OpenSea’s New Marketplace Protocol Could Become ‘Uniswap Moment’ of NFTs
The popular non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace OpenSea has unveiled a new protocol that allows anyone to set up new and decentralized NFT marketplaces. And judging from some members of the community, the protocol could become the “Uniswap moment” of NFTs.
OpenSea said that the first iteration of the new protocol, dubbed Seaport, has already been created by OpenSea itself, but stressed that it is open for anyone to build on. The protocol reportedly allows for a number of new features, including new ways of paying for NFTs, criteria for transactions, and new techniques for eliminating redundant transfers in order to reduce gas fees.
Additionally, OpenSea also said the protocol will allow for “tipping,” which it said can be used by developers of other interfaces to charge their own platform fees.
The key aspects of the new protocol are that it is not controlled by OpenSea and that it will become a free and open resource that can be used by anyone.
“The core smart contract is open source and inherently decentralized, with no contract owner, upgradeability, or other special privileges,” the announcement from Open Sea said.
OpenSea has in the past been criticized by users for operating in a centralized way, with Iranian users complaining in March this year that they had been banned from the platform without any advance notice. OpenSea at the time defended itself, saying that as a US-based company it must comply with US sanctions regulations.
Now, however, members of the NFT community appear to be happy, with one popular member, atareh.eth, saying that he believes this could be NFTs’ “Uniswap moment,” referring to how the decentralized exchange Uniswap (UNI) kickstarted the ‘decentralized finance (DeFi) summer’ of 2020.
“Perhaps there's another NFT summer on the horizon soon enough...,” the user wrote.
The same user also went into more depth on how the new protocol will function, explaining that it will open up for more advanced functions like trading one NFT for another and setting specific criteria for who can take the other side of the trade.
OpenSea was founded in 2017 and built out during the 2018 crypto bear market. It has long been the dominant marketplace for NFTs, although it has increasingly been challenged by LooksRare as well as marketplaces based on blockchains other than Ethereum (ETH).
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