Ordinals protocol sparks debate over NFT’s place in the Bitcoin ecosystem

Ordinals protocol sparks debate over NFT's place in the Bitcoin ecosystem

The recent launch of a nonfungible token (NFT) protocol on the Bitcoin mainnet has the crypto community divided over whether it’ll be good for the Bitcoin ecosystem. 

The protocol, referred to as “Ordinals,” was created by software engineer Casey Rodarmor, who officially launched the program on the Bitcoin mainnet following a Jan. 21 blog post.

The protocol essentially allows for the Bitcoin version of NFTs — described as “digital artifacts” on the Bitcoin network.

These “digital artificats” can comprise of JPEG-like images, PDFs, video and audio formats.

Meme-inspired, NFT-like “digital artifacts” are now being inscripted on the Bitcoin network. Source: Ordinals.

The introduction of the protocol has the Bitcoin community divided however, with some arguing that it would offer more financial use cases for Bitcoin, while others say its straying away from Satoshi Nakamoto’s vision of Bitcoin as a peer-to-peer cash system.

Bitcoin bull Dan Held was one of those on board with the development, noting that it would drive demand for block space, and thus fees, while bringing more use cases to Bitcoin.

Some have pointed out that these NFT-like structures have taken up block space on the Bitcoin network, which could drive up transaction fees.

Among those include “Bitcoin is Saving” on Twitter, suggesting to its 237,600 followers on Jan. 29 that “privileged wealthy white” people’s desire to put JPEGs as status symbols may exclude marginalized people from participating in the Bitcoin network.

Cryptocurrency researcher Eric Wall disagreed with the opinion that the in-built block size limit will prevent a rise in transaction fees.

Others, such as Blockstream CEO and Bitcoin core developer Adam Back wasn’t happy with meme culture being brought to Bitcoin, who suggested the developers to take the “stupidity” elsewhere:

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