Web3 and metaverse: NFTs land on Instagram

One foot in Web3 for Meta. The American group, which owns Facebook, Instagram or WhatApp, announced Tuesday, May 10 the upcoming arrival of a new function. It will allow its users to publish their NFT (Non Fungible Token) on their social wall. The first network to embark on the adventure will be Instagram. Facebook will follow.

NFTs affix a sort of certificate of authenticity to a unique digital file. This new concept can therefore be shared on social networks for free. Adam Mosseri, the boss of Instagram, explains this in a message posted on Twitter. “This week, we’re starting to test ‘Digital Collectibles’ with a handful of American creators and collectors who will be able to share NFTs on Instagram. There will be no fees associated with posting or sharing a digital collectible on IG”he explains.

NFT on Instagram: instructions for use

The sharing of his or her visual works (photo, video, etc.) will follow the following process:

  • First step: connecting to a Wallet or digital wallet. Once linked, creators and collectors will be able to choose which NFTs from their portfolio they want to share on Instagram.
  • Second step: sharing digital collectibles. Once a creator or collector posts a digital collectible, it will have a glitter effect to differentiate the post from others. And it will be possible to display public information, such as a description of the NFT.
  • Third step: automatic marking of the creator and the collector. The creator and collector can be automatically assigned in the digital publication (subject to their privacy settings, Meta says).

Initially, only the NFTs held on Ethereum and Polygon blockchains will be compatible with Instagram. In a second step, those stored on Flow and Solana will follow. Note that the first compatible Wallets will be: MetaMask, Rainbow and Trust Wallet. Three others have already been announced: Coinbase, Dapper and Phantom, but without a specific availability date. You will need to link your Wallet to your Instagram account to be able to share your NFT(s) of choice.

An example of NFT shared on Instagram and related information. Photo: Meta.

With NFTs, traceability of the ownership of a digital work

This new function should therefore allow the holders of a digital work to better retain ownership. Or in any case to claim it in a simple and effective way since the “ownership certificate” linked to the NFT is encrypted in a blockchain. This new function of Instagram should therefore facilitate sharing unique creations without fear of them being looted.

Gradually, the function will be offered to more and more users, as Meta is used to doing with its new functions. Adam Mosseri thus justifies not opening the option to everyone: “One of the reasons we start small is to make sure we can learn from the community. We want to be sure that we know how to manage these principles of distributed trust and distributed power, despite the fact that we are, yes, a centralized platform.”

It will soon be possible for Instagram members to view their collection of NFTs.  Photo: Meta.
It will soon be possible for Instagram members to view their collection of NFTs. Photo: Meta.

A first foray into Web3 for the general public

With NFTs on Instagram, the general public can more tangibly see the effects of the announced Web3. And to see how an owner’s data remains associated with a work. By sharing an NFT work on the social network, a person retains full control over it. Indeed, all the information that characterizes it (name of the owner, date of creation, etc.) remains encapsulated with the digital file.

It is also a way for Meta to prepare for the upcoming launch of its metaverse. He thus gradually made the general public aware of these new concepts. In a press release, the group of Mark Zuckerberg does not hide it. “By building support for NFTs, we aim to improve accessibility, reduce barriers to entry into this universe and help make the NFT space more open to all communities..”

Note that Meta is not the first social network to take a close interest in NFTs. Since January 2022, Twitter has allowed some of its members to use an NFT image as their profile picture. But only subscribers to Twitter Blue, its premium version, have this possibility.

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