OpenSea launches Seaport protocol to barter NFTs

By Raffaele Redi

The new protocol allows combined offerings by bidders

NFT logo seen on smartphone in front of a blurred OpenSea NFT marketplace platform                                 
OpenSea is the largest secondary marketplace for non-fungible tokens – Photo: Shutterstock

The largest non-fungible token (NFT) platform OpenSea has launched a new marketplace protocol called Seaport to allow users to buy, sell and barter NFTs.

The new protocol – currently in its pilot version which OpenSea does not control or operate – allows combined offerings by bidders, with the possibility of bundling different assets in exchange for an NFT and utilising NFTs as means of exchange alongside, for example, cryptocurrencies.

Seaport would offer people the chance to use their own NFTs to barter for other people’s NFTs – an option that currently just a few NFT platforms offer – and also enable more users to bid together on the same NFT.

The protocol would also support “tipping”, allowing alternative interfaces to include their own fees and other applications like on-chain English auctions – where an opening bid is superceded by ever higher bids.

Bidding on traits

Seaport would also let people bid on specific traits from an NFT collection as “each item on a listing can also optionally specify that some ‘criteria’ be met in place of requiring a specific token-ID, enabling collection-level and trait-level offers,” as OpenSea explains.

Traits are specific aspects of Profile Picture (PfP) NFT collections, such as the popular NFTs series CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), indicating the uniqueness of the NFT and consequently determining its price.

“This is only the beginning for Seaport,” said OpenSea. “We built the initial version of the protocol to unlock use cases and optimisations that creators and collectors expect from a modern Web 3.0 marketplace. However, what we’ve really built is a foundation to empower the developer community to work together on this primitive.”

To mark the unveiling of Seaport, launched a two-week audit contest in partnership with code4rena for a $1m prize pool. Last month, OpensSea sales witnessed a rebound after weeks of lower trading volumes, according to Dune Analytics’ data.

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