Following over a year of research and experimentation, tech behemoth, Meta, will not to continue with its NFT project. The social media factory has decided to pull the plug on non-fungible tokens from its Facebook and Instagram platforms. The announcement was made by Stephane Kasriel, head of commerce and financial technologies at Meta. In a series of tweets published on March 13, Kasriel notes that Meta was “winding down digital collectibles (NFTs)” from Instagram and Facebook “to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses.”
Some product news: across the company, we’re looking closely at what we prioritize to increase our focus. We’re winding down digital collectibles (NFTs) for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses. ?[1/5]
— Stephane Kasriel (@skasriel) March 13, 2023
Meta’s Year Long NFT Experiment
News of Meta’s interest in NFTs broke in late 2021 amid the soaring interest in the technology. Instagram then began rolling out NFT support in May 2022, before the same functionality expanded to Facebook a month later. The feature was initially accessible to only a select number of creators. Then, in August, Instagram made its NFT tools available in over 100 countries, before adding an “end-to-end toolkit” that allowed users of Instagram to mint and trade NFTs. However, it appears the experiment hasn’t yielded the desired results.
Despite stopping support for NFTs on both Instagram and Facebook, Meta intends to prioritize finding ways users can “connect with their fans and monetize (content).” However, the news also coincides with a period of great turmoil for the once unstoppable social media empire, which also announced it will cut staff by a further 10,000 employees. This comes just 4 months after initially laying off 11,000 members in November.
News of the winding up has not been well received within the NFT community. One NFT artist by the name of Dave Krugman has been critical of the decision, terming Meta’s whole approach as “shortsighted” before noting the company “quit before it even started.”
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Basil is an avid fan of blockchain technology and all its innovations, and he is passionate about sharing this narrative with his audience. He has spent over five years in the crypto space, specializing in research and creating Web3 content for various media outlets around the globe.