7 min read

The Web3 and AI Newsletter 8

The Web3 and AI Newsletter 8
Image generated using OpenAI's DALL-E 3

Hello, everyone, and warm welcome to all newly joined subscribers!

This is the Web3 + AI newsletter, where we explore the intersection of blockchain and artificial intelligence. It has been a pivotal week, once again, with colossal deals announced and major milestones achieved. After it, I can safely say that Web3 and AI combined are confidently stepping into the mainstream.

Thank you for being here! Let's dive in!

What's New in the Web3 + AI Startup World?

Futureverse Allies with Warner Bros. to Bring “Ready Player One” to the Metaverse

Decentralized AI gaming platform Futureverse has announced the launch of Readyverse Studios with the mission of bringing leading intellectual property and brands to the metaverse.

Readyverse Studios, a first-of-its-kind studio co-founded by Futureverse Co-Founders Shara Senderoff and Aaron McDonald, as well as Ernest Cline, the best-selling novelist and renowned creator of the groundbreaking franchise Ready Player One and Dan Farah, Ready Player One film producer.

The new company aims to bridge the gap between Hollywood and new technologies, and thus grant valuable entertainment franchises a new life and exposure to younger generations. Hollywood, on the other hand, seems glad to accept the offer, since Warner Bros. has already struck a licensing deal, and other big players are expected to follow suit.

The Readyverse will also feature licensed digital props and other intellectual property from director Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One film through a deal with distributor Warner Bros. Negotiations continue with other brands and Hollywood content studios for similar licensing deals, co-founders said.
Link to the original tweet

Fox Partners with Polygon to Fight Deepfakes, Disinformation

Media conglomerate Fox Corp. has released Verify - an open-source content and image verification protocol, built on Polygon blockchain. It will be used to identify AI-generated and deepfake media stories through on-chain data provenance and authentication.

Verify tool
The Verify Tool allows users to authenticate ownership of content published to the Verify Content Graph, where content is hashed and cryptographically signed, binding it to its verified owner.

In practice, viewers can confirm the authenticity of any digital content they come across throughout FOX media outlets by simply pasting a URL or uploading an image to Verify. Moreover, the tool is designed to be useful for other media companies as well, which is ultimately underscored by its open-source nature. Digital media businesses will be able to register content to Verify and, in addition, grant usage rights to AI platforms, so legal battles like The NYT vs. OpenAI can be avoided.

Fox Launches Tool to Verify Online Content as Authentic — and Not AI-Generated Fakes or Misinformation
Fox Corp.’s Verify protocol lets media companies register content and grant usage rights to AI platforms, and can confirm content is authentic.

According to Polygon, 89,000 pieces of content have already been registered since the release of a closed beta version of Verify in August 2023.

Link to the original tweet

This partnership represents a formal recognition of blockchain's considerable potential to certify data origination, and hopefully, will trigger other non-financial uses of the technology.

CharacterX Secures $2.8M to Boost AI & Blockchain Integration

The convergence of Web3 and AI is conquering the social networking world with CharacterX raising $2.8M in a seed round co-led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, INCE Capital, and Spark Digital Capital.

Link to the original tweet

CharacterX aims at transforming the social networking experience so that AI companions become an integral part of it, and human -AI collaborations and synergy redefine how we connect and interact. Moreover, in Q1 of 2024, the team plans to extend users' digital lives by integrating multisensory technology like voice, 3D, and Augmented Reality (AR). Blockchain technology will ensure the network's privacy, fairness, and economic sustainability.

Link to the original tweet

Octavia Attracts Private Round Investors

The Web3 AI chatbot company Octavia started 2024 strong with a series of major partnership and investment announcements. First, a private round raise by the Web3 and gaming experiences ecosystem Equinox was unveiled:

Link to the original tweet

The partnership also entails Equinox integrating Octavia's technology:

AI Moderation Integration: Equinox will push Octavia Labs’ advanced AI moderation tool within its network, enhancing community management efficiency for its diverse ecosystem projects.

Then, Octavia welcomed venture capital firm Castrum Capital as a strategic seed and private round investor:

Octavia Welcomes Castrum Capital as a Key Investor in Its Cap Table
Octavia is proud to announce a strategic partnership with Castrum Capital, a leading venture capital firm known for its dynamic role in the…

Similarly, Poolz Ventures joined Octavia's cap table with the engagement to provide technical and strategic support, and to fuel Octavia's growth and expansion to new markets. The financial dimensions of either one of these deals were not disclosed.

Octavia Labs Strengthens Cap Table with Poolz Ventures Investment
Octavia Labs is thrilled to welcome Poolz Ventures onto our cap table as a significant investment partner. This strategic alliance with…

Octavia is a cutting-age Web3 assistant that is capable, through the aggregation of multiple AI language models and data sources, of executing various tasks across trading, investing, and researching.

Streamr Unites with Arkreen to Decentralize & Monetize Green Energy Data

Decentralized data broadcaster Streamr has joined forces with Arkreen, a Web3 digital infrastructure for distributed renewable energy resources, to harness and monetize green energy data.

Link to the original tweet

The partnership involves Arkreen integrating the Streamr Software Development Kit (SDK) into its infrastructure, as well as pioneering the decentralized collection of information, so that renewable energy data is collected, shared, and utilized transparently and securely. Moreover,

This initiative aims to unlock the demand side of data monetization, providing users with conscious green data that aligns with sustainable practices.

Once the infrastructure is in place, I am sure, it won't be long until AI models are employed to enhance global climate action.

Image generated using OpenAI's DALL-E 3

Noteworthy Podcasts, Articles, Events

Spot BTC ETFs Approved!

All 11 applications for spot Bitcoin Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) were approved by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) after more than a decade of attempts. The assets begin trading today - January 11th, providing institutional and retail funds with exposure to BTC's price movements.

About a dozen companies, including BlackRock, Fidelity and Grayscale, sought to create bitcoin (BTC) ETFs. In recent days they've announced – and, in some cases, slashed – the fees they plan to charge investors, suggesting a fierce battle to win investors' money is ahead. These are spot ETFs, meaning they hold bitcoin itself, versus the already-approved bitcoin futures ETFs, which hold derivatives contracts tied to BTC.
Bitcoin ETFs Win SEC Approval, Bringing Easier Access to Biggest Cryptocurrency
The asset management industry has tried launching a spot bitcoin ETF for over a decade. Hopes are high they will lure more investors into crypto.

Remarkably, that major milestone did not go without hiccups. On Tuesday, the SEC posted on X that all spot BTC ETFs were approved, but it quickly became clear the message was fake, when SEC Chair Gary Gensler admitted that the institution's X account had been compromised. As usual, the event unleashed a wave of droll comments by the crypto community:

Link to the original tweet

Gensler's tweet was even immortalized as an Ordinals NFT 😄

Gensler’s ‘Compromised’ Bitcoin ETF Tweet Inscribed as an Ordinals NFT - Decrypt
A fake tweet sent Bitcoin’s price tumbling. Degens immortalized the SEC chair’s response as digital art.

However, people legitimately demanded that the SEC start investigating itself for market manipulation, since Gensler's tweet slashed more than $2K from BTC's price. Anyway, this has been simply the “cherry on top” of Gensler's impact on the crypto space.

Link to the original tweet

The first-ever guest article on the Web3 + AI blog is now a reality. Hanna Verbytska, Social Media Manager for tech-focused law firm Icon.Partners, kindly shared valuable bits of advice on how to navigate the stormy waters of copyright in the age of AI-generated art and content.

A Practical Guide to Copyright Protection in the AI Age
Web3 + AI’s first guest writer - Icon.Partners’ Hanna Verbytska, shares valuable advice on copyright protection in the age of AI.

If you would like to contribute engaging and informative content on topics covering Web3 and AI, don't hesitate to reach out to me!

Disclaimer: None of this should or could be considered financial advice. You should not take my words for granted, rather, do your own research (DYOR) and share your thoughts to create a fruitful discussion.