Meta is introducing NFTs natively on Instagram

Meta is introducing NFTs natively on Instagram
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Meta is introducing NFTs natively on Instagram

How Blockchain Can Unlock a Better Creator Economy

As we celebrate Creator Week at Meta, I’m sharing why we think the increasing adoption of web3 tech, like blockchain, is beneficial for the 300 million people around the world who now identify as creators, and anyone who aspires to join the burgeoning creator economy.

The creator economy is forecasted by some exploratory studies to reach more than $100 billion. For the creator economy to achieve this level of growth, the new digital economy will need to be more interoperable and portable than the present-day web. A major challenge creators face now is feeling like their relationships with their fans are “locked in” on specific platforms, resulting in creators building and managing a presence and community across many platforms.

Blockchain offers a solution by making assets and experiences more portable across platforms, ultimately giving creators more control over their work, the communities they build, and how they monetize. We believe web3 tech, like blockchain, will positively enhance the economic model for creators by giving them the ability to create new types of digital assets to monetize and enable better and more sustainable ways for them to build their businesses. This is why our strategy for web3 technologies — including blockchain — focuses on helping creators make a living.

Right now, creators primarily monetize their work through a combination of brand partnerships, revenue sharing programs from platforms, or payments from fans and followers. Across Meta technologies, we provide a suite of monetization tools to enable creators to tap into these different business models. To name a few examples: our Creator Marketplace helps creators connect with brands and we have multiple revenue share offerings on Facebook. To facilitate recurring, predictable income, we also support subscriptions, which we announced today are expanding on Instagram, along with adding new ways for people to support creators using gifts on Instagram and Stars on Facebook.

Blockchain provides an opportunity to enhance the value of these existing business models and establish entirely new ways for creators to make, distribute, and get paid for what they produce. It makes it possible for creators to build more direct and profitable relationships with their audiences because it gives them more ownership over their work with blockchain-based assets that can be monetized, like NFTs. Blockchain also gives creators the ability to take their content and fans with them to different platforms.

How might this look in practice? Imagine if, as a creator, you use Instagram to sell a ticket (in the form of an NFT) to an event or experience that includes access to an exclusive meet and greet with you on video or unlocks access to other content. Where there was once a single way to monetize that ticket, there could soon be multiple ways.

Motivated by possibilities like these, we are exploring ways to integrate blockchain and digital assets across Meta technologies and make them easier for creators and people to use. The latest example is a new offering we announced today: a small group of creators will soon be able to create digital collectibles (NFTs) and sell them right on Instagram. Meta won’t charge fees to create or sell digital collectibles until 2024 (though in-app purchases are still subject to app store fees), and at launch we’ll be covering blockchain fees (known as “gas fees”) for buyers. We believe creators should have many choices for when, where, and how they monetize. In keeping with our open approach, creators can add any collectibles they create on Instagram to their preferred wallets in order to take them off-platform.

Right now, there are a lot of complex experiences in web3, and for its benefits to achieve widespread adoption, there needs to be a much simpler user experience. Case in point: so far, only about 4 percent of U.S. adults have ever owned an NFT, and it’s still early for the NFT market compared to where we think it’s going. By making NFTs easier to use natively on Instagram, we’re opening up new ways for the billions of people who use our apps to connect with and support their favorite creators — which, in turn, unlocks more economic opportunity. While it’s still early days, we’re already seeing examples of the positive impact of bringing NFTs to more people. Natalie Amrossi (@misshattan), an aerial and street photographer, has displayed her digital collectibles on Instagram to drive awareness of some of her work and, in return, has seen an increase in sales.

And although visual artists have been among the early adopters of digital assets like NFTs, this technology can help creators of all kinds — musicians, designers, developers, athletes, and more — find their audience, build tailored fan experiences, and monetize in whatever way best suits their community. Interoperability will mean those creators will have the biggest possible audiences because the goods, services, and experiences that people buy can go with them across different platforms.

Our broad, long-term focus is helping creators find success today, as the metaverse comes to fruition. We believe that this means making continued investments in offerings that bring value to creators today, and onboarding them to the new blockchain-based tools and tech they will need to thrive both creatively and financially in the future digital economy.