NFTs are drumming up mega crypto hype in the traditional art world. The digital artist people auctioned off his work called everyday the first 5,000 days at the prestigious Christie's for a whopping 69 million dollars making it the most expensive NFT to date while actually positioning people as among the top 3 most valuable living artist.
Grimes and music artist sold 6 million dollars worth of digital art over the weekend, electronic musician 3LAU sold his album for a cool 11 million dollars while everyone's beloved Nyan Cat GIF actually sold for around half a million.
And of course NBA TopShot - the virtual crypto version of Basketball cards has short video brills showing match highlights from NBA star players.
And since it was launched on October 2020, NBA TopShot has actually brought in a total of over 300 million dollars in transactions.
Non-Fungible Tokens or NFTs for short are cryptographically secure digital assets on the blockchain. Unlike Bitcoin which can be swapped interchangeably with another Bitcoin, each NFT is unique and non-fungible.
NFTs can be anything from a concert ticket to digital artwork, music files, website addresses, virtual land parcels or game wearables. So far, the arena where NFTs are commanding the most bang for the buck are in Collectibles.
It all began in earnest with colored coins as early as 2012, but it only took off with great attraction on March 2017 with their legendary RARE PEPE's face on ethereum. This was shortly followed by Cryptopunks in June. Cryptopunks, which are created by Lava Labs, is a collection of 10,000 limited characters in reference to the Cypherpunk who actually helped give rise to Bitcoin. So Cryptopunks wants free for anyone within an Ethereum wallet to claim but fast forward to today, and the average price of one Cryptopunk is 10.75 each with the highest at 800 each or a total of 2 million dollars.
CryptoKitties was the next collectible craze in 2017 where collectors could breed and trade unique cats on the Ethereum Blockchain. CryptoKitties was so popular that it once actually created such a congestion and such crisis which slowed down the entire Ethereum Network in 2017.
The latest collectible series to break out of this noise is Hashmask, which is inspired by the artist, Jean-Michel Basquiat style. It featured various subs of scarcity when it comes to attributes like masks, skin and eye color and the highest-paid Hashmask called SEX recently sold for more than half a million dollars.
There are now a wide range of platforms that users can visit to mint, buy and trade NFTs with some popular ones being OpenSea, Nifty Gateway, SuperRare, Our Zora, Foundation and MintBase just to name a few.
Each minted NFT is a unique entry storing metadata on the blockchain. So while technically you can simply screenshot it or right-click and save an NFT to your desktop, you'll only own a copy with no proof of originality of provenance on the blockchain at all.
Transparency on the blockchain also means anyone can see the transaction and the history of ownership of a particular NFT so they can see as it passes through famous collector hands who likes to flex their multi-million dollar collections and exquisite tastes in virtual metaverses like Terraverse and Decentraland.
It's almost every other day now that we hear of a new celebrity or famous musician dropping an NFT like Lindsay Lohan, Mike Shinoda from Linkin Park and it is an undoubtedly fact that more people like them will follow.
Part of the appeal of NFTs is that its returning sales revenue directly to the creator in an intimate peer-to-peer relationship. A buyer bids and the sales go straight to the artist's wallet with no middleman like labels or artist management.
Creators are also able to receive perpetual royalties from subsequent secondary sales on their art down the line, something that was not able to be captured before blockchain technology.
NFTs might be the or the another paradigm in the economy of the creators and it most unlikely to become a bubble and in the future.
Helpful article about NFT: What is Non-Fungible Tokens?
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