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David Yermack — Professor and Chair of Finance at New York University - Leonard N. Stern School of Business

Our exploration of how NFTs apply to CG artists continues with esteemed NYU Stern professor, David Yermack, an expert in cryptocurrency.

But don’t worry, you don’t need a finance background to understand this. David breaks down key concepts behind NFTs in the most accessible way possible, so you can figure out how they factor in your world. We get into issues of ownership, the value of digital copies and how NFTs are enabling CG artists to finally become part of the gallery system.


David Yermack - NYU >

David Yermack - Linkedin >

Courses on Digital Currency & Blockchains >

Paper on Digital Currencies, Decentralized Ledgers, and the Future of Central Banking >


04:47 When David got started in the cryptocurrency world  

11:55 How DeFi works and the start of Bitcoin

14:55 What is a token?

16:27 The difference between fungible and non-fungible tokens

18:53 Why NFTs are popular with the art community

22:40 How an NFT keeps its authenticity 

24:44 Other uses for NFTs

29:07 Ethereum explained

33:21 How smart contracts can benefit the art world

40:40 Gas and carbon footprints

46:57 What’s new in Ethereum 2.0

49:55 NFTs and other digital assets 

52:41 Decentraland MANA explained and fantasy gaming’s currency

55:52 Advice and resources for NFTs 

About the author

Christopher Nichols

Chris is a CG industry veteran and Director of Chaos Labs. He can also be heard regularly as the host of the CG Garage podcast which attracts 20,000 weekly listeners. With a background in both VFX and Design, Chris has worked for Gensler, Digital Domain, Imageworks and Method Studios. His credits include Maleficent, Oblivion and Tron: Legacy.

Originally published: April 26, 2021.
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