30 Nov 2021
As the world begins to usher in the era of decentralised "blockchain" based technologies with Web3, Cryptocurrencies and cryptotokens are becoming more mainstream and known to the general populase including your Average Joe who doesn't understand how blockchains work in full or what their purpose serves.
Blockchains are essentially a list of records that have been cryptographically signed and attached to the previous record through its hash and timestamp.
By its open design, blockchains can be decentralised and distributed across many nodes to store and distribute the information and can be open to the public or private.
The problem with how blockchains work arises with Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), a term which you may have heard a lot if you've been reading mainstream news.
NFTs are a unique (non-fungible) piece of data (token) stored on a blockchain. NFTs are fundamentally different from blockchains as they are non-fungible and henceforth no NFT will be equivalent to another while one bitcoin can be interchanged with another.
Since the NFT data on the blockchain is only a hash, it CAN'T contain the image or video associated with your NFT.
If you buy an NFT of a monkey (which are honestly very ugly), it isn't stored on the blockchain. The token hash itself is stored on the blockchain but your monkey picture is stored online somewhere else.
And usually, those monkeys are stored on Google Drive or Dropbox.
This means if Google disapproves of the new "Funky Dunkeys!" NFT series, they can delist all the files and Fredric Fredricson's Funky Dunkey NFT is nothing more than a hash on a blockchain.
They can be used for digital ownership but 9/10 NFTs are meaningless hashes attached to images or videos while the actual image Jimmy thinks he owns is really in the copyright of the original author.
I hope this shows you why NFTs are ultimately useless for digital ownership of art as they are just hashes on a blockchain with images stored in a cloud provider that can disappear at any moment in time.
P.S. for the so inclined, download all the NFTs at The NFT Bay!