Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, have been a revolutionary force in the crypto, arts, and sports industries, not only because of the financial liberation that successful projects offer creators, but also because of their ability to bring creators closer together. art lovers to creators and bring athletes closer to their fans. .
Before 2021, and some blockbuster sales from Beeple, NFT-based art was relatively obscure. And while OpenSea existed, the huge volumes of trade seen in the last six months were unimaginable.
The success of Dapper Labs’ NBA TopShot NFT proved that digital collectibles have great appeal and to date, more than $ 780 million worth of collectibles have been bought and sold on the platform. In late September, Dapper Labs raised an additional $ 250 million in funding, validating the fact that large companies are realizing the marketing and sales potential of NFTs.
In the last three months, various musicians, famous artists, mega influencers and athletes have entered the space either by buying NFT “blue chip” or by launching their own projects on various platforms. Steph Curry and Shaquille O’Neal are just a few of the few professional athletes who recently uploaded their Twitter profile photos to NFT from projects like Bored Ape Yacht Club and Creatures World NFT, and even Snoop Dog has revealed that he is an avid collector of rare NFT projects.
The trend of celebrities, companies and athletes launching their own NFT platforms and one-off launches appears to be accelerating, and this week Cointelegraph was able to steal a few minutes from O’Neal, known simply as Shaq, to ask him about his recent purchases and his planned entry into the space. .
Cointelegraph: Shaq, you are a smart businessman with experience in a variety of industries. What were some of the things that attracted you to NFTs?
Shaq: In 2008, Twitter caught my eye because technology allowed me to speak directly to my fans. NFTs are part of the next wave of direct engagement. If you have one of my pieces, I can interact directly with you. What’s also great is that my collectors can interact with communities of other collectors.
CT: CNBC recently quoted you like saying that you don’t invest in cryptocurrencies because “I don’t get it.” Has your recent experience with NFTs helped clear up some of the confusion about cryptocurrencies as investments and a medium of exchange?
Shaq: I have always approached new spaces by diving headfirst. This NFT collection is my first step into the world of cryptocurrencies. This is why I teamed up with a digital artist like Justin, who is showing me the ins and outs. Everyday I learn more.
CT: How do you think NFTs can help better connect athletes with their fans?
Shaq: There are many ways of doing it. Simply owning my NFTs is a way of sharing my legacy. By owning one, you can own a Shaq item that no one else has. Airdrops and giveaways are great, but nothing better than meeting in real life, so I’ll have dinner with whoever buys my 1/1. I will also be meeting another collector at my Fun House event.
CT: In your opinion, what should the cryptocurrency sector do to make cryptocurrencies more understandable and accessible to the general public and the average investor?
Shaq: NFTs are a great way for people to get acquainted with technology. This is how I am doing it. People need to interact with cryptocurrencies in a practical way to understand them.
Ethernity presents Shaq’s NFT series and takes place on Friday (October 15). There will be five different NFTs reflecting various moments in your NBA career, and prices will range from $ 50 to $ 20,000 in Ether (ETH), ERN (Ethernity native token), and credit card purchases through Banq.
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