Funging the non-fungible: Laying down the law on NFTs

Funging the non-fungible: Laying down the law on NFTs

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Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have over the last few years changed from a technical niche topic for enthusiasts to a headline grabbing technology. High-profile auctions in established auction houses like Sothebys received considerable public attention. Everydays: the First 5000 Days, by artist Mike Winkelmann (aka Beeple), was sold for US$69.3 million in 2021 

But what do we buy if we buy an NFT? How does the law think about this new phenomenon? NFTs seem to speak to some deeply felt needs in the artistic community, but can they deliver, or are they at best a fad, at worst a rip off? Can they help struggling artists whose income streams have been depleted through Covid, or can they fuel illegal activities?

These and similar issues will be discussed by an international panel of academics as part of the “A token gesture” week of events organised by the University of Edinburgh as part of the DECaDE (Centre for the Decentralised Digital Economy)

Information about “A token Gesture” can be found at

Date and time: 17/03/2022 10.00-12.00

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Chair: Smita Kheria, University of Edinburgh

Panel discussants: Alexandra Giannopoulou (Universiy of Amsterdam); Andres Guadamuz (University of Sussex) Sean Thomas (University of York);  Burkhard Schafer (The University of Edinburgh)