The Associated Press (AP) is planning to auction a series of 10 non-fungible tokens (NFTs) that represent some of the most noteworthy photos in history. The news agency unveiled this information through a press release on May 25, noting that it has partnered with blockchain firm Everipedia, OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace, and digital artist to achieve this feat. Reportedly, the digital work is set to become available on the Ethereum blockchain starting this week.
According to the news release, the NFT series is titled AP ARTiFACTS: The 175 Collection. The first piece in this collection is a digital “representation of AP’s iconic photo of U.S. soldiers raising the American flag on Iwo Jima in 1945”. Captured by AP’s Joe Rosenthal, the 76-year-old Pulitzer prize-winning image has been digitally recreated by Marko Stanojevic.
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The NFT, which is currently available on OpenSea, also features a musical note from Nick Kennerly, a renowned violinist, and composer. On top of this, the NFT will comprise several rarely-seen pictures that Rosenthal captured, a rare first print that was produced from his negative, and an Iwo Jima film and audio obtained from AP’s corporate archives.
Reportedly, all funds obtained from the sale of the AP ARTiFACTS: The 175 Collection will go towards funding AP’s journalism.
Using the blockchain to bring history into life
Commenting on how NFTs are improving AP’s photojournalism, the news agency’s director of blockchain and data licensing, Dwayne Desaulniers, said,
We are excited about this new way to view, own and experience historic moments captured by AP journalists. AP’s NFTs are a homage to our rich history of factual journalism, history and facts that belong onchain.
According to the co-founder and CTO of OpenSea, Alex Atallah, the AP ARTiFACTS: The 175 Collection shows how the combination of NFTs, the blockchain, digital art, and metadata helps create innovative pieces that tell stories that can stand the test of time.
The sale of this series of NFTs marks AP’s second interaction with NFTs. The company made its debut in the NFT space in November last year by using Everipedia’s OraQle software to publish its 2020 US election race calls on the blockchain. AP then used this data to create a piece dubbed The Associated Press calls the 2020 Presidential Election on Blockchain – A View from Outer Space, as its first NFT. This piece sold on the blockchain in March this year for $185,000.00 (£131,063.25).