April 11, 2022

Celebrities & Crypto: Why Stars Go Bananas for Bored Apes

“Let’s be honest: celebrities exist to market things.”


Description/Show Notes: Nora and Scott explore the weird and wild world of celebrity NFTs, and find out why it seems like more stars are getting into the crypto business. Elizabeth Lopatto, Deputy Editor at The Verge, guides us through the murky behind-the-scenes financial relationships, and looks at how regulators are responding to a booming industry. 

Hosts: Nora Ali & Scott Rogowsky

Producer: Bella Hutchins 

Production, Mixing & Sound Design: Daniel Markus

Music: Daniel Markus & Breakmaster Cylinder

Senior Producer: Katherine Milsop

Director of Audio: Alan Haburchak

VP, Head of Multimedia: Sarah Singer 

Full transcripts for this episode below. 

Transcript

Nora Ali: From Morning Brew, this is Business Casual. The podcast that reveals the unexpected business story behind everything. I'm Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm Scott Rogowsky. Nora and I are here for your ears, bringing you conversations with creators, thinkers, and innovators who can tell us what it all means and why we should care. Now, let's get down to business. If there's one thing we've talked the most about on this podcast, Nora ...

Nora Ali: Yes?

Scott Rogowsky: What do you think it is? TikTok?

Nora Ali: TikTok slash NFTs.

Scott Rogowsky: Slash NFTs. Slash crypto. Slash Web3.

Nora Ali: It's a recurring theme, for a reason.

Scott Rogowsky: For a reason, right? It is exciting when you think about it. We're on this cutting edge of what some people are saying could be this next revolution in our lives, frankly. The way the internet truly revolutionized our lives 30 years ago. This is the new version of the new internet, that's going to even take us further and deeper away from our IRL interactions.

Nora Ali: Celebrities are trying to get ahead of it and regulation is behind. We've heard that story before, when it comes to technology. And it's important for regular people like us to be very diligent about the research we do when we buy into any of these assets.

Scott Rogowsky: Are you getting into it? Are you doing any of the funging? Non-funging?

Nora Ali: Non-funging? No, I have not minted any NFTs. I have not purchased any NFTs, but I think maybe it's time. I'm a little bit invested in crypto. I dabble. How about you?

Scott Rogowsky: I got a little crypt. I'm a crypto keeper. Are we going to do a BIZCAS coin?

Nora Ali: We should. Let's chat about it. Why not?

Scott Rogowsky: Our face is on either side of it. And then, when you can do heads or tails, you can do Scott or Nora.

Nora Ali: Exactly.

Scott Rogowsky: I want to have a physical coin. I'm still attached to physical things. Old school.

Nora Ali: I don't like physical coins. My change is all just hiding in a drawer in the back of my closet. But our convo was so fun today, Scott. It's about the burgeoning business behind celebrities shilling for crypto. There's this elaborate web of celebrities, NFT creators, crypto exchanges, and talent agencies behind all of it. We wanted to know how it's all connected, and whether any of it's legit, and how regulators plan to control it. Elizabeth Lopatto is the deputy editor at The Verge. She joined us to dive into the murky behind-the-scenes financial relationships and how policymakers and regulators are responding in this world of NFTs and crypto. Our conversation with Liz Lopatto is next after a quick break.

Scott Rogowsky: Elizabeth Lopatto, welcome to Business Casual. We're excited to talk to you about all things crypto and Web3. We are always fascinated, yet always confused about this topic. As I assume, a lot of people are. But it seems to be evolving week by week, month by month. Just last month, big news in the world of crypto: President Biden signed an executive order on ensuring responsible development of digital assets. This was seen as a win by crypto advocates, as you write. Can you help us understand the executive order and what it means for the crypto community?

Elizabeth Lopatto: This executive order, I think, was more about the tone than the substance per se. Because a lot of the stuff that's in the order is stuff that the administration had already been working on. It just provided an overview. But if you think about the way the Trump Administration handled cryptocurrency, especially on the way out the door, there was a lot of legislation that they were trying to push through really quickly. Including, in one case, over Christmas. And so, I think for a lot of the cryptocurrency folks I spoke to ... This felt like a win because it felt legitimizing. They felt like they were being treated with respect. That the technology that they had developed was something that was worth taking seriously. That in and of itself was just a victory. Because one of the things that I've noticed a lot about this space is that people really want to be taken seriously. They're sick of your jokes about internet money and they want to be treated with some respect. In this sense, that was a big part of what that order did. And it also mentioned a central bank digital currency, which for me, as a money nerd, was the most exciting part. The possibility of having a digital dollar maybe or something like that. It felt like, I think, vindication for a lot of the crypto folks I spoke to. That there was this road map for potentially approaching legitimacy. Because right now, I think a lot of people are operating in a regulatory gray area and they would prefer not to be.

Nora Ali: Legitimacy, acknowledgement is the first step. But to your point, it's still quite murky when it comes to the regulatory environment. You've dug into regulatory issues around influencer endorsements when it comes to cryptocurrencies, other digital currencies, the space broadly. Let's start with an example here. You wrote about Gwyneth Paltrow and her current avatar. Her profile picture on Twitter is a World of Women NFT. First of all, what is special about NFT profile pics or avatars on Twitter and other social platforms? And then, how do airdrops factor into all of this? I didn't know a whole lot about airdrops until I read your piece.

Elizabeth Lopatto: One of the things that Twitter now offers is that, if you have an NFT, you can use that as your profile picture. But in order to do that, your Twitter account needs to be associated with a specific wallet. The thing to know about wallets, which are where you keep your cryptocurrency, your NFTs, all of those things ... You can figure out which wallet belongs to Gwyneth Paltrow. One of the things that I think is true about celebrities is that people like to give them free things. Because if a celebrity is seen with a special purse or the right NFT or whatever, that makes other people want it, too. And so, one of the quirks of cryptocurrency is that, if your wallet is known, it's possible to airdrop stuff into it. Let's say, you're an artist. You've minted some NFTs. You want to really juice the market for your art. One way to do that is to put it in front of Gwyneth Paltrow and see if she likes it. You can just airdrop, now that you know this address, because you can see where her wallet is. Because it's hooked up to her Twitter account. Just airdrop your art into her wallet. And if she likes it and showcases it, then there's a tremendous benefit for you. It's not that different from swag bags, which are really normal at award shows.

Scott Rogowsky: Digital swag.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Exactly. But because celebrity marketing is super powerful, the FTC has a series of regulations around influencer endorsements on social media platforms. If you're getting something as a promotional consideration, or you're getting paid to advertise the product, you need to disclose this. If you think about the Matt Damon crypto.com ad ... That's an ad. You don't need to disclose it. We all know he's getting paid.

[AUDIO CLIP]

Matt Damon:... Just like you and me. As they peer over the edge, they calm their minds and steel their nerves, with four simple words that have been whispered by the intrepid since the time of the Romans. "Fortune favors the brave."

[/END AUDIO CLIP]

Elizabeth Lopatto: But if he on his Instagram account like, "Hey. Here's a cool new service I love to use." Then, he would need to disclose. Because the presumption is not necessarily that you're doing ads on your Instagram account.

Nora Ali: My favorite line in your article about the weird world of celebrity NFTs was, "Let's be honest, celebrities exist to market things. That's why they were invented by 20th century Hollywood." You also make this comparison to SPACs or special purpose acquisition companies, where there's often a celebrity involved. Is the success of NFTs, at least how it's constructed now, is it contingent on celebrity participation for that fandom and that community? This word we hear so much around NFTs, is this the default now? Having this big name attached to these big NFT situations?

Elizabeth Lopatto: That's a really good question. I think it depends on who you're trying to talk to. I was at Ethereum Denver earlier this year. There are a bunch of really enthusiastic people there, who are really big believers in cryptocurrency, in building things on-chain, all of that. You don't need a celebrity to reach those people. Those people are already bought-in. However, if you're trying to reach, for instance, my dad ... You're going to need help. He's not necessarily bought-in on cryptocurrency already. He doesn't have a wallet. You're going to have to go through this arduous process of setting one up. And so, in that sense, if want to reach the broad market ... If you want to reach your average consumer, then it seems like an easy way to bring them onboard is to bring in celebrities. That's part of what's going on here. There was a profile of Katie Haun, who is one of the big fish in the space, who's just struck out from Andreessen Horowitz to do her own crypto-focused firm for investment. It talks about her getting dinner with a bunch of celebrities and just introducing them to the NFT space, because they were really curious about it. A lot of these folks are really interested in tech, want to be involved with some of this innovative stuff. They also have money to invest. They're thinking about ways that they can invest their money. Especially, if you're an athlete. Your career's not going to be that long. It's not going to be as long as an ordinary person's career. There's only so long your body can perform at that level. And so, you're thinking about investments that might potentially carry you through the rest of your life. And so, I think that's been a big part of it. People who are curious, who are interested. Who are aware of the fleeting nature of fame, let's say, and are trying to figure out a way to invest so that they will have stuff later.

Nora Ali: Especially, when you're talking about celebrities and high profile folks ... There's also this ethical dilemma that comes up around energy cost and impact to the climate, when it comes to mining cryptocurrencies and other facets of the NFT market. Do you get a sense from your reporting that celebrities, high-profile folks, actually care about this or are paying attention to this when promoting NFTs and crypto? When many of them, at the same time, are trying to align themselves with the fight against climate change as a part of their brand as well. Does that come up?

Elizabeth Lopatto: I think the funniest time it came up was when Tesla briefly accepted bitcoin as a payment for the cars.

Nora Ali: Right. Right.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Actually, at ETHDenver, Kimbal Musk, who is the brother of Elon and sits on the board was like, "Well, we heard about the environmental stuff very fast." And I was like, "I bet you did." But I don't think that most celebrities or even most crypto companies think of the environmental costs as being much of a concern. And I'll tell you why. I hear this lip service to it, but then you ask, "Okay. Are you devoting resources to figuring this out?" They say, "Oh. Someone will." It's like, "Okay so, you're not?" Is what I'm hearing here. I feel like a lot of the talk around environment is just that. It's talk. There isn't somebody going to work. It's, "Somebody else will solve it."

Scott Rogowsky: And it's the computing power that draws on the energy grid, which is mostly powered by fossil fuels still, which is why we're having the climate discussion around cryptocurrency. Right?

Elizabeth Lopatto: That's right. As crypto supporters will tell you, loudly and at length, some crypto mining is actually from renewables. Some of it is hydroelectric power. That's true. Some of it's wind power. That's also true. But it depends on where the mining operations get set up, what this is. There are also, to be fair, knock-on effects from setting up more hydroelectric dams. Because there's an increased demand for energy. That potentially changes the environment too. It's really actually a very complex thing to think about, because it's hard to isolate this stuff out.

Scott Rogowsky: Coming back to celebrity marketing. We're talking about celebrity marketing NFTs. To compare it to Reese Witherspoon, for example, partnering with World of Women. How is that different from ... Shaquille O'Neil is a major endorser of many products? Maybe I have a fascination with him. It's true.

Nora Ali: It's always about Shaq.

Scott Rogowsky: I did name my pet bird growing up, Shaquille Cockatiel O'Neal.

Nora Ali: Oh my gosh.

Elizabeth Lopatto: That's great.

Scott Rogowsky: He's loomed large in my life since youth. But these are celebrities getting paid to promote things. Is it so shameful that they should be getting paid for their reach? Their community? No matter what it is they're doing. Whether it's pizza or Bored Apes?

Elizabeth Lopatto: I am not an expert on celebrity ethics. I just want to be clear. I don't know that it's that different. But the way that I think about it is ... Every once in a while, you'll hear about a celebrity who played a private party for, let's say, a dictator. People get really mad about that, but people generally don't have a problem with celebrities playing private parties. J.Lo plays somebody's Super Sweet 16? No one's mad. I actually think it has more to do with the association and the fact that many people are really skeptical about cryptocurrency. They think maybe cryptocurrency is a negative. That NFTs are potentially a negative, rather than the existence of celebrity endorsements at all.

Nora Ali: All right. Let's take a very quick break. More with Liz when we return. Liz, it's time for ApeCoin. You weren't going to get away from us without talking about ApeCoin. Yuga Labs, which is the folks who brought us Bored Apes and Bored Ape Yacht Club, has created something called ApeCoin. What exactly is it in simple terms? Since you are so good at explaining things to us in simple terms.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Thank you. It's a token. It's a token. The question is, what kind of token is it? I'm going to take a little detour, but I promise there's a reason for it. You may remember there was this wild craze for initial coin offerings around like 2017 or so. And there was a brief pop in Long Island Iced Tea Companies, when they renamed themselves to ... I think it was like Long Island Blockchain Tea or something. It was like a moment of froth, I would say. A lot of these ICOs, ultimately, were frowned upon by the SEC, which came after them. But the idea behind it was a cryptocurrency version of an initial public offering for stock, where you would get all these coins. Then, you could trade them, and you had a stake in whatever project it was. And so, we're going to fast forward now to 2022, when the craze right now is for something called DAOs, or decentralized autonomous organizations. You see them often in the open-source software community, because one of the problems with open-source software is that it can be hard to have incentives for people to do the right thing. And so, by creating this DAO, it lets all of these developers vote on what projects they're going to be doing next and essentially have a stake in the community. The idea is that the coin is associated with a vote. The vote steers the collective organization, the DAO. And so, because it is decentralized, there isn't necessarily a CEO who's saying, "We're going to do this next." It's the community. Yuga Labs is like, "Cool. We're going to launch the ApeCoin DAO. Every ApeCoin is a vote in the DAO, and we're going to do some cool video game stuff and some merch stuff." And if you want to have a voice in all of this, you need to have ApeCoin. They airdropped ApeCoin to people who already had Bored Apes or Mutant Apes. That was the initial thing. And then, they divvied up the rest of it between themselves, some other folks. So Animoca Brands, which is the video game that is using ApeCoin as an in-game currency, they got a chunk. I think Andreessen Horowitz got a chunk. So there's this collective around this for the organization. Because DAOs aren't really legal entities, they created what's called a wrapper, which is a foundation. The ApeCoin Foundation based in the Cayman Islands. And that foundation is the legal part of the DAO. If it wants to interact with the real world in any way, it does it through the foundation.

Nora Ali: Wow.

Scott Rogowsky: A lot of terms here to unpack. We need a glossary, Liz.

Elizabeth Lopatto: I'm so sorry.

Nora Ali: Wait. Just real quick. What is the utility here for people who have ApeCoin? You mentioned there's video game stuff, merch stuff. What is the bottom line here?

Elizabeth Lopatto: Well, that's a great question. The answer is, no one seems to know yet. You can use it as an in-game currency for Benji Bananas, which is a game made by Animoca Labs.

Nora Ali: Great.

Elizabeth Lopatto: So if you're into that, that's cool.

Nora Ali: Okay.

Elizabeth Lopatto: But you can also use it, for instance, to buy drops of Bored Ape Yacht Club merchandise, which happened last week, I think. And then, the other piece of it is there are proposals for the DAO. You can, if you have ApeCoins, you have essentially as many votes as you have ApeCoins. You can vote for specific proposals. Now, so far, most of the proposals have just been, "Here's how we want this to work. We're going to hire these people to do some infrastructure stuff. Here is how long board members get to serve on the foundation." Sort of the beginnings of some ... I hesitate to say constitution. But the setup of how this thing functions. One of the reasons it's difficult to talk about a DAO, especially at this nascent stage, is that there aren't projects that have been set up and voted on yet by the members. That we can say, "They chose to create a video game." Or, "They chose to license some IP here." Or they chose to whatever ... Because they haven't done anything yet. Because it's still setting itself up. One of the things that I've noticed though, is that ApeCoin is trading pretty briskly. I'm sure that there are some people who are using it in the video game. And there are some people who are buying it in order to buy merch. But it seems like a lot of other people are speculating about the value of this token. I don't know if that's because they want to be involved in the DAO or if they're just engaged in naked, rampant speculation, which is just another fun part of the cryptocurrency world. Or what? But there is a complex number of things that are going on with this coin. The reason I've been following it is that it's so high profile. And it's so flashy that ... I'm pretty sure that, if nothing else, they're going to get calls from regulators. Like, "Hey. Can you explain this?" And that might just be all it is. But it's also possible that regulators might take a dim view of this. And so, I've been watching this pretty closely, because I'm really interested in how it functions in reality. Because one of the things that I found in the cryptocurrency space is there's a lot of speculation about how things should or could work. And it's all pretty theoretical. Whenever there's an on-the-ground example, I watch it really closely. This strikes me as a really interesting on-the-ground example of a specific flavor of DAO. And if the SEC's like, "This is chill. We're fine with it," I think we're going to see up more things like this popping up.

Nora Ali: What do you mean by regulators might take a dim view on this? They might be skeptical or ...

Elizabeth Lopatto: The question is whether or not ApeCoin counts as a security. Obviously, it's the view of Yuga Labs and the ApeCoin Foundation that it is not. But a security ... and there is a standard definition. It's from a 1946 Supreme Court case. For instance, shares or bonds, or any of a variety of other derivatives, all count as securities. And if you think about the first DAO, which was just called DAO, it was several years back ... It was in fact a security, because it was a place for people to pool their money and then invest in things. That was explicitly part of what it was for. One of the things about ApeCoin DAO is that it very carefully is not promising a profit to anybody who owns ApeCoin. It's not meant to represent an amount of money that you put in and then you're going to get paid back. There's some question to me about how regulators are going to view this DAO. Especially, depending on what ends up coming out of it. If it's just, "You can vote on some stuff and buy a Bored Ape Yacht Club hoodie and play this video game," that seems pretty limited. I'm not sure that necessarily qualifies as a security. But I don't know. And so, this is part of what I mean about the regulatory gray area we're in. We're not totally sure how the US Government is going to treat these new things, because they're just still so new.

Scott Rogowsky: And yet, ApeCoin is being traded on an exchange like Coinbase, like a security. The volume and the movement of it is similar to shares. But like you said, there's no dividend. There's no interest rate. It is this legal gray area, but this executive order was just passed. All right. We're all in this. Right now, at this moment, the regulation's going to start happening. I guess it's like, "Check back in a year and see where this all shakes out," huh?

Elizabeth Lopatto: I think that's right. Look, to me, ApeCoin has stock vibes. I wouldn't call it a stock, but it feels stock-like. But maybe that's not ... I feel like if you're an SEC regulator, you can't be like, "Well, this has stock vibes. For this reason, we're going to regulate you." You actually do need to have some reason to get involved. I'm interested to see how this works. Often, it takes the SEC months, sometimes years, to catch up with stuff. So it might be a minute before we figure out what's going on with ApeCoin and the ApeCoin DAO. But I do find it really interesting, because I don't think it's as decentralized as people maybe expect. It's certainly not autonomous. I'm wondering if there's a way in which they're riding on this very hip word right now, "DAO," but they're just an organization. That's pretty common actually in cryptocurrency, is that there are a lot of people who are out there running DAOs that are neither decentralized nor autonomous.

Nora Ali: It's just an, "Uh-oh".

Elizabeth Lopatto: Just an, "O".

Nora Ali: Just an, "O".

Scott Rogowsky: And the people with the most holdings, the most ApeCoins, seem to be the founders or the celebrity partners. They have the most votes. It doesn't seem democratic or decentralized, like you're saying.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Right. If you look at the token distribution, there's 150 million that go to the members. The people who have the NFTs. And then, there's 150 million that go to Yuga Labs. And then, there's 80 million that go to Yuga Labs' founders. And then, there's 140 million that go to launch contributors like Andreessen Horowitz, which by the way, is an investor in Yuga Labs and Animoca. At this point, it's like, "Okay. Who actually does have control of this thing?" To me, it looks like Yuga Labs. The other thing to keep in mind is that, when you buy the Bored Ape Yacht Club merch with your ApeCoin ... Because it can only be bought with ApeCoin, or at least, the one that came out on March 28, that was the case. Who are you giving your ApeCoin to? Yuga Labs. All of these proposals were open to be voted on during this merch drop. But people were effectively giving up their votes in order to get hoodies. I don't know that decentralized is something that I would say is true of the ApeCoin DAO. I think it's fairly centralized. Because the voting itself is not on-chain, I'm not sure that it's autonomous either.

Nora Ali: We're going to take a quick break. More with Liz, when we come back. Liz, I was listening to you as a guest on The Vergecast pod from March of 2021. Over a year ago. Some of the folks you were talking to were quite skeptical about NFTs and that market overall. That it's an overheated market and it feels like we don't know where to put our dollars. Because we bought everything we could during this pandemic. Towards Amazon ... We bought everything we could. What do you think has changed a year later, as far as how maybe NFTs are perceived? Our understanding of their value, of ownership, their robustness as assets with value. What's the biggest difference now in how we look at NFTs compared to a year ago?

Elizabeth Lopatto: Well, I think one of the big things is that you're seeing a slowdown in the NFT markets. That's a change. And I don't know what that means in the long term. Because it might just be a temporary slowdown, and then people are going to go back to being very excited about these things again. The thing about money is that it's not real ... It's real enough. If I, instead of giving my landlord a check at the beginning of the month, I said, "Hey. Money's not real, so I'm not paying you," I would be in trouble. I would lose my apartment. But it's not real the way a tree is real and independent of our thoughts and feelings about it. And so, I think one of the things that's true, especially of digital assets ... It's true in the broader market as well. But it's especially true with digital assets, is that a lot of it has to do with sentiment. If you feel like this is real and you feel like this is a good investment, then it's going to be. Tinkerbell lives as long as everybody claps. There are good reasons why you might want this to be real. For instance, let's say your favorite artist isn't as big as ... I don't know. Charli XCX. It's some underground person. You know that they're not making enough money off of streams on Spotify to be an artist full-time, so you want to think about ways to fund them. That's one of the reasons you see the music industry that's gotten really heavily into NFTs. Because that is an alternate way of paying people. You have Steve Aoki, who's very in, has the A0K1VERSE and is trying to get his fans really into it. I don't know. Maybe that is something that we all agree, "Hey, there's value in allowing artists and musicians to just do that." This is a way of paying them that we all feel pretty comfortable with. They get a slice every time we resell the NFT, and that's fine. That might be something that we, as a society, decide. I don't know. But it might also be like a fad, where everybody who bought some lines of code that say they own an Ape JPEG ... Maybe all of those people are going to feel silly. The answer is, "I don't know." Again, this all has to do with whether or not we collectively decide it is real. Because money is a shared delusion. That's true of all money, not just cryptocurrency. And so, if we all collectively decide this is real, this matters, these things count ... Then, it's going to count. And if we all collectively decide, "No," then it won't.

Scott Rogowsky: Liz, we're having such a conversation with you. Honestly, this has been ... We've had a few conversations around NFTs and none have been as enlightening as this one. Because you know your stuff. The question I have for you though is, do you want to be put to the test? Are you ready for a little pop quiz, hotshot? It's time for the Liz Quiz. Quizness Casual. The Business Casual Quiz.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Oh my God.

Scott Rogowsky: With Liz. Let's get down to Lizness, baby. Our contestants today are going to be our guest, Liz Lopatto, working alongside Nora.

Elizabeth Lopatto: God. Okay.

Scott Rogowsky: For a quiz all about celebs and crypto. This is your wheelhouse, Liz. It's your time to shine. Let's get down to it. Qumero, numero uno: Which celebrity recently tweeted about getting into NFTs, but then, followed up with a tweet saying, "I've thought long and hard about NFTs, and I've decided it's not something I need to do. Praying hands emoji. Hearts emoji."?

Elizabeth Lopatto: Okay.

Scott Rogowsky: When I say recently, this is like December, January.

Nora Ali: It's multiple choice. Don't worry. Liz.

Scott Rogowsky: Multiple choice.

Nora Ali: Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: Okay. Is it A, actor Richard Karn, star of Home Improvement. B, Flea, bassist for the Red Hot Chili Peppers. C, actor and race car enthusiast, Frankie Muniz, known for being Malcolm in Malcolm in the Middle or D, singer-songwriter, Jewel. Who will save her soul?

Elizabeth Lopatto: I'm pretty sure it's A.

Nora Ali: Why? Does it ring a bell? I feel like I don't associate him with praying hands emoji, heart emoji, whatever emoji. But hey, Liz, if you have a gut feeling ...

Elizabeth Lopatto: I think I saw the tweet.

Nora Ali: All right. Well, let's lock it in, Scott. A.

Scott Rogowsky: A. You think that some 66 year old, former star of a 90 sitcom, Al Borland of Home Improvement was tweeting about NFTs? You're right. He was. It is maybe my favorite tweet ever. If you look at this picture of him, just at a restaurant by himself, smiling ... Tweeting about how he's thought long and hard about it, and it's not for him. As if the whole world was waiting with bated breath on his opinion. Whether he's going to get into the NFT space.

Elizabeth Lopatto: I love that attitude though.

Scott Rogowsky: I do.

Elizabeth Lopatto: It's so beautiful. Good for him.

Scott Rogowsky: It is. No, I'm genuinely in love with this tweet and this man.

Nora Ali: Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: Nice job, Liz. You're acing this quiz so far. Let's go to Q2. Which of the following celebs is not a part of the Bored Apes community? AKA, they do not own a Bored Ape NFT. Okay. Is it Gwyneth Paltrow, Eminem, Winona Ryder, or Steph Curry?

Elizabeth Lopatto: I think it's Winona Ryder.

Nora Ali: She's so confident.

Scott Rogowsky: I know you, Ryder.

Nora Ali: We're locking it in. Winona.

Scott Rogowsky: Locking it in. Star of Girl, Interrupted has yet to disrupt the NFT space. She is not involved with Bored Apes or NFTs to the best of our knowledge. Good for her, I say. Maybe she'll get in on the BIZCAS coin, when we launch that.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Hey.

Scott Rogowsky: You're two-for-two. Let's make it three for three.

Nora Ali: Wow.

Scott Rogowsky: In 2014, which musical artist turned down an offer to do a second live concert in exchange for 200,000 bitcoin? Was it Lindsay Lohan, Katy Perry, Lily Allen, or KT Tunstall?

Elizabeth Lopatto: Wow.

Nora Ali: They would be a multi-billionaire now.

Scott Rogowsky: Yes.

Nora Ali: Billions of dollars.

Elizabeth Lopatto: God, I don't know this at all.

Scott Rogowsky: I say, she's a beautiful girl. She's a beautiful girl.

Nora Ali: Is that a hint? Is that a hint, Scott?

Scott Rogowsky: Maybe a hint to the wrong answer.

Nora Ali: So we know what it's not.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Okay. Boy, I'm kind of leaning Katy Perry.

Nora Ali: I feel like it was ... I was going to say not Katy Perry.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Really?

Nora Ali: Because I feel like if it was Katy Perry ... I feel like I would've known about that or heard about that. I don't know.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Okay. Maybe.

Nora Ali: But if that's what you feel though, Liz, I've got to default to the guest.

Elizabeth Lopatto: No, no, no. I don't ... I just heard the names and I was like, "I don't know any of this. I don't know." This is going to be a wild guess.

Nora Ali: I think we should pick between Lindsay and Lily for some reason. Lindsay Lohan and Lily Allen.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Let's go with Lily Allen. Because I feel like, at that point, Lindsay had gotten out of music mostly. Right?

Nora Ali: I think that's fair. All right. Lily Allen. Scott?

Scott Rogowsky: Well, the woman who is slapping herself these days thinking she could have been a multi-billionaire had she accepted this offer back in 2014, happens to be Lilly Allen. You are correct. Lilly Allen. You're three for three here.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Oh, man. That's going good.

Scott Rogowsky: Liz.

Nora Ali: Wow.

Scott Rogowsky: I think we're going to have to change this to Lizness Casual. The Lizness Casual Quiz.

Nora Ali: For real.

Scott Rogowsky: In your honor.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Thank you.

Nora Ali: Liz, I don't know if you know how rare a three for three is. This is huge.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Oh my gosh. Well, this is an honor.

Nora Ali: Congratulations.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Thank you.

Scott Rogowsky: Rarer than a CryptoPunk. You got it, Liz. Amazing. Thank you for ... Honestly, this has been such a great conversation and you crushed the quiz. Couldn't have asked for a better guest.

Nora Ali: Thanks for joining us, Liz.

Elizabeth Lopatto: Such a pleasure. Thank you for having me.

Scott Rogowsky: We love hearing from our Business Casual listeners, so please hit our line. We're working on an upcoming episode about the beauty industry. We want to know. What's your favorite beauty brand? Are you a ColourPop stan? Can't get enough of Fenty beauty? Send us an email at businesscasual@morningbrew.com or DM us on Twitter @bizcasualpod, that's B-I-Zcasualpod, with your thoughts.

Nora Ali: You can also leave us a voice memo on our website, businesscasual.fm. Or give us a ring and leave us an old-fashioned voicemail. Our number is 862-295-1135. As Business Casual grows, we are excited to get to know our listeners old and new. Drop us a line and don't forget to leave your name and where you're calling or writing from, so we can hear from you in a future episode.

Scott Rogowsky: Business Casual is minted by Katherine Milsop and Bella Hutchins. Additional production of sound design and mixing by Daniel Markus. Alan Haburchak is Director of Audio of Morning Brew. Sarah Singer is our VP of Multimedia. Holly Van Leuven is our fact checker. Music in this episode from Daniel Markus and the Mysterious Breakmaster Cylinder. If you like what you heard, please follow Business Casual on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get nasty with your casty. We'd love it if you give us a great rating and a review.

Nora Ali: Thanks for listening to Business Casual. I'm Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm Scott Rogowsky.

Nora Ali: Keep it business.

Scott Rogowsky: And keep it crypto.