NFTs and Their Role in the “Metaverse”

The great metaverse project makes it much more logical to spend considerable sums of money to own virtual objects.

The enthusiasm for the NFT does not seem to diminish. These “non-fungible tokens”, widely popularized in recent months, continue to be regularly sold for considerable sums.

These digital certificates can be within everyone’s reach: a young boy managed to raise the sum of 400,000 dollars by selling works made on Paint. With a few notions of computer code, Benyamin Ahmed, a 12-year-old Londoner sold 3,350 works representing whales, inspired by the emoji of the same animal.

What does NFT stands for ? The “non fungible tokens” are certificates of authenticity attributed to a digital work. As everything on the internet is “copyable” to infinity, the NFT allows to appropriate a work and to be the sole owner. The authenticity of these certificates is made possible thanks to blockchains, a storage technology that allows to encrypt and identify data stocks, inviolable and not duplicable.

The NFT madness began more or less in March 2021, when an artist by the name of Beeple auctioned off a digital work, entitled “Everydays: the first 5000 days”, for the astronomical sum of $69.3 million. This purchase, which was highly publicized, triggered others. Twitter founder Jack Dorsey marketed his first tweet in the same way, for $3 million.

Web creator Tim Berners-Lee also sold the first World Wide Web code for 5.4 million. The amounts allocated to the NFT are still huge.

Will the future be virtual ?

To pay such sums for virtual works, literally immaterial, is a concept that can make perplexed. However, whether one adheres to the practice or not, it fits logically into what Mark Zuckerberg describes as his new fad, the metaverse. This half-virtual half-real universe, already started with the Workspace presented by Facebook, consists of mixing elements.

Whether or not one adheres to this concept, the NFT principle seems to be totally in line with the metaverse. Several examples can already testify to this: the success of the concerts on Fortnite, which consist in enjoying the performance of an artist while being in the game.

The fashion house, Dolce & Gabbana, which recently launched its very first collection in NFT and, by extension, the standardization of “virtual” clothing, and with which it will be possible to dress its avatar -the digital version of ourselves. The development of virtual reality headsets is also an asset in this regard.

With this in mind, the NFT makes sense. Until the metaverse is completed, there are still a few steps to go by. For the time being, the few attempts to concretize metaverse remain far from what its creator, science fiction author Neal Stevenson, had imagined.

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