Image courtesy of QuoteInspector.com
Recently, there has been a new buzz within the world of cryptocurrency. Much like the GameStop stock rise, NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, have quickly made their place in the known world while also causing a great deal of confusion. Although not as new as many might assume due to their rapid rise in popularity, NFTs are the latest trend in the world of internet trading.
Over the last few years, more than 100 million people worldwide have used cryptocurrencies, the most notable of which is Bitcoin. The rising popularity of cryptocurrencies has allowed the crypto-market to grow exponentially.
NFTs have made headlines recently because of their unique premise. The holder of one of these tokens owns a unique unit of data that is stored on a digital ledger. This is referred to as a blockchain, and it is used to certify that the digital files are unique as well as track the history of ownership.
Coverage of NFTs has ranged from simple explanations of the complicated market to speculative pieces on the trajectory of the market value and the overall future of the NFT as a viable industry. There also is significant coverage surrounding the environmental concerns surrounding the energy use of blockchain transmissions.
The environmental concerns surrounding NFTs are troubling with some sales having used 8.7 megawatt-hours of energy over roughly ten seconds. This massive use of energy has been used as a major criticism as their popularity has risen.
The primary difference between NFTs and other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin is that they are unique items that only one person can own at any given time. Their quick rise in popularity has spurred the creation of several small communities centered around the sale and trade of these works of media.
In the past few weeks, many notable people and brands have jumped onto the trend of NFTs. New York Times Tech Columnist Kevin Roose recently made headlines when he sold an article as an NFT for over half a million dollars.
“This is my first experiment — a column about NFTs that is, itself, being turned into an NFT and put up for auction,” New York Times tech writer Kevin Roose wrote. https://t.co/ZH4rJBm3BK
— The Hill (@thehill) March 24, 2021
The NBA has been a driver in the sports side of the NFT world. The league’s increasingly popular NBA Top Shot has accrued hundreds of thousands of dollars simply for the opportunity to purchase a single pack of these tokens, which are essentially the cryptocurrency equivalent of a pack of trading cards. Recently, the Golden State Warriors have become the first team to launch their own line of NFTs.
The Golden State Warriors have upped the NFT game with a championship collection https://t.co/3fQxs03alc
— Bloomberg (@business) April 27, 2021
Filmmaker Kevin Smith also announced that he will be entering the arena of NFTs with a token that comes with the rights to his 2021 horror film “Killroy Was Here.” Smith took to Twitter to clarify a few questions surrounding the NFT and to address some of the environmental concerns mentioned by fans.
1) We chose @PhantasmaChain because they’re more energy efficient than if we did this on the ETH chain: https://t.co/GPWWqHTwOs
2) Killroy isn’t ON the NFT; whoever wins the NFT, wins the movie as a real world bonus. So even if someone stole the NFT, they wouldn’t have the movie. https://t.co/92TUpyXjk7
— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) April 21, 2021
Due to the recent emergence and rapid rise of NFTs into the market of cryptocurrencies, it is unclear whether they will become a thriving staple of the marketplace or just another internet trend.