What are NFTs?

Pringles’ exclusive CryptoCrisp flavour, a “limited-edition virtual flavour” with only 50 in existence, is just one of many wonderfully weird and wacky NFTs floating around on the internet many of which are sold for prices that make you want to google “what on earth are NFT’s anyway?”.

Undoubtedly you’ll have heard the term before, maybe read it in the news when the iconic Nyan Cat gif was sold for nearly $600,000. But what are they exactly?

NFT’s are non fungible – tokens, a term that does little to clarify what it is exactly. Essentially fungible means that something can be traded or exchanged with an identical item that is equal in value. Much like how one dollar can be exchanged with another one dollar, these are identical items that are equal in value. An NFT on the other hand, is non-fungible. This means that it has unique properties making it one of a kind.

The Mona Lisa for example, is a one of a kind painting. Digital art is different, after creating a digital masterpiece, like Nyan Cat, it can be duplicated over and over and over again. What digital artists can do is tokenize their art, making a digital certificate of ownership. Now Nyan Cat has become more valuable, $600,000 to be exact.

But what does it mean to buy an NFT? Do you own the copyright? Does this stop others from copying the artwork? An artist can sell an NFT and still retain copyright and, no, there is nothing stopping others from copying the artwork. What you own is a token that proves ownership of the original work. It’s like owning an autographed print or collectables.

So go ahead and buy some CryptoCrisps, you won’t get to taste them but the token will be all yours!



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