On May 10, American business magnate Elon Musk tweeted a meme created using imagery from the Milady nonfungible tokens (NFT) collection. Shortly thereafter, the floor price of Milady NFTs spiked from 3.8 Ether (ETH) to as high as 7.3 ETH before falling to 5.69 ETH apiece at the time of publication.

Created in 2021 by digital arts collective Remilia, Milady is a collection of 10,000 anime profile picture NFTs “inspired by street style tribes.” Artist Charlotte Fang founded the Remilia decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) and helped design the series.

The name “Milady” is a play on the expression “my lady,” which has historically been a polite form of address for noblewomen but has since taken satirical connotations about overzealous chivalry and “nice guys” on internet forums. Four years before the Milady NFT tweet, Elon Musk referenced the namesake whilst adding “my shield is yours.”

In May 2022, the floor price of Milady NFTs fell by over 50% after allegations surfaced that its creator, Charlotte Fang, was involved in various fringe ideologies on the anonymous imageboard site 4chan. Fang appears to have confirmed the authenticity of the alleged screenshots while stating, “trolling about it was juvenile, but in reality I’ve never harmed a fly.” The NFT artist stepped down from the team thereafter.

Despite controversies, Milady has remained popular across Web 3 communities. In addition to being promoted by Elon Musk, Su Zhu, co-founder of bankrupt Singaporean hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, is an avid collector of Miladys and frequently shills the collection to his followers. The collection currently has 39,659 ETH in cumulative volume traded on OpenSea.

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