Meta has announced that it is winding down support for digital collectibles or NFTs (non-fungible tokens) on Instagram and Facebook. The announcement was made by Meta’s lead of Commerce and FinTech, Stephane Kasriel, via a tweet thread on Twitter, wherein he said that while the company was shutting down support for NFTs on its platforms, it would continue to look for ways to support creators, influencers, businesses and people through other ways on the two platforms. Also Read - Instagram introduces 'collaborative collections' to save posts shared with friends
“…across the company, we’re looking closely at what we prioritize to increase our focus. We’re winding down digital collectibles (NFTs) for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses,” he wrote in a tweet. Also Read - WhatsApp working on Telegram Channel like feature called Newsletter
The Meta executive also said that it will use the products that it is already working on to support creators, people, and businesses on its apps and in the metaverse. Also Read - Meta rolls out paid verification in the US for Instagram and Facebook users
Some product news: across the company, we’re looking closely at what we prioritize to increase our focus. We’re winding down digital collectibles (NFTs) for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses. 🧵[1/5]
— Stephane Kasriel (@skasriel) March 13, 2023
Kasriel, however, did not elaborate on why Meta was abandoning its ‘Digital Collectibles’ dreams almost a year after Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg had flagged off NFT support while speaking at SXSW last year. “We’re working on bringing NFTs to Instagram in the near term…I’m not ready to kind of announce exactly what that’s going to be today. But over the next several months, the ability to bring some of your NFTs in, hopefully over time be able to mint things within that environment,” he had said at the time.
His statement that was made in March 2022 was followed by a more formal announcement in May 2022 wherein Meta said that it was giving select users the ability to share NFTs on Instagram. Then throughout the course of the year, the company kept expanding support for NFTs eventually bringing Facebook into the fold and enabling creators on Instagram to be able to make their own digital collectibles on Instagram and sell them to fans, both on and off Instagram.
Notably, NFTs are not the only ambitious project that Meta has shut down in the recent time. Last year, Meta also shut down its crypto-wallet Novi, which was also expected to get NFT support eventually.