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Even the scariest thing you see tonight has nothing on the fears that creep up when diving into Web3.
It’s Halloween. A night of frights, fears and freaks. But a new survey from BlockFi shows that a lot of people reading this newsletter are scared outside of this holiday: Only 21% of women reported that they feel welcome in the crypto community and less than half of women feel financially secure in the space. Talk about spooky.
This all inspired us to check in with our community to confront — and take down — their biggest fears when jumping into Web3. Here are a few that stood out.
Starting in the first place
Jackie Courtney had a long list of fears when starting out in Web3. Her first time minting, her first time transferring funds from Coinbase to Metamask and really any time she transfers NFTs she cares about between wallets, she gets a little scared. But none of those fears compared to when she started to have to tell people that she was working in Web3.
The founder of Qualia, a Web3 group incubating art, fashion and design brands, said she faced major imposter syndrome, until she realized everyone in the space is suffering from some vein of the same feeling.
“One of my mantras is ‘find the next puzzle piece’ and it guides me when I feel stuck or when I feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of the challenge,” she said. “The people that I met once I did start to connect, and sharing with them, learning from them, that also helped me feel connected and ready.”
Even people like Web3 Influencer Zeneca had to push beyond fears to keep going. When he launched The 333 Club, minting was very slow and he was immediately filled with the thought that he made a big mistake, he would fail and all his doubters were right.
After spending a few hours curled up on the couch, Zeneca got to work. He made a plan to manually reach out to over a thousand people who had indicated interest and support.
“I just got to work,” he said. “I learned that there's no problem that's unsolvable and the most important thing is to ‘feel your feels’ then come up with a plan and put it into action.”
Sierra Nawabi, the founder of Good Juu Juu, had a similar realization when she turned her crystal business into an NFT project. She had seen posts equating NFTs to Ponzi schemes and worried that if she launched a collection, she’d alienate her original customer base. Even with the detractors, she decided to push forward.
“It takes time but if you’ve created something of value people will find you,” she said. “But that also requires you to not give up. This has been a lesson in both patience and persistence.”
Going all in
As a long-time startup lawyer, Lindsey Haswell was used to learning about new subjects. But the regulations in Web3 are immensely technical. Most lawyers in the space had spent years in financial services, a background Lindsey did not have.
Despite her fears, she pushed forward, finding talented Web3 lawyers to help mentor her and read everything she could find. She even took a crypto coding class online at MIT. Her hard work paid off: Haswell is now Chief Legal & Administrative Officer at Blockchain.com.
“I asked a lot of questions, googled every unfamiliar word I heard, and eventually realized that nobody really is an expert in this space yet, given how nascent it is,” she said.
Elon’s Twitter. After a six-month saga, Elon Musk has completed his takeover of Twitter, firing many top executives and threatening more layoffs. Many crypto enthusiasts are celebrating the news after Musk hinted at putting the social network on the blockchain. Dogecoin, a token made famous by Musk, was up as much as 40% after the Twitter deal closed.
40,000 words. For only the second time in its nearly 100-year history, Bloomberg Businessweek devoted an entire magazine to one topic: Crypto. TLDR: Life as we know it is built on a series of databases. Crypto is the latest one that may just take over.
Apple’s NFTs catch. Apple will allow Web3 apps in its store to list, mint and transfer data… but that’s it. NFTs within the Apple Store will not be able to unlock any additional features or functionality within the app itself.
Big phish, bigger hack. Crypto exchange FTX — led by CEO Sam Bankman-Fried — will compensate account holders impacted by a recent phishing incident a total of about $6 million. Meanwhile, Binance may be close to identifying the hacker who stole $570 million from the platform.
‘Worst possible time?’ VC giant a16z’s flagship crypto fund lost about 40% of its value in the first half of this year as the market took a massive hit as well. The firm reportedly lost $2.9 billion just on Coinbase. Lead crypto investor Chris Dixon doesn’t appear to be worried: “We have a very long-term horizon,” he said.
BofA: Bitcoin’s the next gold? Despite the volatility of the world’s largest cryptocurrency, analysts for Bank of America on a recent investor call equated Bitcoin to gold, suggesting it may be used as a hedge against the wider market.
LooksRare drops mandate. The NFT marketplace will no longer mandate royalty fees for creators, further dampening the revenue sources for artists in Web3.
For More: Zero Royalties Hurts Diverse Creators
A safer space. NFT project Outlaw Rising serves as a funding vehicle for community organizations and initiatives that are working towards bringing greater equity and accessibility across society’s industrial complexes. Contributor Karie Fugett profiles founder Tsz Lok Leung in our latest Creator Spotlight.
Connecting 1.1 billion. Mention Web3 and wealth creation, and most picture a bunch of dudes trading pictures of monkeys, seemingly creating money out of thin air. But imagine a world where wealth is created at scale and distributed directly to the billions of people who need it most. That’s possible thanks to Web3, writes Contributor Sam Flanagan.
Web3 Entrepreneur Shira Lazar jumped into the space after a career in media to bridge the gap between industry, creators and consumers. “Don't get lost in the idea that you’re not technical enough,” she told BFF. “This space is not just about tech; it is about culture, community and it intersects with any industry.”
Peak6 Founder Jenny Just gave a talk recently on the TEDxChicago stage. Her message to the audience was both compelling and insightful: If you want to empower women, teach them how to play poker.
Congratulations to BFF community member Elif Hiz who launched her first NFT collection, WAGMIs, last week!
Thanks for reading! We’d love to hear from you. Feel free to let us know what you think of this newsletter and what you’d like to see from it in the future by replying directly.
This newsletter and all the information in it does not constitute financial advice. If you don’t want to invest money or time in Web3, you don’t have to. As always: Do your own research.