The Yuga Labs digital land sale this weekend, a mass-mint of new NFTs that temporarily clogged the Ethereum blockchain, is not just making money for the company behind the new set of images that may figure in a future digital service. Other parties are also doing rather well from the effort.
News coverage from the “Otherdeeds” mint points to massive volumes. Decrypt wrote that “OpenSea set a new one-day record for Ethereum NFT trading on Sunday with $476 million,” with the publication adding that “much” of the sum came from Otherdeed activity.
The rush of activity to collect what many hope will be incredibly valuable pieces of digital land — cartoon images of land, in effect, with slight variations — was immensely profitable for Yuga Labs, which took in an estimated $320 million from the event. The overall pace of activity driven by the mint was in fact so large that it led to a simply massive amount of ether, the token associated with the Ethereum blockchain, being burned.
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Amid all the large numbers, you might think that it’s bullish times for the NFT market. After all, so much activity was driven by a single collection’s expansion project — the Bored Ape crew has managed to turn a hit NFT set into several collections, huge venture checks, and now a license to print money thanks to speculators snapping up its newly offered digital assets.
But I wonder. Parsing the top collection list on OpenSea, we can see that the Yuga Labs world represents a large portion of the aggregate NFT market as we understand it. Is there a bit too much centralization in the NFT market?
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