It’s no surprise that billionaire Elon Musk adores memes. He constantly reposts them on Twitter, where he has 61 million followers.
Though some mind his reposting, as he often overlooks to acknowledge the original meme creators, others have benefited from Musk’s habit, including self-named “hobby artist” Eva Beylin.
Beylin was moved when Musk reposted her meme on Wednesday. “The ultimate reward of memeology is for the ultimate meme royalty to use your meme,” Beylin, 28, reports CNBC Make It.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 21, 2021
Even though Musk didn’t give her any credit, “I am over the moon,” she replies, adding that she’s a big supporter of Musk.
Beylin’s meme, which she titled “Love in The Time of Web3,” draws a cartoon couple appreciating the rates of bitcoin and ether, which are $69,000 and $4,200, apiece, in the meme. While the rate of bitcoin hasn’t hit $69,000, the numbers are an unmistakable nod to meme culture.
As the leader of The Graph Foundation, which assists blockchain data protocol The Graph, Beylin is enthusiastic about Web3, which is the decentralized emphasis of the internet that propels blockchain-based systems like NFTs.
“Love in The Time of Web3” got huge recognition following Musk’s tweet. That night, Beylin posted it as an NFT, or nonfungible token, on-site Zora, and two days later, it traded for five wrapped ether, which is about $19,800 at current value, to an unnamed buyer.
“It is surreal,” Beylin remarks.
Though it was Beylin’s thought to create the meme, she did not design the picture of the cartoon couple or edit the values of bitcoin and ether.
Beylin was motivated to create the meme after noticing a post by another Twitter user who edited the cryptocurrency rates and tweeted it as a joke.
To repay the user, who is known as @shegenerates, Beylin gave her 20% of the profits from the NFT sale. Shegenerates was okay with Beylin using her edit; she explains CNBC.
“Personally, I have [Musk] on block on Twitter, so I only viewed it after Eva [Beylin] posted about him liking it. I wish I got all those admiration myself because I can only dream how much serotonin my brain would make with all that recognition, but memes are permissionless, so it’s just fun to see things I shared around,” She generates states.
Beylin doesn’t know the inventor of the image depicting the cartoon couple. And because of the legal gray zone that NFTs exist in, it’s not obvious whether using this image violates any potential copyright laws.
With her share of the sale, Beylin plans to reinvest in other designers by buying their NFTs.
“As a hobby artist, I’d never been able to reinvest in art or have my art paid for [without NFTs]. So, my stuff has always been reinvesting back into NFTs,” she says.
The “Love in The Time of Web3” client has already relisted the meme for 69.42 wrapped ether, or about $275,000. Though it’s smaller than the buyer’s asking rate, a bidder already proposed a 6.94 wrapped ether for the meme, or about $27,500.
If it resells, Beylin will receive a 15% royalty, she says.