Instagram users will soon be able to use the site to mint, showcase and sell digital collections powered by non-fungible token (NFTs) on Polygon, giving creators a new way to engage with and monetize their fan communities.
Meta, which owns Instagram, today announced it will soon test these new features with a small group of creators in the U.S. first with the goal of expanding to more users and countries soon. Instagram plans to integrate a full end-to-end toolkit that can be used for the whole process — from creation, starting on the Polygon blockchain, to showcasing and selling NFTs both on and off the popular social media site.
Meta began testing digital collectibles features on Instagram in May by letting select U.S. creators share NFTs that they have created or bought. By late September, it expanded the offering to 100 countries and allowed everyone on Facebook and Instagram in the U.S. to connect their wallets, share their digital collectibles and automatically tag the creator and collector without paying any network fees.
NFTs open new venues for artists to capture the economic value of their work and a way to transform their social capital into financial reward. Fans get an opportunity to support the creators they love by collecting and curating their work.
After bursting into popular consciousness last year, NFTs have been making steady progress toward mainstream adoption. Most recently, Reddit revealed that more than 3 million of its users created blockchain wallets to purchase Collectible Avatars powered by Polygon. Meta’s entry into this space marks a new chapter in the evolution of the creator economy by opening the path for fans to become creators themselves.
Meta joins a long list of global companies like Robinhood and Stripe that choose Polygon as their entrypoint into Web3. The network, one of the greenest blockchains in existence, is home to tens of thousands of decentralized apps powered by a suite of Polygon solutions, including Aave, Uniswap and OpenSea.
“This move represents a remarkable milestone in the evolution of Instagram’s existing NFT functionality and a natural next step to bring Web3 to the mainstream,” said Polygon co-founder Sandeep Nailwal. "The value added to the creator economy is unmatchable and championing verifiable digital ownership on a platform with such reach will help us further our goal of onboarding the next billion users to Web3."
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