The big news in the tech space over the past few years has been around the many different cryptocurrencies and blockchain, but it can all be a bit of a haze if you’re not able to follow along. Crypto has been moving through many different markets quite successfully for a number of years, recent announcements that Tesla would be investing in Bitcoin and accepting the crypto as a payment adds to the long list of successes and moving into different markets such as online gaming as some of the biggest operators at CNOG for example have a wide range of services that accept crypto and aren’t a part of initiatives like Gamstop. The latest to enter the space has been within NFTs, but it’s a bit of an abstract concept that even once you understand can be a little hard to follow.
(Image from businesswire.com)
NFT stands for ‘non-fungible token’, or in layman’s terms something that is unique – if you trade one bitcoin for another, you end up with the same item with the same value, this is a fungible item, but if you trade one playing card for another, you end up with something completely different, with a different value too. It has largely been aimed at the digital art market as a way to expand into a digital art collection, but even then, for some it is a little complicated as it doesn’t exactly describe what an NFT is, particularly in a market where replication and duplication is so easy.
Essentially what it does for digital products is give the buyer of the NFT the exclusive rights to the original piece, whilst duplicates can be made and shared or even the non-original version from the artists themselves, it is aimed at ensuring the original piece is for the NFT owner for whatever that is worth – and for some, that worth is in the hundreds of thousands of dollars as many have been snapping up digital pieces for the past few weeks.
The whole thing is a little complex, even if you have been following along and are somewhat aware of what the whole thing is, and it adds a lot more complexity to the digital market which is already a bit muddied regardless – if you’re looking to get involved in the market it’s certainly worth doing a lot of due diligence here as it’s still new and there’s still a lot to be explored. It also remains relatively unknown if this is just a passing trend for the time being, or if it will become a long-standing emerging market.