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NFT Royalties Are ‘Not Going Away on SuperRare’: Co-Founder Jon Perkins

NFT Royalties Are Not Going Away on SuperRare Co-Founder Jon Perkins

Jonathan Perkins, the founder of SuperRare, says that the NFT space is a lot bigger than just the recent Blur vs. OpenSea controversy.

Creator royalties, or the lack of them, on NFT marketplaces have become the most talked-about topic in the niche recently. But SuperRare decided to pay creators five years ago.

Jonathan Perkins, the co-founder and CTO of the project, said that when SuperRare came out in 2018, the royalty part would be a “standard.”

“We took a fairly controversial move at the time to include artist royalties. What we said is that if we can help artists make any money through royalties, why not try at least? So we played some part in establishing some kind of a standard, at least for the art side,” told Decrypt during the NFT Paris conference. “Royalties are not going away on SuperRare.”

Creator royalties are fees that can be up to 10% of an NFT sale and are given to the person who made the NFT. These fees can be a big source of income for projects with a lot of trading activity.

OpenSea’s controversial decision earlier this month to change its creator royalty and fee structure has raised serious questions about the value of NFT marketplaces if artists and the original creators can’t get paid. Now, buyers on the world’s largest NFT marketplace can choose whether or not they want to honor creators’ royalty preferences.

The decision was made in response to the news that rival marketplace Blur, which previously offered a 0.5% minimum creator royalty, is now enforcing full creator royalties for any collection that blocks trading on OpenSea, marking a new round of conflict between the two companies.

“What I think we’re seeing pan out now is just the kind of chaos of a new market taking shape,” Perkins, adding that the wider NFT market isn’t just about pictures of monkeys and penguins.

“If you think of it in terms of Blur versus OpenSea, at OpenSea there’s surely an art, but there are also domain names, insurance contracts, collectibles, and many other things that are not art,” he said.

More than just a quick profit

In addition, he believes that the challenges faced by more generalized marketplaces are very different from those faced by SuperRare as “collectors on SuperRare are generally not doing high-frequency trading or trying to make a quick buck.”

“We’ve spent five years building a community where collectors are really building connections with the artists, and there’s more goodwill and long-term view and that tends to make it much easier to have consensus around preserving royalties,” said Perkins.

Perkins said that the recent trend of big firms and brands rushing into the NFT space is natural because there’s “so much surface area,” and big brands know that a new customer base and creator economy are emerging.

“I think it’s actually a good thing for Web3 that these brands are coming in and experimenting,” said Perkins. “If I were to give any advice to any companies like this I would say ‘show up without an agenda and try to learn, try to talk to people, learn from the artist.’ I think it’s possible to do things in a very authentic way.”

He said that the wrong thing to do would be to try to just repeat what you did before and do something “that’s more of a gimmick or low effort.”

“I think the community has a good bullshit detector overall,” said Perkins.

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