List of NFT terms & meanings to help newbies understand the conversation

When we first dove into writing about NFT-related topics, a large aspect that intimidated us was the terminologies thrown around in the community, even in educational materials.

Minting, gas fees, airdrop, generative art, and more. Every sentence we read was then followed up by a quick Google search to comprehend the terms.

Hence, we thought it’d be helpful to come up with a short glossary on some frequently used NFT terms, phrases, and acronyms, that are must-knows if you’re looking to join the chat.

1. 10k project

A 10k project is an NFT collection that has 10,000 unique pieces.

Image Credit: CryptoPunks

This type of NFT is said to be started by the CryptoPunks collection in 2017, with plenty of similar ones following ever since. However, not all collections have exactly 10,000 avatars, but the term is used to refer to this type of collection rather than the exact number of avatars.

2. Airdrop

Airdrop is a term mostly thrown around by Apple users to describe the wireless transfer of files via WiFi or Bluetooth. In the crypto and NFT world, “airdrop” refers to sending cryptocurrency, tokens, or NFTs for free to different wallet addresses (user accounts).

In a Malaysian NFT event, for example, all attendees were airdropped NFT VIP passes that will live on forever in the blockchain, becoming a permanent reminder of the event for guests.

3. Ape in / Degen

“Ape in” is used to describe the action of hastily purchasing a new NFT without doing enough prior research to understand the project. Meanwhile, “degen” (short for “degenerate”) describes a person who makes these risky and bad bets.

4. Axie

I’m sure you’ve heard this before, or have friends who spend a rough 2 hours of their days playing this. Short for Axie Infinity, the play-to-earn game is reminiscent of Pokémon-style games with tradable pets and items that go to battle for you to earn tokens when you win. It is, without a doubt, currently the most popular NFT game around.

Image Credit: Sean Ho

5. BTD or BTFD

BTD is short for “buy the dips” while BTFD refers to “buy the f * cking dips”.

It means to purchase an NFT after its price has dropped. This is often considered a bargain as the asset is likely to recover or increase in value over time.

6. Burn

When someone burns an NFT, they’re essentially eliminating it. The NFT is removed from circulation by sending it to a black hole address (a wallet owned by nobody), effectively destroying the token.

7. Copy cat

Copy cats in the NFT realm refer to a knock-off project which copies another more popular project, which isn’t unheard of in the art world either. Consequently, a lot of plagiarism claims are thrown around in the NFT space, but other than the removal of fakes from official NFT marketplaces, there does not seem to be any other workaround for the moment.

8. DAO

No, we’re not talking about the popular tau fu fah café in Malaysia. In the NFT world, DAO refers to Decentralised Autonomous Organization.

Many up and coming NFT and metaverse projects are setting up DAOs, in which the teams developing such spaces are not governed by one single person or entity.

The regulations and governance of each DAO are coded in smart contracts on the blockchain and cannot be changed unless voted upon by members of the DAO.

DAOs are funded through NFT sales, where holders of the NFTs can decide how to use the treasury and their future project direction.

9. Delist

Delisting refers to the action of taking down or canceling a listing of an NFT’s sale. This can happen when a copyright claim is issued to the NFT creator on the basis that their designs look too similar to a character in popular media.

When this happens, holders of the NFT are typically left with a dead resale market for their collection, unless the NFT gets relisted.

10. Diamond Hands / Paper hands

Coined by a Redditor on the r / WallStreetBets subreddit, “Diamond Hands” refers to someone who has high-risk tolerance for high volatility assets.

No matter how dramatically the value of their NFT increases or decreases, Diamond Hands does not sell their assets in panic. However, there’s also a negative connotation of Diamond Hands, referring to a stubborn investor who isn’t willing to let go of their NFT despite its falling value.

On the other hand (mind the pun), Paper Hands is the opposite of Diamond Hands. It refers to someone who sells or flip their assets too soon, without holding on to them for the long term.

11. DYOR

DYOR is short for “do your own research”. It essentially used as a disclaimer when someone is commending an NFT project, but warning others to develop their own understanding on the matter first before making any moves.

12. Flipping

Used frequently in the context of buying and selling properties, flipping refers to buying items at low prices and selling them quickly for a profit.

In the NFT space, flipping means the same thing, where people buy and sell NFTs to make a quick profit, especially during the early stages of projects when there is higher demand.

13. Floor price

Floor price means the lowest entry price listed for an NFT project.

14. Floor sweeping

When someone uses the phrase, “sweep the floor” in the NFT realm, it meant to encourage members in the community to buy the NFTs at their floor price to hopefully raise the value of the project.

15. FUD

FUD stands for “fear, uncertainty, and doubt”. The acronym is usually thrown around when the price of an NFT project drops, or when there is some sort of negative news or rumors around it. People tend to sell their assets hastily when there is FUD.

16. Gas

Gas is a fee one needs to pay to a blockchain network to perform all kinds of transactions. This fee is paid to the “miners” of a blockchain network to compensate for the computing energy required to process and validate transactions. Gas fees differ from network to network, and are volatile.

17. Generative art

Generative art is the method used by popular NFT projects such as the Bored Ape Yacht Club, CryptoPunks, Pudgy Penguins, PhantaBear, and even local ones like Chapfans, and more, to create their collections.

Image Credit: Chapfans

Through this method, a program or code randomly selects different graphic elements and layers them on top of each other to create a new and unique art piece. The more traits you create, the more unique art pieces you can generate.

18. IPFS

Short for “Interplanetary File System”, IPFS is a peer-to-peer (P2P) storage network. Essentially, it is a filing system that can store files and track their versions over time.

It also defines how files move across a network, making it convenient to share information and files among users on a network in a controlled and authorized way.

19. GMI / NGMI / WAGMI

GMI is short for “gonna make it”, WAGMI represents “we’re all gonna make it”, while NGMI stands for “not gonna make it”.

This is to describe the future state when investments are (or aren’t) going to succeed and deliver great returns.

20. Metadata

Metadata describes the details about a digital asset such as the name of the file, length of the video, and the images that make up its individual frames.

21. Mint

NFT minting is the process of publishing a non-fungible token (NFT) on the blockchain and making it available for purchase.

22. Moon

The saying, “To the moon!” is often used in the crypto and NFT space, and is a term to describe that the price or value of something is going to skyrocket.

Similarly, if something is “mooning”, that means the price of a coin or NFT is experiencing a spike.

23. NFA

Short for “not financial advice”, it’s used the same way as DYOR. The term acts as a disclaimer to an opinion or projection for an NFT that may not be coming from someone in a position to provide financial advice.

24. OS

Short for OpenSea, which is one of the most popular NFT marketplaces globally at the moment.

25. P2E

P2E stands for play-to-earn games. These are blockchain-based games that use tokens or NFTs to reward players, such as Axie.

26. Pentas

Most often used in Malaysian NFT communities, Pentas refers to the Malaysian-made NFT marketplace, Pentas.io, which has gained significant traction since its launch in 2021.

Some artists who’ve minted on Pentas.io

27. Raids

Raids is a term describing NFT projects that conduct flash campaigns on social media to keep communities engaged and promote their NFTs. Community engagement and support is key to keeping an NFT project going, particularly since collections are released in phases over durations of time.

28. Reveal

Some NFT projects will have a “delayed reveal” feature, where the art or design on the NFT will not be revealed until after someone buys it. In other words, the art only “reveals” itself after it’s purchased.

29. Rug pull

Not too far off from a scam, a “rug pull” refers to a scenario when a team behind a seemingly authentic NFT project abandons it and runs away with investors’ funds.

30. Secondary market

After an NFT is minted, it can be sold or purchased on the secondary market, such as OpenSea.

31. Whale

A “whale” describes someone with a lot of money who’s able to invest or has already invested in a high-value NFT project.

Whales tend to have a following from others who may use their buying and selling decisions as an indicator of their future investment decisions.

– // –

As the NFT and crypto space develops fast, these terms may phase out as quickly as they’ve cropped up, and we may see new ones appear often. Once that happens, we’ll take it as a sign to update this list.

  • Read more of our NFT content here.

Featured Image Credit: 123rf



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