Who is MetaKovan?
Image: Emily Morter / Protocol
Good morning! This Monday, tech employees think their industry is too powerful, Dapper Labs wants to turn NBA Top Shot into the future of the crypto world, what we know about the "Everydays" buyer and a new development in the Theranos trial.
We hear a lot from the Jack Dorseys and Sundar Pichais of the world, but what do the thousands of other employees at tech companies actually think about the big issues facing the industry? That's what Protocol asked 1,504 tech employees at all levels, from all over the U.S.
A few highlights from the survey, which you can read in its entirety on Protocol:
One overarching narrative that sticks out here: While executives might like to think that the employees staging walkouts and complaining about working on government projects are just a loud minority that doesn't actually represent the team as a whole, they're wrong.
Like so many overnight successes, NFTs have been around longer than most people realize. Dapper Labs — which owns NBA Top Shot, the most successful and important platform in the space right now — knows the history better than most. As Protocol | Fintech's Tomio Geron writes, Top Shot isn't even Dapper's first shot at this.
Top Shot is booming, but Dapper won't stop there. The company did $232 million in sales in February (up more than 5x from January), and is potentially about to be valued at $2 billion.
This is one of the great questions facing the decentralized future: What does the stack look like? There are protocols like IPFS hoping to underpin everything, while some companies are effectively trying to reinvent not just the wheel but the tire, the rubber, even the whole idea of a circle. Someday there will be a few standards, but until then there will be chaos.
It's fitting, in a way, that we don't know the identity of "MetaKovan," the person who spent $69 million on Beeple's "Everydays" NFT last week. The crypto world is filled with pseudonymous celebrities, all the way back to Satoshi Nakamoto.
That said, here's what we do know about the mysterious MetaKovan:
As for who he really is? One particularly convincing theory: MetaKovan might be Vignesh Sundaresan, the Singapore-based CEO of Portkey Technologies and longtime Ethereum believer. Castor pointed out that Sundaresan's history, interests and even voice match MetaKovan's story. But I wouldn't bet my life on it. Remember all the people claiming to be Satoshi, and all the times their identity has been "discovered" incorrectly?
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act is the most-discussed and least-understood law governing the modern internet. This event will delve into the future of Section 230 and how to change the law without compromising the internet as we know it. Join Protocol's Emily Birnbaum and Issie Lapowsky in conversation with Senator Mark Warner. This event is presented by Internet Association.
In a talk with Tyler Cowen, Patrick Collison said ByteDance's CEO was dealing with many of tech's most important issues, and doing a great job:
The end of one company's dominance over the EV market can't come soon enough, Panasonic's Kazuhiro Tsuga said:
Being rational in an irrational market can crush you, Indie.vc's Bryce Roberts said:
Elon Musk and Zach Kirkhorn have new titles at Tesla, and they're a lot:
It's virtual SXSW week! No Austin, no tacos, but lots of speakers and comedy and stuff to see starting tomorrow.
Samsung's having an event on Wednesday, reportedly to launch some lower-end phones. And if Apple's having an event this month, we'll likely hear about it this week.
Patrick Mahomes, NFL quarterback superstar, is getting in the NFT game. He announced the "Museum of Mahomes" on Friday, with a number of collectibles going up for auction this week. (And if the digital art isn't good enough for you, he's also giving away signed helmets and jerseys to buyers.) Though, to be fair, Rob Gronkowski did beat him to the punch. Just rubbing it in after the Super Bowl win, I guess.
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Today's Source Code was written by David Pierce, with help from Anna Kramer and Shakeel Hashim. Thoughts, questions, tips? Send them to email@example.com, or our tips line, firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy your day; see you tomorrow.