CryptoPunks Sales Surpass $1 Billion

You might think it’s a joke, but I guarantee it is true. CryptoPunks are digital avatars created by an algorithm and registered on the Ethereum blockchain. In fact, anyone can download the image from the internet, but the owner can brag about having the non-fungible token (NFT) registry.

On May 11, a new milestone for these non-fungible tokens (NFT) took place. The traditional auction house Christie’s of London sold a collection of 9 CryptoPunks for $16.9 million. On Aug. 28, the 10,000 avatar aggregate historical sales surpassed $1 billion.

What are NFTs – Non-fungible Tokens?

The main difference between an NFT and a cryptocurrency is that these tokens are neither interchangeable nor divisible. That means each record is unique, entire, and individual.

CryptoPunks was the first case of collectible NFTs, even before the Ethereum ERC-721 standard existed — which allowed native NFTs on the blockchain without the hassle of complicated smart contracts.

Fast forward to today, and there are hundreds of other well-known projects, including the official NBA virtual cards, Top Shot.

No. Although local laws and notary offices may accept blockchain registration, in general terms, it does not involve copyright permissions. When purchasing an NFT, the owner gains control of an address in a decentralized database; that’s it.

Think of NFT as an author’s digital signature. The digital artwork is a file, and therefore it can be copied. However, a blockchain record is unique, and in this case, it cannot be replaced by a similar one.

Can Anyone Launch an NFT?

Yes. The rock band ‘Kings of Leon’, for example, sold some NFT items that entitle you to lifetime tickets to the group’s concerts, in addition to the blockchain registry itself. Likewise, artist Banksy sold an NFT of a music video for $380,000.

Ah! The CEO of Twitter sold the registry of the first post he made on the platform for a measly $2.5 million. Remember: The NFT owner cannot delete, edit or have exclusivity to the post content. All he took home is a record in a database, the blockchain.

Where Can You Buy and Sell NFTs?

In the beginning, trading was restricted to decentralized platforms, using the cryptocurrency Ether (ETH) as payment. The best-known venues are Rarible, OpenSea, Decentraland, Sorare, and Ethernity.

However, its popularity grew, and both eBay and Alibaba marketplaces announced exclusive areas for NFTs trading.

How Can I Create an NFT?

The Mintable platform is recommended for beginners, and the cost is the Ethereum network registration fee, which can range between $5 and $30 depending on the network usage.

It is possible to send audio, video, PDFs, 3D graphics files, among others. Then you create your ad with price, title, description, display image, and enter the address of your wallet to receive payments.

All set! Now, wait for someone to buy your item!

Why Would Anyone Buy an NFT?

Do you know someone who collects basketball or football cards? Or someone who owns framed artist prints? Yes, they might be mass-produced items, but they are numbered and scarce.

Similarly, whoever buys the NFT of an artwork doesn’t just want a copy of the image. Anyone can download it from the internet. The NFT buyer is looking for exclusivity and status.

For example, on Aug. 23, VISA announced the acquisition of CryptoPunk #7610 for U$ 150,000.

CryptoPunks became an object of desire. It remains to be seen whether the trend is momentary or whether this demand will grow over time.

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