This YouTube video by WPBeginner explains how to make a website with WordPress in under 40 minutes. The host Christine teaches the viewer about hosting, themes, plugins, connecting the site to Google, and more. What makes WordPress so powerful is its open market of 3rd party resources; most are free, but paid upgrades are available. The video recommends certain hosting companies and apps (called plugins) and links to them on the video page.
It is more important than ever to bring your business to the internet. This video is a good introduction to website creation. To make your site into an advanced marketing and business tool, I recommend you buy my ebook, Be True, Cut Through: Quarantine Edition, available for download from my “Shop” page.
Crypto.com was created to make the world of cryptocurrency safe and accessible for everyone. This YouTube video by Brian Jung lists the app’s features. It’s easy to buy cryptocurrency with it, send and receive it, trade, and cash out. The app even offers a debit card, so you can use your asset portfolio like a bank. Crypto.com is intended to encourage mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency.
Tools: The top left and right menus of the app give you helpful tools. There is online payment, which is like Venmo for cryptocurrency. There are gift cards that let you earn cash back, and Mobile Uptime to help pay for no contract phones.
Trading: Buy currencies with a credit or debit card. Jung also explains how to transfer money from other accounts or crypto wallets. Then he goes over withdrawing currency into your other wallets or bank account. You can set trade alerts when a currency meets a certain price, and you’ll know when to buy or sell. It also has a handy pie chart to display your cryptocurrency portfolio.
Crypto.com Debit Card: You can qualify for a Crypto.com debit card by staking currencies for 6 months or more (learn about staking in this post, “What Is Staking? Passive Income With Cryptocurrency”). Different tiers of cards are available for different currency amounts or time periods. Once you have a card, you can use the app to convert any of your cryptocurrency to fiat money, and spend it when you’re out and about. This way, Crypto.com acts like an online bank.
Earn Crypto: Finally, Jung goes over ways to earn cryptocurrency with the app. You can stake it, as mentioned before, for set periods. You can’t use that currency during the staking period, but the amount will grow. Crypto.com also has a referral program in which you’re paid fiat whenever someone sign up to the app through your personal link.
Patreon, the crowdfunding platform for artists and content creators, has made dubious decisions in the last few years. Most recently, it is attempting to exert editorial control over its users’ works. In this YouTube video by Clownfish TV, the hosts Kneon and Geeky Sparkles opine why they don’t recommend Patreon anymore. They also take a critical look at its stock valuation, and recommend alternatives for people to make money online.
Patreon originated as a payment processor for online creators, providing a way for their fans to donate money, while taking a cut for itself. Many YouTubers turned to it during the “Adpocalypse,” when YouTube advertising revenue dried up. However, Patreon angered the community when it expelled Carl Benjamin, aka Sargon of Akkad, for his political views. Many users, even those who don’t agree with Sargon, left the platform in support of free speech.
Kneon and Geeky read a post by a Patreon user called Redamz, who is developing a indie video game. Patreon is trying to censor the game for being lewd, even though erotica has been a moneymaker on the site for a long time. The moderators and/or executives at Patreon do not enforce rules evenly, if they bother with them at all. This is a problem in many Silicon Valley-based companies. Redamz has already collected enough money from backers to finish his or her project, and plans to leave Patreon immediately. They do mention Patreon competitors Subscribestar and Pixiv, which have much better free speech policies.
The video then moves on to a Wall Street Journal story about Patreon winning a stock valuation of $4 billion. This is dubious considering the company’s user backlash and employee layoffs. It hasn’t been profitable in almost its entire existence. Perhaps investors see future potential as independent entertainers replace Hollywood. But Patreon is too poorly run to be trusted.
Clownfish TV run their own websites in addition to their YouTube channel. You can find web design tutorials on YouTube and make your own using WordPress, Squarespace, or Wix. Then you can create a merch store, your own donation buttons to your PayPal account or cryptocurrency wallet, and run affiliate links to products for sale and collect commissions. There is also the previously mentioned Subscribestar. It simply doesn’t pay to use Patreon as your middleman.
Last week the price of Bitcoin reached an all time high above $64,000, then quickly dropped to the upper $40,000’s. This coincided with a drop in the stock market, and both were blamed on Joe Biden’s proposals concerning capital gains tax. However, the following YouTube video by Ellio Trades Crypto explains that this cool off matches a pattern seen in past bull runs. It also explains how big account holders, called “whales,” perform tricky trades to manipulate the price of cryptocurrencies.
The first thing to understand is the stock to flow ratio. This is a model that assumes value is determined by scarcity, and is defined by the ratio of current amount of a commodity available to the flow of new production. Based on this, the group PlanB calculates a Bitcoin price target above $200,000. When PlanB looks at previous bull runs in 2013 and 2017, they match up proportionately with what we see today. They even spot big dips midway through the runs, just like what we experienced last week.
During the first phase of a bull run, crypto newcomers invest in Bitcoin, but also try out several altcoins. The experienced whales who bought the altcoins early cash out, and move their gains into Tether or other “stable coins.” A stable coin is a cryptocurrency that matches its value to a fiat currency, like the US Dollar. The video notes that giant purchases of Tether are happening as the rest of the crypto market drops.
Only a few altcoins are reliable with good fundamentals, but that’s hard for newbies to know, so they buy into whatever looks exciting. Usually, the best investment strategy is to buy into an asset a little at a time, and watch it grow. When you hold cryptocurrency for a few months, you get used to the volatility, and you’re almost certain to profit given enough time.
This YouTube video by Nick Benedetto provides a simple explanation of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), and how to make and sell them on a website called Mintable. By using blockchain technology, the same tech that powers Bitcoin, you can create digital art or collectibles that cannot be duplicated.
In a previous post, I suggested that NFT’s are in a price bubble. If you buy one at the sky high prices they’re going for, you’ll likely lose a lot of money when they drop in value. However, I still feel they have potential, they just need to increase in value naturally. Art has been an underappreciated profession for centuries, so it’s good that creators have a new way to make a living.
This YouTube video by Bellular News provides an overview of the decline of corporate made AAA video games. For a few years, giant development companies including Electronic Arts and Activision/Blizzard have inspired the wrath of YouTubers who cover the industry. AAA publishers and developers use greedy and manipulative monetization practices, and overwork their employees to the point of physical illness. These companies used to be the leaders in game quality, but today they are bloated, corrupt, and the creative talent is striking out on its own.
The video begins with Google and Amazon’s misguided ventures into gaming. Google’s Stadia platform is almost defunct, having lured in renowned game creators, wasted the time of those creators with bureaucratic fiddling, and flopped with nothing to show for it. Amazon is on track to replicating that fiasco. Jade Raymond, who Google hired to lead its development houses, has left to start her own independent studio. It will have little corporate involvement save for investments by Sony.
Speaking of Sony, however, the video moves on to the topic of crunch, and the hellish work schedule of Sony’s Naughty Dog studio when making “The Last Of Us II.” The turnover rate was shocking. Another example is Mike Laidlaw, a creative giant at Bioware who left due to parent company EA’s heavy hand, only to be blocked and pinned down at Ubisoft and its overpowered executives. Laidlaw now leads Yellow Brick Games, an independent and intentionally small company that is more in touch with its developers.
Blizzard used to be the gold standard in PC gaming, but has lost its way since it merged with Activision. Most of the individuals who made Blizzard great aren’t there anymore, they joined smaller startups. All the established AAA corporations mentioned in this video have organizational problems; they tend to promote narcissistic social climbers rather than competent employees who know what they’re doing.
Thanks to modern technology, it’s easier for smaller teams to develop quality apps and sell them outside the corporate infrastructure. This mirrors the situation in Hollywood and news media, in which truly talented creators can succeed on their own. This leaves just the hacks and bad actors to work at the legacy organizations, and it shows in their products. We’re transitioning into a new paradigm of entertainment and journalism.