A group of editors at Wikipedia, the free user-generated encyclopedia, voted against classifying NFTs as an art form and reached consensus to defer the issue to a later date.
A survey and debate began on the platform in late December around the most expensive art sales by living artists and whether NFT art sales should be considered “art sales” or of “NFT sales”.
“Wikipedia really can’t decide what counts as art or not, which is why putting NFTs, art or not, in their own list makes things much simpler,” wrote editor Jonas.
Much of the discussion revolved around whether an NFT represented art or if it was just a separate token from the underlying art. Editors were torn over definitions and some felt there was a lack of reliable information from which to draw conclusions.
A call for votes found five publishers opposed to the inclusion of NFTs in art sales and only one in favor. A consensus was reached on January 12 to remove sales such as Pak’s $91 million NFT collection and Beeple’s $69 million NFT from the list of top art sales, and reopen the discussion at a later date.
The decision seems controversial when looking in particular at Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” NFT, which depicts a collage of original artwork by a renowned digital artist who sold to the prestigious house. Christie’s art auction last year in March. The New York Times also described Beeple as the “third best-selling artist” alive at the time.
According to Wikipedia guidelines, neither unanimity nor a vote is required to form a consensus. To reach a decision, the consensus must take into account the legitimate concerns of all participating publishers that fall within the policies of the platform.