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Twitter has hexagonal NFT avatars now, and there’s already a way to mass-mute everyone who uses them

It was only a matter of time until Twitter capitalized on the enthusiasm of its users with stoned ape avatars—the social media platform added crypto wallet support back in September. Today Twitter rolled out NFT avatars for members of its $3/mo Twitter Blue subscription service, which includes other features like the ability to undo a tweet (it actually just waits 30 seconds before sending it). To distinguish these rarified NFT avatars from our lowly jpegs, they’re displayed in a new hexagonal frame.

Twitter launched NFT avatars alongside the creatively hollow ad video below, which depicts a bunch of people going about their lives with avatars superimposed over their heads. It’s the exact same concept of digital identities we’ve had for the entire history of the internet, except with the “new” idea of flaunting how much money you paid for your avatar.

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According to the details on Twitter’s website, the NFT profile photo rollout isn’t complete yet; it’s currently supported on the iOS Twitter app, but not on Android or the desktop or web browser versions. Here’s a bit more information on how it all works:

“Setting up an NFT profile picture means people can associate your Twitter account with your connected wallet’s public crypto wallet address. This means your Twitter account will be associated with your current and historical crypto wallet transactions and holdings, including all other NFTs in that wallet, because this information is all available on the public blockchain.”

Twitter also offers its users a reminder not to give out the private details of their crypto wallets, presumably in the hopes of avoiding another “all my apes gone” viral tweet situation. The rollout still hasn’t been totally smooth, though: a database outage on NFT marketplace OpenSea also temporarily knocked Twitter’s NFT support offline, since it relied on an OpenSea API.

I’ve seen plenty of Twitter users already bemoaning or joking about the NFT support, though it seems extremely unlikely we’ll see Twitter pull back from embracing cryptocurrency or NFT the way Discord scrapped its plans late last year. The gaming community in particular has been more critical of NFTs than the wider net Twitter casts.

Some Twitter users have already channeled their NFT distaste into something productive, though. The open source Better Tweetdeck browser extension includes an option to automatically mute all NFT avatar users. There’s no word from Twitter on when the NFT avatars will migrate from the iOS app to other platforms, but when they do, Better Tweetdeck will be ready.

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