By: Nick Gambino
Twitter founder and CEO, Jack Dorsey, made history by selling his first and the first tweet ever for a cool $2.9 million. More specifically, it was sold as an NFT to a buyer who bid an oddly numbered $2,915,835.47, just because why not.
The buyer, Sina Estavi, was already the highest bidder in the digital auction but decided to up his number to something a little more interesting with no doubt some significance behind it. The most expensive tweet to date was little more than five words, posted on March 21, 2006, “just setting up my twtr.”
All of this begs some important questions: Why that number? Why sell it all? And most importantly, what the hell is an NFT? This last one is the most interesting, so let’s talk about that.
Before last week, I had no idea what an NFT was. In fact, I don’t think I’d ever heard these letters put together in that order in my life. An NFT, or non-fungible token, is essentially a digital asset that can be assigned a value and sold as a unique good. Digital assets generally live without much value thanks to their susceptibility to being easily copied and distributed through the various corners of the internet in an instant.
It’s a bit hard to assign much value to something like that. In the “real” world, a photograph might be one of a kind or 1 of 500, but a digital facsimile of that same photograph would be capable of infinite copies with a simple click of a button.
Thanks to blockchain technology, digital assets are now seeing an emergence in value. Just look at cryptocurrency. They aren’t particularly backed by paper money, like your checking account. They are little more than 1s and 0s but because of their unique digital signature, they have value. NFTs live on the Ethereum blockchain and so can be secured and identified. By limiting reproduction, you avoid inflation and increase value.
This is, in essence, why Dorsey was able to convert his first tweet into an NFT and auction it off for close to $3 million. Estavi now owns that tweet until he decides to sell it.
Dorsey has promised to convert the money he receives for the sale into Bitcoin and donate it to Give Directly Africa Fund to help those in poverty.