What is Proof Collective?
The Proof Collective is an exclusive members-only NFT community made up of 1,000 of the most renowned artists and collectors of the community. Though most of the members are either anonymous or go by pseudonyms. The Proof Collective strands behind some hugely successful NFT collections such as Moobirds, Grails, and Oddities.
In December 2021, co-founder Kevin Rose gathered up a group of people from his tight Proof podcast community and created an organization with a mission. That mission was for them to be the best hunters the NFT space has ever witnessed. Basically to be consistently on the lookout for the next hottest projects that may interest the members.
A Brief History Lesson
Kevin Rose is a veteran of the Web2 world who has succeeded to turn his fierce investment abilities and innovative eye into Web3.
Co-founder Justin Mezzel is also a significant player in the Proof game, as he is the designer behind the Moonbirds NFTs. Moonbirds launched on April 16 2021, and it has since then shot Proof Collective into space. Moonbirds took the NFT world by storm, and is still to this date on Opensea’s top 10 list without budging.
How Can I Join Proof Collective?
To become part of the Collective, you’re gonna need a Proof Collective NFT. The creators originally released these NFTs via a Dutch auction starting at 5 ETH a pop. But the price on the secondary market has multiplied since then, and today it will cost you as much as 60 ETH to own one.
That steep floor price comes with a wide selection of benefits. Advantages like early access to the Proof podcast, access to the collectives Discord, free NFT drops, and access to in-person events.
But the main draw? Staying on the inside.
Existing within the group brings individuals high-level intelligence on the NFT ecosystem. Shared knowledge, experience, and a better position to find projects for investments that pay big dividends.
The Grails Collection
So far, Proof has released 3 seasons of its well-sought-after Grails Collection. Each Grails drop features a set of 20 art pieces by 20 different popular NFT artists. To mint a Grails NFT you’ll need a Grails III Mint Pass. And to have that Pass, you’ll need to own a Proof Collective NFT and have the team airdrop it to you. Else, you’ll have to purchase one on the secondary market.
The Grails drops possess a special minting manner. Proof members and Mint Pass holders can mint an artwork within a seven-day window after minting goes live. But, there’s a twist! The artists’ names are concealed until after the mint is finished. This is to incentivize members to purchase artwork they actually like, rather than do it for the artist.
Proof Collective and Nepotism
The Proof Collective website proudly states that its members own more than 150,000 NFTs, including nearly 150 CryptoPunks, more than 800 Bored Apes, nearly 500 Meebits, more than 5,000 Art Blocks, and nearly 330 SuperRare 1:1 NFTs, among others.
That is one hell of a collection. But who’s bringing in these gems? Although most of the members are anonymous, if we look at the blockchain we can see major names from the community are (or were) members. Which brings us to a big question: how much nepotism is going on?
For starters, the group transferred membership passes to several notable and connected figures in the space, or sold them for almost nothing. Take Beeple for an example, who received a membership pass shortly after the launch of NFT Pass in 2021.
Moreover, Justin Aversano aka Twin Flames acquired his pass for 0.001 ETH. Aversano is the co-founder of Quantum Art, the platform that curates and sells NFTs. In 2022, Quantum Art raised $7.5 million in a funding round including True Ventures. Kevin Rose is on the board of directors of True Ventures. Gary Vee, another Quantum investor also received a free Proof Collective NFT along with his brother.
In reality, there is no rule in Web3 that forbids this kind of favoritism. And maybe, anyone else in their position would have done the same. But to be fair, the Proof brand has recently begun to introduce efforts to make its community more diverse and inclusive, gifting 400 Oddities NFTs to seven communities dedicated to onboarding marginalized populations to Web3. Which we can see as a good step in the right direction.
Highrise: The Proof Metaverse
The Proof’s next big aim is its metaverse project called “Highrise.” The creators are still very vague about the details, but Rose noted Highrise, is a placeholder name. It’s a name Proof chose purposefully, as it describes their vision for the metaverse rising above what’s currently available to provide users different “buildings” and “floors” of purpose-driven interaction.
Regardless of the enigma and the excessive exclusivity of Proof Collective, one cannot deny the amount of influence it rains on the community. In a very short period of time, the founders have successfully created an extravagant platform for artists to showcase their work, for collectors to acquire them, and for enthusiasts to experience them. All in a very innovative and luxurious fashion.