We admit it, the non-fungible token (NFT) space is packed with confusing terms. Occasionally, fanatics (like us) get carried away and start throwing around new vocabulary like Saul Goodman trying to impress a judge. If you’re new to the space, it can sound like another language.
That’s why we took a moment to put together a Web3 glossary with a focus on NFTs. These aren’t all the terms in Web3, but it should be enough to help you get started.
Without further ado, here’s Rarity Sniper’s NFT Glossary:
1:1 art: A unique, one-of-a-kind digital collectible.
10K project: A collection of 10,000 unique, generative NFTs. Many of the first NFT projects like CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club are 10K projects with each NFT varying in rarity.
Airdrop: When an NFT, token, or crypto is freely sent to a Web3 wallet as a means of promotion or to add value for members of a community.
Altcoin/ alts: Cryptocurrencies that are new to the market or have low valuations. Initially, any coin that wasn’t Bitcoin was considered an altcoin.
AMA: NFT slang for “Ask Me Anything.”
Ape/ Aping: NFT talk for buying into a project after its initial launch or drop, often in an irresponsible manner or for Fear of Missing Out (FOMO).
Augmented reality (AR): Technology that combines virtual reality (VR) with physical reality, including tech such as glasses or goggles that augment reality. AR is an important component of the metaverse.
Avatar: A digital rendering of a human being or entity in virtual reality, the internet, a video game, or metaverse.
Avatar project: An NFT project that consists of digitally rendered avatar NFTs that can be used across social media, as a Profile Picture (PFP), or in games or metaverses. CryptoPunks and Bored Ape Yacht Club are avatar projects.
Bags: Refers to the crypto or NFTs one is holding as part of their portfolio, typically referring to significant amounts of a particular coin or NFT project.
BAYC: The Bored Ape Yacht Club is a 10K NFT project launched by Yuga Labs in 2020. It has since become a leading NFT project, helping Yuga Labs to become a major player in Web3.
Beeple: One of the most successful NFT artists to date. Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5,000 Days” sold for a record $69.9 million in 2021.
Bitcoin/ BTC: Developed pseudonymously by Satoshi Nakamoto, BTC it is the most valuable and popular cryptocurrency. The now-famous white paper ‘A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System’ that launched Bitcoin was published in 2008.
Block: A block is the constituent element of a blockchain. It is an individual unit where data is stored.
Blockchain: A distributed digital ledger that records transactions and is immutable and transparent. Blockchains store data in blocks or individual units that are linked (or chained) together and become longer as more information is added.
Bluechip: This term is often used to refer to established, reputable, successful, or early NFT projects like BYAC, CryptoPunks, World of Women, Azuki, and more.
Burn: The closest thing to destroying an NFT. Because nothing that’s coded on the blockchain can be deleted, to “burn” an NFT is to send it to a smart contract that no one can access.
CeFi – Centralized Finance: A process that uses a centralized institution or exchange to let users acquire loans, earn interest, and trade cryptocurrencies.
CEX – Centralized Exchange: Crypto exchanges controlled by a centralized group of people, such as Binance, Coinbase, and Kraken.
Cold wallet (hardware wallet): A physical device that stores your digital asset offline. It is more secure than a hot wallet because it cannot be hacked and gives you complete custody of your assets. Ledger is an example of a hardware wallet.
Consensus mechanism: Refers to how a blockchain verifies its ledger. Proof-of-Work (PoW) and Proof-of-Stake (PoS) are too common types of consensus mechanisms.
Cryptocurrency/crypto: A digital currency that verifies and records transactions using decentralized blockchain technology.
CryptoPunks: A set of 10,000 pixel-art generative NFTs released by Larva Labs in 2017. It is now owned by Yuga Labs and considered an historical OG NFT project.
Crypto Twitter (CT): A unique community of developers, investors, enthusiasts, and companies that discuss crypto and Web3 on the social media platform.
Crypto winter: A period of steep declines in the cryptocurrency market.
Custodial wallet: Custodial wallet services like those offered by Kraken or Binance protect private keys and safeguard user funds.
DAO/Decentralized Autonomous Organization: An organization that’s controlled by its members and is not subject to the whims of any individual or entity. DAO’s are free of top-down structures and are recorded on the blockchain to demonstrate decentralization and transparency. To participate in a DAO, users must acquire the DAO’s digital token.
DApps/ Decentralized Applications: Applications that run on decentralized computing systems.
Decentraland: One of the most popular decentralized metaverses running on the Ethereum blockchain.
DeFi/ Decentralized Finance: An emerging financial technology that promotes P2P transactions and challenges the current centralized banking system.
Degen: Short for degenerate gambler. The term is used affectionately to describe NFT enthusiasts, collectors, snipers, and flippers.
Delist: When a cryptocurrency is taken off an exchange.
Devs: Short for developers.
DEX/ Decentralized Exchange: A digital currency exchange that lets users purchase crypto directly through P2P transactions.
Diamond Hands: A term that signifies someone is an NFT or crypto investor with a high-risk-tolerance.
Discord: One of the most popular social networks for the NFT space.
Doxxed: When the real-life identity of a developer or project team member is revealed.
Drop: When an NFT project is launched, it is called an NFT drop.
Dutch Auction: A style of auction where an NFT is set to a high price, then over time the price decreases until someone bids on the asset or it hits a floor price.
DYOR: Stands for “Do Your Own Research.”
Ethereum: An open-sourced, decentralized blockchain built by Vitalik Buterin in 2015. The blockchain gave rise to smart contracts and NFTs. It is the home of ETH, the second most-valuable cryptocurrency by market cap.
Ethereum 2.0/ “Eth2”: Ethereum after it switched from a Proof-of-Work to a Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism known as “the Merge” in September 2022.
ENS/ Ethereum Name Services: ENS domains let users replace long crypto addresses with shorter names. People can send crypto just by using an ENS address name.
Etherscan: A platform that lets users monitor the price of ETH gas fees.
ERC-721: A token standard on the Ethereum blockchain for creating non-fungible tokens.
Flip: When you flip something, such as an NFT, you buy it and sell quickly to make a profit.
Floor price. The lowest price a digital asset can be purchased for on a secondary marketplace or auction.
FOMO: Stands for “Fear of Missing out.”
Fren: Stands for “friend” in online crypto and NFT worlds.
FUD: “Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt.”
Fungibility: An economics term that refers to a commodity that is precisely equal in value and therefor exchangeable with identical versions of itself. An example is a $1 bill, which can be exchanged for any other $1 bill, or for $1 in change, and nothing is lost or gained.
GameFi: The intersection of blockchain and NFTs in gaming and finance.
Gas fees: The price you pay for transactions on the blockchain.
Gas War: When stiff bidding competition for digital assets takes place on one blockchain and causes the gas fees to rise substantially.
Generative art: Refers to art that has been created in whole or in part with the use of some kind of autonomous system. Many NFT project use generative art.
GM: A common greeting on NFT Twitter, it stands for “good morning.”
GMI: Stands for “Gonna Make It.”
Governance tokens: Tokens that give holders voting rights and other privileges within its respective community.
GWEI: A denomination of Ether used on the Ethereum network. One gwei is equal to one-billionth of one ETH. It is used most frequently to make specifying Ethereum gas prices easier.
HODL: “Hold On for Dear Life” is a common saying in crypto. It means hold onto your crypto and do not sell.
Hot wallet: A crypto wallet that can be accessed online. Some of the most popular hot wallets include Coinbase and Metamask. Hot wallets can be more vulnerable to attacks then cold wallets but also more user-friendly.
Interoperability: The ability for blockchains to cooperate and exchange information with each other allowing the seamless movement of avatars, NFTs, and other digital assets between metaverses and virtual worlds.
IRL: Short for in-real-life. Commonly used in Web3 to refer to a person, place, or thing that exists in physical reality.
Layer 1 (L1): Layer 1 blockchains like Bitcoin and Ethereum offer their own native crypto to access the network and can function without support from other blockchains.
Layer 2 (L2): Layer 2 blockchains like Polygon are built on top of Layer 1 blockchains and can enhance their performance in areas like speed and transaction fees.
Liquidity: An economic term to describe an asset that can be easily converted into cash or another asset.
Metadata: A set of data that makes up the content of an NFT. It can describe the token’s name, properties, traits, transaction history, and more.
MetaMask: One of the most popular decentralized crypto wallets.
Metaverse: The term is used to describe immersive worlds built for virtual and augmented reality.
Minting: Refers to registering a digital asset on the blockchain, thus transforming it into an NFT that can be purchased. After an NFT is minted, it cannot be altered.
Mixed reality (MR): A technology that blends virtual, AR, and physical components, letting users interact with virtual elements similar to how they would in the real world. MR is being used in the industrial metaverse to make factories and production lines more efficient.
Moon: When someone says a crypto or NFT is “going to the moon” or “mooning,” it means the price is rising significantly.
NFTs: Non-fungible tokens are unique, digital assets that can be stored and traded on blockchains. Each NFT is distinct, and unlike crypto cannot be traded 1:1.
NGMI: Stands for “Not gonna make it.”
Nocoiner: Someone who does not own any cryptocurrency or NFTs.
Offchain transaction: A transaction that does not occur on the blockchain.
OG: Stands for “Original Gangster.” In the NFT space, the term is often used to describe some of the first NFT projects.
On-chain transaction: A transaction that occurs on the blockchain.
Paper hands: An expression for NFT collectors that sell their NFTs too early because they are worried about risks.
P2P/ Peer-to-Peer. In computing, a P2P network lets computers operated by individuals share information without relying on a central server.
POAP/ Proof-of-Attendance-Protocol: When an NFT gives users entry to an event, activity, or course. A POAP is like a ticket stub or badge of honor proving your presence at an event.
PFP: Stands for profile picture. Many of the first NFTs were PFP NFT projects.
Probably Nothing: In Web3 talk, this expression means the opposite: Probably something. It is used as a polite way to “ape” into a project that could go to the “moon.”
Public ledger: The blockchain’s accounting system that’s available for the public to see.
Pump: Refers to the price of a crypto or NFT increasing at a faster pace than usual.
Rarity: The rarity of a generative art NFT is determined by the composition of its various traits. Rare NFTs can be worth more in value than non-rare ones. Sites like Rarity Sniper can help you check the rarity ranking of an NFT.
Redpilled: This term comes from the 1999 film The Matrix. It is used to describe someone awakening (to Web3) or drastically altering their perspective in light of a new truth.
Reveal: A feature that allows the owner of an NFT to show additional information or content. Things like video, text, or images can be hidden until the reveal.
Roadmap: A document that outlines a project’s aims, goals, and mission in the present and future.
Royalties/ secondary royalties: The amount of money paid to the creator of an NFT or NFT project. NFTs enable secondary royalties for artists, which means they can collect a percentage from subsequent sales of their work.
Rug pull: When a crypto or NFT project is released and then the developers disappear from the project by stealing the project’s funds or selling off their pre-mined holdings. Similar to a “pump and dump” scheme.
Seed phrase: A sequence of random words that store the data needed to access a person’s cryptocurrency on a wallet or blockchain.
Secondary marketplace: Refers to NFT markets like OpenSea and Rarible where NFTs can be resold after their initial drop.
Shilling: A spammy way of marketing an NFT project or crypto. Can involve repeatedly posting the NFT to social media, constantly mentioning it, or sharing links.
Smart contracts: Blockchain-based computer programs that execute agreements between parties or people automatically. A set of virtual promises with protocols to enforce them. Once smart contracts are created, they cannot be tampered with.
Sniper: Someone who buys rare NFTs at low prices.
Stablecoin: Refers to cryptocurrencies that are pegged to other commodities or currencies, most often the U.S. dollar.
Sweep: This occurs when someone purchases all of the NFTs from a project’s floor.
Token: Tokens exist on blockchains and can have a number of use cases, including granting access to unique services, representing an asset, or giving the holder governance rights in a community.
Up-Only: A phrase often used on Twitter by traders, investors, and NFT collectors to show excitement during a bullish market.
Virtual reality (VR): A technology that creates immersive 3D environments where users can interact with other people via avatars. The technology is critical for the metaverse and is advancing rapidly.
WAGMI: Popular phrase in crypto. It stands for “We All Gonna Make It.”
Wallet: A crypto wallet is an app that secures and stores blockchain-based assets like cryptocurrencies and NFTs.
Web1: The first iteration of the internet, consisting of static pages with read-only functions.
Web2: The second iteration of the internet that we’re currently experiencing. Consists of more user-generated content, but is controlled mainly by centralized companies like Facebook and Google that control users information and data.
Web3: The next iteration of the internet where blockchain, crypto, NFTs, the metaverse, and decentralization play a critical role.
Wen: A misspelling of the word “when,” usually used flippantly by member’s of the NFT community in the phrase “Wen moon?”
Whale: A person who owns significant amounts of a cryptocurrency.
Whitelist: A community or guestlist that lets users mint NFTs early and/or at discounted rates than the public.
Whitepaper: A document that outlines the main features and technical specifications of a crypto, Web3, NFT, or blockchain project.