How NFTs solved the problem of digital scarcity

David Banks
Authored by David Banks
Posted Monday, April 11, 2022 - 4:47pm

Amongst all the talk about whether NFTs are a good thing or not, there have been some interesting arguments. If you don’t know much about the topic, you can learn more about NFTs at

One of the most interesting arguments in favor of NFTs gives it an impressive advantage: NFTs could solve the problem of digital scarcity.

While that is certainly an interesting claim to make, many people fail to see exactly how NFTs achieve this and continue to stand against them. Perhaps because they don’t understand what the term “digital scarcity” really means, or maybe because of other reasons entirely. 

Either way, today we’ll take a look at how NFTs might have solved the problem of digital scarcity.

What is digital scarcity?

First, it’s important to define the phrase “digital scarcity”.

Digital scarcity is a concept where a digital asset comes in limited supply. These assets usually achieve this through coding.

If you think about it, nothing on the internet is really limited. You can share a certain image, download a certain file, and paste a certain link however many times you want. At its core, it’s not a bad thing. 

However, when you apply it to things like art, this becomes a problem. Because the distribution of art isn’t limited, the art’s value doesn’t increase.

Why is digital scarcity good?

Digital scarcity is a great thing for artists who are looking for their work to be appreciated. The most expensive NFT has sold for $69 million.

But even if we look past the money, digital scarcity is still a very valuable concept. It also gives artists a lot of control over what they create. This is true even for other forms of art such as music or even videos.

And even after they sell it, the buyer now also has a lot of control over what they bought. Digital scarcity has long been a problem the internet has been looking to solve.

So, how did NFTs solve the problem of digital scarcity?

Interestingly, NFTs didn’t solve the problem of digital scarcity in the traditional sense. You can still right-click and save an NFT to your computer, copying it and sharing it infinitely.

Rather, NFTs solve the problem of digital scarcity by redefining what it means to own a piece of art on the internet. Instead, they focus on the ownership of the NFT. Being able to prove that you own it means that you’ll legally be able to sell it.

Because of that, it doesn’t matter that someone may right-click and save an NFT you own. Doing so may even increase its value.


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