It seems that every day a new non-fungible token (NFT) is sold for an ever-increasing amount of money; from the recent sale of the Nyan Cat meme by artist Chris Torres, which sold for US$580,000 in February 2021 to the sale of a single digital pixel by artist Pak, which sold for US$1.36 million in April 2021. More recently, in June 2021, Sir Tim Berners-Lee sold an NFT of what is the equivalent of an autographed copy of the source code for the world wide web for US$5.4million. In this article we discuss the utility of NFTs in the context of technology law.
Although the increase in interest regarding NFTs has stemmed from the tokenisation of digital artworks, any unique thing (even physical assets) can be tokenised with an NFT. For this reason, it is possible that in the future, NFTs could be used as a valuable technological legal tool to authenticate unique items and to confirm provenance and originality. To read our full analysis of how technology law can harness NFTs, please click here.
Also, please refer to our earlier articles, ‘Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and copyright law’ and ‘Non-fungible Tokens: what’s all the fuss?’, for a brief overview of what an NFT is and the use cases for NFTs.