The March 2006 post reads “just setting up my twttr.” Despite its simplicity—and the fact the post is free to view— the crypto-asset version of the tweet is currently fetching $2.5 million at auction.
‘I will not sell it at any price’
Sina Estavi, the CEO of cryptocurrency platform Bridge Oracle, is ready to part with millions for the one-of-a-kind digital asset, a price he says is “worth it.”
And he isn’t trying to flip it for a profit. “This tweet will stay with me forever and I will not sell it at any price,” he told Adweek.
Amid a bull market and a concurrent cryptocurrency boom, a new market has emerged for digital assets based on the principle of scarcity. The idea is simple: any meme, NBA highlight, or even a tweet can be “minted” on the blockchain as an NFT and sold to the highest bidder.
Those pushing NFTs want you to believe that everything on the internet is art and everything has value. Perhaps, despite the eyebrow-raising sums of money, they’re right—Jack Dorsey might simply be trying to cash in.
Tweets as digital assets?
Recently, Dorsey invested heavily in cryptocurrency as founder and CEO of Square. Today, his Twitter bio laconically reads “#bitcoin.”
A spokesperson for Twitter declined to comment on why Dorsey opted to sell this tweet, and whether the company supports the free sale of tweets as digital assets. It also declined to comment on whether Twitter is considering building its own system for minting and selling tweets.
Dorsey clarified Tuesday that all proceeds will be converted to bitcoin after the auction ends on Mar. 21 and donated to the nonprofit GiveDirectly, which combats poverty in Africa.
A collector and creator relationship
Valuables, the platform auctioning Dorsey’s tweet, explains in its FAQ: “Owning any digital content can be a financial investment, hold sentimental value, and create a relationship between collector and creator. Like an autograph on a baseball card, the NFT itself is the creator’s autograph on the content, making it scarce, unique, and valuable.”
Whether the NFT craze is a bubble—or at least a passing fad—is still to be determined. In the meantime, it vastly expands the notion of what can be bought or sold online. Increasingly, the answer seems to be simple: Anything.
Editor’s note: Dorsey clarified Tuesday that all proceeds will be converted to bitcoin after the auction ends on Mar. 21 and donated to the nonprofit GiveDirectly, which combats poverty in Africa.