Meta has abandoned its push for NFTs on Instagram and Facebook. This comes after years of supporting digital assets and crypto, shifting its focus to other revenue streams. This article discusses the rise and fall of Meta’s interest in NFTs and how the industry is undergoing a rebranding.
After years of supporting digital assets and crypto, Meta, formerly known as Facebook, is turning its back on NFTs(non-fungible tokens), signaling a major shift away from the metaverse.
The move comes after Stephane Kasriel, Meta’s commerce and financial tech lead, announced the companies refocus toward “other ways to support creators, people, and businesses.” In other words, this means that Meta is now ditching NFTs, perhaps for the time being.
Meta’s Focus on Metaverse
Meta was one of the first companies to shift its focus toward NFTs. In 2021, Facebook rebranded to Meta, announcing the shift of its company from social media to metaverse technologies such as VR(virtual reality), NFTs, and crypto.
Last year, Mark Zuckerberg finally announced the introduction of NFTs to its platforms, namely Instagram and Facebook. However, after recent news, it seems the company has to make an abrupt halt to the aforementioned projects.
2022 was also the year Meta released its official VR headset called the Meta Quest Pro. Despite the apparent high cost, the headset is considered to be one of the most advanced VR equipment we’ve seen so far.
What It Could Mean?
The announcement was met with many replies, with a few “I told you so” and criticisms of its short-sighted move. A Twitter user cited the unrealized potential the company has built up over the years. Furthermore stating that the “inclusion of digital collectibles has so much potential to help creators engage their communities and counterbalance the pitfalls of attention-based advertising economies”.
The comment holds some truth. Currently, NFTs are undergoing a huge rebranding. Companies now prefer using the terms digital collectibles, straying away from the speculation and get-rich-quick reputation of early NFT movements.
For example, in the GameFi industry, NFTs are a major factor in enabling web3 games to fulfill their potential. It has cultivated hardcore followings from projects that brand itself as a fun-first experience.
Triple-A game titles such as Deadrop, Big Time, Illuvium, Gods Unchained, and more have de-emphasized the monetary aspects of NFTs and have instead rebranded NFTs to digital collectibles that both enhance the player experience and a neat way to give player ownership to the items gamers work so hard to farm.
However, with the increasing amount of scrutiny from regulators and the volatile nature of the market, Meta’s move away from NFTs might be seen as a smart decision by some.
Meta’s interest in NFTs was the pivotal event that led to the rebranding of its already successful company. Meta recently had layoffs of 11,000 workers, and its rebranding is a sign of its failure to efficiently pursue its vision.
It’s important to remember that NFTs are a still relatively new industry. Indeed, NFTs have only gained mainstream attention over the past few years, and their long-term impact on the digital landscape is still unknown.
Meta’s decision to step away from NFTs could be a sign of caution amid the volatility and uncertainty of the market. However, it’s also possible that Meta’s move could be a missed opportunity to tap into the potential of digital collectibles and other metaverse-related technologies. Only time will tell if Meta’s decision was the right one, or if the company will need to pivot again in the future.
Edmond is a passionate writer for Video games, GameFi and Web3. He has worked for top GameFi companies and video game/crypto news websites.