Elon Musk Points Out NFT Weakness, Bitcoin Backers Rejoice


  • Elon Musk raised concerns on the “Joe Rogan Experience” podcast about the potential loss of NFT-linked artwork.
  • Some Ethereum-based platforms, like Art Blocks, store artwork directly on the blockchain, which can be recreated anytime.
  • Bitcoin’s Ordinals protocol ensures the complete on-chain storage of assets, permanently linking them to the blockchain via a single satoshi.

Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, and owner of Twitter, recently commented on the potential vulnerabilities surrounding non-fungible tokens (NFTs) during his appearance on the “Joe Rogan Experience” podcast. Musk highlighted the issue and stated that many NFTs link to artwork on external servers. Consequently, he suggested that owners might lose their related artwork if such hosting companies go out of business.

However, not all NFTs face this issue. Projects on Ethereum, the leading blockchain network for NFTs, sometimes store their artwork directly on-chain. Notably, platforms like Art Blocks ensure their artists’ algorithms are on-chain. Hence, the art produced can be recreated from the output. Additionally, NFTs don’t always represent digital art. They can act as proof of ownership for items ranging from digital creations to tangible objects, like wristwatches.

Significantly, there’s one NFT-style ecosystem that guarantees whole on-chain artwork storage: Bitcoin’s Ordinals protocol. Through this, users can inscribe media or artwork directly onto the blockchain, linking it to a single satoshi, the smallest Bitcoin unit. This ensures the permanent recording of assets on the blockchain. As long as the Bitcoin network remains active, these assets endure.

Bitcoin enthusiasts and supporters of the Ordinals swiftly reacted to Musk’s comments. Will Clemente, co-founder of Reflexivity Research, pointed out that around 38 million inscriptions are currently on the Bitcoin blockchain. Rohun “Frank” Vora, a prominent figure in the NFT space, emphasized how the Ordinals model addresses NFT criticisms. Moreover, Dogecoin co-creator Billy Markus supported Musk’s stance, highlighting his preference for Ordinals over conventional NFTs.

In a move that captured the essence of Musk’s message, Leonidas, a prominent supporter of Ordinals, has inscribed the Musk video segment onto Bitcoin. His action emphasized the capability and resilience of the fully on-chain Ordinals, further endorsing its merits.

While Musk’s comments have sparked debate, they’ve also brought attention to the continuous innovations in blockchain and NFTs. Bitcoin’s Ordinals protocol is a potential solution to some concerns raised about off-chain storage of NFT-linked media.