If one day someone had told us that we could buy jpegs for millions of dollars, that not only would it be possible but that there would be a huge hype around it, everyone would have laughed and found it completely insane. And yet…here comes the NFT.
From physical to digital flex
The flex is an integral part of human nature, for thousands of years we observe different ways to highlight the social status.
Today, it seems like we are progressively moving from a society where social status is based on the consumption of goods to a society where social prestige is based on the digital world and on the image we send out on the web and the use we make of social networks. A new term has been coined by essayist Eugene Wei to describe this transition : "status-as-a-service". People, especially Gen Z, are spending an exponential time online, resulting in a social urge to build a virtual identity that is perceived as desirable by others. Welcome to the era of digital flexing.
NFTs have a crucial role to play in this transformation and are a new showcase of our social status. Thus, in the same way that we would show off our latest Louis Vuitton bag or our latest Supreme sweatshirt in the street or to our friends to demonstrate our place in the social space, the image of an NFT testifies to the obvious desire of its holder to show his belonging to a certain social category.
NFTS to get rid of scammed flex
In 2019 the influencer Gabbie Hanna fooled her followers by making it look like via her photos that she had gone to the Coachella festival. By this, she intended to denounce the limits of the idyllic life on Instagram and especially how easy it was to create a false world on social networks and to fake your virtual existence. We no longer count the influencers renting beautiful apartments by the day or shooting in a jet that never intended to leave the tarmac.
With the emergence of web 2.0 we observe a multiplication of scammers staging their false perfect life, their false wealth on social networks. Lil Tay is the embodiment of the abuses and excesses of flex culture. A child who stages himself on social networks in beautiful houses... which are in fact properties that his mother - a real estate agent - was selling
The NFts partly solve the problem of fake show-off thanks to their registration on the blockchain. At a glance, one can have access to the identity of the owner and verify the authenticity of the non-fungible token.
We can no longer flex in a vacuum, impossible to create a false life or invent a false world. Thus, the NFT becomes a weapon to fight against a show off of counterfeiting in the digital world. No more pretending you went to Coachella if the ticket is backed by an NFT.
Instagram, the kingdom of flex, has understood the importance of integrating NFTs in its ecosystem. Soon, users of the famous social network will be able to integrate NFTs in their feed. It will then be possible to flex in all authenticity by posting to his community his NFT of Beyoncé's concert or his NFT of his favourite pair of sneakers.
The objective here is not to criticise or invalidate the mechanisms of flex and show off inherent to human nature but to make them true and proven.
Well, now it's up to you to decide if you want to flex with the latest Bentley or with a CryptoPunk made of a few pixels?