So, you’re wondering what the hell is a cc0 NFT? Well, it all starts with Intellectual property, or IP rights, copyright and similar licenses available for abstract property like digital art. Now, cc0 NFTs are on the rise, with the open and transparent side of branding loved by decentralization maxis. Projects like CrypToadz, Blitmaps, and Mfers, all feature “Creative Commons Zero” artworks. But what does cc0 mean? And how does it relate to NFT IP commercial rights?
Usually, people think that just because you mint an NFT, all you get is the image. However, some NFTs aren’t so simple. While some offer the license of the intellectual property (IP) rights, others give holders nothing at all.
Obviously, it’s important to know your rights with NFTs. So let’s get started with the most popular rights behind NFTs today, cc0 rights and their meaning in the NFT scene.
What does cc0 mean?
The term cc0 means “Creative Commons Zero”. Basically, it means the owners of the IP (Intellectual property rights) relinquish all copyright and the like to the public domain. In other words, absolutely anyone can use cc0 items for almost whatever they want. Cc0 rights allow anyone to use the IP to create their own content.
So what is a cc0 NFT?
A cc0 NFT is a piece of digital content where the IP rights have been relinquished. In short, anyone can reproduce a cc0 NFT. Even non-holders can create commercial goods from cc0 NFTs with no legal repercussions.
Furthermore, with a cc0 NFT, you don’t have to attribute the original creator if you were to use it.
For example, the top project Goblintown gives full cc0 rights out to their artwork.
Cc0 Vs. Commercial IP Rights: Which is the best?
Of course, cc0 NFTs have their pros and cons. However, most of the perks can also become downsides. In essence, it all comes down to your view on the matter.
When you own a cc0 NFT, you can commercialize that artwork in any way you want. You don’t have to ask the project owner or artist for permission to use the NFT.
On the other hand, anyone else can use it too. The IP is in the public domain, meaning someone who right-click-saved your NFT has as much right to it as you do. Yes, even a complete stranger to the collection could use its branding for their own company.
Next, project owners of cc0 NFTs have no control over their branding. That’s because literally, ANYONE can use the likeness in any way, shape, or form.
By comparison, Full commercial IP rights only allow the holder to use the likeness of that NFT. This opens up a whole range of options for licensing the IP to others. A great example of this is the Bored Ape Yacht Club. Basically, the BAYC offer commercial rights, with many apes licensing out their NFT IP for music videos, films, TV shows, and fashion. It’s part of the freedom that comes with owning full IP rights.
Examples of Successful cc0 NFTs
Some say it’s ugly, some praise it for its uniqueness. Either way, Goblintown has been making waves among NFT collectors. The 10K avatar NFTs are all cc0, thereby allowing holders to commercialize them in any way. In this case, holding a Goblintown NFT registered under a creative commons license may be valuable. As for the design, these collectibles definitely stand out.
In fact, the controversial project redefined the concept of beauty in the NFT sphere. The collection’s floor price is 1.9 ETH with many NFT whales endorsing the project. Surprisingly, Steve Aoki even hosted a Goblintown NFT NYC Party this summer.
No avatars, no images, and no stats – just white text on a black background. Simple as it may seem, Loot has redefined the community’s interaction with its NFTs. Basically, each of the 8K NFTs is a “loot bag” filled with guardrails.
Since these digital assets are cc0, anyone can use them for their own project. From P2E games to innovative rarity explorer tools, this project fueled developers’ creativity. Today, the floor price of a Loot NFT is 1.03 ETH – an impressive achievement considering that minting was free at launch. If you want to find out all about the complex Loot ecosystem, check out our post here.
Few projects represent the meme culture better than Mfers. This hand-drawn project consists of 10K avatar-style NFTs created by none other than Sartoshi. In short, Sartoshi was a leading meme creator on NFT Twitter. That is, until he vanished.
Simple as they may seem, the digital stickmen took over the market shortly after launch. Today, you can buy a Mfers NFT for the floor price of 1.18 ETH. However, some of the rarest pieces sold for 11 ETH, skyrocketing this cc0 project to popularity.
Nouns: the most successful cc0 project
Looking for a cc0 NFT project featured in a Super Bowl commercial? Then Nouns is the answer. Beware, though, because these pixelated avatars have a floor price of just 99 ETH. In fact, this is undoubtedly one of the most successful cc0 projects to date.
Unlike most NFT collections, Nouns doesn’t have a number of NFTs. Instead, NounsDAO auctions off a new digital asset every day; the team’s plan is to continue this process “forever”. Therefore, NounsDAO (co-governed by all NFT holders) has one of the largest treasures in the NFT sphere.
Is it cc0 summer?
The short answer is “maybe”. This year, we’ve seen more and more cc0 NFT projects skyrocket in popularity. Collectors, game developers, and artists all enjoy the freedom of using their NFTs however they want.
A quick look at the most popular projects of the summer proves this fact too. For example, Goblintown – a project with no roadmap or utility – went from a free mint to sales of over $130K. Their Twitter community boasts more than 124.5K followers that continue to support the odd collection. Even in the bear market, this new project is thriving impressively!
This successful achievement has inspired other NFT creators to shift to cc0 too. For example, the prolific digital artist XCOPY has announced that all of his NFTs will become cc0. As holders receive the IP rights for each piece, this means that XCOPY’s artworks will inspire many other emerging artists and projects.
The Moonbirds cc0 Controversy
In August 2022, Proof announced the license for Moonbirds became cc0. To explain, the popular project rescinded the commercial rights for each holder. Unfortunately, the team instantly received backlash from its own community members.
Accordingly, the shift to cc0 goes against the initial promises Moonbirds made to the minters. Nevertheless, their decision is legal, in spite of the community’s disapproval.
To conclude, we’ll likely see more cc0 NFT projects in the near future. The new trend facilitates NFT distribution by empowering holders to use digital assets as they please. Some of the most successful projects on the market offer cc0 collectibles, which has convinced top artists to embrace the change too.