Basically, minting your single NFT typically uses as much electricity as running your desktop computer for 6 hours a day, every day, for an entire year, and does that every time the NFT is transferred to another person, for the entire lifetime of this idiotic fad.

I'm moving towards the opinion that anyone who operates within the NFT world should be forbidden to access electronics of any kind.
   7. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: March 25, 2021 at 07:14 PM (#6010177)
I'm moving towards the opinion that anyone who operates within the NFT world should be forbidden to access oxygen.


Fixed.
   8. bob gee Posted: March 25, 2021 at 07:45 PM (#6010182)
And if you want to see how the speculative part of the stock market views NFTs, check out some of the following stock symbols: HOFV DLPN WKEY OCG ZKIN and TKAT (rumored to go into NFT space). There are others, those are the most recent crazy ones, especially TKAT.

   9. Walt Davis Posted: March 25, 2021 at 07:54 PM (#6010183)
Of course you could say basically the same thing about gold.

Anyway, thanks #6. And that's what I mean. I can understand (or "understand") that for a digital work of art or I suppose an historical artifact like the "first tweet", there is a "need" for some authenticity mechanism because otherwise I can just make as many copies of my naked Tatis as I want and try to pass them all off as genuine. And an NFT sounds more verifiable than getting some art expert to sign off that a standard artwork is an original.

But yes, like much of today's economy confuses me, I don't see why anybody cares about owning the NFT itself. It's like bragging that you've got the letter from the art expert stating that this Walt Davis landscape is an original then trying to sell the letter off for $1 M even though my drawing is rubbish (it would be ... as in it wouldn't even be recognizable as a landscape).
   10. . Posted: March 26, 2021 at 10:11 AM (#6010221)
But yes, like much of today's economy confuses me, I don't see why anybody cares about owning the NFT itself. It's like bragging that you've got the letter from the art expert stating that this Walt Davis landscape is an original then trying to sell the letter off for $1 M even though my drawing is rubbish (it would be ... as in it wouldn't even be recognizable as a landscape).


The "NFT" stuff gives it a modern, "fancy," touch so as to try to drive interest, but ultimately it looks like just another reprise of things like the Dutch Tulip Craze/Bubble. And of course, like bobgee noted, it will be securitized somehow and therefore the stupidity will be magnified and spread out beyond just the stupid -- just as with home mortgages ca. 1995-2006.

Only a ####### abject idiot would brag about not owning a digital picture. Idiocracy, indeed.
   11. Lassus Posted: March 26, 2021 at 10:55 AM (#6010229)
Capitalism creates idiots! Consensus!
   12. Russ Posted: March 26, 2021 at 11:20 AM (#6010239)
ISO NFT's for old BTF/Baseball Primer Threads (John Mabry in particular)
   13. DL from MN Posted: March 26, 2021 at 11:32 AM (#6010243)
Of course you could say basically the same thing about gold.


Gold has intrinsic value, necessary for electronics connections, malleable, doesn't rust, etc.

I originally thought an NFT granted the owner the rights to future revenue for the item (rebroadcast, etc). Knowing that isn't true I don't know why anyone would want this.
   14. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 26, 2021 at 11:52 AM (#6010245)
Anyway, thanks #6. And that's what I mean. I can understand (or "understand") that for a digital work of art or I suppose an historical artifact like the "first tweet", there is a "need" for some authenticity mechanism because otherwise I can just make as many copies of my naked Tatis as I want and try to pass them all off as genuine.


The whole point of Walter Benjamin's "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" -- now nearly 100 years old!! Is to discuss this concept:

"The presence of the original is the prerequisite to the concept of authenticity ... Confronted with its manual reproduction, which was usually branded as a forgery, the original preserved all of its authority; not so vis a vis technical reproduction...

The situations into which the product of mechanical reproduction can be brought may not touch the original work of art, yet the quality of its presence is always depreciated. This holds not only for the art work but also, for instance, for a landscape which passes in review before the spectator of a movie. In the case of the art object, a most sensitive nucleus -- namely its authenticity -- is interfered with, whereas no natural object is vulnerable on that score ...

One might subsume the eliminated element in the term "aura" and go on to say: that which withers in the age of mechanical reproduction is the aura of the work of art. This is a symptomatic process whose significance points beyond the realm of art. One might generalize by saying: the technique of reproduction detaches the reproduced object from the domain of tradition. By making many reproductions it substitutes a plurality of copies for a unique existence..."

Etc. etc. It's like the creators of NFT are trying to recreate "aura" despite Benjamin's warnings that "the uniqueness of a work of art is inseperable from its being embedded in the fabric of tradition" and his discussion of the cult value vs. exhibition value of a work.
   15. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: March 26, 2021 at 12:40 PM (#6010259)
I originally thought an NFT granted the owner the rights to future revenue for the item (rebroadcast, etc). Knowing that isn't true I don't know why anyone would want this.

D1ck-swinging among the nouveau riche is about all I reckon it's good for.
   16. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 26, 2021 at 12:51 PM (#6010264)
Basically, minting your single NFT typically uses as much electricity as running your desktop computer for 6 hours a day, every day, for an entire year, and does that every time the NFT is transferred to another person, for the entire lifetime of this idiotic fad.

I'm moving towards the opinion that anyone who operates within the NFT world should be forbidden to access electronics of any kind.


Pales before the waste and ecological damage of crypto-currencies. "Mining" should be taxed into oblivion.
   17. Karl from NY Posted: March 26, 2021 at 02:59 PM (#6010292)
You know, Magic the Gathering has had people buying and selling digital "cards" for forever now.
   18. DL from MN Posted: March 26, 2021 at 03:49 PM (#6010301)
You know, Magic the Gathering has had people buying and selling digital "cards" for forever now.


You can use those cards for entertainment - playing the game. This would be like Magic producing digital cards that can't be used in the game, in fact they can't be used for anything.
   19. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: March 26, 2021 at 04:06 PM (#6010305)
You know, Magic the Gathering has had people buying and selling digital "cards" for forever now.


Those people are idiots as well.

In fact, as best I can tell I'm the only non-idiot in the world. It's an incredibly heavy burden, y'all.
   20. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: March 26, 2021 at 04:25 PM (#6010311)
I don’t really see NFTs as that different from collecting anything else that has some collectible or scarcity value, other than the energy usage issues that others have mentioned. In a way, it’s all equally bewildering to me. (I’m always amused when people congratulate the winning bidder at an auction — bravo, sir, you were the biggest sucker :-). I can see some benefit in that it enables the creators of digital art to get paid for their work the way other artists do. But there are probably better ways to do this that don’t have the carbon footprint.
   21. Brian White Posted: March 26, 2021 at 09:22 PM (#6010351)
ISO NFT's for old BTF/Baseball Primer Threads (John Mabry in particular)


I bid $5 for the Mets fan self-immolation thread!
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 26, 2021 at 10:05 PM (#6010360)
I don’t really see NFTs as that different from collecting anything else that has some collectible or scarcity value,

Well, usually there's a physical item and the scarcity is real. This is completely manufactured scarcity, b/c hidden pixels don't actually make one digital image any different than another.

I mean, an actual Van Gogh painting has scarcity value as well as aesthetic value. This is like paying $1M rather than $100 for a framed Van Gogh print b/c there were some hidden pixels embedded in it.
   23. Lowry Seasoning Salt Posted: March 27, 2021 at 01:04 AM (#6010377)
Well, usually there's a physical item and the scarcity is real. This is completely manufactured scarcity, b/c hidden pixels don't actually make one digital image any different than another.


The best way I've come to think of these—not that it could ever lure me—is like autographed items. Say you have the lone autographed copy of Bob Dylan's first album. Your copy sounds the same as mine. Or you have the lone autographed copy of Don DeLillo's White Noise. It's the same novel I own. Is it better to be able to see and display Dylan's signature? I guess, but to me it's not by much.

So, yes, it is artificial scarcity, but that's not so new really, as artists have long done limited editions and such.

PS: The Primer NFT to draw the most will be RDP's "It's over. It's always been over."
   24. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 27, 2021 at 01:30 AM (#6010379)
No way. Something by Harvey’s Wallbangers, John Brattain or Jack Vincennes. (Cheers.)
   25. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 27, 2021 at 06:50 AM (#6010383)

The best way I've come to think of these—not that it could ever lure me—is like autographed items. Say you have the lone autographed copy of Bob Dylan's first album. Your copy sounds the same as mine. Or you have the lone autographed copy of Don DeLillo's White Noise.


Well, if you had that you could hold it, show the signature to others, and trade it for something else if you didn't want it anymore.

This is more like you have a letter saying "I.O.U. one autographed copy of Bob Dylan's first album."

   26. Howie Menckel Posted: March 27, 2021 at 10:50 AM (#6010397)
I take it none of you guys bought an NFL Personal Seat License, lol

that's a license to pay for season tickets

basically
you got killed if you bought one for the Oakland Raiders or for the Jets
you did ok if you bought one for the Giants
you made a lot of money if you bought one for the Bears
   27. Smitty* Posted: March 27, 2021 at 11:02 AM (#6010399)
Bidding for the NFT of the first-ever “Don’t you hate pants” post starts at $1 million.
   28. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: March 27, 2021 at 11:19 AM (#6010401)
I hate it when people like Barry Bonds & Chris Truby drive up the bidding for the NFT of the first "I hate it when people like Barry Bonds & Chris Truby" post.
   29. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: March 27, 2021 at 11:32 AM (#6010403)
The original Chris Truby post was actually a joke about Albert Belle, not Barry Bonds.

link
   30. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 27, 2021 at 11:56 AM (#6010405)
Alfonso Soriano NFTs are available.
   31. gef the talking mongoose, peppery hostile Posted: March 27, 2021 at 12:03 PM (#6010406)
The original Chris Truby post was actually a joke about Albert Belle, not Barry Bonds.


Yet another example of Bonds' cheating ways ...

Damn. Of course it was. I blame lack of sufficient caffeine.

And Mike Crudale.
   32. Walt Davis Posted: March 29, 2021 at 12:26 AM (#6010525)
Now if you've got a Dylan-autographed copy of White Noise ....

But this is partly where I get lost. I understand having some "signature" to the original digital recording of "I'm too sexy." But my understanding is that some of these NFTs are just hidden pixels in a standard bit of digital art like cat photos. Then the NFT is the thing of value, not the authentication that this is the original.
   33. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 29, 2021 at 06:39 AM (#6010527)
I take it none of you guys bought an NFL Personal Seat License, lol


Another famous scam.
   34. Charles S. is not doing chainsaw bears any more Posted: March 29, 2021 at 09:53 AM (#6010534)
The whole thing sounds like a money-laundering enterprise. Admittedly all I know about money-laundering comes from watching Ozark, but if this next season doesn't get into cryptocurrency, then Marty, Wendy and the gang are missing a golden opportunity.
   35. KronicFatigue Posted: March 29, 2021 at 10:35 AM (#6010541)
About a month ago, there was a thread on some piece of memorabilia being sold for a crazy amount of money. I complained then, as I'll complain now, that art/collectibles that have monetary "value" because of rarity are a waste of money, and it's just rich people trying to brag to other rich people. The cool stuff belongs in a museum for everyone to appreciate. THIS kinda stuff is just stupid.
   36. McCoy Posted: March 29, 2021 at 10:45 AM (#6010542)
I don't think an Alpha Black Lotus belongs in a museum.
   37. dejarouehg Posted: March 29, 2021 at 01:14 PM (#6010568)
I take it none of you guys bought an NFL Personal Seat License, lol


The ultimate proof that P.T. Barnum had a point. (The municipal example is cities that pay to build ballparks/arenas.)

Didn't the Jets deep-six this early on? Were they forced to give the suckers refunds?
   38. dejarouehg Posted: March 29, 2021 at 01:21 PM (#6010572)
The whole thing sounds like a money-laundering enterprise.


There used to be a rumor that the 1990 Jose Uribe Fleer card was being used as a money laundering instrument through EBAY. (Lots of fun articles on this one.)

Something about this seems ugly. Didn't Gronkowski do this a week or so ago?

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