LooksRare NFT Marketplace Upgrades to Version 2, Reducing Fees by 75%

LooksRare, a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace, has announced an upgrade to version 2. The company revealed that the new platform would reduce fees by 75% and implement several other features. The previous version, LooksRare v1, charged 2% per trade, but this has now been reduced to 0.5% in version 2. In addition, the new version has more gas-efficient contracts, allowing users to save approximately 30% on gas fees versus the previous version of the app.

The LooksRare team explained that in version 2, sellers receive Ether (ETH) instead of Wrapped Ether (WETH) for most sales. The smart contracts also allow for bulk buying and selling orders if a user wants to place multiple trades simultaneously. Furthermore, aggregators can now implement custom recipients, allowing users to buy an NFT with one wallet but send it to another.

Sellers can now list their NFTs for sale in token prices instead of ETH. This includes the option to list an NFT for a fixed U.S. dollar price to be paid in equivalent ETH.

LooksRare v1 will be sunsetted, according to the team’s separate April 7 post. On April 12, the app’s front end will no longer allow users to post version 1 auctions through the public API. All current v1 auctions will be removed from the website at 10:00 am UTC on April 13, and the smart contracts themselves will be disabled through an admin function at 11:00 am UTC.

The announcement of the upgrade has received mostly positive reactions, as many LooksRare users believe the new features will provide a strong challenge to competitors such as OpenSea and Blur. However, some users have expressed doubts that v2 will be enough of a change to attract users from other platforms. These users have cited the lack of good token incentives and the inability to list enough collections as potential issues.

Despite some controversy in October when the company decided to eliminate creator royalties, LooksRare has benefited from the recent boom in NFT prices. The company’s latest upgrade to version 2 shows its commitment to providing users with an efficient and cost-effective NFT marketplace.


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LooksRare Version 2 Upgrades NFT Marketplace

In an effort to provide a better user experience, LooksRare has released version 2 of its NFT marketplace, which includes several new features and improvements. One of the most significant changes is the reduction of trading fees from 2% to 0.5%, which is a 75% reduction. Additionally, version 2 includes gas-efficient contracts that enable users to save approximately 30% on gas fees compared to the previous version.

Another important feature of LooksRare version 2 is that sellers will now receive Ether (ETH) instead of Wrapped Ether (WETH) for most sales. Furthermore, the smart contracts now support bulk buying and selling orders, which is useful for users who want to place multiple trades simultaneously. Additionally, custom recipient aggregators have been introduced, allowing users to purchase NFTs with one wallet and send them to another.

Sellers can now list their NFTs for sale in token prices, which means that prices can be set in US dollars or equivalent ETH. This is a useful feature for sellers who want to provide clarity on pricing and reduce the risks associated with market volatility.

Despite the positive reception to the new features, some users are skeptical that LooksRare version 2 will be enough to attract users from other platforms. Some users have expressed concerns that there are still not enough incentives for good token collections to be listed. However, most LooksRare users have responded positively to the changes, and the platform is expected to become more competitive with other NFT marketplaces, such as OpenSea and Blur.

LooksRare faced some controversy in October when it decided to eliminate creator royalties, but it has also benefited from the recent surge in NFT prices. With the release of version 2, LooksRare is poised to continue its growth and establish itself as a leading NFT marketplace.

Looking ahead, the team has announced that LooksRare version 1 will be discontinued. Users will no longer be able to post version 1 auctions through the public API after April 12, and all current v1 auctions will be removed from the website on April 13. Finally, the smart contracts themselves will be disabled through an admin function at 11:00 am UTC on April 13. By sunsetting version 1, LooksRare is ensuring that its users are fully supported on the upgraded platform and can take advantage of the new features and improvements.


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New Week New Hurdles: Top 3 Altcoins to Watch This Week

It was a gory weekend for a number of altcoins as the digital currency ecosystem took another downward slide. Investors chose to stay away from risky assets in the wake of the Russian-Ukrainian brawl. The global cryptocurrency market cap slid 3.99% at the time of writing to $1.74 trillion, paring off the gains accrued in the past week.

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Amidst the bearish slump,  three tokens are under review, including Binance Coin (BNB), LooksRare (LOOK), and Terra (LUNA) have inherent utilities and a competitive market advantage that can help them stay resilient amidst the ongoing bearish slump.

Binance Coin (BNB)

Binance Coin is still the fourth-largest digital currency by market capitalization; a figure was pegging at $62.97 billion at the time of writing. BNB is a strategically positioned coin, active as the native token of the Binance Exchange as well as the utility coin of the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) network. By default, the coin is typically under high demand, an inherent advantage that can easily spark a resurgence in the price breakout of the digital currency. BNB was changing hands at $379.22, down 4.65% during the intraday. With the broad ecosystem activities slated for this week, BNB is on track to retest the $400 resistance in the coming days.

LooksRare (LOOK)

LooksRare is an emerging Non-Fungible Token (NFT) marketplace that intends to dethroning OpenSea. Powered by the LOOKS token, the ecosystem is in a pole position to benefit from the woes of the bigger trading platform. The LOOKS token hit it off with retail NFT traders at its debut, swiftly attaining an ATH of $7.07. While the token has tracked back its gains, it is poised to make a relatively faster recovery from its current price of as many NFT stakeholders are bound to explore the platform more for its incentives and the persistent hacks being suffered by OpenSea.

Terra (LUNA)

Terra is a Layer-1 blockchain protocol that aids the fast performance of smart contracts and decentralized protocols. LUNA was trading at a price of $48.80. Since the beginning of the year, the LUNA token has taken a massive beating amidst the persistent bearish slump. Terra represents an innovative protocol that uses fiat-pegged stablecoins to power price-stable global payments systems. Its usefulness is proliferating, and this has placed a corresponding demand on LUNA, a trend that can spark a recovery in the altcoin this week.

Image source: Shutterstock


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What Are The CryptoPunks V1? And, How Can They Disrupt The Market?

Are the CryptoPunks V1 the original CryptoPunks? Technically, yes. According to LarvaLabs, the company behind the collection, the V1s “are not official Cryptopunks,” though. How will the market react now that they’re making a resurgence? This might be the first, but it’s not the last time you’ll hear about the CryptoPunks V1. Let’s explore their history and the controversy around them.

Related Reading | Snoop Dogg Joins The Bored Ape Yacht Club And The Sandbox. Read All About It

What Are The CryptoPunks V1?

Back in 2017, prehistory for the NFT market, LarvaLabs distributed 10.000 CryptoPunks V1. However, there was a fatal mistake in the governing smart contract. After a transaction, it allowed the buyer, not the seller, to withdraw the money. The buyer could literally have its cake and eat it too, leaving the seller completely in the red. 

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Here’s a thread explaining the technical details of the faulty contract:

What did LarvaLabs do? They disowned the original series and started again. They gave away another set of 10.000 CryptoPunks, the V2, and the rest is history. The almost free collectibles gained traction little by little and became the behemoth they’re today. All of the CryptoPunks in circulation were  V2s, until now…

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A Rebel Marketplace Arises

The CryptoPunks V1s still exist, but they had no marketplace to commerce in because Open Sea banned them. However, a new platform came into town and allowed them to reappear. This time, they’re called Classic Punks or Wrapped CryptoPunks V1, because to be able to sell them you have to wrap them in a new smart contract that doesn’t have the know vulnerabilities of the original contract.

The rebel marketplace is LooksRare.org and, so far, these up-and-coming NFTs have made 307.44 ETH in sales. Not bad, considering there are only 116 holders and LarvaLabs owns at least 1000. In LooksRare, only 23 owners are selling 269 items, so they’re pretty rare. The marketplace describes them as:

“A wrapped CryptoPunk from the initial exploited V1 contract version. Buyer beware – if you don’t understand the preceding sentence, this is not the CryptoPunk you’re looking for.”

Another buyer beware has to be, that low number of holders means that a few people have control of the market and can potentially manipulate it as they see fit. So, tread lightly. 

ETHUSD price chart for 02/04/2022 - TradingView

ETH price chart for 02/04/2022 on Kraken | Source: ETH/USD on TradingView.com

LarvaLabs Disowns The CryptoPunks V1

Through their public channels, the only thing LarvaLabs said was: “PSA: “V1 Punks” are not official Cryptopunks. We don’t like them, and we’ve got 1,000 of them… so draw your own conclusions. Any proceeds will be used to purchase real Cryptopunks!”

However, in the company’s official Discord channel, they are threatening legal action. They also admitted that they sold a bunch of CryptoPunks V1 because they thought that by “selling some of the tokens we would signal our distaste for it.” According to LarvaLabs, they’ve been using the 210 ETH that they received to buy V2 CryptoPunks. And they matched that amount and made a donation to the Rainforest Foundation. 

Here’s trader extraordinaire and crypto influencer Cobie explaining the situation:

As he puts it, “they dumped on people and now they’re trying to make what they dumped as worthless as possible.” Real people paid those 210 ETH. Why do they have to suffer? However, they might end up with the upper hand. LarvaLabs can use all the legal tricks that they want, but they can’t destroy the CryptoPunks V1 contract. 

The Intricacies Of The V1 Contract

As this pseudonymous Twitter user puts it, “my understanding is the contract code is permanent – you can only update a contract post deployment by calling the selfdestruct() function, if there is one. A function which neither of the two Crytopunk contracts have!”

Not only that, there’s another way to destroy a contract, and here’s where the big reveal comes. “Because of ETH’s extortionate storage costs, most use external forms of storage (punks are off-chain art!). In layman’s, contracts essentially include a link to specific reference point, which contains the image. LarvaLabs cannot do that with v1 punks because, both their v1 and v2 contracts point to the same file!”

Oh, what a tangled web we weave!

And that’s the story of the CryptoPunks V1.

Related Reading | Will NFTs Kill Traditional Art? Famed Collector Cozomo de’ Medici Makes The Case

The CryptoPunks V2 Market

According to NFT Stats, “The total sales volume for CryptoPunks was $41.42M. The average price of one CryptoPunks NFT was $232.7k. There are 3.373 CryptoPunks owners, owning a total supply of 9,999 tokens.” Let’s check in a few years to see if the CryptoPunks V1 make a dent on that.

Featured Image: Screenshot of CryptoPunks V1 from LooksRare | Charts by TradingView


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The Top Five NFT Marketplace Alternatives to OpenSea

Key Takeaways

  • OpenSea has become the home of NFT trading, but its various problems are leading users to seek out alternatives.
  • LooksRare caused a storm when it launched with a token for active OpenSea traders last month.
  • Coinbase NFT should also have a major impact on the space once it launches this year.

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OpenSea became the go-to NFT marketplace during the technology’s 2021 boom. However, the platform’s high fees, centralized model, and recent listing issues have driven collectors to seek out alternative options for buying and selling non-fungibles.

NFTs and OpenSea

To talk about the rise of NFTs is to talk about the rise of OpenSea. 

Launched in December 2017, OpenSea emerged as the first open marketplace for Ethereum-based NFTs. Over the next three years, OpenSea quietly developed its platform, catering to the few blockchain geeks who were weathering the crypto bear market by trading CryptoKitties and MoonCats, two historical NFT projects that were among the first collections traded on OpenSea.

While OpenSea had found its niche, it wasn’t until January 2021 that the platform started to realize its true potential. On the back of high-profile NFT sales such as Beeple’s Everydays: The First 5,000 Days and the advent of NFT avatar collections like Bored Ape Yacht Club, NFTs quickly gained popularity and notoriety in both the crypto and mainstream worlds. OpenSea had a tremendous ten-fold increase in revenue between January and February 2021, but this was only a taste of things to come.  

Throughout the rest of 2021, OpenSea’s revenues kept increasing. According to data from Token Terminal, OpenSea’s current revenue stands at $440 million for January 2022, making it the marketplace’s best month ever. With an estimated 90% of the total market share of NFT trading venues, OpenSea achieved a $13.3 billion valuation in a raise led by venture capital giants Paradigm and Coatue at the beginning of the month. However, despite its successes, several factors are driving many in the NFT community away from the leading NFT marketplace in favor of smaller alternatives. 

The Problems With OpenSea 

One common complaint with OpenSea centers on its high fees. 2.5% of the final sale value for every NFT sold goes straight to OpenSea, which is one reason for the company’s high margin profits. Factoring in OpenSea’s fees with the high royalties paid on some collections, users stand to lose up to 10% of the final sale value on secondary sales of NFTs. 

Those focused on the ideals of Web3 and decentralization also take issue with OpenSea’s high degree of centralization. Many members of the NFT community had hoped that OpenSea would issue a governance token to its users to help decentralize the company and give back to the users who were instrumental in its growth. However, these hopes were seemingly shot down in December when OpenSea’s new Chief Financial Officer, Brian Roberts, revealed that he had hopes of taking the company public through a stock offering. Although Roberts quickly backtracked on his words, an OpenSea token does not look likely anytime soon. 

As OpenSea is centralized, there’s a risk that it will create a closed ecosystem akin to existing Web2 platforms. As a demonstration of the centralization issue, OpenSea recently froze 16 NFTs stolen from New York’s Ross+Kramer Art Gallery owner Todd Kramer. The fact that OpenSea has the power and is willing to freeze assets traded through its smart contracts sets a worrying precedent. 

Also of concern is OpenSea’s habit of delisting NFT artists’ collections without warning. Recently, the platform delisted 16 NFTs from the late hip-hop photographer Chi Modu without comment. Modu owns the rights to the photography and was not breaking any of the platform’s community guidelines.  

Another complaint with OpenSea is a listing issue that has resulted in numerous high-value NFTs being sold for a fraction of their market value. If a user lists an NFT for sale then transfers it to a different wallet, the listing gets canceled on OpenSea’s frontend as it cannot be fulfilled. However, if the user doesn’t pay a gas fee to cancel the transaction first, the listing reactivates if the user transfers the NFT back to the original wallet at a later date.

To make matters worse, OpenSea sent out an email to users with inactive listings on their accounts advising them to cancel listings without first transferring their NFTs away from the address with the associated listing. This process makes it easier for opportunists to snipe mispriced NFTs by checking the Ethereum mempool for cancelation transactions then paying a high gas fee to execute a purchase transaction before the cancelation.

As OpenSea’s users continue to lose patience with the platform, other NFT marketplaces and trading solutions have emerged. Many of these competitors have quickly gathered momentum by acknowledging OpenSea’s shortcomings and launching cheaper, more decentralized, and more user-friendly ways for collectors to buy and sell NFTs. 


The first contender on our list—and one of the newest projects—is a platform that takes direct aim at OpenSea’s business model. LooksRare launched last month and has attracted users through a combination of a token airdrop and trading rewards. Anyone who traded at least 3 ETH worth of NFTs between Jun. 16 and Dec. 16, 2021 was eligible to claim an allocation of LOOKS tokens, with more tokens dropped to those with higher trading volumes. 

LOOKS holders can stake their tokens to earn a portion of the trading fees generated through sales on LooksRare. The yield for LOOKS staking currently sits at over 600%, a testament to the high trading volumes on the marketplace. In addition, LooksRare undercuts OpenSea by charging 1.5% on trades rather than 2.5%. Since LooksRare launched on Jan. 10, it has outpaced OpenSea in raw trading volumes almost every day—but there’s a catch. 

LooksRare is currently distributing LOOKS tokens to users with the highest trading volumes. This has incentivized several users to conduct wash trades on high-value NFTs, trading them between wallets to rack up higher trading volumes, and thus, more LOOKS token rewards. LooksRare has facilitated many legitimate sales too, with high activity on trending collections such as Bored Ape Yacht Club, CloneX, and Azuki.

With its motto of “by NFT people, for NFT people,” LooksRare emphasizes decentralization and community involvement. Even for those who care less about the ideals of Web3, LooksRare offers users a cheaper, more streamlined experience with the ability to earn through NFT purchases. 


As more and more NFTs get spread out over different marketplaces, a place to aggregate listings is becoming a necessity. Enter gem.xyz, a newly-released NFT aggregator that makes comparing listings across several marketplaces easy. 

The biggest boon of using gem is the ability to buy multiple NFTs in the same transaction, allowing for substantial gas fee savings. Users can select the NFTs they want to purchase from a collection, and gem’s user interface will show the total cost and the gas fee savings from rolling all the trades into a single transaction. 

The more NFTs a user purchases in a single transaction, the more gas they save. gem estimates that buying 14 NFTs at once equals a gas saving of 33% over OpenSea or other NFT aggregators such as genie.xyz. As gem makes it easier and cheaper to buy NFTs in bulk, it’s the perfect tool to “sweep the floor” by buying up the cheapest available items from an NFT collection. 

Additionally, gem allows users to pay for NFTs using almost any ERC-20 asset or combination of assets, simplifying the buying experience further. It also pulls data directly from other marketplace’s smart contracts, so even if the frontend of these sites goes down, users can still buy and sell NFTs listed on them through gem. 

gem is still in beta but has already facilitated over $50 million worth of NFT sales. Those who test the platform out may even be rewarded in the future if gem decides to launch a token as other NFT marketplaces have done in the past. 


While NFT marketplaces offer a convenient way to get eyes on an NFT you want to sell, there’s usually a fee for the service. However, if you’ve already found a buyer, or even someone willing to trade one or more of their NFTs for yours, you can head over to sudoswap and create a custom swap for free, minus the cost of gas. 

On sudoswap, users can create open swaps that anyone can view and interact with or select a specific address to be the exclusive participant in a trade. Not only can NFTs be traded for ETH or WETH like on OpenSea, but also between any ERC-20 token, ERC-721 or ERC-1155 NFTs, or even a combination of all three. 

Gas costs are optimized, so users only need to pay for asset approvals and swaps, unlike OpenSea and other NFT marketplaces that require users to pay gas to create orders. sudoswap is completely trustless, with assets remaining in users’ wallets until both participants confirm a trade. 

As an added level of security, sudoswap uses trade codes instead of allowing users to post hyperlinks to swaps. This stops scammers from luring unsuspecting users with fake hyperlinks. To send a specific trade to another user, the creator must give the trade code to the other party, who can then input it into the official sudoswap site. 

sudoswap lets NFT collectors avoid marketplaces entirely by allowing them to trustlessly solicit trades with buyers and sellers. As it takes 0% commission, users can save substantial amounts when trading high-value NFTs. 


While traditional NFT marketplaces cater to casual buyers looking to trade avatar collections or generative art runs, SuperRare targets a different demographic of NFT collectors. It has established itself as the go-to platform for exclusive artists selling unique single-edition artworks. 

Because SuperRare is still in early access mode, the marketplace is only onboarding a hand-picked selection of artists. Even after the platform fully launches in the future, those wanting to sell their NFTs must first submit their artist profile to SuperRare and be chosen for inclusion on the site. 

However, despite the difficulty of being listed on SuperRare, the rewards for artists are great. The platform favors creators, ensuring they receive 10% of all secondary sale revenue for art initially sold on the SuperRare marketplace. 

While SuperRare has cultivated an exclusive arena for high-value NFT artwork, it comes at a price. Compared to other marketplaces, SuperRare is expensive, with 15% of primary sales going to SuperRare, 10% of secondary sales going to creators, and an additional 3% tax on all purchases paid by buyers. 

However, in return, SuperRare offers a white-glove service for all market participants and ensures creators are supported so they can continue producing high-quality digital art. The platform also holds decentralization close to its heart and uses a DAO system to manage the community treasury and guide the platform’s future development. 

Coinbase NFT

The last OpenSea alternative on our list hasn’t yet launched but is sure to disrupt the NFT world when it does. 

Coinbase NFT is set to focus on accessibility for non-crypto native users. Whether other marketplaces require users to connect with a non-custodial Web3 wallet such as MetaMask, Coinbase NFT will integrate with the Coinbase exchange and let users buy and sell NFTs in U.S. dollars using credit and debit cards. Additionally, Coinbase will custody NFTs for users while letting them mint, collect, discover, and showcase their non-fungibles all in one place.

The Coinbase NFT initiative is currently led by the company’s Vice President of Products, Sanchan Saxena, an industry veteran with a proven track record of developing products for companies such as Airbnb and Instagram.

“We are actually embracing the idiosyncrasies and the positives and the negatives of the blockchain,” Saxena told nft now in a January interview. Those familiar with blockchain technology will still be able plug into Coinbase NFT with a non-custodial browser extension wallet. But for less tech-savvy users, Saxena has confirmed that they will not have to worry about the jargon and technical aspects of buying NFTs.

By abstracting away the technical side of NFTs, Coinbase’s new marketplace should help keep newer users safe from scams and costly mistakes while they get to grips with the complex world of NFTs. 

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this feature owned ETH and several other cryptocurrencies. 

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OpenSea Rival Surges 55% in Just Four Days, Shattering $500,000,000 Market Cap

A new entrant into the non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace sector has seen its price and market cap explode this week.

The OpenSea rival LooksRare launched on January 10th, and the project’s native asset LOOKS has already surged in price by nearly 55%.

The token, which was listed by the exchange OKEx on Wednesday, is currently trading at $4.10.

LooksRare’s market cap also briefly exceeded $500 million on Thursday, though it has since settled to about $478 million, already ranking it 179th among all crypto projects.

The project, which bills itself as “by NFT People, for NFT People,” says its marketplace indexes all NFT collections on the Ethereum blockchain, meaning traders can access all the NFTs available on OpeanSea and other marketplaces.

Data from blockchain research tool Dune Analytics indicates LooksRare has been dominating the NFT space in terms of trading volume since its release. The fledgling marketplace hosted more than $551 million in trading volume on Thursday, a more than 6x advantage compared to OpenSea’s roughly $88 million on the same day.

In total, since LooksRare launched on Monday, it has hosted more than $1.37 billion in total volume, compared to OpenSea, which hosted about $281.7 million over the same period.

OpeanSea reached a valuation of $13.3 billion last week after investors injected additional capital during its latest round of funding.

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A Meebit NFT Sold for $49.5M in Ethereum—But There’s a Catch

Key Takeaways

  • Meebit #13824 sold for 14,700 Ethereum on LooksRare this afternoon.
  • LooksRare is a new OpenSea competitor offering trading rewards to incentivize users, which may explain the sale.
  • Trading volumes for Meebits and Loot have soared on LooksRare this week, likely because the two collections do not charge royalties on secondary sales.

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LooksRare is currently offering trading rewards divided pro rata between users, which may explain the eye-watering price tag. 

Meebit NFT Fetches $49.5M on LooksRare 

A Meebit NFT just sold for eight figures, but the trade looks very suspicious. 

The sale took place on LooksRare, a decentralized OpenSea competitor that launched with a token airdrop this week, earlier this afternoon. The buyer paid 14,700 Ethereum for Meebit #13824, the equivalent of around $49.5 million at today’s prices. The transaction can be viewed on Etherscan

The $49.5 million price tag makes the token one of the most valuable NFTs ever sold, behind Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5,000 Days” and Pak’s “The Merge,” which respectively fetched $69.3 million and $91.8 million last year. However, several signs suggest that the trade may not be legitimate. 

The buyer’s wallet contains 18 other Meebits and three CryptoPunks, which suggests that they are a big fan of Larva Labs NFTs (Larva Labs is the design studio behind the two collections). However, while the rarest CryptoPunks frequently trade for millions of dollars, Meebits are typically much less sought after. On both LooksRare and OpenSea, the cheapest Meebits are trading for roughly 4 Ethereum at press time. Meebit #13824 also has more common traits than other NFTs in the collection, which makes it less valuable. Prior to today’s sale, the highest offer it had received on LooksRare was 3.95 Ethereum. 

LooksRare Rewards Incentivize Wash Trading

LooksRare’s token reward distribution may explain the sale. To incentivize users, the marketplace is paying out 2,866,500 LOOKS tokens to traders daily for its first 30 days. The LOOKS token is currently trading at $4.12, which equates to $11.8 million in daily rewards. The rewards are distributed pro rata according to each user’s trading volume, which means generating more volume can earn a greater portion of the $11.8 million. 

As the Twitter user dingaling suggested in a Wednesday tweet storm, some LooksRare users could have engaged in wash trading to receive a greater share of the rewards. Wash trading involves buying and selling products to create artificial activity to manipulate markets and prices. It’s illegal in traditional markets. In this instance, the original owner of Meebit #13824 may have sold the NFT back to themselves through another wallet to secure a greater share of the rewards pool. Crypto Briefing analyzed the transaction history on the seller’s wallet but did not find any prior connection to the buyer. 

In addition to Meebit #13824, many other NFTs have sold at inflated prices relative to their market value over the last few days. Meebits and Loot are particularly susceptible to the wash trading hack as neither collection charges a royalty to the creator on secondary sales, which isn’t the case for most other NFTs. As a result, the relative cost basis for a wash trader is much lower. Meebits has seen 107,238 Ethereum in trading volume on LookRare in the last few days, while Loot has processed 40,416 Ethereum. On OpenSea, the two collections have seen only 80,500 Ethereum and 72,600 Ethereum since the marketplace launched. 

LooksRare is set to continue paying trading rewards in four phases that will gradually reduce distribution over the next year. While the marketplace is yet to comment on the wash trading issue, for now it seems a little early to rank the Meebit #13824 sale alongside Beeple and Pak just yet. 

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this feature owned ETH and several other cryptocurrencies. 

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LooksRare Dangles Carrot for OpenSea NFT Collectors

Key Takeaways

  • LooksRare launched today, airdropping its native LOOKS token to OpenSea.
  • OpenSea users who had traded at least 3 ETH between 16 Jun. and 16 Dec., 2021 were eligible for the airdrop.
  • LooksRare is hoping to bring an end to OpenSea’s monopoly over the NFT space.

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LooksRare launched with an airdrop today. The NFT marketplace is aiming to take on OpenSea.

LooksRare Targets OpenSea Users

A new NFT marketplace is hoping to topple OpenSea’s monopoly over the space.

LooksRare launched today with an airdrop for OpenSea users. The platform’s LOOKS token was distributed to anyone who traded at least 3 ETH (worth around $9,100 at press time) on OpenSea between 16 Jun. and 16 Dec., 2021. Per its tokenomics page, the airdrop accounts for 12% of the total supply of 1 billion.

Dune Analytics data shows that 185,223 Ethereum addresses are eligible to claim between 125 to 10,000 LOOKS tokens based on their trading volume. Soon after it opened for trading on Uniswap, the LOOKS token peaked at $4.71 before cooling to around $1.75.

The airdrop is crypto’s latest “vampire attack,” a strategic move in which a project aims to attract users from a leading competitor. Projects usually carry out vampire attacks by offering incentives such as tokens in hopes of attracting liquidity.

LooksRare is not the first project that has attempted a vampire attack on OpenSea via an airdrop. In October, another NFT marketplace called Infinity launched an airdrop for OpenSea traders that met certain eligibility conditions. However, it failed to gain significant traction following its launch.

LooksRare says it will reward users on an ongoing basis. Besides the initial airdrop, users will be able to earn LOOKS token rewards for trading verified collections. Furthermore, each transaction will carry a 2% trading fee that will be paid to users who stake LOOKS tokens. By contrast, OpenSea takes a 2.5% cut from every transaction rather than paying anything back to the end user.

Although several marketplaces like SuperRare, Foundation, and Zora have benefited from growing interest in NFTs, OpenSea was the big winner of the 2021 boom. It clocked about $14 billion in trading volume over the course of the year. However, despite its success, OpenSea has also come under fire from the NFT community for various reasons. In September, it suffered a major PR blunder when its then head of product was caught using insider information to profit on NFTs listed on the marketplace. Following that, in early December, it faced a fierce backlash when its new CFO Brian Roberts hinted that the firm was considering going public. Many NFT community members had hoped that OpenSea would decentralize the project by launching a token with an airdrop for early users, but the IPO plans suggested otherwise.

As OpenSea currently has no token, it can not offer incentives to users like decentralized projects can. That leaves space for competitors like LooksRare to thrive. Whether it will succeed remains to be seen.

Disclosure: At the time of writing this feature, the author owned ETH and several other cryptocurrencies.

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