Mark Zuckerberg announced this week that the firm would begin testing digital collectibles on Instagram, a picture and video sharing network, indicating a step toward nonfungible tokens, or NFTs.
Zuckerberg said the plan to test digital treasures on Instagram was the first step toward letting artists and collectors exhibit NFTs on other Meta-controlled applications like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook in an interview with Tom Bilyeu. Meta was planned to “bring comparable capabilities to Facebook shortly,” as per the CEO, and was also developing augmented reality NFTs for Instagram.
The change seems to enable Instagram users to show NFTs as profile profiles, similar to what Twitter announced in September 2021, and then rolled out iOS support for NFT hexagonal avatars in January. Reddit said immediately after Twitter’s NFT launch that it was exploring the tokens as profile images on its platform, while OnlyFans, a content subscription service app popular for promoting pornographic material, has been offering NFT profile pictures since December 2021.
According to Datareportal, Instagram had 1.5 billion worldwide users in January 2022, about half of Facebook’s 2.9 billion. Many notable crypto users already have profiles on the picture and video sharing network, which some hackers have exploited. For example, bad actors broke into Bored Ape Yacht Club’s Instagram page in April and uploaded links to a fake airdrop with the project’s over 600,000 followers, according to Cointelegraph.
Since October 2021, the social media firm has disclosed a slew of cryptocurrency and metaverse-related activities. For example, despite the fact that the Diem Association’s digital currency project Diem — previously Libra — was shut down in February, Meta established a physical metaverse-themed retail shop on the San Francisco Peninsula on Monday.