N, F, T. Three letters that have taken over the headlines. You can’t understand the future of the internet as we head into the Web 3.0 era without understanding digital currencies and the means of value exchange. Enter NFTs, or as Elizabeth Strickler from Georgia State University says in her TEDx talk: The three letters that are changing digital experiences now.
NFT stands for “non-fungible token” It’s essentially a unique and non-interchangeable unit of data stored on a digital ledger such as a blockchain. You may have heard of forms of cryptocurrency like Bitcoin before. These are fungible tokens since one Bitcoin can be exchanged for another, just like one dollar can be exchanged for another dollar. NFTs, on the other hand, are not interchangeable, since each of them represents or links to a piece of digital media, whether that’s art, text, videos, or even bits of code.
NFTs are typically released in drops, where a limited number of digital media are made available on an NFT marketplace for purchase. If the artist or creator has done a good job promoting their drop, the available items will be sold in minutes and then resold again on the secondary market for even more than their original value.
Many brands have already made their first foray into the NFT world. Some of these brands are Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana, Stella Artois, The Economist, P&G, and many more. Beauty brands like Clinique, for example, launched their first NFTs with a focus on community and utility.
Athletes and stars are also entering the space at a record pace, from Martha Stewart to Snoop Dog, Lionel Messi and Lindsay Lohan, and Tom Brady.
Vogue Business captured it well. In a recent article, they mention NFTs evolving from being collectors’ items to include loyalty rewards and physical product perks, as brands find more purposeful brand uses of non-fungible tokens.