After Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, it’s YouTube’s turn to get involved in the world of cryptocurrencies. The video hosting platform is currently exploring the possibility of adding a feature related to non-fungible tokens (NFTs) for content creators.
YouTube is looking into NFTs
In an official annual letter published this Tuesday, January 25, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki shares her priorities for the platform. She synthetically mentions the economy of the creators, the support of their work, innovation and the protection of the community.
On the subject of innovation, the YouTube CEO said that the platform considers “Web 3.0 as a source of inspiration to continue innovating”. She explained that she has been following the cryptocurrency world very closely over the course of 2021 and has been paying particular attention to non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs).
“The past year in the world of crypto-currencies, non-fungible tokens and even decentralized autonomous organizations has highlighted a previously unimaginable opportunity to grow the connection between creators and their fans,”she wrote in her letter.
In addition, Wojcicki said she is more interested than ever in “expanding the YouTube ecosystem” and reaffirmed her intention to “help creators take advantage of emerging technologies.” According to her, this could include “things like NFTs”.
While she didn’t explain more clearly what form this might take within YouTube, it’s easy to imagine that influencers will be able to create NFTs featuring their world (a reference, a piece of the set, etc.), offer them as a reward to the community or sell them. As such, it’s not out of the question that YouTube will start creating its own NFT exchange platform.
This letter from YouTube’s CEO also marks the first real official interest from Alphabet, Google’s parent company, in the field of non-fungible tokens.
The race to NFTs for social networks
This initiative comes at a time when other giants of social networks, and more generally of Tech, have already positioned themselves on this prolific market. A few days earlier, Twitter already made the news about NFTs. Indeed, the social network with the blue bird gave the possibility to Twitter Blue subscribers to connect their account to Opensea’s one in order to check their collection and the authenticity of their profile picture.
More broadly, whether it’s Twitter and its profile pictures, Facebook and its name change to Meta, or Instagram and its plan to integrate NFTs into its platform, the social networks are all intent on munching their way into the pie.
And no wonder, the NFTs market is showing amazing health compared to the lackluster state of the major cryptocurrencies – including Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) – over the past few weeks. And for good reason, as of January 18, NFTs buying platform Opensea was already posting an all-time high in trading volume at over $3.6 billion.
Until then, attempts by big tech companies to do projects have not necessarily been successful, on the contrary. To cite just one example, Ubisoft’s launch of Quartz, a platform for purchasing game items in NFTs on Tezos (XTZ), was a disaster. While Wojcicki wants to explore this new technological landscape, it is far from a given that the YouTube community will support her.