The Era of the Metaverse:
Metaverse: Metaverse is a term consisting of “meta,” meaning “virtual” and “transcendent,” and “universe,” meaning space. It refers to a three-dimensional virtual world where social, economic, and cultural activities take place just like reality.
NFT: Meaning “Non-Fungible Token,” NFT refers to a token that represents rare digital assets.
Transition to an era where we can own a famous writer’s poem
On June 5, 2021, the third poem collection Rat and Oyster (Hyundae Munhak) of writer Bae Soo-Yeon was published in the form of an NFT, sold at 2.94 Ethereum on Opensea, an online NFT marketplace. The momentary currency of 2.94 Ethereum was approximately 9 million won, which today costs about 10 million. If we think that a poem collection usually costs about 9 thousand won, the purchase was made at a price 1,000 times higher. Also, considering that there was no intermediary in the purchasing process as it was a direct trade between the writer and the buyer, the purchase has actually brought the writer more than 1,000 times profit. Writer Bae says she will donate the entire profit to an organization advocating the democratization of Myanmar.
An online NFT marketplace “Opensea”
The production and purchase record of Rat and Oyster written in the blockchain
The screenshot above shows the production and purchase record of the NFT Rat and Oyster written in the Ethereum blockchain, and how the work was transferred. As such, the data recorded in blockchain is open to the public, and nobody is authorized to modify or delete the record.
The profile of writer Bae Soo-Yeon registered on Opensea
Above is the profile of writer Bae Soo-Yeon registered on Opensea, the biggest NFT marketplace. If we search “0x4c54…3a29,” which is her Ethereum address, we can easily find out her NFT production history, sold price, and transfer record. In addition, anyone can see who currently owns her NFT, and if the NFT has been resold to another person. And these all have the unique characteristics of the blockchain, where no records can be modified or removed.
NFT publishing market and prospects in Korea
Korean NFT markets are expanding, but are currently limited to games and artworks. However, games and works of art also have problems choosing a platform on the NFT market (like a blockchain network such as Ethereum). It is the reality that many authors are having trouble publishing and selling NFTs due to linguistic and technological barriers.
An NFT production platform, “Krafterspace,” based on Klaytn, the representative blockchain in Korea
How can authors and the publishing industry coexist in the metaverse era?
When the Internet was first born, some experts talked about how the future might change. However, it did not directly impact the audience. However, today we are all living with the Internet, feeling its importance in daily life.
The NFT has heralded the emergence of the metaverse era. Now the world has changed, and authors and readers can have direct exchanges of works by means of a new technology called the blockchain. And this trend is expected to develop further with the metaverse.
Written by Kim Dong-Hwan (Hankyung columnist)
Kim Dong-Hwan (Hankyung columnist)#Metaverse#NFT#Rat and Oyster#Bae Soo-Yeon#Blockchain