Amidst all events that happened this year in the cryptocurrency industry, without a doubt, the list would not be complete without making mention of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). Asides from the Bull Run, Decentralized Finance (DeFi) frenzy on the Binance Smart Chain among others which was witnessed, NFTs rave was and is still very relevant.
However, celebrities had a role to play in the popularization and adoption of the technology. Just the way institutional investors that came into the Bitcoin and cryptocurrency markets played a huge role in wide adoption and likewise increase in the price of Bitcoin. Institutional investors popularized Bitcoin such that banks and individuals that once spoke against the technology have now embraced it with open arms. Celebrities have played a similar role in the adoption of NFTs by the creation and auction sales of NFTs.
What are NFTs?
NFT is an acronym for Non-Fungible Tokens which means the token is interchangeable with an equivalent. In other words, an NFT is a unique unit of data stored in a digital format with Blockchain technology and can therefore not be replicated or replaced. The irreplaceable nature of NFTs is what distinguishes them from the normal cryptos. NFTs are exclusive to an individual, unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum that can be held by a lot of people. They’re fungible tokens because 1 BTC is equivalent to 1 BTC and can be exchanged for each other.
An NFT may represent real-world objects like art, music, in-game items, and videos. They are bought and sold online, frequently with cryptocurrency, and they are generally encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos.
Use-case of NFTs
The basic and most important use of non-fungible tokens is the storage of unique data on the blockchain. The process of storing a real asset on the Blockchain is called tokenization. Different categories of real assets can be tokenized; songs, albums, publication records, artworks, photos, and lots more.
These NFTs are tokenized with the aim of either keeping the digital format on the Blockchain or ultimately putting them up for sale. 2021 has seen the sale of different NFTs at whopping prices on NFT marketplaces such as OpenSea, Rarible, Influxo among others.
So why would anyone want to buy these NFTs?
Anyone can view the individual images—or even the entire collage of images online for free. So why are people willing to spend millions on something they could easily screenshot or download?
Because an NFT allows the buyer to own the original item. Not only that, it contains built-in authentication, which serves as proof of ownership. Much like the priceless nature of a Matisse or a Van Gogh, the original creation is worth more than the postcard you bought from the museum, and the same follows for NFTs and their copyrights.
Collectors value those “digital bragging rights” almost more than the item itself.
What Role Have Celebrities Played in NFTs?
NFTs have become a force to reckon with in the year 2021. The market capitalization of NFTs has exploded and witnessed parabolic growth in 2021 and celebrities have played a very important role in making that a reality. Several celebrities have tokenized their musical albums, artworks among others and auctioned them for sale, and have made good returns on these NFTs. This has in turn popularized NFTs and brought them mainstream.
Nevertheless, celebrities have also prompted other reputable companies to adopt the idea of NFTs and have set plans in motion to launch theirs. Fashion companies, media houses, and beverage drink companies among others have shown intention of creating NFTs this year. Apart from the fact that celebrities are making money from the NFTs rave, the adoption of unique digital storage is being popularized and widely adopted.
Ultimately, the popularization of NFTs by celebrities is in a way fostering the growth of blockchain technology and the cryptocurrency industry at large. An instance whereby a celebrity makes a sale on an NFT created, the news will spread far and wide and inquisitive people begin to ask questions. This could go a long way in bringing those individuals into the crypto industry.
There is a massive value and monetary potential in owning these ‘one of a kind’ NFTs, as with all art, inflation and rarity will drive its intrinsic value. Experts say that this phenomenon is ‘history in the making’ for the industry that only has one value at the point of sale when it comes to paying royalty to these masterpieces, only made possible by NFTs.
Legendary footballer, Ronaldinho who won the FIFA Player of the year award twice is said to have launched an NFT collection recently in July 2021 on NFT platform INFLUXO, which was developed by BigONE. The collection of NFTs will feature about seven NFTs and will be auctioned to fans of the legendary footballer. Taking a look at this scenario, football is one of the most popular games with a large fan base, and with the move of Ronaldinho, his fans will be interested in the auction as well as the technology behind the NFT idea which is, in turn, encouraging the growth of the industry.
What determines if a celebrity NFT is rare and significant?
The NFT has to tell a story that depicts the significance of the moment or the poetry of its being, just like Ronaldho’s Legendary footwork on the field, “Gathering everyone on the field to stop the genius, but they still can’t do it”. Owning the feeling or the genius-ness of Ronaldho is something that only a true fan can resonate with its intrinsic value. To many, this digital marketplace INFLUXO could be a way to communicate this specific feeling that couldn’t’ exist differently.
Celebrities and NFTs; making Our World a Metaverse
At the end of the NFTs wave with celebrities, is the evolution of our world into a metaverse where the internet will become a virtual world. We’ve witnessed albums, artworks, songs, photos, and even real estate being tokenized and sold as NFTs. The NFTs auctioned and sold by celebrities are a way of connecting with their fans digitally with the sale of tokenized assets thereby making the world a metaverse.
In conclusion, the NFTs industry is still in its early stages and many innovations lie ahead for the industry. It is a very secure way of storage on the Blockchain that cannot be tampered with. The technology will soon be widely adopted and celebrities have taken the lead already.
Anndy Lian is an early blockchain adopter and experienced serial entrepreneur who is known for his work in the government sector. He is a best selling book author- “NFT: From Zero to Hero” and “Blockchain Revolution 2030”.
Currently, he is appointed as the Chief Digital Advisor at Mongolia Productivity Organization, championing national digitization. Prior to his current appointments, he was the Chairman of BigONE Exchange, a global top 30 ranked crypto spot exchange and was also the Advisory Board Member for Hyundai DAC, the blockchain arm of South Korea’s largest car manufacturer Hyundai Motor Group. Lian played a pivotal role as the Blockchain Advisor for Asian Productivity Organisation (APO), an intergovernmental organization committed to improving productivity in the Asia-Pacific region.
An avid supporter of incubating start-ups, Anndy has also been a private investor for the past eight years. With a growth investment mindset, Anndy strategically demonstrates this in the companies he chooses to be involved with. He believes that what he is doing through blockchain technology currently will revolutionise and redefine traditional businesses. He also believes that the blockchain industry has to be “redecentralised”.