NFTs and ownership

NFTs make art, music, writing, games, and other creative content more abundant, not more scarce.

Many critics of NFTs claim the opposite — that NFTs restrict access to creative content.

This is not a critique of NFTs. This is a critique of a fictional caricature of NFTs dreamt up by critics.

NFTs add a new layer of value — digital ownership — that didn’t exist in a credible way before NFTs.

This concept of ownership independent of copyright is widely understood in the offline world.

There can be many copies of a work of art or other cultural artifact.

As depictions of the original are more widely shared, owning the original becomes more valuable.

The most forward-thinking NFT projects make the content itself public domain.

The more you copy and share the content, the more popular the project becomes, increasing the likelihood of the NFTs becoming valuable.

The internet is a giant meme-propagation machine.

NFTs work with the internet instead of fighting it, increasing the abundance of creative works while also allowing creators to get properly paid for their work.

Also, although short term it’s frustrating, long term it’s a massively positive signal that the main criticisms of NFTs is based on false premises. Eventually the truth will propagate out.


Originally published on January 1, 2022

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