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Bill Gates doesn't think very highly of NFTs

“Obviously, expensive digital images of monkeys are going to improve the world immensely.”

Bill Gates

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 07: Bill Gates speaks onstage at the TIME100 Summit 2022 at Jazz at Lincol...
Jemal Countess/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Bill Gates probably isn’t fretting much about all those plummeting cryptocurrency values at the moment. During an interview at a recent TechCrunch climate conference, the co-founder and former horndog CEO of Microsoft made it clear that he doesn’t think much of the various hype machines surrounding crypto culture — particularly the world of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs.

“Obviously, expensive digital images of monkeys are going to improve the world immensely,” he offered when asked about the subject, referring to the totally legit Bored Apes Yacht Club. Understandably, Gates appears far more interested in investments that generate tangible, real returns for societies and economies, adding, “Anyway, I’m used to asset classes like a farm where they have output, or a company where they make products.”

Gates went on to describe projects like BAYC as “100 percent based on the ‘Greater Fool Theory,’” referring to the idea that someone will make a profit by purchasing and subsequently selling overvalued assets during a market bubble. “I’m not involved in that. I’m not long or short in any of those things,” he said, in case anyone still had any lingering doubts about his position.

It’s bad out there right now — A few months ago, plenty of people would have scoffed at Gates’ accusations that NFTs are largely bullshit. Fast forward to today, and well, there are still a lot of people holding out on their various Bored Ape images and crypto schemes. But! Many more are finally realizing that the bubble has objectively burst, and now it’s just a question of how long our crypto bear market lasts. Or, y’know, if it ever rebounds at all.

Unfortunately, a lot of people are financially suffering in the process. With companies like Celsius unable to even cash users’ remaining funds and Coinbase laying off nearly 20 percent of its employees, it’s a grim time to have money tied up in pretty much any cryptocurrency. Gates, for his part, has been pretty vocal for a while now about his worries and skepticism regarding the industry. “I do think people get bought into these manias who may not have as much money to spare,” said Gates last year while speaking with Bloomberg. “My general thought would be that if you have less money than Elon, you should probably watch out.” Pretty wise words to live by, if we’re being honest.