Unexpected u-turn: Meta halts minting and selling

Onur Demirkol
Mar 14, 2023

After a year of pushing digital collectibles on Facebook and Instagram, Meta has decided to end its NFT support.

Meta's long-term goal is to lead the technology world with the metaverse. The company has taken innovative steps and shifted its focus away from traditional features with moves like Instagram's NFT support. However, "Meta is winding down NFTs for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses," says Stephane Kasriel, Meta's head of commerce and financial services. Kasriel avoided giving specific reasons behind the call.

Back in 2021, Mark Zuckerberg announced Instagram's work on NFTs, and a small group of users started testing it after some time. In the fourth quarter of 2022, users could sell or mint NFTs on the Polygon blockchain directly from Instagram. The NFT project was also one of the signs that showed Meta's intentions and future plans on the field. However, it looks like the company has backed up to pursue another path.

Instagram NFT feature

"Opportunities for creators and businesses to connect with their fans and monetize remains a priority, and we're going to focus on areas where we can make impact at scale, such as messaging and monetization opps for Reels," said Kasriel. It looks like Meta will concentrate on aspects that currently keep its social media platforms at the top. Even though it is winding down NFTs, the company will still work with NFT and Web3 content creators who continue using Instagram and Facebook to amplify their work.

Zuckerberg announced 2023 as the "year of efficiency," and Meta laid off thousands of its employees as well as shutting down multiple projects. According to a report by The Wall Street Journal, more layoffs are expected in the upcoming months.

On the other hand, the latest news show that we will see a different approach from Meta. Apart from the merger of Messenger and Facebook to compete with TikTok, the company is also working on a new decentralized social media platform, a possible competitor to Twitter.


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