The NFT world saw one of its strangest transactions this week, with an NFT that supposedly appeared on the website of internationally-known artist Banksy, selling for more than $300,000 USD.
The buyer claimed the work was fake – and the transaction was refunded according to Etherscan. In addition, the NFT has vanished from Banksy’s website, and the artist’s spokesperson has denied any involvement by Banksy in the transaction, or promotion of the artwork.
— Pranksy 📦 (@pranksy) August 31, 2021
Banksy Might be Up to Something
In a world that continues to be ever more focused on digital life, Banksy keeps (maybe) coming up with ways to stay relevant. We can’t be certain that the artist is behind this stunt – but there are some very interesting questions that should be addressed.
Perhaps the most pressing question is: How did the artwork get posted on Banksy’s website in the first place?
It would be nearly impossible to sell artwork from a secretive artist like Banksy without some form of confirmation – and the posting on the artist’s website acted as a starting point for this adventure in NFTs.
The fact that the transaction was almost immediately undone is also worth looking at – as is the buyer’s name – “Pranksy”.
Due to the quasi-anonymous nature of most public blockchains, it is unlikely that we will ever know the truth of what happened – other than that Banksy is back in the spotlight after the shredded painting stunt back in 2018.
NFTs Are Exploding
Whatever happened with the “fake” Banksy that is now back in the wallet of whoever sold it, NFTs are the hottest new asset class globally. In the NFT gaming sector play-to-earn games are catching on in a big way, with residents of poorer nations looking for new ways to earn an income.
In the Philippines, merchants are starting to accept Smooth Love Potion ($SLP) from Axie Infinity as a form of payment. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), or the central bank of the Philippines, is paying attention to the situation, but has yet to take any action.
As a heavily impoverished country, the Philippines’ throngs of unemployed are always looking for a way to make extra money, and the relatively small amounts of money available in play-to-earn games is better than local jobs pay in many cases.
In addition, Axie Infinity is global in scope, which means that buyers from wealthier nations can connect directly with poorer economies, which is pretty much great for everyone involved.
Venezuelans Look to NFT Games for Badly Needed Income
It would be difficult to find an economy in worse shape than the one in Venezuela. Nothing works in the country, and hyperinflation has been a staple for years.
According to local media reports, Axie Infinity has become an extremely popular way to take advantage of NFTs, as many games offer airdrops or free tokens that allow people with no assets to enter the online gaming ecosystem.
The amounts of money that a player earns with an Axie are small. Well, unless you are in an economy that is totally broken, and even a few USD is enough to make an impact in your life.
All of these tokens can be traded in the global crypto network – which means that major tokens like Bitcoin and Ethereum can eventually be bought with the proceeds of play to earn games – and turned into real cash.
There is a good chance that these NFT-based play-to-earn games will make cryptos more popular than most people can imagine today – so get ready to see tokens you have never heard of post outstanding gains!