Coinbase announces beta of NFT marketplace with social engagement

Crypto exchange Coinbase’s nonfungible token (NFT) marketplace has moved into beta more than six months after the company announced it planned to open a waitlist for the site.

According to a Wednesday blog post, the crypto exchange said beta testers for Coinbase NFT would be able to create online profiles as well as buy and sell NFTs. In a Tuesday press briefing, Coinbase vice president of product and ecosystem Sanchan Saxena hinted the design of the marketplace would be a cross between a social media platform and other NFT marketplaces like OpeaSea.

“While it is true that buying and selling NFTs is a big part of the ecosystem today, what we have learned by talking to many customers and creators is that there is more to it than just buying and selling,” said Saxena. “There is the community aspect of it.”

According to Saxena, the platform will have opportunities for engagement between users as well as creators. Like many social media platforms, Coinbase NFT will allow users to follow profiles of creators and others, comment on artwork and monitor a personalized feed to discover new NFTs based on engagement and purchases.

Coinbase’s Sanchan Saxena speaking on the platform’s NFT marketplace

In regard to moderating comments, Saxena said the platform would operate on the principle that users and lawmakers decide “the law of the land.” According to the Coinbase executive, the staff is “not in the business of judging what’s right, what’s wrong, as long as it’s legal.”

While the marketplace is in beta, Coinbase said there would be no transaction fees for a limited time, and the exchange aimed to reduce gas fees for Ether (ETH) transactions by partnering with 0x Labs. Users can choose their own self-custody wallets or the Coinbase Wallet.

According to Coinbase, the exchange planned to open access to the NFT marketplace based on users’ position on the waitlist, with the platform available to everyone over 18 years old “in the coming weeks.” In addition, Coinbase said it planned to…


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