The “Ecological Nightmare” backlash forces ArtStation to drop NFT plans

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Well-known online art portfolio platform ArtStation has given in to pressure from artists and eco-conscious users after announcing a series of non-fungible tokens (NFT) from several notable artists.

On March 9, the platform announced that the program should begin today. It featured works by artists such as Halo Infinite’s art director, Nicolas “Sparth” Bouvier, retired NASA astronaut Nicole Stott, Assassin’s Creed franchise art director, Raphael Lacoste, painter Craig Mullins, and Magic: The Gathering Illustrator Alena Aenami.

After an angry bombardment of criticism, all mentions of the announcement were withdrawn and replaced with a short message on the website stating, “Given the critical reception on social media regarding NFTs, it is clear that this is not the time for NFTs is on ArtStation. “Despite the setback, the company didn’t quite shy away from the technology, hinting at its possible future uses:

“We are very sorry for all the negative emotions this has caused. Despite our attempts to validate our approach, we clearly made a mistake and admitted mistakes. It was our bad. We believe NFTs are a transformative technology that can make meaningful, positive change for digital artists. “

Dapper Labs founder and CEO Roham Gharegozlou said the decision to slack off was “myopic” [used by NBA Top Shot]. ”

ArtStation’s original plan appeared to use the ERC-721 token on Ethereum, which will remain a performance-hungry Proof of Work blockchain until most transactions are switched to the more efficient Proof of Stake blockchain Eth2. It’s unclear if the platform is considering other blockchains that NFTs can host at a fraction of the power.

That apology calmed only part of the community, however, as artists like Ashley Grace returned to Twitter to voice their concern over the post’s apparently inconclusive wording and likening NFTs to an “ecological nightmare pyramid scheme.”

Prior to pulling down the initial announcement, ArtStation tried unsuccessfully to calm the push back, adding that it “will help offset the cost of the carbon footprint of any particular digital artwork being handled on the platform”.

Twitter user “Bleached Rainbows” stated that “ArtStation goes into NFT and says” but don’t worry! We pay for carbon offset payments. This corresponds to lighting a house and placing a single potted plant on the burned property as “compensation”.

The backlash added to other controversies, including rumored sexism and adult content, with artists threatening to cancel their subscriptions. Other issues included the unregulated nature of the NFT space and the possibility of fraud occurring, and criticism that the move was a win-win for the platform and its best-known artists.

Despite the heated controversy, NFTs continue to find widespread support with Beeples Everydays: The First 5000-Day Auction on Christie’s Heating. Kinetic founder Jehan Chu tried to join but was outbid for $ 7.25 million and it remained two days.

The highest bid is currently $ 9.75 million.

Nine hours after ArtStation canceled the NFT launch, Rob Gronkowski announced his new NFT collection of four cards to represent his four championships for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The tickets will be auctioned on March 10th via Opensea.