• Alibaba has launched an NFT marketplace for the trading of intellectual property rights

  • Alibaba Group Holding, a Chinese multinational e-commerce firm, has launched a new nonfungible tokens (NFTs) marketplace, allowing trademark holders to sell tokenized licenses to their intellectual property.

    The new NFT marketplace, called “Blockchain Digital Copyright and Asset-Trade,” is accessible through Alibaba’s Auction platform. The platform’s NFTs will be issued on the “New Copyright Blockchain,” a distributed ledger technology platform managed centrally by the Sichuan Blockchain Association Copyright Committee.

    According to a report published on August 17, the marketplace hopes to attract writers, musicians, artists, and game developers.

    The marketplace is already operational, hosting several NFTs that will be auctioned off next month. To participate in auctions, bidders must post a deposit of 500 yuan (approximately $77). Each of the upcoming auctions has a reserve price of $15.

    Buyers can access their collections through the crypto portfolio app Bit Universe, which is integrated into WeChat.

    SCMP reporter Josh Ye tweeted about the new marketplace, saying that “although the technology itself does not prevent unauthorised copying. Sales include full ownership of works purchased via the platform.”

    Many of the NFTs on display do not specify what rights are granted to purchasers, and one NFT appears to depict unlicensed Star Wars fan art.

    While this is Alibaba’s most significant NFT announcement to date, many of the company’s subsidiaries have already embraced nonfungible tokens.

    Taobao, an Alibaba-owned e-commerce platform, featured NFTs for the first time in July during its annual Maker Festival, which celebrates Chinese art and entrepreneurship. Huang Heshan, a Chinese artist, hosted the sale of NFT-based real estate at the event.

    In the same month, SCMP launched the ‘ARTIFACT’ NFT project, which included tokenized historical moments reported by the publication from its 118-year-old archive, such as the handover of Hong Kong from the United Kingdom to China in 1997.

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