Russian Social Network Vkontakte to Integrate NFTs & Blockchain

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Moving in lock-step with popular North American social media networks, Russia’s Vkontakte is preparing to launch non-fungible token (NFT) and blockchain integrations to allow users to monetize content. The information first came from the publication Vesti.

According to Vkontakte’s Technical Director, Alexander Tobol, it is part of a larger initiative to protect user-generated content and allow users to monetize it. NFTs are the perfect measure of protecting copyright, Tobol said, because they are verified on the blockchain and signify when a piece of content is “unique.”

The focus on copyright was important for Vkontakte because many NFT marketplaces struggle with preventing the minting and selling of pirated material. Vkontakte will curtail these deceptive practices by using the social network’s ID codes, which will pair a user with the content they create.

Tobol noted that the company is not planning to create its own blockchain but instead act as an intermediary and allow users to benefit from it. As of now, there’s no timetable for the NFT and blockchain integrations. NFTs continue to be a hot industry, with some reports suggesting more than $41 billion in NFT sales occurred during 2021.

Social Media Networks Doubling Down on Web 3.0 & NFTs

Vkontakte is not the first social media network to announce its plans to integrate non-fungible tokens or Web 3.0 technologies. The shortlist includes:

  • YouTube: The possibility for users to generate content and sell them as NFTs
  • Twitter & Reddit: NFT profile picture verification
  • Meta: The addition of an NFT marketplace on Facebook and Instagram
  • OnlyFans: NFT profile picture verification and more integrations to come

Part of the attraction for social media companies regarding NFTs is that the technology could allow creators to connect more personally with their fans. The creation of NFTs that signify membership tiers, access to exclusive content, and decentralized autonomous organizations seem poised to upend the current content monetization model for the average user.

But, like with Vkontakte, most of the companies mentioned have no firm timetables as to when the integrations will launch. Only Twitter and OnlyFans have rolled out NFT integrations, and their integrations have just been for profile picture verification. 

Time will tell when these companies follow through and how successful their implementations are.