According to professional wrestler and actor John Cena, fans only bought 7.4 percent of the World Wrestling Entertainment, or WWE, NFTs that he made accessible last month.
Cena said it was a mistake to offer his WWE NFTs as part of a package including physical collectibles — a hat, shirt, wristbands, belt, towel, autographed picture, and the digital collectible — at Florida Supercon 2021 on Sept. 12. Instead, the group provided 500 $1,000 gold tier packages with the NFT, but only a tiny percentage of them were sold.
“I talk a lot about failure,” Cena remarked, “and this notion failed.” “I and the WWE thought $1,000 was a reasonable pricing point. We were mistaken. We were completely incorrect.”
“We sold 37 of them. It was a catastrophic failure.”
Cena and WWE produced two tiers of NFTs for the wrestler: a 24-hour auction of a “John Cena Platinum NFT” and 500 limited edition NFTs the following day as part of the bundle mentioned above of physical collectibles. The platinum NFT reportedly sold for $21,000, with the highest bidder receiving VIP seats to WrestleMania 38 in Dallas or WrestleMania 39 in Los Angeles, as well as hotel accommodations.
Long before the rise in popularity of NFTs, the WWE veteran promoted the crypto space on social media. He shared a picture of the physical token before the 2017 Bitcoin (BTC) bull run when the price was in the $4,000s. The Undertaker, a retired professional wrestler who was a member of the WWE until 2020, has also appeared in NFT collections.
It’s unclear whether the NFT’s price — Cena estimated the digital artwork to be worth around $500 — or the actual memorabilia put off wrestling fans. In July, an entrepreneur held simultaneous auctions for an Apple co-founder Steve Jobs job application and an NFT. The real paper sold for $343,000, while the NFT received a final bid of 12 Ether (ETH), or $27,460 at the moment.
Why Afrofuturism will be the Driving Force of NFTs
A particular group in the world is more excited about the NFT space than most other groups. So, no, it’s not who you think it is. Unless you’re thinking of Black creatives. If so, then you’re right. But why is this group of people so excited? Amongst the many reasons, one of them is because many Black creatives see this as an opportunity to be reimbursed for the works they’ve been doing finally.
Along with the growing numbers of African and African diaspora NFT creatives, another term has been popping up alongside them: Afrofuturism. So it seems a given that Afrofuturism, a concept that merges technology and African culture, is gaining traction in the African NFT creative community. But is that all there is to it?
In 1993, author Mark Dery first coined the word Afrofuturism. Since then, the term has been embraced by many Africans and African diasporas. But even though the term was invented in 1993, the core concept of Afrofuturism has existed for centuries. While some people see Afrofuturism as a mere aesthetic that combines shiny chromes with rustic textiles, others see it more profound. To these people, the essence of Afrofuturism is hope. And it’s this hope that continues to exist in the Black community.
When Africans were forcibly taken and sold to slavery centuries ago, those who survived the brutal process dared to hope for a better future. When African-Americans were segregated and treated as less than a person, they also hoped for a better future. Even in more recent times, when police brutality and institutionalized racism continue to make the lives of Africans and the African diaspora difficult, they continue to hope for a better future.
It’s easy to categorize Afrofuturism as a science fiction genre. Dery himself coined the term while discussing why there weren’t more sci-fi works by African American authors. But ask any African creatives, and they will tell you that aesthetics is at the bottom of the list of why Afrofuturism is essential to them. Afrofuturism is not about excellent aesthetics and strong aesthetics. Afrofuturism is about imagining a better future where they or their descendants can live as fully realized beings that no longer have to suffer from the worries of the current world. The aesthetics are just a side effect.
And this brings us back to NFTs.
The decentralized blockchain and NFTs bring a lot of freedom to Africans that may not have had access to that freedom before. As a result, it is easier than ever before to make a living out of making art. They no longer had to deal with government restrictions, unavailable resources, or the difficulty of traveling to sell their creations. As a result, making art is now more lucrative than ever. That’s why Afrofuturism is heavily linked to the NFT movement.
NFTs offer a glimpse of different and better reality to these Black creatives. This glimpse gives them hope, and this hope drives them to create. It’s a self-fulfilling cycle that will continue for several generations. In a world that feels like everything is against them, NFTs, the blockchain, and the digital future is the silver lining they’ve always longed for. This hope, wrapped up in a blanket called Afrofuturism, will be one of, if not the most significant driving force of Black creatives finally receiving their due in the NFT markets.
Whitney Houston’s Unreleased Song Demo NFT Sells for Over $1 Million
Whitney Houston’s unreleased track was sold as a non-fungible token for $999,999. OneOf, a music-focused marketplace, was utilized to sell the NFT.
An NFT based on a previously unreleased Whitney Houston track was sold for $999,999. After first confirming in November 2021 that some Whitney Houston NFTs will be offered, with artwork by artist Diana Sinclair, NFT marketplace OneOf confirmed the sale on December 15. Houston recorded the song when he was 17 years old, but it was never released.
These NFTs have been available for purchase since the opening of Miami Art Week on December 1. Additionally, several NFTs relating to Houston’s career have been launched, and customers can choose which ones they want based on their platform tier.
For example, gold and platinum grade members have access to rare, archive images of the singer. In addition, diamond tier members can get Diana Sinclair’s artwork based on some of Houston’s most well-known tunes.
OneOf is an “eco-conscious NFT platform created exclusively for the music vertical,” according to the company. Quincy Jones, a well-known producer, has lent his support. The platform seeks to list NFTs at fixed costs that are affordable to the general public, and it plans to have thousands of NFTs on its platform.
There has been a lot of talk about how NFTs could change the music industry by raising the amount of money going to artists. This appears to be the reaction of the crypto community to the announcement of the NFT sale in Houston. Indeed, a growing number of musicians and artists in different fields are seriously contemplating collaborating with NFTs.
The NFT format is gaining popularity among artists
Eminem, Grimes, Snoop Dogg, and The Weeknd are just a few artists who have recently released NFTs. The earnings from the purchase of NFTs inspired by musicians are often donated to charitable organizations, such as the Freddie Mercury-themed NFTs launched to aid an AIDS research charity.
It’s easy to see why NFTs would be so popular. Artists are not only paid more, but they are also able to interact directly with their audience. Although NFT adoption is still in its early stages, the music business appears to be on board.
The Golden State Warriors Basketball Team has Signed an NFT Deal with FTX US
FTX US, a cryptocurrency exchange operating in the United States, said today that it had signed an agreement with the Golden State Warriors professional basketball team. The Warriors will generate and issue non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as part of the partnership, with FTX US serving as the team’s primary digital asset launch hub.
According to a press release, the Warriors based in San Francisco want to launch NFTs FTX US’s NFT marketplace in early 2022. Digital artifacts of the Warriors’ six NBA Championship rings and ten commemorative ticket stubs will be included.
In addition, FTX US will donate one bitcoin to each of three Bay Area charities working to increase diversity in STEM and tech.
In a statement, FTX US President Brett Harrison said, “The FTX US NFT Platform will give a premier, safe, and secure forum for the Warriors international fan base to access rare items from the brand.”
Through its NFT platform, FTX US has made a concerted attempt to grow into sports and entertainment. For example, in November, it inked a contract with the University of Kentucky basketball team to allow players to design and sell their own NFTs.
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