Engineering 101

Hush—Sony Filed an NFT and Blockchain Patent

There are two cunning ways to determine what a company is up to regarding future technology development—patents filed and job descriptions. Thankfully, we don’t have to go through garbage dumpsters to recover memos, files, etc., now that we’re digital. (Yes, this really happened back in the day.)

Sony filed a patent revealing its consideration of blockchain and NFT technology for tracking in-game video game assets. Eurogamer reported that the patent is dubbed Tracking Unique In-Game Digital Assets Using Tokens on a Distributed Ledger. A patent diagram shows the mechanics for tracking changes in ownership, visual appearance, or metadata of digital assets.

The patent describes technology that could track the history of an in-game item going from player to player, a core idea behind NFTs. It also says people find it “meaningful” to own or use unique items related to celebrities or activities.

They filed the patent in July of 2021 before the larger controversy surrounding NFTs occurred.

NFT speculation has been a big part of the video game news cycle in 2022 beyond PlayStation. Multiple studios have spoken out against NFTs, with many developers signing an anti-NFT pledge and Minecraft avoiding implementing NFTs or blockchain technology entirely.

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