Non-fungible tokens have quickly become a mainstream phenomenon, with a slew of celebrities, entertainers, and sports figures promoting them. The question is, which NFT has had the greatest impact on this burgeoning industry?
There’s no denying that NFTs have taken the world by storm, with some of the most popular digital collectibles commanding exorbitant prices, prompting a stampede of newcomers eager to cash in on the trend.
While many have tried to cash in on the apparent success of NFTs, a few notable digital collectible creators have had their NFTs sell for millions of dollars at auction. NFTs have become the new-age autograph in a short amount of time, and their use has spread across a wide range of industries.
As blockchain-powered digital collectibles marketplaces boom for American sports leagues such as the National Basketball Association and the National Football League, the world of sport has taken a liking to NFTs. Beeple’s $69 million digital art piece broke auction records and changed the way people enjoy and own art, indicating that the art industry is undergoing a new age renaissance of sorts. Musicians, celebrities, and content creators have all launched their own NFTs, which are changing the way fans and consumers buy memorabilia, merchandise, and content.
Here are some of the most popular NFTs in 2021, with information on the developers or original owners as well as the current value of those NFTs.
Beeple’s now-famous digital collage “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” is an obvious choice for this list of prominent NFTs. Its price alone has cemented its reputation as the most valuable NFT ever sold at auction.
The digital collage was created by American digital artist Mike Winkelmann, better known by his nickname Beeple, and sold for $69,346,250 in February 2021 at renowned auction house Christie’s.
Over the past 13 and a half years, Beeple has been releasing a piece of digital art every single day, and “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” is a collage of 5,000 of these objects.
The NFT’s jaw-dropping price tag was only realized in the last two minutes of the auction, when the digital art piece saw a drastic rise in the value of offers, moving up from a $20 million offer to a final bid for about $60 million. The $9 million difference was due to Christie’s buyer’s premium.
Jack Dorsey’s $2.9-million genesis tweet
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey successfully auctioned off the digital rights to his first-ever tweet from March 2006, in a strange and wonderful use-case example for NFTs. In March 2021, the NFT tweet was ultimately sold for $2.9 million, with the proceeds going to the GiveDirectly fund.
On March 6th, Dorsey posted a link on his Twitter profile that directed users to an online auction for his 2006 tweet, which was also the first-ever made on the popular social media website 15 years ago.
“Just setting up my twttr,” says Dorsey’s first tweet, which he posted in March 2006. Dorsey’s digitally autographed tweet drew a lot of interest, but Sina Estavi, the CEO of Tron-based Bridge Oracle, won it.
Edward Snowden’s NFT
Another well-known person who has raised a lot of money by selling of an NFT is American whistleblower Edward Snowden. He made headlines in 2021 when he raised $5 million for the Freedom of the Press Foundation by selling a one-of-a-kind piece of NFT art.
Snowden commissioned the NFT art project, dubbed “Stay Free,” to honor a key 2020 court decision stating that the US National Security Agency’s mass spying breached the law. Snowden was instrumental in revealing the infractions, and the art piece includes every page of the landmark court decision, as well as a silhouette of Snowden’s face in the foreground.
Over the last decade, Snowden has become one of the most well-known government whistleblowers. Snowden obtained access and exposed sensitive material linked to NSA privacy abuses during his position as a former employee and subcontractor for the US Central Intelligence Agency.
A federal appeals court concluded seven years later that the NSA’s surveillance program, which collected data on Americans’ phone calls, was unconstitutional. After disclosing this material, Snowden was forced to seek asylum in Russia, where he was granted permanent status. For disclosing this information to the public, Snowden was charged under the Espionage Act.
Given the popularity of NFTs in 2021, it’s no surprise that Snowden’s “Stay Free” art work fetched such a high price at auction. PleasrDAO, which was founded by a group of NFT art collectors, purchased the NFT.
The group won the digital art work with a winning bid of 2,224.00 Ether (ETH). As the bidding for the “Stay Free” NFT heated up, Snowden remarked in a tweet that the final sum paid for the art piece was more than the Freedom of the Press Foundation’s yearly budget.
Gronk’s NFL Championship Series
Rob Gronkowski, an NFL veteran, is undoubtedly the most significant player to have had a successful NFT debut of digitally signed trading cards.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end debuted in the realm of NFTs in March, when he teamed up with OpenSea to create a collection of trading cards, which he sold for $1.8 million in ETH.
The Championship Series NFTs honor Gronkowski’s four NFL championships, while the fifth and final “Career Highlight Refractor Card” honors those four great seasons. Gronkowski won three NFL championships with the New England Patriots, and he won his fourth with quarterback Tom Brady after joining the Buccaneers in 2020.
The four Championship Cards had 87 digital editions up for auction, whereas the fifth Career Highlight card was just a single NFT.
Given this, it’s unsurprising that the one-of-a-kind “Career Highlight Refractor Card” sold for the most money at auction, fetching 229 ETH (about $435,000 at the time). The two-day auction resulted in the sale of 349 trading cards, as well as the one-of-a-kind Career highlight card, to 95 different owners. The auction’s entire trading value was 1,014 ETH, which was worth $1.8 million on the day.
Grimes’ $5.8 million in 20 minutes
Last but not least, Canadian musician and visual artist Claire Elise Boucher, better known by her stage name Grimes, had a successful NFT launch, with purchases of tokenized artwork totaling $5.8 million at the end of the sale in March 2021.
Grimes’ first NFT collection, nicknamed “WarNymph,” was designed by her brother, acclaimed digital artist Mac Boucher. The artwork depicted a fantasy universe focused on a goddess who was stylised as a baby angel. Carbon 180, a non-governmental organization dedicated to decreasing carbon emissions, received a portion of the revenues from the “WarNymph” NFT sales.
As previously stated, Grimes’ NFT work was in high demand, with copies selling for more than $5 million in less than 20 minutes after being public on Feb. 28. “Death of the Old,” the most expensive NFT, received a winning offer of $389,000.
It looks Like NFTs Are Here To Stay
NFTs have quickly outgrown their reputation as a novelty, and there appears to be widespread agreement that the field will continue to attract significant investment and use in the future.
It is apparent that tokenizing assets is becoming more widespread, from singers looking to push the bounds of their regular releases, such as Kings of Leon, who made $2 million from their NFT album release, to a $1.8 million pair of sneakers.
“I own some NFTs, but that is because I enjoy the art and the community that was developed to make the art,”
Mattison Asher, who does research on Ethereum, NFTs, and DeFi at ConsenSys, said at the time and added that it’s difficult to predict whether the prices paid for certain works of digital art and other NFTs will keep their worth in the future. However, beauty is in the perspective of the beholder, and the auction plainly demonstrates that people respect Beeple’s “The First 5000 Days.”
Asher, on the other hand, believes that sales like those of “Everydays” have played a larger part in bringing together businesses that appear to have more in common than meets the eye:
“The stories of crypto and Beeple are strikingly similar. Beeple, like the crypto sector as a whole, has had to overcome a tremendous amount of adversity in order to reach the current level of success. Beeple has been making digital works for years, much like the crypto industry as a whole, with little recognition.”
A YouTuber has Exchanged his Tesla Roadster for an NFT
“Looking back in a year, two years, or three years, this could be a monumentally idiotic decision, but it could also be a fantastic decision,” Dan Markham said.
Dan Markham, the creator of the What’s Inside YouTube channel with seven million subscribers, has swapped his Tesla Roadster for a single nonfungible token.
Markham traded a blue Tesla Roadster — which he claimed may be worth “a quarter-million dollars pretty soon” — for a nonfungible token of a “positive porcupine” in a video posted to his What’s Inside Family channel on Sept. 15. The NFT was created as part of the VeeFriends project and is owned by Eli Burton, the creator of the graphic novel The Adventures of Starman.
“Looking back in a year, two years, three years, it may be a monumentally idiotic decision, but it could also be a fantastic decision. I feel these automobiles will hold their worth for a long time, and I am a firm believer in NFTs.”
“It’s a picture for a car — clearly he’s getting the better end of this deal.”
Before learning of Markham’s offer, Burton said he had planned to sell the digital painting for more than $100,000. But, according to the graphic novelist, trading the NFT for the car was “as simple as supply and demand,” as there were 10,000 tokens available at a starting price of $60,000 apiece. VeeFriends has a list of 40 porcupines that seem alike in a range of settings.
“Having it makes practically no difference in terms of money – whether it’s in a collector automobile or a collectible NFT — it’s still collectible,” Markham said.
Even though the two collectors exchanged NFTs on the blockchain, the transaction was primarily conducted in the real world, with Markham physically handing Burton the Tesla’s paper title and key. The porcupine is presently listed on OpenSea with a top bid of 16.339 Wrapped Ether (WETH) — around $56,445 at the time of publication — but Markham stated that he intends to keep the NFT in order to obtain access to a VeeFriends token holders-only conference.
NFTs have also been linked to physical collectibles by certain cryptocurrency users. For example, in July, an entrepreneur held simultaneous auctions for an Apple co-founder Steve Jobs job application and an NFT. The actual paper sold for $343,000, while the NFT received a final bid of 12 Ether (ETH), or $27,460 at the moment.
NFTs Inspired by Freddie Mercury is Being Released to Benefit an AIDS Charity
On the 75th anniversary of his birth, the renowned musician is honored with a special NFT collection.
Four digital collectible artworks inspired by the late Freddie Mercury will be auctioned soon. On what would have been the singer’s 75th birthday, the auction will take place.
Blake Kathryn, Chad Knight, Mat Maitland, and MBSJQ contributed artwork to the collectibles. SuperRare, a digital art marketplace, will host the timed auction. It will go live on September 20th and will last 75 hours, according to the organizers.
Furthermore, the auction earnings will benefit the Mercury Phoenix Trust, an AIDS charity. The nonprofit was formed in remembrance of the singer by Queen band members Brian May and Roger Taylor and band manager Jim Beach.
Three of the NFTs in the collection feature images of the performer himself. The fourth image depicts a white grand piano with a crown on the seat and a goldfish pond in the background.
Both SupreRare and the charity linked the effort to Mercury’s inventiveness in a joint statement. “When Freddie Mercury died, he left the world an obvious artistic brief. ‘You can do whatever you want with my work as long as you don’t bore me.’“
The popularity and activity of the NFT market has exploded in the recent year. These digital collectibles took over key mainstream industries, resulting in the emergence of a digital metaverse. Some, such as Tether’s co-founder, predict that in the future, “every consumer product will have an NFT.”
Like the Freddie Mercury NFT, various examples of this technology have been deployed in space for commemorative and charitable objectives.
Beeple, a well-known digital artist, sold an NFT for $6 million and donated the earnings to the OpenEarth Foundation. Pele, a Brazilian footballer, also sold NFTs as digital trading cards and donated the proceeds to his charity.
NFTs also allow for the creation of a digital capsule or a remembrance of something or someone. For example, Russel Simmons and Snoop Dogg just released an NFT anthology honoring hip-hop music pioneers. Never-before-seen artwork and music from industry giants were featured in The Masterminds of Hip Hop.
Commemorative NFTs are popular outside of the music industry as well. Unreleased images of Kobe Bryant were put up for auction as NFTs in August. Bryant was photographed while he was an 18-year-old basketball player.
Do you Aspire to be President? You Can Now Purchase the White House as a Virtual Property NFT
For decades, the White House has served as a symbol of the American people and democratic values. Until today, the public could only fantasize about possessing an actual model of the White House for their house. However, you may now own a piece of history—as well as home decor—by purchasing an NFT powered by Next Earth.
Who is the owner of a piece of history?
Many well-known landmarks have historical significance for the cities in which they are located. Maybe one day, you’ll be able to “purchase” a section of the Great Wall of China or a space on Mount Rushmore. The public, however, now has that ability with the purchase of an NFT on Next Earth. Likewise, on the Ethereum blockchain, you can own land tiles of the White House by simply picking them from a map of the world.
What is the value of it? No one knows how the digital real estate replica phenomena will develop because the notion is still in its early stages. Virtual properties, on the other hand, have been sold for large sums in past virtual worlds. As a result, it’s possible that an NFT version of the White House could one day be sold for a considerable sum—much like a house—in the future.
Putting Together a Virtual Real Estate Portfolio
Although the White House serves as the residence of the President of the United States, it is also a significant piece of real estate. The same may be said of numerous famous properties worldwide, whether or not they are political milestones.
Take a glance at any large city on the earth, and you’ll see that it has its own set of valuable assets, whether virtual or tangible. Furthermore, because you can develop nearly anything on land, it is the place to be.
So, what if you could purchase a plot of land in a major city? In a world where everything is now a piece of digital real estate, a plot of land that would be yours to develop – yours to do with as you please? That is precisely what Next Earth is constructing.
The Metaverse’s Implications
The White House NFT is just one of several high-profile real estate properties available for purchase in the metaverse. The metaverse represents the ability to own digital real estate in virtual environments. Virtual real estate can be owned, developed, and monetized in the metaverse.
We’ve already seen many significant business leaders tweet about buying NFTs and other virtual real estate assets in the metaverse, such as sports memorabilia. As more organizations and individuals get on board with investing in digital real estate, this trend will only continue to increase.
The Metaverse in the Future
These days, the metaverse craze is all the rage, and virtual real estate is no exception. One of the metaverse’s possible futures is similar to Ready Player One but without the dismal components. Virtual real estate based on NFT is already a reality, and Next Earth is leading the way.
Second Life and The Sims were among the first to provide Metaverse 1.0, which is a centralized virtual world that you can explore, construct, and play with. But, of course, at the end of the day, the centralized firm in the middle would be in charge of your assets.
For the first time, Metaverse 2.0 integrates blockchain technology with a digital duplicate of Earth, allowing users to hold rare digital assets that can be brought to life. Within the metaverse, users form communities that provide chances for interaction with other users and the construction of virtual structures.
Metaverse 3.0 is the way things will be in the future: It’s a hybrid of virtual reality, metaverse 2.0, and blockchain technology. This is a digital rendering of what our home planet would look like if we turned it into a virtual reality experience. People will interact with the real world via digital avatars, communicate as if they were in person, and construct virtual reality-only objects. The infrastructure required for this new version of the metaverse to operate safely, securely, and transparently is provided by the blockchain, the technology that allows bitcoin to act as money rather than merely a digital currency.
In their metaverse, Next Earth is now selling virtual land tracts. The NFT-based metaverse is already an amazing development and yet another illustration of how blockchain and NFTs are transforming our lives, with more intriguing innovations in the pipeline, such as pixel-based land art.
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