• Non-Fungible Tokens attached to digital art is a hot topic right now. Essentially turning your digital art into a collectible that gets attached to a crypto-token after you pay to have it 'minted'.

    The process is harmful to the environment.

    Some say that the system itself is harmful, needs to be fixed, but selling an NFT on it does not change that. Others disagree with that. However, taking part would definitely leave you with some 'dirty hands'...Thoughts on this? Many of you are digital artists. What do you think?

  • @kylebeaudette I have been seeing a lot of NFT going on and was reading about this last night. I need to learn more about this but looking at the info so far, yes it seems to be devastating for the environment but some of the people that are doing it don't really seem to care as they can make lots of money and they want the hype and online presence.

    Does it has a bit of an anti-establishment vibe at the moment? Or hyped up like the early dot-com boom. It has a FOMO feel to it. Also I've seen lot of the work can be stolen art, bastardisation of other's work or just a meme. I think it is not regulated so anyone can steal art, hack others accounts and no-one can really do anything about it.

    I have a lot to learn and I'm sure it could be great to be able to create online collectables (not sure what you would do with them), but like you, I'm not sure destroying the planet is the way forward to be honest.

  • Pro

    @kylebeaudette When I first heard of it I thought it was a bit ridiculous, like selling hot air to people who have more money than they know what to do with. But to each his own? After learning of the devastating environmental impact, I'm absolutely disgusted and will do everything I can to dissuade everyone I can to take part in this. I'm thinking of making a video about this soon on my channel. I have but a small audience, but if I can convince even one person it would be worth it. With the planet already in such dire straits, harming it that much more for such an unnecessary, superfluous fad is horrible and unethical.

  • @NessIllustration yes please make a video! I am seeing artists that like and respect and have followed for years (some really big named one) creating them and I feel really disappointed in them for doing it. I've blocked a lot of NFT related accounts and keywords on Twitter. I'm glad others feel like this and not just me. It just seems so weird. There seems to be nothing stopping the quest for fame, even if it means destroying things for others.

    The 'art' side of it all is also questionable. I'm not the best illustrator but I've worked on my skill all of my life, I don't want to be compared with a quick right-click-save and Photoshop filter piece that will be sold for more money that I will ever make.

  • Super interesting. When I saw this post, I thought, "What the heck are NFTs?"

    So, being curious, I had to spend some time (I should've been working) Googling it. The most helpful thing for me (a newbie) was a YouTube video by Brad Colbow (, where he very simply explains it, breaks it down, and brings out some pros and cons.

    Also found these articles on The Verge ( and Wired ( very interesting.

    Just putting these out there for anyone else who might find them informative as well.

  • As much as I love the concept of artists having more control/ownership of their work, I don't like it. It's hard to say this isn't a trend in the least but for how long will it last is my question. I think that buyers are eventually going to wise up to the fact that they don't actually own what they are buying. Like all art the value of it is based on what we as a whole put into the idea (like a banana duct taped to a wall) and the dollar value behind that idea. On top of that is the negative environmental impact which sucks.

    I read this great article here that sums things up quite nicely in my opinion. Simply put:

    "But “ownership” of crypto art confers no actual rights, other than being able to say that you own the work. You don’t own the copyright, you don’t get a physical print, and anyone can look at the image on the web. There is merely a record in a public database saying that you own the work – really, it says you own the work at a specific URL."

  • @kylebeaudette I've been trying to get my head around what NFT means over the last few days but had no idea about the environmental impact, very interesting

  • Good points all around!
    I think they are worth something, it's not quite the same as selling an idea or hot air because it's connected to a token that can be verified online. The same way a baseball card is "worth" something. A digital collectible.

    I feel like the argument over it being terrible for the environment will continue for quite a while until that gets remedied, or lessened to an exponential degree.

    But I think NFT's are here to stay, even if this bubble bursts.

  • Count me in at waiting for a carbon neutral version of blockchain mining or whatever the proper term is. The environment doesn’t need any further damage for the sake of yet another gold rush, boom, bubble, and inevitable burst. If wealthy people have a hard time figuring out how to spend their money, they can donate to charity. At least they can get a tax receipt in addition to feeling good about doing good 🙂

    I came across a series of tweets an American comic book artist wrote yesterday about how NFTs won’t change the system we have of the “starving artist who is one broken leg away from setting up a go fund me page to pay for medical bills”.

  • @kylebeaudette Photoshop has just put out a NFT support tweet so I think there's no going back now.

  • @danielerossi yeah, DC or some other comic megacorp put out a statement to all their artists about how NFT's of their art for comics is not for sale by them and they are working on a 'plan'.
    Plan: we make 95% of the profit, you get a lil piece of the 5% left over.

  • @kylebeaudette We've talked about this a lot at work over the last month. it may be a little bit out of reach now (and was more accessible back in November), but it is totally still worth a try as an artist with a following!! I think to "mint" the NFT is anywhere between $40 - $100 on sites like Mintable: and Rareable:

  • I don't know if you guys follow Will Terry's youtube channel but I thought it was interesting that he posted this vid yesterday:

    Its a long video and he only touches on the subject for about 10-15 minutes of it but I thought it was interesting since this topic just hit the forum.

  • Just wondering where the information on the environmental damage of NFT's comes from?

    I've seen a few data reports and would like to see what other information has been going around. The research I have from years working in the crypto industry doesn't show NFT's to have had any impact on crypto-mining. I was a crypto-miner in 2017 to 2018 but they are bringing it to what's known as the ice age to make it more difficult to mine to curtail wasted energy and switch to something called proof of stake (uses a lot less energy). Blocks get mined regardless of whether someone mints one NFT or a thousand of them. So artists using the network or boycotting it wont make any difference because that isn't how it works - each block is the same size and gets mined regardless of what's in it. There's a brilliant visualiser of how transactions and mining interact at

    Global Bitcoin mining takes up around the equivalent of people with games consoles playing on their console for 4 hours a day. Ether mining uses less than half the power of bitcoin mining and has the same carbon footprint as YouTube. 51% of Bitcoin mining takes place in Sichuan in China and 90% of that is hydro-power by using the River Yangtze. They are ending using coal at the end of April in Mongolia (or so they say!) So on average its about 73-74% renewable energy at source. The report is on coinshares research site. I have a pdf if anyone is interested (bit dry).

    So yes it does use a lot of energy to mine crypto but nowhere near as much as other industries artists are involved in such as selling physical art, digital downloads, computer games or printing books and distributing them around the world via planes, trains and automobiles.

    Full disclosure: I do make NFT art and make money in the crypto industry so I want to defend it from being demonized. I'm constantly looking for ways to improve the NFT industry and finding ways to stop needlessly wasting energy. I hope upgrades in July that Ethereum will have made leaps and bound in reducing energy waste. Also, there are other platforms like TEZOS that mint NFT's a different way.

    I'm a digital artist and want to do it efficiently but also want to make art I can sell online and receive payment instantly and securely and get secondary market royalties paid directly into my wallet without chasing people up. Selling NFT's helps me do that. Not everyone it seems wants to right click save! There are people who want to pay too. Like digital patrons, plus secondary market sales are lucrative for them as well. Art goes in cycles but the tech is new and probably here to stay like when the MP3 disrupted the music industry. I got into it with investing in NFT concert tickets as the company wants to get rid of ticket touts! And so far they have been successful with all the concerts they have ticketed.

    Here is a good write up that questions the online debate about NFT's and I think puts things into perspective -


  • @sigross yeah, I think people have now made it the argument of 'well, you're joining into something that's harmful to the environment..'
    Not that the nft itself is creating more than what exists without you doing it, just that now you have 'dirty hands' for taking part.

    I talked briefly about making an NFT and my followers roasted me a bit😅

  • @kylebeaudette People can mint on Tezos and they are already on a system called proof of stake. Which is no different than uploading an image to the internet. Every digital artist is guilty of that!

  • @kylebeaudette btw I think your work would be great as NFT art. Smart contracts and digital tokens aren't going away, its an integral part of web 3. Worth setting up a shop collection on - I would defo buy an NFT off you, if you minted any!

    If you wait till later this year to mint on Ethereum chain, they are implementing staking technology that reduces the energy consumption by 99.98%.

  • @sigross I think you have provided the most amount of information that I have seen yet. I've read a bunch of news and articles (for and against NFT's) that has stated that there is an environmental impact but none of them have given hard facts. Neither side has backed up their claims to justify their claims either. Thank you for explaining so well. Im going to do some more research. You have peaked my interest for more info and I may sway my stance.

  • @BradAYoo I'm glad you found it useful. 🙂 I definitely want to see improvements on energy consumption and it's worth looking at all sides of the debate. And to learn about the various platforms and tech I think a good blogger is the Digital Art Collector -
    with regards to NFT's in general with why they exist and advice on what's going to help artist's to last, it's worth listening to The Outer Realm (by Second Realm) podcast with Gary Vaynerchuk - on spotify too.

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