Will the enthusiasm wane? NFTs, which have been much talked about in recent months, have not been spared by the cyclone, which has caused the value of cryptocurrencies to fall far from their highs. In this highly speculative market, such a household seems welcome. By 2021, NFT exchanges had exploded, amid rising prices, to reach $ 17 billion in transactions, according to specialist website Nonfungible.com. The start of the year had set the tone when artist Beeple had raised $ 69.3 million for one of his digital works at an auction hosted by Christie’s in March. Entitled “Everyday: the first 5,000 days”, it consists of a collection of digital drawings that the artist had been making daily for more than thirteen years. This sale was made possible thanks to NFT or “non-fungible token”, translate non-fungible token. It is a token, like cryptocurrencies, in other words an asset that is exchanged and registered on a blockchain, a decentralized digital ledger. But unlike bitcoin or ether, an NFT is non-fungible, which means it is unique. So much for the technical aspect.
Specifically, “it is a technological standard that certifies the authenticity of an underlying,” explains Faustine Fleuret, president of ADAN, an association representing players in the digital asset sector. Underlying can be very diverse “. Picture, video, tweet, digital map of a football player, plot of land in a virtual world called a metaverse … The field of possibilities is wide.
Interests? “Exchanges rarity,” says Faustine Fleuret. A tricky concept in the digital world, where nothing is easier than copying and pasting to acquire a file (image, sound, etc.). NFT allows you to attach a piece of data (such as an image) to a person. The system is time-stamped: if someone creates another NFT from the same image, it will be easy to know which one is the first and therefore the original. “It’s a new kind of ownership deed,” sums up Daniel Villa Monteiro, education director for Alyra, the blockchain school.
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Harder to take advantage of an NFT
The sales opportunities are obvious in the art sector, which quickly acquired the concept. But the big brands are also very interested in the subject within video games, e-commerce and even the luxury industry. However, the sector is still embryonic: according to a survey conducted by KPMG France for ADAN, only 15% of French people have already heard of NFTs, compared to 76% for cryptocurrencies.
However, it is not unaffordable to acquire NFTs. Utilizing it, however, will be more random. “In the world of art and collection, part of the value is subjective, and it is not specific to the crypto-world,” emphasizes Faustine Fleuret. Fashion on some NFTs can actually dry up very quickly. So the buyer of the first tweet from co-founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, worth $ 3 million in March 2021, put it up for auction in April last year. Bids did not exceed $ 30,000 …
If the sharp decline recorded in the crypto market – and on which NFTs depend – encourages you to buy some, to take advantage of an adjusted price, you must first know where to find it. Some trading platforms have become important in this market, such as OpenSea or even Rarible. These are kind of good corners of NFT … And like this reference site, they do not guarantee to get a good deal, nor to have a serious seller in front of you. It is therefore necessary to try to find out as much as possible before putting in. It should be noted that some artists also sell NFTs directly and that traditional art houses are also starting to offer NFT sales. Once your NFT has been discovered, move on to practical things. Because an NFT is paid in crypto assets. The most used blockchain in this area is Ethereum and you will need to get ether from a broker like Binance or Coinhouse. You will store them in a “wallet” (an electronic wallet where you can store your cryptocurrencies), which will also be used to store your NFTs. One of the most commonly used is called MetaMask.
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Lightness does not prevent mistrust. “One of the main problems is theft,” says Laurent Gayard, author of the book Understanding NFTs and Metavers. “Sometimes people retrieve images or even appropriate images from other artists and put them up for sale in the form of NFT.” If the platforms investigate the topic to try to identify “counterfeits”, in the event of a problem, do not expect them to provide after-sales service. Finally, it happens that some collectors get their wallets hacked even though they are encrypted. In the case of acquiring high value NFTs, be careful to protect them well. For this it is better to choose a cooling system, that is, not connected to the Internet.
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