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Factbox: What are NFTs and who's cashing in on them?

TechnologyMar 12, 2021 03:10PM ET
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2/2 © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: 2/2

(Reuters) - NFTs are all the buzz this year, with people raking in millions by auctioning these digital assets.

Digital artist Beeple sold an artwork for nearly $70 million at Christie's on Thursday and Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) boss Jack Dorsey is auctioning his first-ever tweet as an NFT with the top bidder willing to pay $2.5 million for it.


An NFT, or a non-fungible token, is a type of digital signature that allows anyone to verify the authenticity and ownership of an asset. The digital record is saved on blockchain ledgers that can be read by anybody looking to find out the owner of the asset. Blockchain is also the technology driving the cryptocurrency market.

NFT enthusiasts hope these digital assets will retain value because it is possible to distinguish the original work from copies. They compare it to the original Mona Lisa painting at the Louvre Museum, which is unique and priceless.

Digital objects can be minted as NFTs and traded as assets, including art, sports collectibles, patches of land in virtual worlds, cryptocurrency wallet names and even tweets.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) searches for NFTs have soared this year -

For a table with some of the high-profile NFTs sold this year:

Date NFT

Mar 11 A digital artwork by artist Beeple was sold for nearly $70

million at British auction house Christie's on Thursday. It

was the first sale ever in a major auction house of a piece

of art that does not exist in physical form.

Mar 5 Twitter boss Jack Dorsey listed his famous first-ever tweet

- "just setting up my twttr" - as a unique digital

signature on a website for selling tweets. Dorsey, a known

bitcoin enthusiast, said the auction will end on March 21.

Feb 28 Musician Grimes sold some animations she made on a website

called Nifty Gateway for a total of more than $6 million.

Mar 11 Super Bowl-winning tight end Rob Gronkowski is launching

his own digital trading cards as NFTs in March, telling

Reuters he expects millions.

Feb 22 A fan paid $208,000 to acquire a video clip of a Lebron

James slam dunk.

Feb 19 A crypto art rendition of the famous Nyan Cat meme was sold

for nearly $590,000.

Feb A 10-second video clip featuring an image of a fallen

Donald Trump, also by Beeple, sold for $6.6 million on

Nifty Gateway.

Factbox: What are NFTs and who's cashing in on them?

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Comments (1)
Notvery Goodathis
Peteymcletey Mar 14, 2021 4:07PM ET
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TAPM is a unique play in the space. they had bitpainting back in 2018. but the craze in crypto and blockchain had tempered by then. they had recognized original art was a way to market it, but they didn't push that aspect yet.
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