Is NFT art? That’s what Wikipedia editors are asking

By Raffaele Redi

The discussion originated from the top art sales list

Tablet with Beeple pattern                                 
Collins dictionary listed NFT among the ten words of 2021 – Photo: Shutterstock
                                

Wikipedia editors voted against the integration of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in the art sales list, deciding to delay the discussion on art NFTs.

“I don't think society has figured out if NFTs are by themselves visual artworks, coding, or a contractual document, and sources alone probably can’t decide as existing sources will be all over the place,” said one of the editors.

A debate in 21 December was held on the online encyclopaedia around the subject of “the most expensive art sales by living artists”. 

According to one of the editors: “Wikipedia really can’t be in the business of deciding what counts as art or not.”

The opinions were mixed on the issue, so the editors decided to park the debate and continue the discussion at a later date.

“It doesn’t take my concerns into account. I do not think that they should be removed, if that wasn’t clear. I think much of the art that is sold as NFTs is shit, but that doesn’t matter,” added one of the editors.

Crypto literacy

However, NFTs have recently entered the lexicon. According to collinsdictionary.com, the word of the year is the abbreviation for non-fungible token, NFT.

Crypto literacy is still at early stage. According to Cryptoliteracy.org, 98% of the US users failed to pass a simple quiz about cryptocurrencies.

More recently, Sir Geoffrey Vos, Master of the Rolls presiding over the UK Court of Appeal, suggested that every lawyer should know about blockchain, smart legal contracts and cryptoassets, as reported by the Law society Gazette.

The group also called for action to develop a regulatory regime for cryptoassets such as NFTs.

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