Donald Trump Aims for Bumper Payday by Turning Controversial “Mugshot” Pic into NFT Series

  • Donald Trump launches a third series in his Trump Trading Cards NFT venture.
  • The theme of this series centers around his viral mugshot picture.
  • NFT sales show a strong rebound in Q4. 

NFTs have been a topic of controversy since their inception, but the controversy has intensified following the August 2021 top as prices and interest collapsed. Critics have pointed out the sometimes mind-boggling prices commanded by “just jpegs.” However, former US President Donald Trump seems unfazed by these criticisms, as evidenced by the launch of his third Trump Trading Card series, called “Mugshot Edition.”

Trump’s NFT Endeavours

Trump’s “Mugshot Edition” NFT collection is based on his viral mugshot picture taken by the police following his voluntary attendance for questioning over challenging Georgia’s 2020 election result.

This latest collection features 100,000 NFTs centered around “47 portraits that celebrate Donald J. Trump’s storied career.” The quantity available in this series represents a significant jump compared to the first and second releases which were limited to 45,000 and 47,000 cards, respectively.

The Mugshot Edition series of Trump Trading Cards offers added incentives to buy in bulk. For instance, purchasing 47 cards in one transaction opens up an invitation for a gala dinner with Trump at his Mar-a-Lago residence. Additionally, bulk buyers will receive an extra physical trading card that contains a cut of the suit/tie worn for the viral mugshot picture.

When promoting the new card series, the former president laid out the incentives detailed above. He also injected self-deprecating humor around his physical appearance into his message by saying:

Some people call these [cards] pop art, modern art. I wish I looked as good as I do on those cards and I can tell you they give me muscles where, believe me, I don’t have them.

While Trump leans into humor to peddle his latest digital offerings, broader appetite persists worldwide for speculative digital collectibles as global NFT sales rebounded strongly over the past quarter.

NFTs on the Rebound

According to Crypto Slam, global NFT sales have rebounded strongly in Q4. The week beginning November 6 marked a decisive uptick with $215.6 million in sales, compared to $109.7 million the week before. From this point onwards, sales remained consistently high, with the week between December 4-10 generating $325.4 million in sales, marking the highest weekly sales since the end of February.

Similarly, total transactions are on the rise with the week beginning November 6 recording consecutive weekly increases to culminate in 2.1 million total transactions between December 4-10, marking a 15-week high.

On the Flipside

  • Trump called the case leading to his mugshot “a travesty of justice” on the belief that Georgia state‘s election was rigged.
  • Trump has built a career on media spectacle and leveraging controversy for personal benefit.
  • The Mugshot Edition cards are untradeable until December 31, 2024, dampening the secondary market for them.
  • The secondary market for series one and two cards is buoyant, with a current price floor of 0.16ETH ($350 from an initial $99 purchase price).

Why This Matters

While controversial, Trump’s latest gambit in profiting from his own politicized legal troubles highlights our era’s insatiable appetite for spectacle. This NFT series tests the public’s willingness to reframe controversy into “fun” collectible assets and raises questions about digital culture norms.

Learn more about FIFA’s latest strategy to increase fan engagement with NFTs here:
FIFA NFTs Offer Shot at World Cup Final Tickets, Memorabilia

Read more about the downturn in Bitcoin dominance and subsequent expectations around altseason here:
Altcoins Poised to Explode as Bitcoin Dominance Wanes?

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