Meta has reportedly pulled the plug on non-fungible token (NFT) integrations on Instagram and Facebook. Creators will no longer be able to display, mint, or sell NFTs on Meta plaforms.

Despite being just roughly 10 months into testing, Instagram NFTs will no longer be supported by Meta. Any NFT integrations on Facebook will also be wound down, leaving Meta “to focus on other ways to support creators, people and businesses.”

It’s 2023, which means it is also Mark Zuckerberg’s “year of efficiency“. So far, what has that meant? Well, in November last year, 11,000 Reality Labs workers were laid off. This is the division of Meta that develops extended reality products. This year, underperforming projects will be getting the chop. However, this does not include Zuckerberg’s pet project, the metaverse, which many believed leant itself to blockchain blending.

Support for Instagram NFTs is winding down

On Monday, head of commerce and financial technologies at Meta, Stephane Kasriel, wrote in a Twitter thread:

Kasriel thanked partners who were involved in Meta’s web3 ventures, stating that the company gained insights that can be applied to further supporting creators: “We learned a ton that we’ll be able to apply to products we’re continuing to build to support creators, people, and businesses on our apps, both today and in the metaverse.”

It was also revealed that focus would be shifted towards other features that can help creators earn money on the platforms.

Rather than Instagram NFTs, the company will look at messaging and monetization opportunities on Reels. The Reels Play bonus programme has also been announced, paying invited participating creators for their video content on Instagram. Additionally, improvements to MetaPay, the firm’s payment platform, are to be made.

Meta’s Digital Collectibles feature only began testing in May 2022, enabling select users to display NFTs on their profiles. By November last year, Meta opened up support for a small group of creators in the US to test the minting and selling of NFTs directly on the Instagram platform. These tests and features will now be abandoned by the company.

Meta still continues with web3 focus

Despite ditching its NFT integration plans, Meta is still focussing on web3 moving forward. Stephane Kasriel stated that the company would continue to support NFT creators who use Instagram and Facebook to amplify their work.

According to a report by TechCrunch, Meta is also working on a new decentralised social media platform. Not too much information is available around the app, but it is set to be a text-based updates app. The platform, codenamed p92, is still currently under development.

Reactions to Meta axing Instagram NFTs

Naturally, people have taken to social media to share their opinions on this news from Meta. Many have called the move “short-sighted”, backing out of plans that would have seen the company keep up with technology.

Others have suggested that this a significant blow to the mass adoption of NFTs and crypto technologies. Although, a number of other mainstream companies are continuing to adopt NFTs and blockchain ventures, including Starbucks and Spotify.

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