The growing cultural capital of crypto has been proven once again with ‘NFT’ declared word of the year.
The sale of artwork Beeple for $69m in March was enough to get everyone talking about the concept of non-fungible tokens (NFTs). While all-too-familiar pandemic related words including ‘double-vaxxed,’ ‘pingdemic’ and ‘hybrid working’ were also high on the list it was ultimately a word from the crypto space which won out for lexicographers at Collins.
The Dictionary defines NFTs as “a unique digital certificate, registered in a blockchain, that is used to record ownership of an asset such as an artwork or a collectible”.
Essentially, NFTs are ultra-secure, digital receipts which verify the ownership of assets on the blockchain. While they are most commonly associated with the sale of digital art they can be used to prove ownership of an array of assets.
Twitter founder Jack Dorsey sold his first tweet as an NFT for $2.9m. In the past month over $28m has changed hands in the online game NBA Topshots where fans buy and trade videos of basketball highlights as NFTs.
In the third quarter of 2021 global NFT market volume exceeded a staggering $10bn.
While hype around NFTs is certainly on the rise they have plenty of detractors. Fraud is an issue which the industry is yet to iron out and many people in the UK still do not know what they are.
Just one in five Brits know what non-fungible token is compared to one in three people globally according to a recent survey by Finder.com.