The initial NFT drop offers collectors exclusive, historical, and stunning visual content. This will include award-winning photographs of subjects like space, climate, and war from AP photojournalists.
The Associated Press (AP) will sell its state-of-the-art modern and classic photographs as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) from a new platform created by blockchain technology provider Xooa. The news publisher said its first NFT collection would include photography from present and former photojournalists at the company and feature a selection of Pulitzer Prize-winning images. In a blog post from the company, AP’s director of blockchain and data licensing Dwayne Desaulniers said:
“For 175 years, AP’s photographers have recorded the world’s biggest stories through gripping and poignant images that continue to resonate today […] with Xooa’s technology; we are proud to offer these tokenized pieces to a fast-growing global audience of photography NFT collectors.”
Connecting the virtual world and the real world
As per the statement, the photographs will be minted as NFTs on Polygon, Ethereum’s layer-two scaling network. The platform will facilitate secondary transactions using debit or credit cards and payments in Ethereum. Xooa, the company that’s building the marketplace, is a blockchain marketplace specialized in creating “white-label NFT marketplaces for brands and IP owners.” Xooa’s Head of Marketplaces, Zach Danker-Feldman, said the partnership will serve as a “powerful connection between the virtual world and the real world.” He added:
“Xooa is proud to work with The Associated Press to launch AP’s NFT marketplace. Xooa’s work with brands around NFTs and metaverse marketplaces provides inherent scarcity and utility for collectors as well as a powerful connection between the virtual world and the real world […] in this marketplace deployment; emphasis has been placed on accessibility for all types of collectors to empower them to join a community that shares their interest in stunning photography.”
Social media capabilities, new content concepts, and off-chain benefits
The marketplace will support crypto wallet provider Metamask with plans to include Fortmatic, Binance, and Coinbase shortly. Other items that are on the cards include “withdrawals to other marketplaces,” “social media capabilities,” “new content concepts,” and “off-chain benefits” for NFT holders.
Without giving too many details, AP said its NFT marketplace would debut on January 31. Still, there are indications there could be an early access scheme that includes a waitlist where interested users can get “priority access” and a higher waitlist ranking if you refer others to sign up. The Associated Press joins a few other organizations in the journalism industry that have shown interest in the use cases of blockchain.