The digital work “Stay Free” in the form of an NFT token from Edward Snowden was sold for $ 5.4 million in ETH. “Stay Free” features the silhouette of a National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower in the form of a statue by Rodin.
The image was formed from the pages of the US Court of Appeals decision that the Patriot Act does not authorize the massive collection and surveillance of American telephone records by the NSA. Thus, Snowden took advantage of the current popularity around unique tokens and his own reputation. Let’s talk about the situation in more detail.
Recall that the American Civil Liberties Union (ACZGS) won the lawsuit against Snowden, while he himself remains persona non grata in the United States because of his role in the release of the NSA surveillance program. In 2013, when a computer analyst was signing a contract with a security agency, he began leaking classified documents to the press. Shortly after being charged with espionage, Snowden flew to Russia, where he received asylum, and then a residence permit.
NFTs themselves are non-fungible tokens – that is, coins in various blockchains that are tied to certain items in physical or virtual form. Thanks to the use of blockchain, it is very easy to prove the authenticity of an object – as well as the ownership of it.
Despite the obvious advantages of using the blockchain, the idea of NFT tokens is not approved by everyone. For example, the world’s most profitable artist David Hockney, whose work “Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)” was auctioned in 2018 for a record $ 90.3 million, questioned the concept’s benefits. In particular, David is confused by the possibility of the “disappearance” of the works themselves, which already raises doubts about the understanding of the topic by the creator. More information about his point of view can be found in a separate article.
And although recently NFT is remembered much less often, Snowden nevertheless joined the topic and made good money on it.
NFT in the fight for justice
The work was sold on the Foundation digital site for 2,224 ETH, Decrypt reports. The proceeds will go to the Press Freedom Foundation, a non-profit organization founded in 2012 that develops open source communications and encryption, Snowden said. As president of the foundation, Snowden serves on the board of directors along with John Cusack, journalist Glenn Greenwald and Daniel Ellsberg.
The buyers of the work were representatives of the PleasrDAO platform. They support transparency as much as Snowden, so the decision was made because of similar views. Buyers say they will continue to acquire NFT works, invest in the decentralized finance niche, and advance their own mission in every possible way.
There was a serious struggle for work. In particular, the equivalent of 5 million for it at the last minute was suggested by a Twitter user under the pseudonym xaix2k. However, his proposal was eventually interrupted.
There is another addition among the NFT sellers. Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger has put up for sale the only edition of the 3D animated video in the form of a unique token for his new song “Eazy Sleazy”, performed with Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters. The auction on the Nifty Gateway platform has already ended, the lot was sold for 50 thousand dollars. The buyer of NFT was someone under the pseudonym brockpierce. Whether or not this is the former representative of the Block.One startup Brock Pierce is unknown.
As a reminder, this is not the first time that celebrities have entered the NFT market and receive millions of dollars for their unique creations. For example, the well-known performer Grimes has already done this before.
Despite the large amounts of sales, the situation with the NFT token niche is not entirely clear now. On the one hand, the number of users of platforms for trading such tokens sets records. In particular, the maximum of the indicator was recorded in the previous week.
Number of users of NFT platforms
At the same time, the trading volumes are still far from the maximum: they have recently decreased.
We believe the idea of taking advantage of the popularity of NFT tokens was the right one. In addition, Edward Snowden created a unique piece that will remain in history. Moreover, in the future anyone will be able to purchase it, and there will be no problems with the proof of ownership.