That Web3 has had a tense history with traditional media is not news. However, Time magazine has been one of the most innovative media outlets in terms of Web3 integration over the last two years. The media’s NFT attempt did $10 million in NFT sales in 2021 and has cooperated with hundreds of artists since it formally debuted The Genesis Collection for TIMEPieces, the publication’s Web3 community project, in September of last year.
President of Time Keith Grossman participated in a panel discussion at nft now and Mana Common’s The Gateway: A Web3 Metropolis today. He discussed Time’s position as an industry leader with regards to Web3, the future of journalism, the inception and development of TIMEPieces, and more before announcing his departure for the position of President of Enterprise at MoonPay.
As for TIME’s influence on Web3, “it’s easy now to be up here and brag about the success that TIME has had in the previous two years in Web3,” Grossman added. Remember that in March of 2021, when we declared our intention to join Web3 in a proper fashion, we were laughed at. Crucial, however, is the question of what is driving this. Sure it’s not the stock exchange. In what ways is Web3 genuinely supported? I got exposed to people’s online personas. In the years [before to] 2020, when we were all separated from one another, our online personae served as pleasant supplements to our flesh and blood. By the year 2020, we have accepted the fact that our online identities are just as significant as our actual ones.
In April of 2020, Grossman shared the narrative of his first forays with Web3 with the Clubhouse audience. When thinking about the future of blockchain technology, Grossman couldn’t shake the news that the inventor of the Nyan Cat meme, Chris Torres, had sold the rights to the meme on the blockchain for 300 ETH (almost $600,000) a few months earlier. Do you understand why a cat with the physique of a pop tart farting a rainbow recently sold for half a million dollars? [I asked] The memory prompted Grossman to reflect. “They stared at me like I was insane,” the speaker said.
As he spent more time on Clubhouse, Grossman began to understand the fundamentals of NFTs, such as the functionality of Web3 communities and the mechanism of token-gated access.
Time’s inaugural blockchain project
Grossman also detailed how he “stumbled” onto the potential of Web3 in a way. Oseary, who manages Bored Ape Yacht Club and Madonna among many others, held a Web3 speed dating event on Time’s behalf to gauge interest in a potential partnership. In the end, Grossman met “the only two individuals who would finally answer my call” at Time to discuss the plans for the magazine.
Grossman said, “No one would answer my call.” It’s true, I contacted everyone. Any and all systems. It seemed unlikely that anybody would take Time’s attempt to break into Web3 seriously. John Crain, CEO of SuperRare, was one of the few to take Grossman seriously and provide the magazine minting privileges on his site. Crain gave Grossman some ETH and showed him how to make a SuperRare coin. For Grossman, whose understanding of the blockchain was still developing at the time, minting meant that the token was exclusive to his account and inaccessible to everyone else.
There are two possible types of communities: those driven by greed, and those guided by shared ideals and principles.
By KEITH GROSSMAN
With this in mind, Grossman created three of the most famous covers in the history of Time magazine: “Is God Dead?” in April 1966, “Is Truth Dead?” in April 2017, and “Is Fiat Dead?” in March 2021. A fifteen thousand dollar offer for “Is God Dead” arrived not long after. The cover, in Crain’s opinion, was far more valuable than the price, therefore he suggested that Grossman withdraw his offer. After a few days of no bids on the cover (and subsequent derision from Web3 watchers and skeptics watching the magazine’s experiment play out in real time), Grossman finally got an offer for the cover, this time for $440,000.
Grossman stated, “I began to grasp better how the one-of-a-kind market operated.” “It reminds me of media’s episodic advertising,” I said. Several months later, Grossman saw that SuperRare had formed a DAO and distributed RARE, the token native to that DAO. Grossman discovered the email from SuperRare instructing him to get his tokens by searching his mailbox.
Grossman remembered, “I claimed [them], and my jaw struck the ground.” Time has accumulated $1.4 million in RARE tokens thanks to its successful use of the platform. In a flash, I had it changed to Ethereum. […] I changed it into cold hard cash. I sent $1 million to Time and kept $400,000 for myself. And that’s what got TIMEPieces off the ground. So, I never met with anybody or had any kind of interaction with a business associate. This DAO convergence is where I got the money to start TIMEPieces.
The Web 3.0 and media’s bright future
Grossman also provided insight into the present condition of Web3, highlighting the communities that have succeeded and those that have failed.
Grossman emphasized, “You can either be a greed-based community or a values-based one.” “Greed-based societies become prominent during bull markets, whereas value-based groups prevail during bad markets.” In a similar vein, the outgoing president of Time used a contrast between good and evil actors to frame his opinions on the future of journalism. According to Grossman, the emergence of citizen journalism and mob journalism might be attributed to the current post-truth climate.
Citizen journalism entails members of the public reporting on events from an impartial vantage point utilizing a tool like Etherscan. I mean, you can see it,” added Grossman. I think the clarity is one of its most attractive features. The goal of mob journalism is to get as much attention as possible by gathering as many people as possible in one place. It may be light and humorous, or even enjoyable, but it’s not journalism. The impact of citizen journalism cannot be overstated. It is commonplace in Iran. […] I’m really concerned about the anger that’s building up as a result of the gap between the disconnected reporting of traditional media and the mob journalism that’s emerged as a result of the rise of citizen journalism.
“This isn’t a crypto issue; it’s a problem with bad actors,” they said.
By KEITH GROSSMAN
Grossman compared the development of the media to the transition from horses to automobiles in the United States over the course of the last several centuries. Grossman said that throughout the first stages of continental development, horses served as the primary mode of transportation for the growing population. When trains first appeared, they served as a means of long-distance travel. Despite the widespread adoption of automobiles, the use of horses remained limited to a select few industries and demographics, with the wealthiest people having access to the most desirable models. Grossman pointed out that, in light of the widespread use of paywalls to restrict access to their material, the most high-quality media is increasingly restricted to the well-off.
It will be fascinating to observe where the media goes in the years ahead, according to Grossman, since so much will rely on the laws that are passed.
Impact of the FTX Scandal on the Media
Grossman said he was baffled as to why so many traditional media sites had been so lenient with Sam Bankman-Fried and the stunning collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX. However, he does not put much stock in conspiracy theories that suggest SBF has some kind of shady ties with the media or elected officials.
According to Grossman, who has worked in the media for decades, “there’s no scenario where journalists all meet in a room and determine anything.” There is no possible scenario in which lawmakers would treat him leniently because of the large sums of money he donated to them in the past. Honestly, I don’t believe [the media] has a good enough grasp of space to grasp the gravity of the situation. It’s hard to think that someone who utilized money for so much good could simultaneously do something so evil, given how welcome and heartening the effective altruism method he adopted is. […] The problem isn’t with the cryptography; it’s with the bad actors.
It will be interesting to see how Grossman adjusts to using MoonPay. The outgoing president of Time has the will and expertise to make the online exchange a formidable Web3 recruiter.