To put it simply, NFTs are representations of media files that have been given special features because of blockchain technology.
This means they can't be copy-pasted, edited, deleted, or otherwise manipulated. But, it doesn’t mean that the storage of it is, necessarily, safe.
NFTs can uniquely represent various pieces of media. The media can be anything digital, including art, videos, music, gifs, games, text, memes, and code.
The beautiful thing about NFTs is they take away the middleman and allow creators from a wide, wide circle to be able to sell their works directly and capture more value.
NFT 101 and the problem of temporary storage
Let’s start with what an NFT is not. An NFT is not the actual media file or image that you have created.
Instead, an NFT is a non-fungible token issued on a distributed ledger such as a blockchain (like a record of a transaction in your bank account) that points to what you have created.
In other words, they are not the images, but the links that point to the metadata and then the images - again, like your bank account is not the actual money, but it points to the money you have.
So if an NFT is a token distributed ledger that points to a link of your metadata that then contains the link to the image, where is the actual metadata and image stored? If I’m buying or selling a media file I want to know that it is kept safely (just like the money in your bank account).
What will happen to the image if it is only stored on someone’s private server, Google Drive, Dropbox, or other subscription service?
To provide the basic decentralized proof-of-ownership and the guarantee of the metadata and image over time, NFT projects need to store the NFT contract issued on a ledger, the content (assets), and the metadata (link to assets) on immutable platforms.
Most NFTs have their ledger contract on Ethereum so that box is checked off, but most have forgotten about the problem of where the NFT metadata and image are stored. And unfortunately, many NFTs are living on temporary storage devices.
Permanent is the fundamental part of the infrastructure of ArDrive
With NFTs on ArDrive you do not have to worry about the metadata or image of your NFT you sell ever disappearing. Permanence is part of the infrastructure of the storage system. Every NFT minted or stored on ArDrive will be around for lifetimes. This is what the creators (and the owners of the NFT) get every time with ArDrive NFTs. This is what will make them Durable NFTs and be able to last for centuries to come.
NFTs with the ArWeave File System (ARFS) and Customizable MetaData
ArDrive created its own protocol - ARFS - for getting the metadata of your NFTs onto the Arweave network, and it is powerful. Look at what it can do for you:
- Standardized and flexible means of defining your custom metadata for your NFT
- Supports parent/child inheritance and version control
- JSON of metadata properties and rules
- Can be queried by any application using Arweave GQL
How to get your NFTs (and their metadata and images) onto Arweave with ArDrive
We know that our NFT creators come to ArDrive with a range of technical capabilities and project complexities. That is why we have come up with a number of different ways to help you have Durable NFTs onto Arweave.
Video: How to save your NFT images and metadata to ArDrive (Beginner)
Article: Using ArDrive and OpenSea (Beginner to Intermediate)
Video and Article: Arweave Manifests: How to get your NFT Project, Static Website, or dApp onto Arweave (Intermediate to Advance)
Video and Article: Store your NFT collection the right way by ArDrive community member felwintrr
Knowledge base: Storing your NFT Data with ArDrive Web