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Key Talks: Interview with Bruno Škvorc

NFT ecosystem growth and challenges, the dilemma of NFTs' environmental impact, NFTs 2.0 and innovation, ethical considerations in NFT projects, and the value and dynamics of the NFT market.

Mark Galkevich
September 28, 2023
Key Talks
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Founder RMRK.app NFTs 2.0, Co-founder CypherMOD Official.

What challenges do you believe the NFT ecosystem currently faces in terms of scalability and sustainability, and how can these challenges be addressed while maintaining ethical standards?

‍I do not see any challenges in terms of scalability or sustainability. The only challenge in web3 is market fit. We keep making ponzis and centralized AWS-hosted apps that keep getting taken down by authoritarian regimes like that of the USA, while the real builders who want to be the change they want to see in the world go un-funded.

NFTs have been associated with environmental concerns due to the energy consumption of certain blockchains. How do you view the ethical dilemma of NFTs' environmental impact, and what solutions or alternatives do you believe can help mitigate these concerns?

There is no ethical dilemma with NFTs and their effect on the environment. The energy cost of minting 10000 NFTs on any proof of stake chain today is equivalent to about the energy Mother Nature needs to digest a slice of bread. The environmental troubles of NFTs are a meme. They are a talking point for professional victims and serial complainers. Even in proof of work chains which are admittedly incredibly wasteful and should not exist, like Bitcoin, the blocks would still be mined. Even if 15 minutes passes in bitcoin with zero transactions submitted, the block is still "mined". And mining an empty block would cost exactly the same amount of energy as mining a completely overflowing block. So NFTs or no NFTs in a block, the block still happens.

As the founder of RMRK (NFTs 2.0), you're at the forefront of NFT innovation. Could you elaborate on how NFTs 2.0 addresses some of the ethical issues or limitations seen in traditional NFTs, and what impact you anticipate this innovation will have on the NFT space?

NFTs 2.0 or modular NFTs as we like to call them do not address ethical issues or limitations at all, nor are they intended to. The standards we launched are designed solely to take the technology to the next level by allowing true innovation in the NFT space, well past the curse of static images. These NFTs allow other NFTs to own them, equippables across many NFTs so they can modify their output based on contained child NFTs, they allow people to emote on them and implement these reactions in various programmatic ways, they allow composable books, movies, songs. Most importantly, they are forwards and backwards compatible with old school NFTs, and with anything new launched on them, meaning a true global item economy is finally possible, and vampire attacking other collections on launch no longer needs to be a thing. As far as impact, I anticipate massive shifts in fully on-chain games with fully autonomous RPG mechanics, licenses as part of music NFTs, advanced IP rights, advanced RWA implementations and much more. The sky is the limit with this new technology.

Can you share an example of an NFT artist or project that, in your view, effectively balances artistic expression and ethical considerations, and what lessons can others draw from their approach?

‍We have many wonderful builders on our standards. There have been incredible composable PFP projects (https://x.com/bitfalls/status/1508793028454014978?s=20…), creative games with item and farming mechanics (https://evrloot.io). Reputation systems rewarding votes in on chain governance (https://proofofchaos.app), reputation system for ecosystem participation (https://blossom.land), and so much more. None of these have had ethical issues in their process or launches, so I am not sure what to suggest. We also tried very hard to make sure that we, as providers of the technology, are ethical towards them, and so we enforce royalties on our platform to make sure all artists are paid their due. This is exceptionally important in the world of nestable NFTs where NFTs can be in NFTs which can be in other NFTs etc. As such, the designer of a jacket patch on an astronaut contained within a spaceship will still get his royalties for the design.

Given the recent report indicating that a significant majority of NFTs are now considered "virtually valueless” in the current market, what are your thoughts on the potential factors contributing to this decline, and do you believe there is a path for NFTs to regain value?

‍"Virtually valueless" is another clickbait from the same crowd which was promoting NFTs in the bull run (proof: https://x.com/HashBastardsNFT/status/1705322870484644091?s=20…). It is best to ignore such headlines and publications, much like the "omg ze environment" complainers. Yes, many people have left the industry - both gamblers and builders. And with a mass exodus of speculators, value goes down as no one is speculating on an entire asset class. I do not concern myself much with the pricing of virtual assets, it is ultimately irrelevant. My goal is to provide technology which can finally take the NFT space far beyond speculation, which would render it immune to the effects of gambling. I believe that with our ERCs (documented at https://evm.rmrk.app) we have finally succeeded in doing that. Now, all we have to do is figure our how to make builders passionate about building real, decentralized web3 technology again.

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