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The NFT Platform - What is it?

10th March 2021 Print

For many the whole blockchain and crypto craze has been a big of a haze, if you’re not following closely it can be pretty easy to get lost amongst the weeds with all the new terminology and all of the different markets that are popping up because of the change – crypto has even become so widely used that many big platforms have jumped on board, online gaming through the likes of online slot machines have become a favourite for many and are helping the market change but there are always more developments, with the next coming through something called NFT’s.

If reading through the explanation doesn’t make it clear what exactly they are, you’re not the only one, as the concept seems rather abstract and not too straightforward itself. As part of the growing Ethereum blockchain, NFT’s are a way to collect and store primarily digital work – news around the artist Grimes getting big money through NFT or the sale of NyanCat as an NFT have made waves, but it still doesn’t clear anything up.

It stands for ‘Non-fungible token’ or in real words, something unique. You can trade one bitcoin for another bitcoin and you’ll end up with the same item, these are something that’s classed as fungible, but trading one playing card for another means you end up with a completely different item too – that’s the basis of the NFT market, you pay for a unique piece of digital content that you can then store in your digital wallet and can be used to trade or sell at a later date – being touted as “an evolution of fine art collecting” in the digital space though, but even after all of that, it still doesn’t make all that much sense.

If millions are paid for a piece of work that’s available through the internet, on the public domain, then that NFT can still be duplicated and saved – whilst fair enough the duplicate isn’t the original, which is what the NFT will claim to be, but is there all that much difference in the digital space? This was made even more clear with the popular band Kings of Leon after the NFT of their new album generated over $2m in sales, but given the album was to be released on Spotify anyway, it begs the question of what the money is really for.

Whether this is just a new trend in the latest blockchain fad that’ll fade over time, or something that’ll stick around for the longer term, it’s certainly more confusing and not as clear as it needs to be, and just muddies the water on digital ownership and reproduction more than  how muddy it already is.

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