We all know that NFTs (Nonfungible Tokens) are here to stay and the arrival of the metaverse is only set to make their appeal and use even more popular.
NFTs are making it ever more possible to express individuality online, whether through randomly generated or carefully designed features. The virtual clothes and accessories users choose in the metaverse will help to make online identity feel true to each person and deepen their engagement. Fashion and art are a vital part of self-expression in the physical world; why should the online world be different?
As mentioned earlier, digital fashion is booming and it has a new growth opportunity in NFTs. Design houses and celebrities are selling skins, outfits, hairstyles and pets as NFTs; “dropping NFTs” is as hot as dropping an unexpected album. In fact, both musicians and athletes are embracing the possibilities of earning royalties when NFT assets are sold, in hopes they will be able to create a new system of property rights, unencumbered by the practices of legacy brokers.
As digital property rights become legitimized and blockchains become more secure, NFTs may become more serious bargaining chips. Imagine a group bargaining with Disney for the rights to use their characters, for example. Seems far-fetched? Sotheby’s recently saw a DAO (comprising 17,000 donors) push bidding for a rare copy of the US Constitution to over $43 million. Although they didn’t win this time, it’s clear that NFT-facilitated shared ownership is set to be a real economic force.
The range of revenue streams available on the metaverse, from gaming to ticketing to software subscriptions to healthcare, holds the potential to shift the tech paradigm away from advertising and big data, with all the privacy and security nightmares they have brought. That certainly isn’t a given, but it is at least a possibility.
The more open and accessible the platforms are, the stronger this narrative becomes. Interconnecting platforms attract more users; then seamless, interoperable payments and assets mechanisms increase their incentive to design and trade — circulating revenue throughout the system and increasing the potential for a parallel economic order.
Major games corporations are already making their metaverse development tools widely available with the explicit aim of encouraging interoperability and thereby wider adoption. These companies are convinced that an open metaverse is best for business. It will certainly be the best way to create a thriving online economy — one in which users are motivated to participate and to create value, which will accrue to platform developers as well as user-creators.
It’s just possible that, for once, the technological, philosophical and economic cases all point in the same direction: toward a distributed metaverse, using the capabilities of blockchain technology, in which online citizens can finally escape the walled gardens of Web 2.0 and reap the benefits of their contributions. In this exciting new world, NFTs will bridge the gap between the real and the virtual. From identity to enterprise, tangible ownership will make all the difference. It’s a whole new level of reality.
Mark Zuckerberg’s decision to rebrand Facebook to Meta was enough to propel the metaverse into major headlines around the world, although the concept has been around for at least three decades. It is this apparent sudden emergence of the metaverse that provides the escape velocity for the rehabilitation of NFTs’ image as a speculative crypto gimmick.
By creating a metaverse of quality, rather than a collection of separate 3D spaces, platforms need to be interoperable and seamless. Payments must be secure, friction-free and instantaneous, and it must be possible to retain and use the assets created (such as your customized avatar) no matter where in the metaverse you are. Until recently, to participate in the digital world, you had to leave a trail of breadcrumbs that allowed gatekeepers (game makers and so on) to recognize you.
As Blockchain is one of the “core enablers” of the metaverse, according to venture capitalist and influential metaverse commentator Matthew Ball. Another crucial element in his definition of the metaverse is an “individual sense of presence, and… continuity of data.” The more you “live” online, the more important your individual “skin” will be. Even the most basic pixel art can come to be strongly associated with individual identity, as shown by the passion for CryptoPunks; owners often say they feel closely connected to their punk.
Personally as Zachdev, I see a future where VR tech related devices starts becoming affordable for the new generation as this will allow them to consistently interact with NFTs, bidding for art pieces within the metaverse and comparing NFT collections amongst each other’s virtual homes. Remote working won’t be the same anymore, technology will start creating virtual experiences for all of us to work together in digital offices.