- Burks highlights the evolving role of NFTs beyond digital art.
- He emphasizes the importance of safeguarding copyright while noting it’s not NFT-specific.
- Advocates for tailored, use-case-based regulation, taking cues from Singapore’s approach.
The CEO of Mintable, Zach Burks, has expressed concerns about the United Kingdom‘s approach to regulating nonfungible tokens (NFTs). He believes that the government’s current stance does not align with the evolving nature of NFT technology.
In a recent interview with Cointelegraph, Burks criticized a report from a U.K. parliamentary committee, stating that it exaggerates the role of NFTs in copyright infringement while failing to acknowledge their broader utility beyond mere digital images. He highlighted that NFTs are transitioning away from the speculative hype surrounding profile picture NFTs (PFPs) and are being adopted for various practical purposes by brands.
The Culture, Media, and Sport Committee’s report from October 11 emphasized the need for the government to protect artists and content creators from NFT-related copyright infringement. Burks emphasized the importance of safeguarding copyright and intellectual property rights, citing Mintable’s IP protection algorithm as an example of a platform taking steps to prevent plagiarism.
NFT marketplaces need to do more to address the scale of copyright infringement on their platforms.
We’ve published our report on “NFTs and the Blockchain: risks to sport and culture”.
— Culture, Media and Sport Committee (@CommonsCMS) October 11, 2023
However, he argued that these concerns are not unique to NFTs and are challenges inherent to the internet at large. Burks pointed out that established online platforms like WordPress, YouTube, and Spotify also grapple with copyright infringement issues, which are being addressed by major tech companies such as Google. He stressed that these issues predate the emergence of NFTs.
Was such a great time speaking at the 40th International Symposium on Economic Crimes at Cambridge University in the UK!
Learned so much, met some amazing people, and hopefully educated the people who listened to my many panels about NFTs and the blockchain space! pic.twitter.com/txExSVqTIb
— Zach Burks (@ZachSpaded) September 14, 2023
Burks, who maintains regular communication with U.K. government officials regarding NFTs, called for regulators to adopt a more nuanced perspective on NFTs as a versatile technology. He emphasized the wide range of potential applications for NFTs, including car records, property records, banking documents, backup systems, supply chain management, and more. NFTs, he argued, go beyond digital art or financial instruments and should be evaluated based on their specific use cases.
He cautioned against regulating all NFTs under a single, overly broad framework, such as the EU 17 copyright directive, as it could hinder the true potential of the technology. Burks suggested that the U.K. government should consider a more tailored approach, similar to the one used in Singapore, where NFTs are assessed based on their specific functions and applications.
In conclusion, Zach Burks believes that the U.K. government should adopt a more flexible and context-specific approach to NFT regulation to fully harness the technology’s diverse potential.
Disclaimer: Please note that the viewpoints and perspectives expressed by the author, as well as any individuals referenced in this article, are intended solely for informational purposes. They should not be construed as financial or investment advice. It’s important to acknowledge that investing in or trading cryptoassets carries inherent financial risks.