Reddit jumps on NFT bandwagon, starts hawking crypto-optional avatars

Would you pay $100 for a Reddit avatar?

Reddit is bringing NFTs into the fold with a project selling “Collectible Avatars” crafted by independent artists.

Users are able to purchase designs for traditional fiat currencies and they’ll be priced according to a flat rate. Reddit notes that there will be 87 different avatars to choose from, and they’ll be available for a range of prices beginning at $9.99 and topping out at $99.99. Those that join the r/CollectibleAvatars subreddit will get first dibs on the collection and they’ll be stored using Vault, Reddit’s own crypto-wallet service.

Each avatar that’s sold will lead to direct compensation for the artist, although an exact amount wasn’t given. We reached out to Reddit for an official figure and will update accordingly. Every design contains a proof of purchase on Polygon, an Ethereum-based blockchain, giving owners the ability to use their avatars on platforms outside of Reddit. Commenting on posts with one of these avatars will produce a “glow-like effect,” next to one’s profile image.

Here’s Reddit’s short video-promo for its new NFT project.Reddit

Less investment, more art — Reddit isn’t the first social media giant to experiment with NFTs. Twitter has its own NFT profile picture feature, though it hasn’t really taken off outside of web3 evangelists. For what it’s worth, Reddit appears to be veering from the beaten path.

One of the primary criticisms for mass NFT adoption across our social channels, is that they are still being treated like regular digital token projects writ large. That is, users are supposed to buy into them in the hopes of flipping their purchase later down the line for a profit.

Instead, it looks like Reddit would like users to purchase these custom avatars because they actually want to keep them. And the fact that they are available for traditional fiat currencies, eliminates a boom-bust cycle for their corresponding value.

Creating a direct line between artist and consumer is also an interesting way of building a legitimate community around Reddit’s avatars. As noted in the announcement, the corresponding subreddit for Reddit’s NFT project will give users the opportunity to interact with the people artists their purchase.