Emily Ratajkowski Is Reclaiming Control Of Her Image By Minting It As An NFT

Image via DFree / Shutterstock.com

Emily Ratajkowski joins the likes of Kate Moss and Paris Hilton as she launches a non-fungible token (NFT) at auction house Christie’s on May 14, as part of her efforts to reclaim her own likeness and image. Titled Buying Myself Back: A Model for Redistribution, the NFT is closely-linked to an essay she published in The Cut last year.

According to The New York Times, in 2014, Ratajkowski was taken by surprise when the artist Richard Prince had reprinted one of her Instagram pictures on a large canvas, selling the photograph for US$90,000 as part of his New Portraits series. When she tried to buy the work, it had already been sold to a gallery employee. She then acquired another Prince Instagram “painting” of herself at a later date.

Ratajkowski’s NFT will feature an image of her photographed in her New York apartment, posing in front of the Richard Prince painting she bought.

In an Instagram post announcing the launch of the NFT, Ratajkowski explained: “The digital terrain should be a place where women can share their likeness as they choose, controlling the usage of their image and receiving whatever potential capital attached.”

She added, “NFTs carry the potential to allow women ongoing control over their image and the ability to receive rightful compensation for its usage and distribution.”

Buying Myself Back: A Model for Redistribution will go on sale on NFT platform OpenSea, with no opening bid listed as of now.

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A post shared by Emily Ratajkowski (@emrata)

[via The New York Times and Artnet News, cover image via DFree / Shutterstock.com]

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Banksy Painting Is Now First Physical Art Sold In Crypto By Major Auction House

Image via VanderWolf Images / Shutterstock.com

A renowned painting by the faceless street artist Banksy went off the market on Wednesday. This time, it was paid for in cryptocurrency—US$12.9 million worth of it.

The sale of the Love is in the Air canvas piece at Sotheby’s crystallized it as the first-ever physical artwork to be sold for cryptocurrency through a major auction house, The Hill reports. By association, the sale marked the debut of crypto payments for physical artwork at prominent auction houses.

The famous oil and spray paint work—which features a protester in a balaclava preparing to throw a bouquet of flowers—was projected to be sold for US$3 million to US$5 million, about 35 to 53 bitcoins, but the highest bid far surpassed the estimate and closed at US$12.9 million.

Per the terms of the sale, bidders could only offer USD, but the buyer would be given the choice to purchase the painting in either Bitcoin or Ether. It is unclear which cryptocurrency was eventually used to pay for the Banksy piece.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Sotheby's (@sothebys)

[via The Hill, cover image via VanderWolf Images / Shutterstock.com]

Instagram Hack Lets You Share Links On Stories Even Without 10K Followers

[Click here to view the video in this article]
Image via ALEX_UGALEK / Shutterstock.com

Everyone—whether small business owners, creators or anyone hoping to share an article—could benefit from the coveted ‘Swipe Up’ feature on Instagram stories that directs followers to a webpage. Unfortunately, this tool is currently only available for Instagram accounts with at least 10,000 followers.

The good news is that Instagram is testing link-sharing on stories for a broader set of users, as the company’s VP of Product Vishal Shah confirmed with The Verge. Here, links will appear as stickers that others can tap on.

While everyone else awaits for that to be an official feature, though, there are ways to add the ‘Swipe Up’ function to your Instagram stories, as social marketing tool Later reveals in a blog post. They’re not as straightforward as the feature that larger accounts are entitled to, but they’ll do if you absolutely wish to direct followers to your storefront or an article.

The trick, it seems, is to create IGTV videos, which let you add multiple clickable links to their descriptions. This turns IGTV clips into “landing pages” for your profile.

First, you’ll have to record a video that’s at least 60 seconds long and upload it as an IGTV video. You can then insert your links in the description.

To enable the ‘Swipe Up’ gesture, create an Instagram story and tap the link icon at the top of your screen, then select ‘+ IGTV Video’ and add the video you just recorded to your story.

Viewers can then swipe up your story to jump over to your IGTV video, where they’ll also be able to tap on links in the video’s caption.

For more details, head over to Later’s full blog post, where it also details a second way for anyone to add links to Instagram stories. You can also check out the video below for a step-by-step tutorial on sharing links to longform IGTV videos.

[via Later, cover image via ALEX_UGALEK / Shutterstock.com]

Instagram Lets Some Users Post From Desktop: Find Out If You’re One Of Them

Image via Postmodern Studio / Shutterstock.com

Instagram is reportedly conducting a trial that lets some users post to their feeds directly from a desktop browser. This is the first known instance in which the photo sharing platform has publicly allowed users to post an image from outside its mobile app.

Instagram confirmed the test to Engadget, saying: “We know that many people access Instagram from their computer. To improve that experience, we’re now testing the ability to create a Feed post on Instagram with their desktop browser.”

Since the pandemic hit last year, people have been spending more time on their desktops and laptops, doing everything from working to video conference and browsing the internet right from their desk. This could perhaps be a reason Instagram’s looking to expand its posting capabilities from more than just the smartphone app.

Previously, leaker Alessandro Paluzzi spotted desktop posting capabilities on Instagram, though his findings at the time only showed an internal test. Now, more selected users are seeing this new feature enabled on their desktops.

According to a test by Engadget, it appears to still be possible to upload multiple photos, edit, and apply filters to images from the desktop browser. There doesn’t seem to be any significant changes when compared to the smartphone app, either.

It’s hardly a surprise Instagram is moving in the direction of its parent company, Facebook. Earlier this week, it was also reported that the company was testing another feature that would place “suggested posts” into users’ feeds among posts they’ve chosen to follow.

As per CNET, you’ll know if you’ve been selected upon logging in, as a pop-up will appear to alert you should you have the feature.

If you’re one of the lucky ones, here’s how to post directly from your desktop:

1. You’ll see a ‘+’ button on the right corner in the top navigation bar of Instagram.com’s desktop website, between the ‘DM’ and ‘compass’ icons. Click on it.
2. Drag and drop the pictures or videos you wish to upload.
3. Make edits and/or apply filters.
4. Add your caption, geo tag, or tag others in your post.

While it’s currently unclear when both trials will be fully rolled out, it seems it won’t be too far off in the future.

NEW! @Instagram lets you create + publish posts via desktop! pic.twitter.com/JWzwKg1kyO— Matt Navarra (@MattNavarra) June 24, 2021

Now we're talking @instagram Can now upload from desktop 🤩 pic.twitter.com/d12t0VAYO5— Dean Davies (@deancdavies) June 24, 2021

Well this is a massive shift – you can now create and post Instagram photos from desktop 👀 pic.twitter.com/V7Pp0eBwwn— James Daly (@JamesDaly90) June 23, 2021

[via Engadget and CNET, cover image via Postmodern Studio / Shutterstock.com]

Paris Hilton Backs NFT Nonprofit To Fund Artists Who Want To Create Crypto Art

Image via Tim Kang

In order for artists to get their digital artworks out into cyberspace, they usually have to pay a rather pricey fee to mint their non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which not many can afford.

Now, artists can apply for the Seven Genesis Grant, funded by 28-year-old software engineer and NFT collector Tim Kang and celebrity heiress Paris Hilton.

Just last week, the Seven Genesis Grant launched its first exhibition and sale, featuring works from 317 digital artists hailing from 60 countries.

Kang first announced the grant in January, receiving over 700 applications in just two days. The idea came to him when he realized rising ‘gas’ fees (fees to mint NFTs) were a barrier to entry for artists.

“At the time, gas fees were starting to hit like a hundred dollars. That’s so much money for some people. I just wanted to make sure that there is opportunity for anyone out there, no matter where you are or what kind of background you have,” said Kang, as per Artnet News.

To date, Kang has invested approximately US$25,000 of his own money to fund the Seven Genesis Grant. He is now working with donors, including Hilton, who will guest curate the firm’s next show, Empowered, focusing on female artists.

“Paris is very kind and genuine. She’s the perfect person to do this women’s empowerment exhibition,” Kang explained.

Aside from funding artists’ minting fees, Kang says the Seven Gensis Grant is also a way to present curated NFT exhibitions. Going forward, he hopes to structure its grant programs to provide educational resources and tools to artists who lack funds.

To find out more, visit the site here.

[via Artnet News, cover image via Tim Kang]


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