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Last week, Pepsi launched its first NFT collection, a series of cartoon microphones with Pepsi logo noses. Budweiser, which bought an NFT and Ethereum domain name in August and changed its Twitter handle to beer.eth, responded, “Welcome brand friend. WAGMI.” Pepsi replied, “Thanks, fren! WAGMI.”

Facebook, which renamed itself Meta in October, tweeted to Pepsi, “This is going to look great in the metaverse.”

As one Crypto Twitter user summed up these exchanges: “Just nuke it all.” Another replied drily, “We’ve become the very thing we set out to destroy.”

This month also saw Adidas buy a Bored Ape NFT and overlay branded clothing onto it, and announce a metaverse project with the studio behind Bored Ape Yacht Club. Not to be left out, Nike bought RTFKT, a metaverse sneaker studio. White Castle bought a Sea Hams NFT and an Ethereum domain name.

Nike’s move, in particular, prompted backlash among crypto people. Emma-Jane MacKinnon-Lee of DIGITALAX tweeted to RTFKT, “Congrats on ur exit from web3 it’s a shame that you weren’t in it for the long haul. so much to do to revolutionise fashion and break away from legacy brand control.” There were many “rip rtfkt” replies.

A clash is brewing. Much like the many recent examples of gamers getting angry over crypto invading their platforms, the outrage can cut the other way: crypto people can see that brands are rushing into Web3 and making it uncool.

Crypto lingo like “WAGMI” (we are going to make it) could die a quick death when you have Pepsi proudly tweeting it. And Facebook’s attempt to reclaim the word “meta” has even Keanu…


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