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Yuga Labs accused of IP theft for trademarking BAYC wolf skull logo

NFTs were introduced to the world to help solve the illegal use of intellectual properties and protect artists — the very problem Yuga Labs has been accused of doing.

The iconic wolf skull logo of Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), Yuga Labs’ premier nonfungible tokens (NFTs) collections, was allegedly illegally trademarked without proper licenses. The image was originally released by a company specializing in drawing tutorials for children and beginners.

NFTs were introduced to the world to help solve the illegal use of intellectual properties and protect artists — the very problem Yuga Labs has been accused of doing. Crypto Twitter member and NFT artist @Jdotcolombo came across a post from April 5, 2021, in which Easy Drawing Guides advertised “an easy step-by-step drawing tutorial” for a wolf skull.

Website showing time stamp of the art's release. Source: EasyDrawingGuides.com

The art displayed by the company closely resembled BAYC’s official logo, which initially raised suspicion of wrongdoing — considering that BAYC’s Kennel Club collectibles launched on June 17, 2021.

Easy Drawing Guides responded to the commotion to confirm that Yuga Labs did not own a license to use the wolf skull drawing. Taking things one step further, Yuga Labs trademarked the unlicensed logo as its own. In retaliation, Easy Drawing Guides stated:

“The intellectual property rights for the drawing belong to Easy Drawing Guides as it's our original drawing and protected by our Terms and Conditions.”

Cointelegraph confirmed that the terms and conditions of Easy Drawing Guides grant a non-transferable, non-exclusive, revocable, limited license to use and access the Website solely for personal, non-commercial use.

On the one hand, BAYC supporters believe that no intellectual property was breached in using the logo, however, most agree that Easy Drawing Guides is entitled to some serious compensation.

Yuga Labs has not yet responded to Cointelegraph’s request for comment.

Related: Yuga Labs settles lawsuit with developer involved in copycat BAYCs

The intellectual property dilemma is not new for Yuga Labs. One of the founders of the BAYC copycat NFT collection RR/BAYC filed an opposition notice against 10 trademark applications from Yuga Labs.

Opposition example. Source: USPTO

In the notice, RR/BAYC co-founder Jeremy Cahen highlighted a list of “grounds for opposition” against Yuga Labs’ filings — claiming that the company “abandoned any rights” to certain logo and artwork designs due to BAYC NFT sales granting “all rights” of the digital images to the owners.

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

Hermès wins case against Mason Rothschild’s Metabirkins

A nine-member jury found Rothschild liable for trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and "cybersquatting," awarding Hermès $133,000 in damages.

On Feb 8, a jury trial in the Southern District of New York reached a verdict in Hermès' lawsuit against MetaBirkins. The court ruled that artist Mason Rothschild had violated the trademark protections of the brand Hermès. Rothschild's 100 "Metabirkins" NFTs were found to not be artistic commentary and therefore not protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution.

According to a report by Vogue Business, a nine-member jury found Rothschild liable for trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and "cybersquatting," awarding Hermès $133,000 in damages. Notably, the decision marks the first time the relationship between digital art, NFTs, and physical fashion has been addressed in court. Hermès argued that NFTs represent a new product category, while Rothschild argued that there is no such thing as a digital twin. Rothschild said he plans to appeal the verdict. 

In response to the court’s decision, the artist took to his Twitter account to express his disappointment. He shared: 

“A broken justice system that doesn’t allow an art expert to speak on art but allows economists to speak on it. That’s what happened today. What happened today was wrong. What happened today will continue to happen if we don’t continue to fight. This is far from over.”

This case is expected to have far-reaching implications for the use of NFTs by artists and for the protection of intellectual property in the metaverse. Blockchain and tech lawyer Michael Kasdan who has been following the case for a while now shared his thoughts on the ruling on Twitter. According to him, “It would have been more surprising and a 'bigger deal' in terms of changing the status quo if Rothschild had won.”

Related: Intellectual property has an awkward fit in Web3 decentralization — Lawyers

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, court documents filed on Jan. 23 revealed that Hermès believed that the collection improperly used the Birkin trademark and potentially confused customers into believing the luxury brand was in support of the project.

In September 2022, Cointelegraph spoke to David Kappos, a partner at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, who noted that the tension between Intellectual Property (IP) and decentralization does not have a clear solution. When asked about third parties creating digital artworks or wearables of branded products, Kappos advised that “an unlicensed implementer in a Web3 environment should refrain from creating a wearable that is confusingly similar to a brand owned by a third party — the same as in the real world.”

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

DeGods and Y00ts NFTs are bridging off Solana. Here’s why

The migration of Solana's top two NFT projects to Polygon and Ethereum is set for the first quarter of 2023 on an opt-in basis.

Nonfungible token (NFT) firm Dust Labs is migrating its two top-performing Solana NFT projects — DeGods and y00ts — onto Ethereum and Polygon in a bid to expand their adoption. 

The news was announced on DeGods and y00ts Twitter page on Dec. 25, with both NFT projects expected to be officially bridged onto Ethereum and Polygon respectively in the first quarter of 2023.

Rohun Vora — the creator of DeGods and y00ts who is known by the alias Frank III — said the decision was made to “explore new opportunities” and to allow for the continued growth of the collection. The move will also see the DUST token — used to buy, sell and mint NFTs on the DeGods ecosystem — also be bridged onto Ethereum and Polygon.

Vora confirmed that two NFT projects will still remain on Solana for the time being, and in a separate post responding to a Twitter user, confirmed that the bridge/migration will be owner "opt-in."

During a Dec. 26 Twitter spaces, Vora explained to 66,000 listeners that it was simply a matter of getting the NFT projects on the platforms that he sees will drive the next wave of NFT adoption.

In his reasoning, he made parallels to the intense battle for intellectual property (IP) between streaming services such as Netflix, Disney Plus and HBO Max — suggesting that the streaming service that secures the best IP will ultimately win the lion’s share of viewers, which then attracts better projects.

“They’re trying to get the best IP on their streaming services because that IP is ultimately going to drive the growth on that platform.”

“Once you get enough IP on the platform it becomes a virtuous cycle, people want to be on Netflix because that’s just the brand and the place to be,” he added.

He said a similar battle is playing out between different blockchains that are trying to build the best NFT platforms, noting that as NFTs are driven by attention, there is an opportunity for “virtuous cycles” that would create a network effect for NFT projects.

From there, “the metrics, the volume and the liquidity will follow that,” he added.

Vora said his bullish view on Polygon for NFTs was influenced by the fact that Disney, Adidas, Nike and Reddit chose Polygon as their NFT platform of choice.

Vora also said that he had received grant offers from many other platforms, most of which were much larger than what was offered by Polygon, but Polygon provided y00ts with the best opportunities moving forward.

“Polygon by far was one of the lowest, if not the lowest in terms of dollar value, but we went with Polygon because we see a lot of opportunity on a strategic level and that’s what excites me and should excite you holders more than anything.”

Related: Solana TVL drops by almost one-third as FTX turmoil rocks ecosystem: Finance Redefined

The news has only added to the growing list of concerns for Solana, which has seen the total value locked (TVL) on the ecosystem fall 97.88% from a peak of $10.17 billion to $215M at the time of writing, according to decentralized finance data aggregator DefiLlama.

Solana co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko shared his “bittersweet” feeling on the news that the NFT projects would no longer “100% focus on Solana” to his 223,600 Twitter followers on Dec. 26, but accepted the “reality” that these projects want to expand their reach.

But controversial figure Ben “Bitboy” Armstrong and a fair share of his 1 million Twitter followers weren’t so optimistic on Solana’s future, with 70% of 11,881 voters in a poll voting “Yes” to “Is Solana dead.”

According to DappRadar, both the y00ts and DeGods NFT collections are ranked first and second in  terms of fiat transaction volume on Solana over the last 30 days.

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

4 ‘emerging narratives’ in crypto to watch for: Trading firm

The crypto trading firm sees NFTs becoming more intertwined with brand IP, while Web3 apps with "real world utility" gain traction.

Despite an eventful year fraught with crypto collapses and price drops, Steven Goulden, a senior research analyst at crypto trading firm Cumberland has pointed to several “green shoots” to break the surface in crypto in 2023.

In a 14-page “Year in Review” report released on Dec. 24, Goulden said he saw four “emerging narratives” in 2023 that will lead to “significant progress” for crypto over the next six to 24 months.

These include non-fungible tokens (NFTs) becoming a “go-to method” of tokenizing a brand's intellectual property (IP), Web3 apps and games becoming “genuinely popular,” while Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) could become more commonly used as a nation’s reserve asset.

Goulden argued that while NFTs have until this point, been “largely been confined to the art space,” he believes the next step for NFTs will lie in the marrying of NFTs and a brand’s intellectual property.

The analyst noted that many non-Web3 companies are already making “significant progress” to monetize IP and improve customer engagement using NFTs.

Among those include Starkbucks partnership with Polygon to generate NFTs for Starbucks customers, and Nike’s launch of Swoosh, which enables users to design customized sneaker NFTs.

“Listening to these companies talk about Web3 initiatives, it’s clear they see digital engagement with customers and fans as a new aspect of the retail experience,” said Goulden.

He also noted that “selling NFTs to retail users has the potential to generate material, high-margin revenue.” Nike is a textbook example of that, having generated $200 million from digital sneakers alone. The analyst expects Polygon’s MATIC, LooksRare’s LOOK and 0xmon’s XMON token to lead the way on this front.

CryptoKicks digital shoes from Nike and RTFKT. Source: Nike.

The Cumberland analyst also said that NFTs will become a “go-to method of tokenizing IP”, sharing that there is around $80 trillion of intangible assets that exists on corporate balance sheets today.

Real-world utility apps to gain traction

Goulden also sees the adoption of Web3 platforms providing “real world utility” starting to gain traction in 2023, acknowledging it has been “extremely challenging” to disrupt Web2 monopolies thus far:

“The reality is that it takes time to build and bootstrap projects like these, and so we anticipate material traction is probably 12+ months out, with serious user adoption probably 2-5 years away.”

Some “genuinely useful real world” platforms that Goulden highlighted included IT recruitment platform Braintrust, Internet of Things protocol Helium, GPU rendering service Render, global mapping project Hivemapper and ride sharing app Teleport.

Web3 games to attract “serious” gamers

The analyst was also optimistic about the Web3 gaming market, noting that there is around three billion gamers in the world, 200 million of which are “serious” — representing $200-300 billion in total addressable market.

“[...] yet these users usually don’t own in-game items and have little control or governance over these gaming ecosystems,” said Goulden.

Related: 5 cryptocurrencies to keep an eye on in 2023

Goulden says the play-to-earn aspects of blockchain-based gaming will lead to significant profitability for developers but added that because it takes “around 2-3 years to build a triple A (highest-quality blockbuster) game,” we probably won’t see a “Web3 game that becomes a star” until 2023 or 2024.

Web3 Gaming Market Figures. Source: Fungies.

BTC and ETH as reserve asset

Finally, the research analyst suggested that close attention should be placed on BTC and ETH’s potential role as a reserve asset, particularly for nations focused on exports.

Goulden said many high-export nations around the world may choose to stock up its reserves with alternative assets such as cryptocurrency instead of U.S. treasury bills as a means to depress their own currencies against the U.S. Dollar.

“Even a small central bank allocation to BTC or ETH would be material and would likely lead to other exporting states following suit.”

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

What are CC0 NFTs, and why are they important?

A CC0 (Creative Commons Zero) NFT is an NFT with a copyright in which the owner permits anyone to use the NFT for commercial gain.

What are the future possibilities with CC0 NFTs?

The world of NFTs is in its infancy. As artists and creators explore ways to create and monetize their content, products and platforms are emerging to offer frameworks for creators to operate and build their brands, and monetize them.

It is still the early days for the nonfungible token world. The last couple of years have seen an economic model emerge for artists and creators. With every new business model, there needs to be new distribution strategies that emerge. 

NFTs have shown how brands can be monetized. However, relying on a small community to create the distribution capability for the brand is not scalable. As more co-creation models emerge and more platforms to actively promote become mainstream, CC0 NFTs would have the bells and whistles needed to scale their brand outreach.

Another fundamental building block for nonfungible tokens to scale their reach is interoperability. The NFT world is still siloed across different blockchains. Even the cultures of the Ethereum and Solana NFT collections are noticeably different. There is a need for better interoperability across chains, and nonfungible token cultures would need to be agnostic to the infrastructure on which they are created.

As these infrastructural and community collaboration layers get more sophisticated, CC0 nonfungible tokens will have the rails they need to scale their brand beyond a community of 10,000 NFT holders.

What are the implications for the CC0 NFT project team?

As the Web3 world has largely promoted transparency and openness with code, NFT creators and teams are also opting for the same with art. However, that is just the beginning of the journey, and these nonfungible token creators and communities must realize that.

CC0 can sometimes be portrayed as a logical conclusion where the NFT creators hand over the process of building on their creation to their community and beyond. Some NFT collections have had several derivative projects promoting the culture of the NFT almost as brand extensions. However, declaring a project as CC0 is just the beginning.

NFT project teams and creators who take the CC0 route must actively promote the use of the brand and onboard other creators and projects to build brand extensions to their NFT collections. 

No open-source software project could have scaled without a strong codebase. Similarly, CC0 NFT projects need a strong creator community to spread the word, get inspired by the original nonfungible token collections and make them household brands. This is only possible through the conscious community-building efforts of the NFT project teams.

Therefore, by going down the CC0 route, NFT creators have almost reduced the burden on its nonfungible tokenholders to promote the brand. Instead, they have a more considerable responsibility with their NFT holders to onboard brand, product and art extensions to their nonfungible tokens.

For instance, if a Nike product line chooses to use a Moonbirds image on their shoes, that increases the awareness of Moonbirds within the retail audience, thereby improving the brand outreach. However, these top-tier brand partnerships must be often forged by the NFT project teams.

What are the implications for the NFT community?

The CC0 approach isn’t without its challenges, particularly for the individual NFT holder keen on monetizing their ownership rights on the nonfungible tokens.

NFTs that haven’t embraced CC0 have had NFT holders license the use of their nonfungible tokens to businesses, brands and creative initiatives. Some nonfungible token communities that had gone down the CC0 route had unhappy community members and commercial downsides in the short term.

CC0 allows for the very open use of the NFT brand and art by removing the IP friction points. However, some NFT holders of top communities own their profile picture (PFP) nonfungible tokens to monetize the IP of the NFTs. In some scenarios, NFT holders had lost significant opportunities in licensing contracts when the nonfungible token project team chose to go down the CC0 route.

This approach has its pros and cons like the open source approach to software. There are short-term downside implications for community members who want to tap into the IP rights they had over the NFTs. However, the long-term benefit of building the brand through an open approach is equally alluring for many.

How did the rise of CC0 NFTs happen?

Although one significant project chose CC0 in 2021, many followed suit in 2022, with a CC0 summer that saw many big NFT projects embracing the CC0 route.

Perhaps the first significant NFT project to open the door to the CC0 licensing model was the “Nouns” project. They were soon followed by many nonfungible token projects, including Moonbirds, Cryptoadz, Cryptoteddies and Loot, that chose to go down the CC0 route. 

This has given derivative NFT collections more freedom in drawing inspiration from these CC0 collections. Derivative NFTs are typically those that draw design and art inspiration from the parent NFT collection, which often increases the brand outreach of the parent collection. With CC0s on the rise, derivatives had more liberty.

However, this also resulted in commercial implications for the NFT holders and project teams who make fundamental business strategy decisions for the nonfungible token community.

What are CC0 NFTs?

As nonfungible tokens (NFTs) rose to fame over the last couple of years, they were hailed as the solution to digital ownership and intellectual property (IP). However, a new class of NFTs and founders who believe in them have emerged in CC0 NFTs.

CC0 nonfungible tokens are to NFT creators as open source software is to developers. However, the digital ownership and IP protection was the design principle behind NFTs when they first launched. Several projects, including Bored Ape Yacht Club and CryptoPunks, have benefitted from the holders of these NFTs owning the IP to their art. 

Nonfungible tokenholders could create revenue opportunities for themselves by allowing creators, businesses and brands to use their NFT artwork for a fee. Other creators, NFT collections and even traditional businesses could use nonfungible token images as a brand-building exercise if they had the permission of the NFT holders.

Recently, a movement termed CC0 NFTs has taken the nonfungible token world by storm. The term CC0 NFTs was inspired by the “Creative Commons Zero” licensing model. As per this model, creators can waive their rights to their art, allowing others to use the artwork freely to build more art, a product or a brand on top of it.

This is akin to the open source movement in operating systems, as Linux chose to open its ecosystems for free use. Similar to the Linux operating system, which has a market cap of $15.95 billion and powers over 85% of smartphones, CC0 NFT collections expect a larger base of projects, artwork and brands using their NFT artwork.

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

Yuga Labs Launches Bored Ape and Mutant Ape Yacht Club Community Council

Yuga Labs Launches Bored Ape and Mutant Ape Yacht Club Community CouncilThe non-fungible token (NFT) and blockchain firm Yuga Labs has announced a community council will be representatives of the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) and Mutant Ape Yacht Club (MAYC) NFT collections. Yuga Labs has chosen seven community members with “a proven track record” to represent the NFT club at large. Yuga Labs Names Seven […]

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

Intellectual property has an awkward fit in Web3 decentralization — Lawyers

IP rights will continue to be an area of conflict within Web3 and NFTs, but there's no easy solution, lawyers told Cointelegraph.

Intellectual property (IP) rights will continue to be a growing area of tension within Web3 and NFTs, as IP rights often rely on a single "identifiable entity," while Web3 is more often decentralized. 

Speaking to Cointelegraph, David Kappos, a partner at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP said that IP is traditionally “owned by an identifiable entity, which makes it necessarily centralized from a legal viewpoint.”

Kappos suggested that the tension between IP and decentralization does not have a clear solution, asking “how does a DAO really own the IP of the protocol it is supposed to govern?"

Over the last year, there have been several lawsuits against NFT projects alleged to be violating IP, copyright, and trademarks.

When asked about third parties creating digital artworks or wearables of branded products, Kappos suggested that “an unlicensed implementer in a Web3 environment should refrain from creating a wearable that is confusingly similar to a brand owned by a third party — the same as in the real world.”

One such example is digital artist Mason Rothschild being sued by French luxury group Hermès for creating ‘Metabirkins’, an NFT collection inspired by the group’s famous Birkin bags.

In August, NFT company Yuga Labs released a new IP rights agreement for its CryptoPunks and Meebit collection, offering all CryptoPunk and Meetbits holders to use their NFTs for commercial or personal purposes.

Related: NFTs and intellectual property, explained

Nathanael Lim, co-founder of Web3 media start-up Avium said this was a positive step for users, but the real change is that the market will be noticing IP rights more.

In August, venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (A16z) announced a set of six licenses tailored to NFTs based on the Creative Commons license. Lim suggests that these are mainly improvements on the Creative Commons licenses released twenty years ago, and have helped clarify some of the confusion people have had about the licenses by updating the more relevant parts, but more innovation needs to occur within the space.

Both Lim and Kappos were speakers at IP Week @ SG 2022, a global conference organized by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS).

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

Yuga Labs Officially Releases IP Rights Tied to Cryptopunks, Meebits NFTs — Galaxy Digital Report Criticizes BAYC License

Yuga Labs Officially Releases IP Rights Tied to Cryptopunks, Meebits NFTs — Galaxy Digital Report Criticizes BAYC LicenseYuga Labs, the company behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) non-fungible token (NFT) collection, has officially released the intellectual property (IP) rights tied to the Cryptopunks and Meebits NFTs. The company acquired the IP rights to the NFT collections in mid-March 2022, and owners can use their NFTs for commercial or personal purposes. Yuga […]

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

NFTs and intellectual property, explained

When you buy a nonfungible token, do you automatically get intellectual property rights? Well… it's complicated.

How can IP assets transform DeFi, DAOs and the metaverse?

InvArch says that its infrastructure can be used to speedily create new decentralized autonomous organizations.

This could make it easier for nonprofits to fund intellectual property development — and organizations could generate cashflow without signing over their IP rights. It's hoped roadblocks to innovation could be torn down — with a new "development highway" left in its place.

InvArch's infrastructure could also offer greater protections to those who are building ambitiously on virtual plots of land in the metaverse — and unlock whole new business opportunities over in the world of DeFi. 

The project won the 43rd Kusama parachain auction — and at the end of June, it unveiled technology that will make everything from music to code "all but impossible to steal." What's more, this will strike at the heart of centralization in the world of IP, not least because seeking protection through InvArch is vastly cheaper than the status quo.

Learn more about InvArch

Disclaimer. Cointelegraph does not endorse any content or product on this page. While we aim at providing you with all important information that we could obtain, readers should do their own research before taking any actions related to the company and carry full responsibility for their decisions, nor can this article be considered as investment advice.

Could smart contracts be used for IP agreements?

Yes — business deals could be brought into the 21st century with the help of blockchain.

InvArch's goal is to ensure that those who hold the most desirable NFTs — including CryptoPunks, Bored Apes and Meebits, can establish on-chain agreements that extend to use of their nonfungible tokens in a third-party product.

Setting out its vision in a recent blog post, the project added: "In the end, you have a marketplace where communities can buy swag and products relevant to their interests — and a market where artists and NFT copyright owners can establish lucrative income streams from their NFTs and increase the raw value of their digital assets."

How can NFT and Web3 protocols help transfer IP rights?

The 21st century has turned into an IP war zone and an innovation graveyard — but things are beginning to change.

New and enhanced NFT classes have the potential to certify the authenticity of nonfungible assets, protect their uniqueness, and streamline management rights.

This approach is being championed by InvArch — an IP rights blockchain that is scalable, interoperable and has ambitions to be integrated throughout the Web3 world. An Invention, Involvement, Inventory and Investment protocol (known as INV4) delivers piracy-proof files as well as on-chain copyright and licensing.

Setting out one potential use case for how its approach could transform the creative sector, the project paints a picture where decentralized music studios and record labels can flourish — with individual artists contributing distinctive elements. They could then be brought together to form a song with a plethora of beats and rifts — with each contributor retaining their IP, jointly owning the rights to the track, and sharing a piece of the royalties.

Which NFT collections have given IP rights to owners?

Some of the biggest NFT collections out there right now — Bored Ape Yacht Club among them — have given full intellectual property rights to users.

This is a significant (and you could argue a very generous) development. It effectively means that those who own Bored Ape NFTs have the potential to profit from them. We've seen Eminem and Snoop Dogg team up for a new music video where they transform into their characters. Meanwhile, sites have emerged where collectors can effectively hire out their ape's NFT to brands.

As we alluded to earlier, the actor Seth Green made a splash when he unveiled plans to create a TV show themed around his Bored Ape NFT, which he affectionately calls Fred, called White Horse Tavern. Green's beloved collectible ended up being stolen in a phishing attack, and he ended up paying over the odds to get it back. 

BAYC's license states those who purchase NFTs "own the underlying Bored Ape, the Art, completely" — but doesn't actually mention what happens in cases of theft. Many experts believed that Green would have been on firm legal ground if he released the TV show without the NFT, but there are no guarantees.

When you buy an NFT, do I automatically get IP rights?

The short answer to this is no. It's important to read the small print to find out exactly what you're getting.

Let's run through some quick examples. Jack Dorsey sold off his first tweet in NFT form for a whopping $2.9 million back in March 2021. While there's little doubt this is a historic piece of content, crypto entrepreneur Sina Estavi doesn't own the IP to this tweet. All copyright still rests with Dorsey.

The New York Times pulled off a tongue-in-cheek stunt when it published an article about crypto collectibles — and then gave readers the chance to own a tokenized version of the story. It ended up selling for a whopping 350 ETH — worth $560,000 at the time, and about $600,000 as of the start of August 2022. Although this NFT did come with some perks (the buyer was given the chance to be named and photographed in a subsequent piece,) it didn't include the copyright to the article… or any reproduction or syndication rights.

Potential pitfalls don't end here, either. MetaBirkins have become especially popular during the NFT boom — a digital remake of Hermes' famous bags. But digital artist Mason Rothschild ended up in hot water with the designer brand, which took legal action after claiming it could cause confusion in the eyes of consumers.

What are intellectual property rights?

In its simplest form, intellectual property relates to something you create with your mind — such as artwork, literature and inventions.

These protections were relatively easy to enforce in the analog era, but our digital world — where copying and pasting runs abound as millions of people create their own content — makes things especially challenging.

Nonfungible tokens are a thrilling development that have the power to modernize everything from baseball cards to music albums, from movie merchandise to stunning art. But, as with any new technology, there are issues that need to be overcome.

The industry's still getting to grips with the rights that are afforded to the owners of an NFT, and there are other threats that need to be addressed. If a nonfungible token is stolen by a malicious actor, does the victim still enjoy IP rights? And how can we counter the risk of copycat NFTs being minted on a rival blockchain?

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say

Yuga Labs Obtains Cryptopunks and Meebits Brands, Gives Commercial Rights to NFT Holders

Yuga Labs Obtains Cryptopunks and Meebits Brands, Gives Commercial Rights to NFT HoldersOn Friday, Yuga Labs, the firm behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) non-fungible token (NFT) collection, announced the company acquired the intellectual property behind the Cryptopunks and Meebits brands. Furthermore, after obtaining the IP from Larva Labs, Yuga has decided to give “full commercial rights to the NFT holders.” Bored Ape Creators Yuga Labs […]

‘Surgical removal’ of crypto will only weaken USD dominance, commentators say