Pro skateboarder Tony Hawk has become the latest celebrity to join the craze over non-fungible tokens (NFTs) by announcing that he will sell the moment he made his final 540-degree ollie trick in the digital format.
The skating legend said in an Instagram post on Thursday that the video clip of him making the trick, which he first performed in 1989, will be sold off through NFT marketplace Ethernity Chain, with a part of the proceeds to be donated to charity.
Hawk’s move follows several other artists and celebrities that have offered up various creations, ranging from paintings and videos to tweets, as NFTs at auction, some of which have been sold for eye-watering amounts.
A few weeks ago, musician Grimes auctioned off a series of ten pieces of digital artworks as NFTs for around US$6mln, while last year the digital artist known as Beeple sold around US$3.5mln worth of art as NFTs.
Grimes’ use of NFTs also appeared to have rubbed off on her husband, Tesla inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) boss Elon Musk, who earlier this week said he would auction off a tweet of a techno song about NFTs as an NFT before changing his mind late on Tuesday.
NFTs function effectively as digital, blockchain-based certificates of authenticity for a piece of art or other creative work, allowing the owner of the NFT to claim ownership of the original creation even if it has been copied.
Mainstream adoption could be ahead, says asset manager
While the explosion of NFTs onto the crypto scene has been dismissed by many as another investment bubble that will ultimately burst and fade away, some analysts have said the growing interest in the token could indicate long-term staying power.
“Yes, the NFT bubble will eventually pop, but the broader impact it'll make will remain. Just like any new technology, which is changing the way we live right now or in the future—similarly what we’ve seen with other digital assets like Bitcoin—as the initial hype evaporates, the prices level out and wider adoption begins, though the process can be lengthy”, said Vytautas Zabulis, chief executive of digital asset trading firm H-Finance.
“NFTs could essentially eliminate such platforms like eBay, Facebook or Spotify, by creating a direct economic relationship between the digital asset creator and the buyer. What we see now is just the infant stage of what could become a new trade market, eventually mingling with traditional finance”, he added.