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Meta "Short-Sightedly" Pulls NFTs From Instagram in Crypto U-Turn

Meta is ending support for NFTs on its platforms less than one year after rolling it out, whilst the firm prepares for additional job cuts.

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Meta is ending support for NFTs on its platforms less than a year after its roll-out.

On Monday, Meta's fintech head Stephane Kasriel announced the firm is "winding down digital collectibles (NFTs) for now to focus on other ways to support creators, people, and businesses."

Read more: BlackRock's New Metaverse ETF is Meta-Heavy Despite Weak Outlook

"We'll continue investing in fintech tools that people and businesses will need for the future. We're streamlining payments w/ Meta Pay, making checkout and payouts easier, and investing in messaging payments across Meta," Kasriel said.

The news comes as Meta revealed it is planning multiple rounds of additional layoffs, amounting to the same 13% cut from last year.

Meta's announcement was not well received by the crypto community. NFT artist Dave Krugman described Meta's move as "wild" and “a short-sighted”, criticising the firm for “quitting before it even started.”

Podcaster Marc Colcer also described Meta's U-turn as “short-sighted for a company that’s supposed to be thinking long term.”

In August 2022, Instagram rolled out NFT features to over 100 countries across Africa, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and the Americas.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the move with photos of a Little League baseball card he made himself as a youngster.

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A post shared by Mark Zuckerberg (@zuck)

Meta's muddy metaverse

In its most recent quarter, Meta's revenue beat was quickly soured by when its metaverse arm, Reality Labs, reported a whopping loss of US$13.7 billion in 2022, compared to a loss of US$10.2 billion in 2021.

In Q4 alone, the segment's loss was over US$4.3 billion, marking its worst quarter since Q4 2020.

Read more: Meta's Metaverse Arm Reality Labs Revenue Win Overshadowed By Growing Losses

Meta CFO Susan Li said Reality Labs expects losses to deepen throughout the year. “On Reality Labs, we still expect our full year Reality Labs losses to increase in 2023, and we are going to continue to invest meaningfully in this area given the significant long-term opportunities that we see,” Li said on the earnings call.

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