Adobe is releasing a system built into Photoshop that can, among other things, help prove that the person selling an NFT is the person who made it. It’s called Content Credentials, and NFT sellers will be able to link Adobe ID to their crypto wallet, allowing supported NFT marketplaces to display a sort of verified certificate proving the source of the art is authentic.
According to a Decoder interview with Adobe Product Manager Scott Belsky, this functionality will be integrated into Photoshop with a “prepare as NFT” option, which will be released in preview later this month. Belsky says that the attribution data created by Content Credentials will live in an IPFS system. IPFS (Interplanetary File System) is a decentralized way of hosting files where a network of people is responsible for keeping the data safe and available, rather than a single company (somewhat similar to how torrent systems work). Adobe says that NFT marketplaces like OpenSea, Rarible, KnownOrigin, and SuperRare will be able to integrate with Content Credentials to display Adobe attribution information.
Art theft has been a huge problem in the NFT world. There have been many examples of people coining art that they did not create or for which they do not have the rights on the blockchain. The reason is that anyone can mint an NFT, even if they don’t own the copyright to the content, and there’s really nothing the blockchain can do to stop that. Worse yet, the minting is enshrined on the blockchain, making the NFT creation look authentic if you don’t know the original work.
This system doesn’t make it harder to mint a media NFT you don’t own the rights to, but it might make that NFT less attractive to the market.
In other words, I could right-click an existing image of an NFT and re-mint it myself, potentially fooling unsuspecting buyers. While Adobe’s system won’t prevent artwork theft, it does offer a way to prove that the NFT you’re selling isn’t stolen; Beyond that, it’s up to buyers to decide how much value they place on it.
Even Banksy, who gets a mention on Decoder, has been caught by NFT scammers. An NFT collector (ironically named Pranksy) paid $300k for an NFT attributed to the famous street artist, which was almost definitely a fake. He ended up getting the money back, but there wouldn’t have been as much of a fuss if Banksy had digitally signed the NFT. As Adobe’s Belsky points out, Banksy probably wouldn’t want to tie his name and Adobe ID to a crypto wallet, but the system is meant to be open source; the anonymous artist may be able to find a way to provide Verified Content Credentials. by the company in charge of authenticating your work.
NFTs aren’t the only thing that will benefit from Adobe Content Credentials, which are a result of its Content Authenticity Initiative. The company is releasing the system as a beta version, and users can use it to show what edits have been made to a file in Photoshop, tag their stock images in Adobe’s system, and more.
For more on Adobe’s take on NFTs, the impact of certified attribution on art and NFTs, and Photoshop on the web, check out this week’s episode of Decoder and the rest of our Max conference coverage. Adobe.