I have plenty of experience publishing paper books and have also published electronic books several times, but publishing an NFT book is a first for me – the cover features an AI-generated image that is quite fitting for the theme of “The Future of Humanity Under the Impact of ChatGPT”!
The “sense of ceremony” in book NFT
To make the NFT book more collectible, the cover needs to be more varied. I used three variations of AI-generated images and then generated different textures, colors, and styles in a 6:3:1 ratio, so as to provide readers who collect NFT books with unique covers (see above). One-tenth of the total covers will feature the book title on the left, making them the rarest, while the cover for the second image will occupy 30% and etc. All depend on the reader’s luck to obtain.
In addition to the varied covers, there are also the author’s signature and message. Since each book NFT is unique and tailored to each reader, it can add a message specific to you. If you want to receive a particular message (such as about academic progress or good health!), you can send me your wallet address together with the expected message, after creating the electronic wallet that receives book NFT. Soon, you will receive a book NFT that belongs to you.
By now, I believe you all have a concept that, compared to ordinary e-books, book NFT are more like some kind of signed collector’s edition. They inject more human feelings and warmth into the original electronic files which may otherwise be replicated infinitely, thus allowing the author and readers to establish a unique connection. Perhaps, as Gao Zhongjian said, it adds a “sense of ceremony” to e-books, “creates a feeling of ownership and brings out the precious relationship between readers and authors.”
The more substantial meaning of book NFT
Of course, book NFT offer more than just a “sense of ceremony”. The more substantial and concrete meaning lies in the experimentation with a new model that may break the current publishing dilemma. As I have explained in detail in the past, physical books are gradually being replaced by e-books, and fewer and fewer people are willing to buy physical books. However, the development of e-books is still far from mature. What form should it take? Can the reading experience be further improved? Which platforms or channels should be used for sales? Do physical bookstores still retain some necessary functions?
Secondly, the sales and circulation of current e-books are mainly carried out through monopolistic online bookstores. The e-book platforms that we often come into contact with now hold astronomical numbers of users’ big data and know their reading and consumption habits well, giving the platforms a dominant advantage in the supply chain. Upstream suppliers lack bargaining power, being largely constrained in terms of product categories and pricing. It is entirely conceivable that once these internet giants combine (or being combined) with political authoritarianism, they will constitute huge infringements on freedom of thought and speech.
In this increasingly “Cultural Revolution” era, it is difficult to ensure what kind of creation will not involve “word crimes” in the future. Any existing mainstream or non-mainstream publishing medium may be silenced or blocked. Alternatively, book NFT can ensure the preservation and circulation of works. It also provides new channels for dissemination and promotion, unleashing the power of people’s spontaneous and collective support. When people feel that certain content is worth cherishing and valuing, they can use NFT to collect, own, and share it.
As someone who was familiar with publishing books, I am now encountering the impact of information and intelligent technology. On the one hand, I hope to respond to the current trends by participating in discussions such as “The Future of Humanity Under the Impact of ChatGPT”. On the other hand, I also hope to use the publishing experiment of book NFT to step out of my comfort zone, and explore a human future that is still full of unknowns.
(Tentatively translated by ChatGPT, further editing and polishing is required)
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