Welcome back and Happy Holidays! Here at MSQ we cover everything from DeFi and NFTs to Blockchain Games and Wallets. From Monday to Friday, we bring you some of our top finds from across the cryptosphere and serve it up to you in the most fun and entertaining way possible. In today’s special holiday edition, we’re featuring the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly sides of NFT Communities!
A Look Back
The world has changed a lot over the past few years—we work differently, eat differently, shop differently; even the way we enjoy entertainment has evolved. That’s not to say we weren’t already on this course to begin with, but the rate of change has undoubtedly accelerated, and 2021 was no exception.
Your friends, your colleagues, the relationships around you have likely changed as well. Perhaps this helps explain why online communities have flourished recently. Humans are social creatures, and a group identity, belonging to something bigger, is in our DNA. We’ve discovered new ways to navigate our increasingly techno-integrated lives and learnt how to connect more meaningfully despite the distances between us.
I spent quite a bit of 2021 in and around online communities looking for NFT projects to write about, and something I couldn’t help but notice is that many feel like an echo chamber where voices get lost while others should simply be avoided all together. However, there are a great deal many that feel like home…
It’s no surprise that being part of a good community is great for our mental health, and conversely, toxic environments only serve to isolate and alienate people. In a world that’s changed so much so quickly, it’s important to recognize and engage in meaningful and supportive communities. So today, we take a closer look at the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly sides of NFT communities.
As Maya Angelou once stated, ‘The ache for home lives in all of us,’ and this rings truer than ever as of late. Home is what great communities feel like, a place we feel accepted no matter what we’re going through. We’re all on different paths, and that’s something the good ones understand. They welcome us with open arms and take us as we are. These are the kinds of communities where you end up bonding with others, many times becoming friends across various social media platforms, DMing each other new projects, or just to check in and say hello.
Another thing I absolutely love to see while exploring new communities is people being supportive and collaborative. ‘Yes. This is how it should be!’ I often find myself thinking. This is one of the most important things I take into consideration when choosing a project to write about too—members going out of their way to help others, whether they’re new to the scene or have been there since the beginning; collaborating and intermingling with other projects and communities, forging new partnerships along the way. These are exactly the kinds of things that grow a community and, more importantly, what we all need—a good place to call home.
I’ve also gone into communities where I feel my voice gets lost in the static. While this can sometimes be the result of a massive membership, more often than not, it’s because there’s a lack of empathy among its members. Genuine questions, praise, dissent, requests for help; they are all treated equally in that they are all readily dismissed. Others are either too busy or good to reply or be even remotely welcoming.
These are the places where you’ll find that tribalism, hype, and calls of mooning aren’t merely present, but the status quo. Some of the most promising projects devolve into echo chambers, and it’s unfortunate to see. There’s so much potential if only people would lighten up and be friendly to each other. Projects and communities where attitudes like these are the most prevalent are best to be avoided. A calm headspace just isn’t worth sacrificing—your time is better spent elsewhere!
The Facebooks of the NFT world. I can usually spot these communities right away, and it’s not difficult once you’ve seen it. All dissension and legitimate concerns aren’t just ignored; users are outright and immediately perma-banned. There’s hostility and petty in-fighting, arguments over whether or not the project is a rug…it’s all manner of ridiculousness and nothing but radio silence from the team.
These communities are the ones that throw up all of the red flags. I’ve sadly seen many ignoring their gut and holding onto hope that they’re not throwing precious time and energy into a lost cause. You can almost hear the doubt in each of their comments. It’s painful to watch, and you just end up feeling bad to watch seemingly good people get gaslit by what almost always end up, indeed, being a rug, or at worst, a slow rug. Avoid these spaces like the plague. If you’re already in too deep, it’s never too late. There are plenty of places out there that are ready and willing to welcome you with open arms.
Even the greatest of projects and communities can have elements that are good, bad, or ugly, but what’s important is which way the scales tip and how each member chooses to handle the negativity. I’m sure many of you are familiar with the saying, ‘If you want to go further, go together.’ And while its origin is, ironically, a subject of debate, what should matter is that it’s correct. Humanity thrives on cooperation, and a lack thereof inevitably leads to ruin. So it’s important to remember now, more than ever, to cut each other some slack. We’re all battling something. So in the immortal words of Bill S. Preston, Esquire…
Thanks again for stopping by, MSQ fam. As quickly as this year went by, we certainly learned a lot. There’s plenty to look forward to in 2022, and we hope to see you right back here as we continue to bring you the latest and greatest in NFTs, Blockchain gaming, and more!
Happy Holidays, and a Happy New Year! 🥳