An NFT is a unique digital asset published via Ethereum’s Blockchain technology. It can be sold, and traded. Although others can get copies of the original work, they cannot duplicate it. An NFT gives its buyers the right to own it. It allows creatives, companies, and organizations to distribute an asset for the highest bidder.
People buy NFTs for a variety of reasons. Art collectors to add them to their galleries, speculators to diversify their collections portfolio, and others just to signal their status—to show off that they can buy a tweet for $2.9 million.1
But the possible applications of NFTs reach beyond buying digital art, selling it, or collecting it. I can already see its potential uses, for instance, in the publishing industry. Independent, hybrid, and even traditional authors can use NFTs—either themselves or in collaboration with their agents—to get more control over their work.
Personally, I was never too excited about cryptocurrencies. I was forced to use them as a mean of exchange, a couple of times, due to the capital controls imposed in my country, to pay online. However, when I first read about NFTs, I couldn’t help but think about its possible uses within the publishing industry.
Publishing houses and small presses can use it to release exclusive language and/or territorial rights of books to foreign publishers. Independent writers can use NFTs to release an exclusive version of their writing to their readers.
There are, of course, other possibilities for designers, illustrators, architects, and public relations professionals. I am not saying it will ‘revolutionize’ anything. I am saying that both creatives and companies will use it to their advantage. And why shouldn’t they when people are willing to buy a JPG file for $69 million.2
If you don’t know anything about NFTs, and if the learning curve scares you, then I suggest reading this guide to NFTs for beginners.
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- Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey sold his first tweet, as an NFT, for $2.9 million
- JPG File Sells for $69 Million, as ‘NFT Mania’ Gathers Pace