The creative humans of this world have started “to wear” virtual fashion items and have commenced trading digital landed properties. Not exactly, but yeah, something close to that. Because to me, if an individual can trade virtual- jewelry, sneakers, fashion items, and whatnot, they can as well wear it virtually, because why exactly are we paying a whopping amount of money for virtual clothes, “art memes” and digital real-estate?
Now that the whole world is buzzing about Non-Fungible Tokens, NFTs, especially with the recent news of artistes tucking millions of dollars away from selling the blockchain based innovation, you may already be wondering what this technical jargon means and how you can leverage it. We hope that this piece will spill the tea and inform you.
When talking about, NFTs, Mark Cuban, owner of NBA Mavericks notes:
“We can sell virtual Mavs gear, sneakers, art, pictures, videos, experiences, anything our imagination can come up with we can sell. We are looking at adding virtual jewelry, accessories and clothing that we create to real pictures in social media. So you can add cool Mavs virtual sneakers that look as real as the ones on your feet to your posts.”
What are NFTs?
NFTs are really “digital certificates that authenticate a claim of ownership to an asset, and allow it to be transferred or sold. The certificates are secured with blockchain technology similar to what underpins Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.”
What this simply means is that a person that creates a work of art or any innovation for that matter can store the same in a unit of crypto- a token. It is a form of certificate that evidences your intellectual property. This certificate is stored as a specific value on a blockchain. An artist or creative may decide to sell this virtual intellectual property in NFT form. This is a huge opportunity for artists and creatives looking to make money from their innovations that would ordinarily not yield any income. Should you decide to explore the opportunities that come with NFTs, platforms like Nifty Gateway may avail you the opportunity to create whatsoever and trade the same as an NFT on their market overt. Just recently, an “animated cat”, Nyan Cat, exchanged hands at about $580,000-you may convert it to Naira if you wish.
NFTs became mainstream in 2017 although they have been around since 2012. Its first real use was when the humans of this world decided to buy digital cats via the CryptoKitties game with ETH.
Unlike fungible tokens (examples of fungible tokens are BTC, ETH, XRP etc.) non-fungible tokens are “indivisible” and unique. The “divisible” here refers to the essential “divisibility” feature of money. This feature and many other features that enable a currency to be used as a payment mechanism and makes it usable is lacking in non-fungible tokens. NFTs remain distinct from other NFTs, unlike a bitcoin which is really the same as other bitcoins.
Essentially, NFTs are scarce crypto assets and the good news to creatives and artists in Nigeria is that they are allowed in the Nigerian terrain since they fall within the definition of crypto assets in Nigeria.
The Nigerian SEC defines a crypto asset to mean:
“a digital representation of value that can be digitally traded and functions as:
a medium of exchange; and/or
b. a unit of account; and/or
c. a store of value,
but does not have legal tender status in any jurisdiction.”
For what it’s worth, that your “doodle” or piece of art that is lying fallow may probably go for bucks and bucks if you explore the NFT space. If you must know, a “Banksy NFT” recently exchanged hands for 228.69 ETH which is a whopping $380k. One of the masterminds behind the sale notes:
“We’re already planning our next event in collaboration with a prominent artist,”
“Our aim is to bridge the world of traditional art with the world of NFTs. So, we’ll definitely be doing more to uphold this ethos.”
Just any creative work ranging from art, music, real estate, yeah land, FANTASY, fashion items, can be made into an NFT. Whatever can be elevated from the realm of thoughts to the digital realm can be NFT.
What Value is an NFT?
It then begs the question, of what real value is an NFT that it is exchanged for such huge money? Some individuals have clamoured that the buzz around NFTs are merely emotional and nothing of real value attached to them while some NFT proponents hold that it is just a means to create, view aesthetics and perhaps communicate. One ardent NFT proponent stated that “It’s not just about the money. It’s much more sustainable.”
We will leave this question with our readers. We hope to hear of your experience should you decide to explore the space.