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Video game developer Ubisoft leads Animoca’s latest funding round

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Video game developer Ubisoft leads Animoca's latest funding round


Animoca’s blockchain & digital entertainment spin-off Animoca Brands and Galaxy Digital’s Interactive VC are the latest names to net capital through fundraising.

NFT game developer Animoca Brands has raised $65 million in its most recent funding round, at a $2.2 billion pre-money valuation. The funding announced yesterday reflects the growth that NFT gaming and virtual asset-focused firms have seen in recent months. The round took several investors on board including, Ubisoft Entertainment, Liberty City Ventures, Dragonfly Capital, Tess Ventures, Sequoia China, MSA Capital, Kingsway Capital, Smile Group, and Adit Ventures.

The latest score means the Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming company has now raised a total of $203.88 million this year. Earlier in June, the company raised $138.88 million, which –an investment that was set to bring digital rights to online users.

Animoca provides digital property rights to video game and metaverse consumers using blockchain tech and NFTs. It is through these offerings that users gain play-to-earn capabilities, interoperability of owned assets, interaction with GameFi opportunities, and assured ownership rights of their digital assets.

Using funds acquired in the latest funding, the company plans to invest in strategic acquisitions, development of products, and intellectual property licensing endeavours. Further, Animoca Brands aims to expand digital ownership to several new gamers and users on the internet. According to the company chair and co-founder Yat Siu, these fall in line with the company’s vision to use NFTs in redefining equity and rights for properties online.

“In 2018, we laid out a strategy based on our assessment that in the future digital property rights would revolutionize industries by expanding financial inclusion and that this significant change would start with NFT adoption in games,” he said. “That future is already here. With the backing of our new strategic investors, Animoca Brands will continue to advance blockchain in gaming – and beyond – to introduce billions of gamers and Internet users to true digital ownership,”

Also, this week, Galaxy Interactive raised $325 million with more than 70 limited partnership entities participating. Galaxy Interactive is an affiliate company of Michael Novogratz’s Galaxy Digital and is the second fund in the expanding suite of multi-LP offerings by Galaxy Digital. The latter had $2.2 billion worth of assets under management as of the end of September.

Galaxy Interactive noted that $150 million of the raised funds has already been invested or reserved for investment into new companies in the interactive sector (intersection of finance, tech, and content). The fund’s founding partner Sam Englebardt further explained that part of the raised funds would be directed to blockchain gaming and AI. Englebardt observed that with young people moving from the physical to the digital world, the ‘interactive sector’ is ripe for growth.

“There has never been a better time to focus on the intersection of content, finance, and tech, and we’re fully dedicated to leading the charge in growing this sector,” he noted.



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Not Too Hot, Not Too Cold

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Not Too Hot, Not Too Cold


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This article/post contains references to products or services from one or more of our advertisers or partners. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products or services

Picking the right crypto wallet is arguably more important than picking which crypto to invest in. After all, crypto values will ebb and flow with the market — but with the wrong wallet, you can lose everything overnight.

  • “Hot” wallets are convenient, but live online and are vulnerable to hacking.
  • “Cold” wallets are the most secure, but they’re easy to lose.

Learn the difference here: Hot Wallet vs. Cold Wallet

Trust Wallet, however, falls right in the middle – and it very well might be where Goldilocks would store her Ethereum.

So, should you “trust” the Trust Wallet? Beyond supporting a million cryptos, what does it have to offer both beginner and advanced HODLers? What are its best features, and how does it stack up to the rising competition?

Let’s investigate Trust Wallet.


Features – 7


Fees – 10


Supported Currencies – 10


Ease of Use – 7


Customer Service – 4


Security – 8

7.5

Total

Trust Wallet may be missing live human support and hardware integration, but with over a million supported cryptos and security by Binance, it’s a solid, future-proof all-rounder.

Try Out trust wallet

Pros & Cons

pros

  • Over one million cryptos supported
  • Allows staking for 12 cryptos
  • Security measures supported by Binance
  • Zero wallet fees
  • Built in DApp browser

cons

  • Customer support limited to email tickets
  • Recovery phrase can be lost or stolen
  • No native desktop experience
  • No cold storage option
  • Lack of internal guides and FAQs
  • High third party transaction fees

What Is Trust Wallet?

Trust Wallet is the official crypto wallet of Binance. It’s a hot wallet — meaning it’s connected to the internet — and it’s best known for supporting over one million cryptocurrencies.

Raise your hand if you didn’t even know there were over one million cryptos.

Trust Wallet was launched in 2017 by Ukrainian developer Viktor Radchenko. He wanted a way to save tokens directly to his phone, so he designed and developed a solution himself. After rapidly gaining steam, Trust Wallet attempted to launch an ICO (initial coin offering) within a year of its launch; but the ICO flopped and Radchenko admirably returned every penny to investors.

But things would pick up just a month later when soon-to-be-titan Binance acquired Trust Wallet for an undisclosed sum. This marked Binance’s very first strategic acquisition of another player in the space.

Read more >> Binance.US Review

Four years later, Radchenko would step down as CEO of Trust Wallet, citing a desire to focus on family and “recharge.”

Twitter

Today, Trust Wallet continues to operate as “the official crypto wallet of Binance”.

Who Should Use Trust Wallet?

Trust Wallet’s best features are:

  • Its massive array of supported tokens
  • DApp browser, and
  • Staking support

For those reasons, I think it’s best positioned to help long-term HODLers and validators (aka stakers) who want a “Goldilocks wallet.”

Trust Wallet isn’t as “hot” as leaving your private keys on an exchange (which tend to get hacked), but it’s also not so “cold” that you have to purchase and safekeep a physical device.

Top Features of Trust Wallet

Support for Over One Million Cryptocurrencies

Perhaps Trust Wallet’s most unique and standout feature is its ability to support over one million cryptos and tokens spread across 53 blockchains.

A million cryptos.

That’s a number worth repeating in your best Dr. Evil voice and goes well beyond the “mere” thousands supported by MetaMask or Coinbase Wallet.

The app also supports the storage of NFTs, so you can stash your virtual art collection alongside your staggering array of digital coins.

Related>>How to Buy and Sell NFTs

One persistent criticism over Trust Wallet was that it, rather embarrassingly, didn’t support Cardano, one of the most popular modern cryptos. That was true for a time, but no longer. The Trust Wallet team just recently added support for Cardano in July of 2022.

If you’ve ever felt frustrated having to maintain multiple wallets to store all of your obscure altcoins, Trust Wallet may be your savior. Like C-3P0, Trust Wallet speaks a million languages.

Slick Mobile Experience

Trust Wallet’s other standout feature is that it’s pretty dang easy to use.

I’ve tested a lot of crypto wallets in my day, hot and cold. I swear that some of them are hard to use on purpose. It’s as if the developers deliberately design confounding, hacker-like interfaces to intimidate newbies and appeal to a more hardcore, CS-savvy audience.

Trust Wallet isn’t one of them. It’s intuitive, well laid-out, and should appeal to greenhorns and veterans alike.

Staking Support for 12 Cryptocurrencies

If you’re unfamiliar with staking, it’s a bit like a high-yield savings account (HYSA) of crypto.

What makes staking so neat is that it finally gives crypto investors a method of generating interest from their holdings.

Staking is still relatively new to crypto, which is why it’s pretty impressive to see Trust Wallet support a whole dozen stake-able cryptos. That’s double what Coinbase offers.

Here’s the full list as of July 2022, with more currencies on the way:

  • Algorand (ALGO
  • Binance Coin (BNB)
  • Callisto (CLO)
  • Cosmos (ATOM)
  • IoTeX (IOTX)
  • Kava (KAVA)
  • Osmosis (OSMO)
  • Terra (LUNA)
  • Tezos (XTZ)
  • TomoChain (TOMO)
  • Tron (TRX)
  • VeChain (VET)

You can always see the most up-to-date list, as well as current staking APYs, here on Trust Wallet’s staking page.

Purchase Crypto Through Six Third-Party Partners

At their core, crypto wallets are designed to send and receive crypto. That’s it.

But in recent years, some have gone the extra step of allowing you to purchase crypto from directly within your wallet. This usually involves partnering up with a single, trusted third-party exchange like Kraken.

Not to be outdone, Trust Wallet has partnered with six third party payment networks to enable users to buy from within the app.

As of writing, they include: 

  • Mercuryo
  • MoonPay
  • Ramp Network
  • Simplex
  • Transak
  • Wyre

Curiously, Trust Wallet’s own parent exchange Binance isn’t listed. Perhaps this is due to the latter’s ongoing troubles with U.S. regulators. Either way, it’s a bummer since Binance likely would’ve charged significantly lower fees than these third parties (but more on that in a bit).

Learn more about exchanges>>The 10 Best Crypto Exchanges for 2022

It’s worth noting that although Binance is absent, you can still buy the platform’s proprietary token BNB through the third party networks.

These exchanges also allow you to purchase crypto with a credit or debit card — another feature that was unheard of just a few years back.

Unfortunately, as is often the case with in-wallet purchase options, fees are high across the board. There’s a $50 minimum, $2,000 maximum, and net transaction fees hover around 5% or higher.

So while buying crypto from within Trust Wallet may be fast and convenient, it’s still cheaper to buy it elsewhere and transfer it over.

Browser for DApps

The Trust Wallet app features its own Web3 browser.

Unlike a last generation “Web2 browser” like Google Chrome, a Web3 browser leverages blockchain technology to encrypt and protect your browsing data. It also enables access to decentralized applications, or DApps.

Web-whaaaa?>>What Is Web3 And Why Should Investors Care?

DApps (aka dApps) are like next generation programs that live and operate on the blockchain. There are already over 4,000 DApps, according to State of the DApps. They range from social media platforms to games to file sharing sites. And through Trust Wallet, you’ll be able to access most of them, even from mobile.

It’s an impressive feat given that each DApp is unique — and to create a seamless experience, Trust Wallet would have to work directly with dozens of dev teams.

So that’s what they did.

One of the most notable DApp integrations is with PancakeSwap, which allows you to swap your coins for other coins without the use of a middleman. No need to create a new account on a new service or pay another round of high third party fees – just find a liquidity pool big enough to facilitate your desired swap and poof: instant, automatic, and painless.

How Many Cryptocurrencies Does Trust Wallet Support?

A lot.

Well over a million, according to their latest numbers.

As mentioned earlier, Trust Wallet was mocked on Reddit for supporting well over a million cryptos and tokens… but not Cardano.

Considering that Cardano (ADA) is the 8th-most popular crypto in the world by trading volume, that’s a bit like an ice cream shop touting that they offer over 1,000 flavors but not strawberry.

The whole Cardano episode gave me the feeling that Trust Wallet fully intends to grip tightly onto their crown as the most versatile crypto wallet on the market. This, combined with their affinity for staking and support from Binance, tells me that Trust Wallet is highly future proof.

Trust Wallet Platforms

Earlier I hinted that Trust Wallet is mobile-only. That’s mostly true.

Technically speaking, Trust Wallet is intended to be a mobile-only experience. You can find it on both the App Store and the Google Play Store.

That being said, there are at least two ways of accessing your Trust Wallet via desktop.

The first is if you happen to own an Apple MacBook or iMac fitted with the company’s nifty new M1 chip. The M1 lets you use iPhone and iPad apps on your Apple computer, including the Trust Wallet mobile app. As expected, the experience is just the mobile version on a larger screen, like an emulator.

The second way to access Trust Wallet via desktop is, oddly enough, through its own competitor Metamask. Specifically, you’ll download the Trust Wallet mobile app, download the Metamask Chrome extension, and then import your Trust Wallet into Metamask.

How to Add Money to Trust Wallet

There are two ways to fund your Trust Wallet:

  1. Purchase crypto from directly inside the app, or
  2. Send crypto to your Trust Wallet address

Method 1 is pretty straightforward: Just pick an exchange, choose an amount of crypto, and confirm your transaction. Just remember there are high fees involved and a $50 minimum purchase.

Method 2 is how most users will fund their Trust Wallet, either by sending coins over from another wallet they control or receiving funds from another person.

In either case, you’ll need to generate a public key for the funds you’re looking to receive. So if you’re looking to get Ethereum, you’ll tap Token > Ethereum, and generate either a QR code or an old fashioned alphanumeric public key to share. Then, fire that over to the sender and they’ll use it to direct crypto to your Trust Wallet.

How to Withdraw From Trust Wallet

If you’re looking to move crypto from your Trust Wallet into another wallet (perhaps for cold storage) the process is pretty straightforward. Just make sure that the receiving wallet supports the crypto you’re looking to send, generate a public key, and send the coins from your Trust Wallet to the receiving wallet’s public key.

If the crypto isn’t supported by the receiving wallet, you’ll want to convert it into a supported crypto on PancakeSwap first.

Now, if you’re looking to convert crypto sitting in your Trust Wallet into USD in your bank account, the process is a bit more complex.

Here’s how to withdraw from your Trust Wallet:

  1. Tap the crypto you’re looking to convert and tap “More”
  2. Convert the crypto into BNB
  3. Register and sign up for Binance, if you haven’t already
  4. From your Binance dashboard, click BNB and generate a public key
  5. Back in Trust Wallet, send your BNB to your Binance account using your public key
  6. Once your BNB hits your Binance account, click Switch and then Sell for USD (or your local currency)
  7. Then, once your BNB sells, you can withdraw it to your linked bank account

Unfortunately, the information above was taken from a Youtuber unaffiliated with Trust Wallet. There doesn’t seem to be a withdrawal guide on Trust Wallet’s support center, nor any mention of withdrawals at all.

Unsurprisingly, the confusing and roundabout process for withdrawals is a common thread among the app’s less-than-stellar reviews.

Trust Wallet Play Store review

Trust Wallet Fees

Trust Wallet itself is free to download and free to use.

You’ll still pay gas fees on swaps, but those are charged by the host blockchain, not by Trust Wallet. Gas fees are essentially unavoidable no matter what wallet you use, although you can minimize them by trading during low traffic hours.

As mentioned earlier, transaction fees are high on Trust Wallet — around 5%. But all of those fees are charged by the third-party exchanges integrated into Trust Wallet (Wyre, Transak, etc.) Trust Wallet doesn’t charge any fees on top of those.

So while it’s commendable that Trust Wallet doesn’t charge any fees for simply using the wallet, the fees for buying crypto from within the wallet are high. It makes way more sense to buy crypto from Binance and then transfer it to your Trust Wallet. That would cost you at most 0.5% and could actually be as low as 0%.

But putting aside the high cost of buying crypto from inside the wallet, Trust Wallet itself is still free to use. That gives Trust Wallet a small leg up on its cold wallet rivals like Ledger, which start at $59.

Read more>>Ledger Wallet Review 2022: One of The Best Hardware Crypto Wallets

Is Trust Wallet Safe?

Trust Wallet is curiously tight-lipped about their security measures. They have a 1,200-word blog about how their users can stay safe, but I could only find three words about their own security measures:

“Military-grade encryption.”

Nevertheless, I’m not too worried. Binance wouldn’t link its reputation to Trust Wallet’s without first enshrouding the app in state-of-the-art crypto security.

Now, that being said, some are still concerned with how Trust Wallet has chosen to handle secure access to the app.

When you download Trust Wallet, the app will generate one “master private key” that serves as your login credentials. It’s essentially the keys to the whole castle, bundled into a single 12-word recovery phrase.

Trust Wallet

Trust Wallet recommends that you store your recovery phrase “in multiple, secure places” like a password-protected notes app, cold storage (i.e. a USB stick), or even a piece of paper.

The advantage of using a recovery phrase in lieu of traditional logins is that the former are harder to hack or guess.

But since they’re virtually impossible to remember, recovery phrases are extremely easy to lose or forget. And it’s all a thief needs to access your crypto.

u/buy4takeonefree on Reddit
Trust Wallet review on the App Store

Trust Wallet’s security system, then, is a mixed bag.

On the one hand, it’s (presumably) backed by the best cyber defenses that Binance can offer. But to access your funds, all anyone needs is a simple phrase.

If you choose to use Trust Wallet, you’ll have to follow their recommendation and store your recovery phrase very, very carefully. You don’t want to end up sifting through a landfill for eight years, desperately seeking the hard drive containing your recovery phrase.

Best Trust Wallet Alternatives:

MetaMask vs. Trust Wallet

Despite countless direct comparisons and feverish forum debates, Metamask and Trust Wallet share very little in common. For starters, Metamask only stores Ethereum-compatible tokens across a handful of networks compared to Trust Wallet’s 53 supported blockchains.

Plus, MetaMask exists primarily as a browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, Brave, and Edge. Trust Wallet, on the other hand, is a mobile-first experience.

Lastly, MetaMask offers seamless integration with NFT marketplace OpenSea. Trust Wallet is technically also compatible, but you’ll have a better experience buying and storing NFTs with MetaMask.

Coinbase Wallet vs. Trust Wallet

Trust Wallet trumps the Coinbase Wallet in most key wallet-related aspects. Tokens supported? A million versus “just” 44,000. Blockchains? Dozens versus a handful.

But where Coinbase Wallet makes up serious ground is in customer support. Coinbase offers its users a robust library of FAQs, live chat, and even live phone support — all of which Trust Wallet lacks.

Despite both wallets boasting incredibly user-friendly UIs, Coinbase Wallet might be the overall better choice for newbies who may have questions or simply value human support.

Exodus vs. Trust Wallet

Exodus is the total opposite of Trust Wallet and many others like it.

Exodus may only support 225 cryptos and tokens, but what it lacks in variety it makes up for in human and hardware support. First, Exodus offers 24/7 live human support in case there’s ever any trouble. Second, it integrates with Trezor, giving you a seamless cold storage option for the ultimate level of security.

So while Exodus’s limited list of supported cryptos may be a deal-breaker to some, it’s still a superb choice for beginners who want maximum support and security.

Get the full lowdown on Exodus.

The Bottom Line

Trust Wallet is safe, secure, and incredibly robust in its feature set. The lack of customer support, hardware integration, and archaic user security measures may all be vexing — especially considering its $4.5 billion parent company. However, even in its base form, Trust Wallet is a solid, future-proof wallet option.

Just don’t lose your recovery phrase.

Want to learn more crypto? We’ve got you covered. >>





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Are NFTs Protected by Copyright?

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Are NFTs Protected by Copyright?


Advertising Disclosure
This article/post contains references to products or services from one or more of our advertisers or partners. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products or services

Whenever I explain NFTs to someone, the #1 follow-up question I often hear is:

“But what do you get with it, though?”

The short answer is: nothing. You get a few lines of code on the Ethereum blockchain and bragging rights.

But lately, the answer has gotten more complicated. Sometimes, you do get limited copyright uses with the purchase of an NFT. So that begs the question: what is the artist left with? Where’s the line?

So let’s break down everything you need to know about NFTs and copyright.

The Short Version:

  • In the vast majority of cases, NFTs do not entitle the purchaser to any sort of copyright protection.
  • Some NFTs do include limited copyright uses, but they always include written authorization and/or transfer of ownership in the purchase contract.
  • While minting and selling NFTs of art you don’t own is technically illegal, enforcement measures are almost nonexistent.

A Quick Recap of NFTs

In the simplest sense, NFTs are just “certificates of ownership” for pieces of digital artwork that live (mostly) on the Ethereum blockchain.

In addition to some timestamping, NFTs include three core pieces of data:

  • A hyperlink to a piece of art
  • The name of the original artist
  • The name of the person who currently holds the NFT

So, when you pay $984 for an NFT of a bear spinning a burger on its finger, is that all you’re getting? Or do you get some limited copyright uses included in the price?

(And if you’re still wondering why anyone would buy an NFT, check out How to Explain NFTs in Under 30 Seconds).

Defining “Copyright”

Copyright is an original creator’s protected, legal right to:

  • Sell the work
  • Produce, distribute, and sell copies of their work
  • Sell merchandise featuring the work
  • Publicly display and/or perform the work
  • Claim “moral rights,” i.e. object to mutilations, modifications, or derogatory uses
  • Otherwise commercially profit from use of the work
  • And more

Modern copyright traces back to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (1886). All modern creators should read this document very, very carefully since it’s basically their Bill of Rights.

The Berne Convention has a “principle of automatic protection,” meaning the moment the work is completed, it’s automatically copyrighted. In most cases, that protection extends to 50 years beyond the creator’s death, at which point it becomes public domain.

If you’re an artist seeking a little extra protection, you can also register your creative works with the U.S. Copyright Office. This additional layer of defense will help to prevent copycats — and make it easier to sue them — but it’s not 100% necessary.

It’s still your work from the moment of inception.

Now that we’ve refreshed NFTs and copyright, let’s see if and where they intersect.

What Copyright Protections Are in Place for NFT Buyers?

At least, not 99.9% of the time — none.

In the vast majority of cases, purchasing an NFT is no different from purchasing an 8” x 10” print from a booth at an art fair. There’s no contract with the artist, no negotiations between lawyers, none of that. You might not even get a receipt.

Instead, the transaction couldn’t be simpler. You give the artist money, she gives you something to hang on the wall.

But let’s dive deeper. What exactly does owning an NFT entitle you to? Conversely, what would be an overstep and open you to legal action?

OK, So What Does Owning the NFT Entitle Me To?

Not much.

Generally speaking, NFT holders have the same rights as people who buy physical art. They can either:

  1. Display it, or
  2. Sell it

Anything beyond that would likely tread into legal no-no territory.

That being said, NFT holders do have some pretty interesting options within the “display” category.

First, you can actually set any NFT you own as your verified Twitter profile picture. It’s a neat feature they added in January, and gives your profile a unique hexagonal shape.

Source: @ParisHilton/Twitter

There are some caveats. First, you need to pay for a premium Twitter Blue account, which costs $3 a month. Then, you’ll need to purchase or borrow an iPhone since the feature is only available on iOS. Lastly, you’ll need to connect one of three compatible wallets: MetaMask, Coinbase Wallet, or Rainbow.

Related>>How to Buy and Sell NFTs

The second “display” option comes from Mark Zuckerberg. During his metaverse keynote from Connect 21, he discussed virtual art galleries where NFT owners can proudly display their collections.

Two months later, photo editor Pixlr announced Pixlr Genesis: “The preeminent 100% decentralized art museum to rival the Louvre.”

Source: Pixlr Genesis

(This doesn’t extend to other virtual public art galleries, as they would likely still fall under “fair use” since their core purpose — “nonprofit education” — remains unchanged.).

Here’s a quick summary of what NFT holders can and can’t legally do.

Rights Original artist NFT holder
Sell the NFT X
Mint a copy X
Sell merchandise X
Charge for a viewing X
Reproduction in other creative works X
Set as your verified Twitter profile picture X X
Display in a Metaverse gallery X X (supposedly)

With that said, there are three exceptions to the “display and sell only” rule:

  1. Written authorization. Sometimes, an NFT purchase might actually include express written permission from the artist for limited copyright uses — even a full transfer of ownership, which moves all of the Xs in the above chart to the right hand column. One famous example is Bored Apes. The “Apeholders” who own Bored Ape NFTs are actually allowed to profit from their specific Ape and make derivatives.
  2. Commissioned works. If you commission an artist to mint an NFT on your behalf and agree to a transfer of ownership upon its creation, you would own the copyright of that NFT. Contrary to popular belief, commissioners don’t own copyrights by default.
  3. Public domain. Finally, if you own the NFT for an artwork that lives in the public domain, there’s technically nothing stopping you — or anyone — from modifying or selling copies.

Is There Anything Stopping an NFT Creator From Duplicating Your “Exclusive” NFT?

Yes and no.

For starters, they can’t duplicate your exact NFT because by nature, it’s non-fungible. It has unique identifiers etched into its very code that would prevent an exact copy from being made.

However, there’s nothing stopping an artist from making multiple NFTs from the same work of art. Snoop Dogg, for example, has minted 824 NFTs so far of his song Diamond Joint:

Source: Crypto.com

Crucially, however, Snoop Dogg set the expectation upfront that the cap would be 20,000 editions. That way, nobody purchased an NFT under the false pretense of exclusivity.

If he had claimed that only 100 would be made — and then made 19,000 more — he could be taken to civil court for false advertising.

Threat of legal action aside, NFT creators just don’t do this because it would torpedo their reputation and jeopardize future sales.

Speaking of creators, what copyright protections are in place for them?

What Copyright Protections Are in Place for NFT Creators?

As a creator, all of the automatic copyright protections afforded to you by the Berne Convention still apply to the NFT world.

After all, NFTs are “reproductions” that only you, the original creator, are legally allowed to produce and commercially profit from.

And since you’d be profiting from them, you’d better make darn sure that you 100% own the IP.

Per digital law group Renn & Co, every aspiring NFT minter should ask themselves these three questions:

  • Is the artwork you want to mint original and unique, and created by you? ‍
  • Have you created the artwork underlying the NFT yourself, or in collaboration with other artists?
  • Are you the owner of the artwork’s intellectual property rights? ‍

If the answer to all three questions isn’t a resounding “yes!” then you could be stepping in hot water if you try to sell the NFT.

Has Anyone Been Sued For Reproducing NFTs?

There’s already “a considerable amount of NFT litigation brewing” writes law group Frost Brown Todd. Here are just some of the dozens of high-profile examples:

  • Roc-A-Fella Records is suing its co-founder for allegedly attempting to mint Jay-Z’s album Reasonable Doubt as an NFT.
  • Miramax sued Quentin Tarantino for auctioning off seven “exclusive scenes” from Pulp Fiction as NFTs.
  • Nike is suing online retailer StockX for selling NFTs of limited-edition Nikes (not sure how they’d get away with that one).

Even though the verdicts haven’t been reached, the simple fact that judges are accepting these cases should bring NFT creators some level of comfort.

This means that despite the fact that NFTs are jumbles of code, they’re still considered reproductions of someone’s art — and that 19th century copyright protections absolutely apply to these 21st century innovations.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean that every NFT thief will see their day in court.

What’s Stopping Someone From Minting NFTs of Art They Don’t Own?

“It seems to me that [OpenSea are] making some money on illicit behavior. They have a $13bn valuation and they’re trying to go public. How much of their valuation is from stolen art?”

At present, nothing.

OpenSea’s own tutorials show how the process for minting and selling an NFT on the platform involves four easy steps:

  1. Upload any JPG, MP3, etc.
  2. Give it a name
  3. Set a price
  4. Link your wallet to receive funds

There’s no form of ownership verification, no checkbox to certify that you’re the rightful owner, nada. There’s not even a reminder not to steal like you’d find on YouTube’s upload window:

Source: YouTube

Not only that, the sample JPG that OpenSea uses in their “How Do I Create an NFT” article is an illustration of a burglar holding (presumably) stolen pieces of art.

Source: OpenSea

 

Now, while it’s true that both YouTube and OpenSea allow you to upload someone else’s copyrighted work, YouTube doesn’t let you monetize it so easily. Plus, YouTube has automated copyright enforcement tools like Copyright Match and Content ID to help creators protect their content, even before another creator tries to profit from it.

YouTube’s moderation bots are controversially strict, but at least they’re on the right side of the law. In the NFT world, bots are used to expedite crime.

One artist, Aja Trier, discovered 87,000 fraudulent NFTs of her work for sale on OpenSea. In fact, 500 were minted in just one night, implying the use of automation.

She told The Guardian that by the time her takedown requests were processed, 37 of the NFTs had been sold. And allegedly, OpenSea kept the 2.5% commission.

“It seems to me that they’re making some money on illicit behavior,” Trier said. “They have a $13bn valuation and they’re trying to go public. How much of their valuation is from stolen art?” ​​

OpenSea is reportedly working on its own “smart moderation” tools, but until then, the NFT marketplace overall is “one huge mess of theft and fraud and inauthenticity.”

Are Your NFTs Protected by Copyright?

NFTs are a double-edged sword for artists.

On one hand, they give them a novel — sometimes lucrative- – way to monetize their creations without giving up the copyrights. On the other hand, they’ve made life for plagiarists and forgers almost comically easy.

If you’re considering investing in an NFT, please ensure that the NFT minter owns the original artwork- – for both of your sakes.

Disclaimer: The information provided in this article does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available are for general informational purposes only. 

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Nas Academy and Invisible College to launch a crypto academy for Web3

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Nas Academy and Invisible College to launch a crypto academy for Web3


Nas Academy is going deeper into the web3 ecosystem thanks to its partnership with Invisible College.

Creator tech platform Nas Academy announced on Tuesday, August 9th, that it has partnered with Invisible College to launch a cryptocurrency academy for web3.

According to the press release shared with Coinjournal, the partnership will lead to the launch of the world’s first bundle of courses that can be unlocked with an NFT collection. 

The team revealed that more than $2,000 worth of courses would be made available initially, covering topics like NFT investing, Community Building, Video Editing, and Crypto fundamentals.

The press release added that starting on September 1st, Invisible College members who hold a Decentralien NFT will be able to unlock more than 18 web3 and creator courses on Nas Academy for free.

Invisible College is a school focused on helping people learn, invest, and build in web3.

The library includes courses from some of the world’s top creators and investors, including Zeneca, Nuseir Yassin, and Ben Yu.

While commenting on this latest development, Nas Academy CEO Nuseir Yassin said;

“Web3 is more than just a compelling topic for courses. We believe NFTs can reinvent the way students consume online education and allow people to own a piece of the internet. That’s why we wanted to partner with a visionary community in the form of Invisible College. We are excited to build together to help educate and bring the next wave of users into web3.”

The Nas Academy said this catalog of courses would empower students to build, influence, and invest in the future of the internet.

Invisible College Co-Founder Nick deWilde commented that;

“Lately, there’s been lots of debate about web3 use cases. The way we see it, combining a catalog of high-quality courses with an NFT collection is a fundamentally new way to empower students to own their education. And there’s no way we could have pulled it off without web3 technology. 

We also needed a forward-thinking partner who was willing to innovate with us. Fortunately, the Nas Academy team are just the type of crazy dreamers who could help us expand our vision and make it a reality.

Finally, we’d like to thank all of the creators who have joined this historic collaboration. They’ve produced some incredible classes that we’re excited to share with a brand new audience.”

Invisible College said it would also be working with Nas Academy to onboard leading web3 instructors to teach courses on the platform, with the goal of becoming the largest web3 learning library on the internet. 

Nas Academy is a technology platform that empowers creators to build communities through education.



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