Despite signs of a cooling market, major crypto exchange Coinbase Global Inc. launched its NFT marketplace on Wednesday with a focus on trying to create a social community for buyers and sellers.
“This product is more than just buying and selling,” Sanchan Saxena, vice president of product for Coinbase, said. “It’s about building your community. It is about making sure that you can connect and engage with them on the platform.”
The goal of Coinbase is to create a community for NFTs as well as a marketplace for buying and selling NFTs. Additionally, users can create profiles and curate them with the NFTs they’ve created, comment on NFTs, or start conversations with other NFT holders and sellers.
“The community aspect has become a really important part, almost as important as the art itself,” said Lucrece, an NFT creator on Coinbase’s platform. “When you create a community, they’re your advocates. As a single creator, I don’t have a big team. So the people that share your vision, your long term goals, those are the people you want to have engaged with you …NFT’s are inherently a social thing.”
Initial access to the platform in the United States will be limited to a “small number,” a Coinbase spokesperson said. Over the next three to five weeks, more users will be added from a waiting list as the platform is tested.
A non-fungible token (NFT) records the ownership of a digital file such as an image, video, or text using a blockchain.
As a result of their popularity skyrocketing in 2021, they mirror mainstream investors’ and companies’ growing embrace of cryptos such as bitcoin. Cryptocurrency has fetched millions of dollars from NFTs, but their growth has slowed down in 2022.
NFT sales on the ethereum blockchain decreased to about $2.5 billion in March from $5 billion in January on the popular marketplace OpenSea.
“We believe NFTs are here to stay,” a Coinbase spokesperson said. “Beyond buying and selling NFTs, our marketplace offers better ways to find the right communities and better spaces in which they can feel connected with each other.”
It is common to find scams, fakes, and market manipulation in NFTs that are largely unregulated.
Cent was also forced to halt transactions in February for allowing people to sell NFTs that they did not own.
Coinbase will allow users to report content that is copyrighted or fraudulent. NFTs will be able to be created (or “minted”) on the Coinbase NFT platform in the future, the spokesperson said.