NFTs Have Real World Use Cases Not All Are Valuable

Just because NFTs have a use case doesn’t mean they should be used. While Facebook is rolling out NFTs, there have been two new NFT use cases this week – but for opposite reasons. While NFTs put patients in possession of their medical records, an Amazon rainforest conservation NFT faces questions about how it acquired the land it sells.

Blockchain healthcare company MaPay and the Drexel University College of Medicine are using the layer-1 blockchain Algorand to store patient medical records as NFTs. Currently, health providers store medical records themselves – leading to costly and slow paper record retrieval and the sale of patients’ medical data.

At a basic level, NFTs store and denote ownership of digital items without third parties. Putting healthcare data on the blockchain gives patients ownership of their records — so the pitch goes — and makes retrieval more efficient.

Charles Cairns, Drexel’s vice president of medical school, believes that the future of the medical industry is in blockchain technology.

“This initiative will be transformational particularly in underserved areas. It is not a question of should this be done. It is an answer that it must be done for the future in medicine,” Cairns said.

Nemus and its ‘non-fungible territory’

Nemus, an NFT mint committed to the protection of the Amazon forest, has opened a prosecutor’s investigation into the company’s ownership of Amazonian land.

The CEO of Nemus owns the initiative focused on rainforest conservation. Nemus claims to have 100,000 acres of Amazon rainforest. The company did not respond to requests to verify that the land is its own.

Users can purchase NFTs that represent a piece of land, understanding that Nemus will protect the land and its native inhabitants.

Nemus says users do not own physical land due to restrictions by Brazilian law, and instead the company holds the land.

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Last week, local residents complained that they had been deceived into selling land to the NFT project. Prosecutors from the Brazilian Federal Ministry of Public Affairs then announced that Nemus had fifteen days to prove ownership of the land.

“The company issued a sign written in English to the villages and asked locals, who could barely read, to sign the documents without disclosing the content or giving a copy,” the prosecution said.

Nemus and Drexel Medical College point to an emerging limit in the discourse covering NFT use cases. Sean Stein Smith, an assistant professor of digital assets writing at Lehman College, believes the debate about the usefulness of NFT technology is over.“To the point of trying to wait for ‘real-world applications’ of NFTs – those applications are here,” Smith said. “’Do they benefit from an economic and broader societal perspective?’ is ultimately how any project should be evaluated.” Nemus did not respond to a request for comment.

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