Nifty News: Ellen’s NFT auction flops, Oscars controversy, Kayne’s $1.8M sneakers and more

The much-hyped NFT sale by popular talk show host Ellen DeGeneres has fallen flat, with the comedian selling just five out of 10 available Gold editions of her “Woman With Stick Cat” nonfungible token for $2,500 on the Bitski platform. Another 64 people paid $100 each for an open Silver edition of the same NFT.

The drawing appears to have been created with minimal effort in a bid to satirize the notion that any old celebrity-peddled junk will sell as an NFT.

A Platinum video monologue about NFTs by DeGeneres fetched the highest price — $14,555. In total, the sale has raised just $33,455 for the World Central Kitchen food relief charity — even after being promoted on her nationwide talk show and to her 79 million followers on Twitter. But perhaps it was just the wrong audience.

While there was a backlash in some quarters of the crypto community against the sale, any mainstream publicity for NFTs is good publicity, right?

Charity crypto founder wanted

Lending further weight to the idea that NFT investors are getting a little more choosy, the “world’s first founding charity NFT,” Covid:aid, remains without a bid one week after opening the bidding.

Covid:aid aims to support those affected by the pandemic, and whoever buys the NFT — an image of the new charity’s logo — will also receive the coveted title of “Covid:aid Founding Crypto Philanthropist.” Originally listed at a reserve price of 1 Ether (ETH) on April 21, the reserve was dropped to 0.1 ETH the following day, but is yet to attract a bid.

Basketball warriors

The Golden State Warriors have become the first professional sports team to release its own NFT collection on OpenSea. Up for auction this week, the Legacy Collection includes tokenized championship rings and ticket stubs from iconic games dating back to 1947, as well as NFTs including some IRL experiences. The team’s interest in the space was reportedly sparked by the success of NBA Top Shot, which has made half a billion dollars in sales since launching.

World’s most expensive sneakers fractionalized

Rare sneaker platform snapped up Kanye West’s 2008 Nike Air Yeezy 1 sneakers at a Sotheby’s auction on Monday for a cool $1.8 million, making them the most expensive sneakers in history. announced plans to fractionalize them and sell the shares to the “the sneaker community.”

However, it does not appear as if the sneakers will be tokenized as NFTs — Rares’ terms and conditions do not mention digital assets, and the company’s Crunchbase profile talks about selling shares in sneakers through an app via an initial public offering. Various non-crypto fractionalized asset sites have sprung up in recent years, showing the concept is not unique to NFTs.

Oscars NFT controversy

The artist behind a surprisingly controversial Oscars NFT dedicated to the late Chadwick Boseman has apologized and vowed to make changes. Andre Oshea was commissioned by the Academy to create the artwork, which many viewers apparently took as a sure sign Boseman was going to win Best Actor… but, of course, he was beaten by Anthony Hopkins.

The NFT was criticized for its environmental impact, the fact only 50% of the proceeds were going to charity, and for “trying to capitalize both on the tragedy of Boseman’s death and the current speculative interest in NFTs,” according to Gizmodo Australia. Some took the artist to task for listing the NFT for $1.2 million since Oshea had only spent $50 to purchase the 3D model of Boseman’s head, which the NFT was based on. The artist released a statement on Tuesday apologizing for “any upset caused”:

“I now recognize that Chadwick’s face is a triggering reminder of his death rather than his life, and I will be redesigning the artwork to be auctioned off later this week.”

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