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NFTs- legitimate or a scam?

For discussion and debate about anything. (Not a roleplay related forum; out-of-character commentary only.)

Where do you stand on the concept of NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens)?

Pro
1
2%
Anti
41
71%
Neutral
13
22%
Unsure
3
5%
 
Total votes : 58

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Saiwania
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NFTs- legitimate or a scam?

Postby Saiwania » Thu Oct 14, 2021 3:43 am

Within the world of cryptocurrencies like BitCoin or Etherium, there is a relatively new financial instrument/product out there which has emerged in prominence recently- which is the NFT or Non-Fungible Token. To start with for those who don't know: what is an NFT? I'm uncertain I can even explain it effectively, given that this Investopedia article hasn't done too good of a job putting it in laymen's terms. https://www.investopedia.com/non-fungib ... ft-5115211

I will however try.

An NFT is a form of digital "collectible" that exists on a blockchain, similar to Bitcoin. The technology of blockchains means that each NFT is verifiably unique. They are bought and sold using a variety of cryptocurrencies. However, it is important to note that while many NFTs are tied to digital artwork, what you are buying is *not* the artwork. You gain no rights to it whatsoever, nor any exclusivity outside of the NFT blockchain. What you buy is a digital receipt with the artwork/info about item on it. NFTs by themselves serve no other functions outside of cryptocurrency trading/speculation but can supposedly be used for other assets like real estate.

On the pro-NFT side, there is contention that NFTs are a revolutionary new product/service which will help artists raise money to pay themselves for their efforts or allow people to do certain sorts of trading that's new. NFTs do have supporters. Some people do buy NFTs to collect them. However, it is largely impossible to ever achieve a full collection of any NFT category.

The far larger category of those into NFTs is people hoping to resell them for profit. If an NFT goes up in value and you got in early enough, this is perhaps viable. Problem is, people can and often will get burned in terms of not being able to find anyone to resell it to if it goes down in value or if the blockchain its connected to were to go offline or failed/gone out of business for some reason.

It isn't all good however, in that there are many criticisms that could be leveled against it. On the anti-NFT side, there are many concerns or criticisms which are:

NFTs are a pyramid scheme. NFTs follow many of the same principles as pyramid and multi-level marketing schemes. Fundementally, due to the fixed supply of many NFTs, in order to maintain value in a secondary reselling market, demand has to increase. This means there must be an ever increasing number of new buyers to that market. Because these buyers are late to the market, they will see diminishing returns. This is, by definition, a pyramid scheme. Many pro-NFT individuals will try to deny this, but it remains true that NFTs often exist as a bubble. With any bubble, when it bursts, those who have not already cashed their chips lose out.

NFTs have a negative impact on the environment. More well known blockchains like BitCoin run on a technology that requires vast amounts of electricity. This equates to the total energy consumption of a small country. There are however other blockchains that use less electricity, but a blockchain inherently uses more electricity over time as it grows bigger if it does. Pro-NFT users will often try to dismiss this argument using the prospect of improved energy efficiency in the future, but the truth remains that we live in the 21st century when we can ill afford any emissions that we can do without. If the consensus is that NFTs serve no purpose whatsoever, we can do without the added carbon emissions no matter how small.

NFTs serve no purpose. NFTs by definition offer nothing of real tangible value. The art attached to NFTs can often be freely obtained elsewhere and enjoyed forever simply by saving it to your computer after downloading. It is true that some NFTs are sold with extra uses, however typically in these cases what you are buying of value is actually the *other* stuff, the NFT remains just as useless if that is the case.

When Vignesh Sundaresan bought an NFT of Beeple’s Everydays: The First 5,000 Days for $69.3 million, all he really purchased was a certified (yet non-exclusive) copy of, and information about, a viral piece of digital media.

NFTs can use stolen artwork. This is not always the case but it is true that many NFTs have been sold by people who had no rights to the original artwork. There is no system in place to police NFTs and there is nothing to stop any individual making an NFT of any artwork they come across.

NFTs are scam ridden. By design, there isn't nor can there ever be a central authority on blockchains. If you are scammed, you have lost your stuff and there is no way to get it back.

Now, what are my thoughts about NFTs? I'm against the concept because its too intangible/opaque for my liking. I can't understand it well but if I could- I don't truly believe in the model. At least with traditional commodities, you're buying a physical good to try to sell it for more later if/when its more valuable. With stocks, you're buying partial ownership of a real business/company.

The biggest problem with NFTs I see is that the ownership is too diluted. It's like buying a car anyone can just drive off in if the same copies of an image exists elsewhere. If anyone can use/access what you're buying, why would you buy it? What you get with an NFT is some "certificate of ownership" for a specific user on a specific blockchain. The only monetary benefit that can be gotten from it is if the buyer can manage to sell it to another buyer above break even price. Which makes it no better than other forms of financial speculation/volatility. There are some other reasons for why I hate NFTs enough for it to just not be for me. I'm convinced that it loses money more often than not.

But I want to hear other people's views on the subject, do you believe an NFT is more of a potentially legitimate part of finance or more inherently a scam/fraud of some sort? Which side do you fall on and why? Have you or do you intend to spend money on or participate in emerging NFT markets? If you have, how has it went in terms of outcomes, is it a space you'd want to delve into or avoid? What are the merits or disadvantages of NFTs you'd consider? Thoughts.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4dkl5O9LOKg - A video that explains NFTs visually and might be easier to understand.
https://www.artnews.com/art-news/news/n ... 234600107/ - An examination of some NFT flaws.
Last edited by Saiwania on Thu Oct 14, 2021 11:31 am, edited 6 times in total.
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The Alma Mater
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Postby The Alma Mater » Thu Oct 14, 2021 3:46 am

I think it is very sad to see Neopets finally die this way.
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Postby Antipatros » Thu Oct 14, 2021 4:50 am

It's an interesting application of the blockchain technology, for sure.

I'm not inherently opposed to the idea or the technology, but a lot of the stuff you're seeing now is either tulip mania or are outright scams.

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Tyrassueb
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Postby Tyrassueb » Thu Oct 14, 2021 4:51 am

It's a scam.
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Antipatros
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Postby Antipatros » Thu Oct 14, 2021 4:58 am

On your point about power consumption: Most NFTs are running on the Ethereum blockchain, which is currently migrating to a proof-of-stake (rather than proof-of-work, like Bitcoin) system which will be much less energy intensive.

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Postby Page » Thu Oct 14, 2021 5:24 am

No more or less legitimate than diamond rings and murderabilia. People will value what they will.
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The Alma Mater
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Postby The Alma Mater » Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:22 am

Page wrote:No more or less legitimate than diamond rings and murderabilia. People will value what they will.


A valid point. Objectively, diamond rings, signed baseballs etc. are pretty worth- and useless; yet people are willing to pay large sums of money for them. If people are willing to do the same for some lines of collectible code... why not.
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Postby Ifreann » Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:26 am

My favourite explanation of NFTs is that they're essentially the same as those deeds for an acre of the Moon. All you can do is show people the receipt saying you own the thing in question, but you don't really own it in any meaningful sense. Except NFTs are also a scam to drive up the value of Ethereum.
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Postby Antipatros » Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:57 am

Ifreann wrote:My favourite explanation of NFTs is that they're essentially the same as those deeds for an acre of the Moon. All you can do is show people the receipt saying you own the thing in question, but you don't really own it in any meaningful sense. Except NFTs are also a scam to drive up the value of Ethereum.

Spending a lot of money on "ownership" over some pixels is not unprecedented. See the trading markets in games like TF2 or CS:GO

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Kerwa
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Postby Kerwa » Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:59 am

No doubt there’s some money laundering/bribery type stuff involved as well as idiots. It’s the lazy man’s contemporary art.

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Postby Luziyca » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:04 am

I feel they're more on the scammier side of things, as is most cryptocurrencies in general: cryptocurrencies seem to only be used when it comes to either cheap marketing gimmicks or to help organised crime. Plus, considering that blockchains and the like produce more power than even Nigeria, I feel like a great way to address both the crime aspects and the climate change aspects would simply be to ban cryptocurrency and NFTs outright.
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Postby Bulgar Rouge » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:13 am

Definitely not a scam or a pyramid scheme. The environmental argument is a nothingburger.

BUT NFTs, like many other blockchain-based assets, simply solve no actual problem. They may have a good use case in ensuring the originality of unique assets - for example, match shirts personally autographed by Leo Messi or real works of art (as opposed to the digital crap everyone "creates" now). But what's going on is really overhyped.

I think they'll go down the road of DeFi and prediction markets - once the hype is over, most projects will go belly up. The ones left will be those solving actual issues and will eventually evolve into serious businesses.

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Postby Ifreann » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:23 am

Antipatros wrote:
Ifreann wrote:My favourite explanation of NFTs is that they're essentially the same as those deeds for an acre of the Moon. All you can do is show people the receipt saying you own the thing in question, but you don't really own it in any meaningful sense. Except NFTs are also a scam to drive up the value of Ethereum.

Spending a lot of money on "ownership" over some pixels is not unprecedented. See the trading markets in games like TF2 or CS:GO

Buying cosmetic in video game does give you a greater degree of meaningful ownership than buying an NFT. If I buy a hat in TF2 then I can wear that hat in TF2. That might sound like a silly thing to spend money on, but I do own the hat.

If I buy an NFT of a high quality digital image of that same hat...I can't do anything with it. Not anything that I couldn't also do if I just downloaded the image without buying the NFT. All I can do is point to the Ethereum ledger as proof that I do, in fact, own the image. Which is as good as pointing to a sheet of paper saying I own half an acre in the Sea of Tranquillity. What's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product, it's the fact that buying an NFT doesn't give you any meaningful ownership of the digital product.
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Vassenor
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Postby Vassenor » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:24 am

Scam.

Like Etherium as a currency literally only exists because one guy needed a Cope supply after his favourite class in World of Warcraft got nerfed.
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Postby Ethel mermania » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:28 am

poll needs Hasselhoff option.


I am voting scam.
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Postby Bulgar Rouge » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:28 am

Vassenor wrote:Scam.

Like Etherium as a currency literally only exists because one guy needed a Cope supply after his favourite class in World of Warcraft got nerfed.


Sure. Would you refuse 2 ETH coming to your wallet though? Unlikely.

Would you refuse an NFT that currently markets for $1 million? Also unlikely, especially if you can sell it for the same or even half price right away.

The good thing is that blockchain ecosystems self-regulate fairly well. The bad thing is that they're often blinded by hype. Not a fan of NFTs, but many of these things have at least some value.

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Postby Vassenor » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:29 am

Bulgar Rouge wrote:
Vassenor wrote:Scam.

Like Etherium as a currency literally only exists because one guy needed a Cope supply after his favourite class in World of Warcraft got nerfed.


Sure. Would you refuse 2 ETH coming to your wallet though? Unlikely.

Would you refuse an NFT that currently markets for $1 million? Also unlikely, especially if you can sell it for the same or even half price right away.

The good thing is that blockchain ecosystems self-regulate fairly well. The bad thing is that they're often blinded by hype. Not a fan of NFTs, but many of these things have at least some value.


-looks at how volatile cryptocurrencies are-

That's some self-regulation. :rofl:
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Postby Ethel mermania » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:31 am

Bulgar Rouge wrote:
Vassenor wrote:Scam.

Like Etherium as a currency literally only exists because one guy needed a Cope supply after his favourite class in World of Warcraft got nerfed.


Sure. Would you refuse 2 ETH coming to your wallet though? Unlikely.

Would you refuse an NFT that currently markets for $1 million? Also unlikely, especially if you can sell it for the same or even half price right away.

The good thing is that blockchain ecosystems self-regulate fairly well. The bad thing is that they're often blinded by hype. Not a fan of NFTs, but many of these things have at least some value.


Well if its given to me I wouldn't refuse it, but I would look to sell it to turn into something useful like cash.

I would never buy one.
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Postby Antipatros » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:36 am

Ifreann wrote:
Antipatros wrote:Spending a lot of money on "ownership" over some pixels is not unprecedented. See the trading markets in games like TF2 or CS:GO

Buying cosmetic in video game does give you a greater degree of meaningful ownership than buying an NFT. If I buy a hat in TF2 then I can wear that hat in TF2. That might sound like a silly thing to spend money on, but I do own the hat.

If I buy an NFT of a high quality digital image of that same hat...I can't do anything with it. Not anything that I couldn't also do if I just downloaded the image without buying the NFT. All I can do is point to the Ethereum ledger as proof that I do, in fact, own the image. Which is as good as pointing to a sheet of paper saying I own half an acre in the Sea of Tranquillity. What's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product, it's the fact that buying an NFT doesn't give you any meaningful ownership of the digital product.

For casual ownership of hats in TF2, this makes sense. Some people have huge collections of unusual items though. Like this guy, for example: https://backpack.tf/profiles/76561198261771051

He's definitely not wearing these hats in the game. He could cycle through these hats I guess, but I don't think that's why he has them.

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Postby Kandorith » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:37 am

Luziyca wrote:I feel they're more on the scammier side of things, as is most cryptocurrencies in general: cryptocurrencies seem to only be used when it comes to either cheap marketing gimmicks or to help organised crime. Plus, considering that blockchains and the like produce more power than even Nigeria, I feel like a great way to address both the crime aspects and the climate change aspects would simply be to ban cryptocurrency and NFTs outright.

The energy thing is why projects like Cardano (ADA) should get more attention they look to solve it.

Anyway, I do not see NFTs as a scam more as a gimmick and sort of creating this futuristic idea of art and pop culture. A problem like with crypto is indeed the regulation, but many times I have been tempted (and a few times I have) to make my own NFTs from indeed my own created works. Something the local art galleries are also quite excited about is more artists looking towards the idea of NFTs.

I believe one gallery is even building its own platform to use as a national gallery for NFTs where only licensed/verified artists can share their art to be sold on the NFT market.

In the end, it is a new hype that might lay down a foundation for a whole new concept or it might actually evolve into becoming a future way of how we see art and buy/sell art.
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Postby New Astri » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:42 am

the only two kinds of people into nfts are the people who don't realize it's a scam and the people who are scamming the people who don't realize it's a scam
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Postby Ifreann » Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:49 am

Antipatros wrote:
Ifreann wrote:Buying cosmetic in video game does give you a greater degree of meaningful ownership than buying an NFT. If I buy a hat in TF2 then I can wear that hat in TF2. That might sound like a silly thing to spend money on, but I do own the hat.

If I buy an NFT of a high quality digital image of that same hat...I can't do anything with it. Not anything that I couldn't also do if I just downloaded the image without buying the NFT. All I can do is point to the Ethereum ledger as proof that I do, in fact, own the image. Which is as good as pointing to a sheet of paper saying I own half an acre in the Sea of Tranquillity. What's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product, it's the fact that buying an NFT doesn't give you any meaningful ownership of the digital product.

For casual ownership of hats in TF2, this makes sense. Some people have huge collections of unusual items though. Like this guy, for example: https://backpack.tf/profiles/76561198261771051

He's definitely not wearing these hats in the game. He could cycle through these hats I guess, but I don't think that's why he has them.

Again, what's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product.


Kandorith wrote:
Luziyca wrote:I feel they're more on the scammier side of things, as is most cryptocurrencies in general: cryptocurrencies seem to only be used when it comes to either cheap marketing gimmicks or to help organised crime. Plus, considering that blockchains and the like produce more power than even Nigeria, I feel like a great way to address both the crime aspects and the climate change aspects would simply be to ban cryptocurrency and NFTs outright.

The energy thing is why projects like Cardano (ADA) should get more attention they look to solve it.

Anyway, I do not see NFTs as a scam more as a gimmick and sort of creating this futuristic idea of art and pop culture. A problem like with crypto is indeed the regulation, but many times I have been tempted (and a few times I have) to make my own NFTs from indeed my own created works. Something the local art galleries are also quite excited about is more artists looking towards the idea of NFTs.

I believe one gallery is even building its own platform to use as a national gallery for NFTs where only licensed/verified artists can share their art to be sold on the NFT market.

In the end, it is a new hype that might lay down a foundation for a whole new concept or it might actually evolve into becoming a future way of how we see art and buy/sell art.

NFTs entirely are a scam. They're just a way to increase demand for cryptocurrencies.
Last edited by Ifreann on Thu Oct 14, 2021 7:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Ethel mermania » Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:06 am

Ifreann wrote:
Antipatros wrote:For casual ownership of hats in TF2, this makes sense. Some people have huge collections of unusual items though. Like this guy, for example: https://backpack.tf/profiles/76561198261771051

He's definitely not wearing these hats in the game. He could cycle through these hats I guess, but I don't think that's why he has them.

Again, what's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product.


Kandorith wrote:The energy thing is why projects like Cardano (ADA) should get more attention they look to solve it.

Anyway, I do not see NFTs as a scam more as a gimmick and sort of creating this futuristic idea of art and pop culture. A problem like with crypto is indeed the regulation, but many times I have been tempted (and a few times I have) to make my own NFTs from indeed my own created works. Something the local art galleries are also quite excited about is more artists looking towards the idea of NFTs.

I believe one gallery is even building its own platform to use as a national gallery for NFTs where only licensed/verified artists can share their art to be sold on the NFT market.

In the end, it is a new hype that might lay down a foundation for a whole new concept or it might actually evolve into becoming a future way of how we see art and buy/sell art.

NFTs entirely are a scam. They're just a way to increase demand for cryptocurrencies.

You can pay cash for an NFT.
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Postby Majo Bolldass » Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:11 am

I vote scam.

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Postby Antipatros » Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:11 am

Ifreann wrote:
Antipatros wrote:For casual ownership of hats in TF2, this makes sense. Some people have huge collections of unusual items though. Like this guy, for example: https://backpack.tf/profiles/76561198261771051

He's definitely not wearing these hats in the game. He could cycle through these hats I guess, but I don't think that's why he has them.

Again, what's bullshit about NFTs isn't the idea of valuing a digital product.


Kandorith wrote:The energy thing is why projects like Cardano (ADA) should get more attention they look to solve it.

Anyway, I do not see NFTs as a scam more as a gimmick and sort of creating this futuristic idea of art and pop culture. A problem like with crypto is indeed the regulation, but many times I have been tempted (and a few times I have) to make my own NFTs from indeed my own created works. Something the local art galleries are also quite excited about is more artists looking towards the idea of NFTs.

I believe one gallery is even building its own platform to use as a national gallery for NFTs where only licensed/verified artists can share their art to be sold on the NFT market.

In the end, it is a new hype that might lay down a foundation for a whole new concept or it might actually evolve into becoming a future way of how we see art and buy/sell art.

NFTs entirely are a scam. They're just a way to increase demand for cryptocurrencies.

I guess I don't really understand what your argument is. Owning a token on a blockchain can be meaningful if we're going to accept that "owning" a hat in Valve's item database can be meaningful.

You might be able to download the picture that I "own" as an NFT, but that picture you downloaded isn't cryptographically verified/signed like the token is. As dumb and as abstract as it seems, that cryptographic signature can have value to some people.
Last edited by Antipatros on Thu Oct 14, 2021 8:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

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