The crypto art world is a relatively new trend that’s been immensely growing in popularity over the last few months, and as such, there are bound to be some growing pains. As the list of meme NFTs being sold by their original creators or stars expands almost daily, there are also some that we’ve recently uncovered to be not so legitimate.
As part of our interview series with meme creators earlier today, we sat down with the original creator of the Rage Comics character Me Gusta, who goes by May Oswald now and not Matt, where we brought up a listing for an NFT of Me Gusta that appeared to be legitimate. As it turns out, this NFT is indeed a fake, and even worse, the account behind it has essentially stolen Oswald’s identity and attempted to legitimize themselves.
The artwork listed on Foundation appears under the username @insert, which is the online handle of May, claiming to be “Matt Oswald” and the original creator of Me Gusta. According to the account, they were invited to the crypto art platform by Whynne, the creator of Trollface, and is verified under the Twitter account @MattOswald__.
The Twitter account, which was created in January this year, has several tweets from the imposter advertising the Me Gusta NFT as well as interacting with other prominent meme stars or creators in the NFT space, some of which also appear to have been duped into believing this was the legitimate originator.
During our call, Oswald said that she in fact doesn’t even support NFTs and hasn’t listed any of her own artwork anywhere, including Me Gusta. According to Oswald, the listing isn’t even the original iteration of Me Gusta as it claims to be. From the side-by-side comparison below, you can see Oswald’s original creation left, and the newer, hi-res version that appears to have been retraced as an illustration on the right.
As we were writing this article, the listing on Foundation was removed and placed under review shortly after our interview and request for comment, so it seems like action is already being taken to remove the artwork.
Oswald said that while she’s pleased to see action taken, she’s also happy that no one was tricked into actually buying the NFT as well, which was listed for 2 ETH (about $5,000) on March 21st. Despite the weeks of pleas for someone to buy it on the fake @MattOswald_ Twitter account no bids had been made so far, so the auction was never actually initiated.
We reached out to Foundation to hear more about this imposter behind Oswald’s Me Gusta NFT, but haven’t heard back yet. We’ll update the article as new details emerge.