What to Know About Crypto’s New Artwork Obsession

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Every now and then an acronym (e.g. PSA) pops up and suddenly appears to be everywhere. The newest is NFT, which stands for something that isn’t clearer: non-fungible token. We’ll get into the basics below, but here’s an example: A group of financial traders called Injective Protocol put $ 95,000 on an original Banksy screen print and then burned it crispy. A video of the destruction is now available for 22.5 NFTs, or approximately $ 34,421. Banksy has not yet responded publicly, but cannot exactly complain. The anonymous artist once put one of his works in a paper shredder the moment it was sold for £ 1 million. Taglialatella Galleries, which sold the work to Injective Protocol, are in the process of creating their own NFT program.

There are other troublemakers in the NFT arena (such as the infamous YouTuber Logan Paul). But the art world also has an ever-growing presence on NFT networks that extend to the more adventurous sides of the music industry. This is in large part thanks to Grimes that the currency has entered the mainstream discussion in the past few days: the musician made $ 389,000 from a 50-second music video earlier this week. To date, she has raised approximately $ 6 million from digital art sales in the format. In the meantime, Kings of Leon was the first band to release an album in the form of an NFT.

You don’t have to be an artist to join the fun. To prove it, you’ve come to the right place at Mark Cuban. In perhaps the laziest and most bizarre sale in NFT history, the Dallas Mavericks owner sold one of his own tweets for nearly $ 1,000. Why someone would pay so much for metadata for something anyone with internet access can download remains open to discussion – especially since the tweet associated with a blog post was neither viral, intelligent, nor funny. Think of it this way: Anyone can own a print or poster of a Kehinde Wiley painting. If you’re smart enough, you can even download a picture of a Wiley from the internet and hang it on your wall, although the resulting object would be little more than the frame in which it was placed. But only one person can own the Original Original Wiley Painting, and that’s the thing that is worth all the money. Owning an NFT is something like the digital equivalent of owning the original masterpiece instead of just printing it.

It can’t be that hard to sell your own tweet, right? Take the first step here – learn what an NFT actually is.

What is an NFT?

As Crypto Casey helpfully explains on her YouTube series Cryptocurrency for Beginners, things like air and water have an objective value, which means that they are inherently important. The meaning of things of subjective value, on the other hand, depends on a person’s beliefs, perceptions, or preferences. Think limited edition sneakers, collector’s cars, and rare baseball cards.

NFTs naturally fall into the latter category. As for the “fungible” part, it means that anything that has value (called an asset) can easily be exchanged for another asset of the same type. NFTs are not fungible and therefore cannot be exchanged or split evenly. In other words, you can easily convert USD to yen, but a collector cannot fully exchange their Warhol collection for an equivalent Picasso collection. Bitcoins are like USD, NFTs are like these Warhols. (In theory anyway.)

To recap, an NFT is, as Crypto Casey summarizes, “a digital representation of a unique asset that cannot be exchanged or traded equally for another NFT of the same type.” Most commonly, this is in the form of digital art although tokens can also represent goods and services or things like tickets. Saving the tokens and controlling the data is not limited to one person, place or company. Instead, there are tokens in networks that are about transparency. The data is available to the public, which means you can be confident that it is correct and that a token is authentic, virtually indestructible, and completely yours.

Why are people so crazy about them?

It’s an exciting new place for those who are bored with Bitcoin and for those who are collecting. Networks keep their backends public, which prevents counterfeiting from being listed. Ethereum, one of the most popular, allows users to bundle tokens and avoid transaction fees.

Unlike IRL goods, NFTs cannot be lost, damaged or stolen. This would require the dismantling of an entire global network, which is essentially impossible.

What types of people are into NFTs?

As you’d expect, the tech / blockchain bro communities as well as any type of collector in general. The Hypebeast-y strains who used to spend thousands of dollars on rare Japanese toys and KAWS figurines are now in the hunt for NFTs. Then there are internet celebrities like Logan Paul, whose Pokémon card got 3.9 million views in less than a week when the live stream was unboxed. (Then he turned around and was selling custom digital Pokémon cards with their faces overlaid as NFT.) And there’s a huge ecosystem of people creating and buying digital art that don’t necessarily have access to the more elite art world – and what’s important is that you don’t ask for their consent.

Is the art … good?

As with art in a museum or gallery, it all depends on your tastes. In any case, you are guaranteed not to come across a fake.

Is fashion part of all of this?

Hardly, but inevitable; There is a lot of overlap between the industry and the Hypebeast collector base. So far, the presence of fashion has mainly consisted of outfits for characters in video games such as Fortnite or Pokémon. Gucci and The North Face have already teamed up with Pokémon Go, so a foray into the NFT is likely. Be on the lookout for a Balenciaga NFT drop too: the house recently developed its own video game. If and when it does, you can be sure that none of it is fake.

Fascinating. Where should I start?

Visit the OpenSea website which is currently the most popular NFT market. The listings include everything from the Kings of Leon images to video game accessories and domain names. Changing your Fortnite aesthetic can cost as little as 0.02 tokens.

When does the NFT bubble burst?

We do not know it. But if you do, you sell the information for a million bitcoin.

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