Home nft The Dark Side Of NFT: Art & Identity Theft, Wash Trading, And Environmental Damage
The Dark Side of NFTs

The Dark Side Of NFT: Art & Identity Theft, Wash Trading, And Environmental Damage

by Admin

The new problems for investors and art dealers alike as digital collections and works of art painted via a crypto-currency token, or non-fungible tokens, increase their appeal in the market. The original copies of these one-of-a-kind digital objects authenticated by blockchain technology are kept and sold with a token which serves as evidence of ownership. However, the token comes with a strong environmental impact, as the mining process is similar to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. In return for ether, NFTs are also commonly traded, a crypto asset that has a significant mining impact.

The Dark Side Of NFT

NFTs are ubiquitous, and they are not confined in their early years to the youngest, most inventive segments of society. The NFT of an artist’s digital collage known as Beeple was sold at an auction in March for more than 69 million dollars and was only designed for conventional Christie’s auction house. The work comprised 5,000 digital images, produced and published every day for more than 13 1/2 years.

The new phenomena have attracted attention by fraudsters – art theft, identity theft, among others – NTFs are quick to change the landscape of art and entertainment

Other problems are copyright laws, storage of documents, forgery issues, large carbon footprint, expensive taxes, and defaults on ownership.

Ether issues carbon comparable to YouTube for 13,000 hours in a single transaction — minting, bidding, canceling, sales, and owner transfers —

As Indians become a marker for non-fungible tokens (NFTs), as more and more celebrities are joining, NFTs rapidly change the art and entertainment landscape by facilitating support for their favorite designers and making it easier for artists to mint and trade unique and collectible articles than ever before.

NFTs gradually acquire popular attention, with celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan and Sunny Leone joining the battlefield, and increasing interest demands for deep diving and a deeper understanding for everyone – artists, start-ups, investors, or people.

The Dark Side Of NFT

NFTs are files of an Ethereum blockchain owned by a blockchain. The idea was won over by Indian crypto-entrepreneur Vignesh Sundaresan (aka Metakovan) during the NFT’s inaugural art Auction in March 2021, who paid $69.3 million to a digital collage of 5,000 pictures, entitled “Everyday: The First 5000 Days,” by artist Miche Winkelmann (already called “Belle”). The bidding was done in the crypto-monetary Ether, unlike conventional Auctions.

The worry is a string

Talking about NFT Marketplaces (a location where users can buy and trade NFT), Melvin Thambi, an NFT artist and cofounder of NFTMalayali, during the Crypto summit sponsored by Inc42, said the NFT phenomena has enabled him to connect more rapidly than Facebook-owned Instagram.

With increasing attention paid to NFTs, however, studies have shown that fraudsters who upload phony artwork attracted attention from the new phenomena.

How can NFT Marketplaces ensure that users do not manipulate transactions by trading themselves (wash trading) so that the value of NFT is increased? How do purchasers verify the same rare object that the vendor claimed is the NFT they bought? On the other hand, how are artists saying they do not copy their work or rob their identity on NFT markets?

For example, in the NFT marketplace, which turned out to never have been his, a verified profile of artist Derek Laufman, the author of the RuinWorld comic book, BOT-9 and the designer of Marvel’s Super Hero Adventures, emerged.

Each NFT is unique, yet forgeries and even theft of the identity of artists because of its digital nature cannot be prevented.

In another case, scammers have started taking advantage of the work of Qing Han (also known as Qinni), a prominent artist who has lost the fight against cancer. In April 2021, just a year after her death, a friend of her brother’s revealed that five stories stole the name of his sister to sell the NFTs of his work.

However, it was the tip of the iceberg, like other developing techniques. BuyUCoin CEO, Shivam Thakral, discussed bottlenecks in Indian NFT markets: “Copyright law, storage of document, falsification, huge carbon footprint, high taxes and ownership defaults are some of the main difficulties.”

“Artwork such as Monalisa’s painting of Leonardo Da Vinci has been around for hundreds of years. We must discover a mechanism to ensure that digital artworks in the form of NFTs persist in a similar manner,” he said.

When NFT-police startup bitsCrunch raising $750K in its seed round, its founding member, Vijay Pravin Maharajan, stressed the many challenges faced by the NFT eco-system, including forgery, wash trading (trading in personal networks to enable higher rewards and rates), and inadequate valuation of assets.

The Environment is involved
The environmental hazard of the digital art being stored on a blockchain book is, to put it simply, not just at the individual level. Beeple’s Digital Art, for instance, is responsible for more carbon emissions in the environment annually than most small countries!

The Dark Side Of NFT

Ethereum consumes over 44,94 terawatt-hours of electricity per year, equivalent to countries like Columbia’s annual energy usage. This also accounts for around 34.58 metric tonnes per year of carbon dioxide, similar to Denmark’s carbon footprint.

Ether issues carbon equivalent to watching YouTube for 13,000 hours for a single transaction – minting, bidding, canceling, selling, and transferring property – using the power that would power a house in a developed nation for six days!

During the previous seven days (September 19-September 25) NFT transactions worth more than $225 million took place, just think about how much power was consumed, how much carbon was dumped into the environment!

Imitating his worries, Elon Musk did stop the project in May 2021 by blaming climate change in its decision, even though it said in March 2021 that Tesla will accept Bitcoin as a form of payment for electric cars. In order to trade in NFTs, bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies are utilized.

Searching for environmentally sustainable options
“The world’s leading industries seek to reduce their carbon impact. Renewable energies are the best way to address environmental concerns in the NFT sector,” Thakral states. “We are aggressively exploring the utilization of nuclear power, wind, hydropower, or any other type of renewable energy to drive its NFT business that will dramatically minimize environmental impacts.”

Similarly, OKEx CEO, Jay Hao said: “The industries that have been the world’s main development engines received criticism from the environmentalists after the industrial revolution. As part of their long-term business plan, they have maintained sustainability and decreased their carbon impact.”

“Similarly, [NFT platforms] are vigorously researching the usage of renewables to power NTF-related enterprise to make the NFT market environmentally friendly,” Hao noted.

Ownership and copyright

Art theft is an increasing NFT problem. In recent months, artists have come to discover their work in internet markets where they are sold without their approval as NFTs.
The difficulty here is that the mechanism used by NFTs was built up some years ago and was not suitable for the manner in which Internet users may sell and exchange decentralized goods, such as art.
In a 2017 “game” named CryptoKittties a very early form of NFTs was consolidated. The game enabled players the purchase and breeding of a limited number of virtual cats (sold as NFTs). In those days, the makers of the game built these NFTs, thus they are unique to the whole game.

A player could not merely upload a copy from a cat to sell or use, because the copyrights for the cats that could be bought or sold were exclusive to the creators. This restriction over who could not mint new cats meant that the developers were at once responsible for controlling the number of cats on the market. It wasn’t going to overwhelm the cat market.
However, NFT designers in the art industry have little influence over the way their work is marketed and where it is sold. In this situation, they are digital artists. This was an issue long before the NFTs took a look. And, according to Wellington-based artist PepperRaccoon, the dream NFTs try to offer artists is not all that fits the eye.

“I believe the NFTs do not solve any of the problems claimed to be solved. It’s only selling optimism, really.

“The benefit of NFTs is that the work is demonstrated by the unique attachment to your original piece. That means that the person in possession of this work knows that he has the “original” piece. But the difficulty is that someone might take a JPG, put it on another marketplace and sell it with a different token. No ‘original’ is available.”

Who can’t “mint” an NFT, then? The solution is simple: in minting his work (i.e., how many “original” copies are sold) and where his work is sold the artist should finally be able to declare. However, it is difficult to execute the anarchy of the Internet.

Given that many artists have been confronted with financial constraints over the past year, the idea of selling online work is little wonder. It’s not unclear why, with the new, hyped-up world of cryptocurrency, some artists have turned to sales as NFTs. That stated, artists should dive into active platforms to avoid their work getting rubbed off.


As is the case with the NFT system, the platform on which NFTs are located — the blockchain in Ethereum – has become outmoded.

Like his competitor Bitcoin, regular people with computers that solve complicated Mathematical Equations can be “mined” (or “made”) by the Ether that is located on Ethereum. These folks are talented coins in return for mining the currency. And the more precious the coins are, the greater the impetus to be extracted. It’s really a symbiotic connection: I scratch your back, you scratch it.

The difficulty is that Bitcoin and Ethereum are gigantic in terms of the power required. More CO2 emissions from the power needed to create the new Bitcoin than the whole Aotearoa nation are generated, in perspective. Some analyses suggest that Bitcoin is on course to overshadow London’s overall energy usage.

“Extracting at least two weeks of residential energy use in a single transaction as part of an artwork offered by NFT, Raccoon claims.

Many NFT markets are looking at transforming their models from a system of ‘proof of work’ to a ‘proof-of-holding’ system (where computers have to solve these equations to generate new coins) into a system where users show themselves owners of their currencies for the production of new coins.

This is to say, users may indicate that they own a part of the land and therefore emphasize its perceived worth to create further value by producing new blocks.

Will this systematic change reduce blockchain technology’s climatic impacts? Temporarily, perhaps. However, Ethereum and Bitcoin carbon emissions are increasing at an alarming rate to tackle the problem with very radical innovation. Such innovation requires money and effort, and the short-term financial advantages now greatly outweigh the long-term environmental effect of those participating.

However, some musicians were led to say nothing of the NFT efforts until more sustainable methods were established. It is these environmental consequences of Ether mining.

Entry and cash flow barriers

NFTs were described by artists as “pyramid schemes.”

Many people throughout the world, rich and powerful, have invested in Ethereum and have a strong interest in it succeeding. The same investors make the big checks that generated headlines, says Raccoon. “A man, who is very much involved in the development of cryptocurrencies, produced greater art markets that you see happening, like a $69 million purchase of Beeple’s painting.” “

The “pyramidal” nature of the NFT method means for new artists it’s very difficult. Many artists fight to sell their work without the following or the celebrity. “The best-known people, the musicians that release NFTs and already have a great deal of success are the ones who get the money,” adds Raccoon. “Many are sold this dream of thousands of dollars, while it is merely another conventional art market which has become more concentrated in reality.”

So what should artists do?

“Take care of the concept of imagination value,” she says, “and be careful. You’ll gain someone from this when you have the concept that your job has fictitious worth – online virtual value. It’s necessary to see where money really goes, therefore I think it’s good to sit and wait.”

The NFT market is still quite young and it has a number of dental issues and significant questions like many juvenile ones. Is it going to crash and burn? Or is it intended to innovate and be a better-controlled platform that eliminates the danger of copyright violations and of the existing power hierarchies? New, sustainable platforms will develop to address this.

Only time can shed light on such responses. Whilst art has discussed the unsustainable and immoral features of NFT, artists should ultimately be able to live from their work and not be concerned to contribute to a pyramid system, the decline of the ecosystem of Earth, or even the judgment of their peers.

And if nothing, in an increasingly decentral world, the NFT market has opened up an important conversation of how artists may earn money from selling their work.

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