Shanghai is the largest and most populated city in China (with over 25 million residents) that has now tapped the power of blockchain technology to preserve and safeguard the events of the COVID-19 lockdown in the city.
Numerous videos, photos, and audio are now stored as non-fungible tokens that can now be bought and sold in NFT marketplaces using cryptocurrencies; avoiding censorship.
Residents of Shanghai are using NFTs as a way to express their dismay with China’s zero-tolerance COVID policies knowing that NFTs run on blockchain technology and hence, can’t be deleted.
A growing number of Shanghai residents are taking to the streets to protest China's zero-tolerance policy on COVID. (Image credit: Coda Story)
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Simon Fong On His Propaganda NFT Art Collection
One of the NFT designers is a 49-year-old freelance graphic designer, Simon Fong. He has been a resident of Shanghai for over nine years. He started creating graphic designs that illustrate Shanghai residents’ lives while on lockdown and taking some cues from the Mao-ear posters around.
Fong has chosen the style of Mao-era propaganda which includes scenes depicting the events happening during the zero-tolerance COVID lockdowns.
Pictures include PCR testing processes and also the hunger experienced by residents who are now asking for food rations from the government.
It seems that these rampant COVID lockdowns are just taking the country further backward. The Propaganda collection posters created in April can now be bought at OpenSea, an NFT marketplace.
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Each NFT artwork by Fong represents stories that are inspired by real-life events and sprinkled with light humor.
Fong was interviewed recently by Yahoo News and mentioned that his favorite piece in the Propaganda art collection is the one with the title “Stay Negative.”
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Most people would tell you on a regular day to always think and stay positive. However, it seems with the current COVID situation, the only way to beat the disease and stay alive is to stay negative.
Fong has now sold over 10 NFT items, each selling at an average of $287 or 0.1 ETH.
‘The Voice of April’ Now an NFT
In the middle of the COVID lockdowns in Shanghai, “The Voice of April” was launched on YouTube which showcased heartbreaking video footage of people crying and shouting from their homes in the face of the COVID lockdowns.
However, the video was banned for unknown reasons even if it contained actual or factual events. There was no mention of any individual or government officials, to begin with, that may have prompted its removal or censorship. It was not even in violation of any laws.
That particular video has now been minted and turned into an NFT and is available at the OpenSea NFT marketplace. In that way, that memory is forever preserved.
Featured image from Wall Street Journal, chart from TradingView.com