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Non-Fungible Tokens

Feb 28, 2022


Today’s edition of the Current Affairs Dialog box comprises a discussion on Non-Fungible Tokens, and how it is relevant to UPSC exam preparation.

For Prelims: Non-Fungible Tokens, and Its relevance

For Mains: Difference between Non-Fungible Tokens and Cryptocurrencies, Importance of Non-Fungible Tokens.

Why in the News?

The sales of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) surged $25 billion in 2021, according to market data tracker DappRadar data analytics.

NFT non-Fungible

Probable Question

With the onset of non-Fungible tokens and cryptocurrencies, the financial architecture of the world is poised to make a shift. Discuss

Key Points

About Non-Fungible Tokens

  • A Non-Fungible Token or NFT is a unit of data that is stored on a digital ledger (blockchain) and can be sold and traded.
  • NFT ledgers claim to provide a public certificate of authenticity or proof of ownership.
  • Digital art, images, videos, text, music, and even virtual real estate and in-game items can be bought and sold as NFTs.
  • It is backed by Blockchain technology.
  • Terra Nullius was the first NFT on Ethereum Blockchain.
  • Anyone who holds a cryptocurrency wallet can buy an NFT without going through KYC norms.
  • Some of the largest NFT marketplaces of NFTs are:, Rarible.

What do the terms ‘Fungible’ and ‘Non-Fungible’ Imply?

  • Money is an example of a fungible entity, which means that one rupee can be exchanged for another.
  • By definition, a non-fungible token is not comparable to another non-fungible token which means that each NFT is either one-of-a-kind or part of a very limited run, and each has its own unique code. 

How do NFTs Work?

  • NFT works on blockchain as it gives users complete ownership of a digital asset. 
  • NFTs can have only one owner at a time. 
  • Apart from exclusive ownership, NFT owners can also digitally sign their artwork and store specific information in their NFT’s metadata.

Also read: Best Way To Prepare Economy For UPSC Prelims

Difference Between NFT and Cryptocurrency

  • Cryptocurrency is a currency and is fungible, meaning that it is interchangeable.
    •  For instance, if you hold one crypto token, say one Ethereum, the next Ethereum that you hold will also be of the same value. 
  • However, NFTs are non-fungible, which means the value of one NFT is not equal to another. Every art is different from others, making it non-fungible, and unique.

Risks Involved in NFTs

  • The emergence of fake marketplaces, unverified sellers often impersonating real artists, and selling copies of their artworks for half prices are major challenges.
  • Trading NFTs involves technical processes that are sometimes misunderstood -- and that can lead to investors not knowing quite what they are dealing with.
  • NFTs can have a negative impact on the environment.
    • In order to validate transactions, crypto mining is done, which requires high-powered computers that run at a very high capacity, affecting the environment ultimately.

Level up your Prelims 2022 preparation by watching Weekly Current Affairs Masterclass for Prelims & Mains (7th February to 13th February) by Prem Sodhani Sir, our DREAM TEAM Faculty for Current Affairs:

Importance of Non-Fungible Tokens

  • Non-fungible tokens are an evolution over the relatively simple concept of cryptocurrencies.
  • Modern finance systems consist of sophisticated trading and loan systems for different asset types, ranging from real estate to lending contracts to artwork.
  • By enabling digital representations of physical assets, NFTs are a step forward in the reinvention of this infrastructure.

News Source: The Indian Express

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