Tech billionaire Elon Musk went on the Joe Rogan podcast yesterday. Beyond the acquisition of Twitter and his plans to transform X into a global financial hub, the duo briefly delved into the complex world of Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). Elon Musk criticized the current NFT storage methods, suggesting a more blockchain-integrated approach.
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Elon criticizes off-chain storage
The interview, published on Twitter (X), has ignited interest among proponents of onchain NFTs. The idea of encoding the actual artwork in the blockchain, as opposed to merely linking to an external image, holds appeal for those concerned about the longevity and authenticity of their digital assets.
By commenting that NFTs are “not even on the blockchain”, Elon managed to ignite a discussion on social media among crypto enthusiasts and experts, particularly around the use of Ordinals and the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).
Long live Ordinals
As the community pointed out in chants of “Long Live Ordinals”, Elon’s comments show indirect support to the Ordinals movement, as NFTs on the Bitcoin network are fully on-chain. Adding to the argument, the billionaire has previously demonstrated appreciation for the Milady NFTs, the renowned Ordinals collection currently undergoing a founder’s dispute.
As pointed out further in the comment section, several NFT collections store their image files on IPFS, a distributed network. While on-chain storing is ideal, IPFS offers a viable option for decentralized storage. However, it is not easy to use. According to developer @LeonidasNFT, it was not uncommon for him to find broken IPFS links in old NFT smart contracts.
Beeple is the face of NFTs
Rogan, known for his candid opinions, made a bold statement:
“80% of NFTs are a scam, except for Beeple. Beeple is a legit digital artist…It’s amazing he puts out a piece of art per day, 365 days per year.”
This comment not only highlights Rogan’s skepticism towards the majority of NFTs but also underlines the credibility and recognition of Beeple’s digital artistry in mainstream culture.
Elon Musk, responding to Rogan, shared that he followed Beeple on an unspecified platform but eventually stopped. He stated that some of Beeple’s artwork was too edgy and jarring for his taste.
NFTs in the spotlight
The discussion may signal a renewed interest and potential shift in the perception of NFTs, as the industry has been reported as 95% dead by countless news publications. As public figures like Rogan, Elon Musk, and Mark Cuban weigh in, the debate over the value, legitimacy, and future of NFTs gains more public attention.