In an attempt to withhold market dominance, NFT marketplace OpenSea announced earlier today that it will be temporarily waiving its 2.5% sales fee and reducing creator royalty protections.
Along with removing sales fees, which would cut off OpenSea’s primary source of income, the platform said it will move to optional creators’ earnings of a minimum of 0.5% for collections without an on-chain enforcement tool.
The move comes after a significant week for rival marketplace Blur, which launched in October last year. Earlier this week we saw Blur distribute its native token BLUR to over 100k+ NFT traders through an airdrop.
The next day, the marketplace posted a blog aimed at NFT creators, highlighting the contrasting royalty payment options between its platform and OpenSea, while encouraging its users to block OpenSea trades to receive full royalties. Blur does not have a marketplace fee.
“Our preference is that creators should be able to earn royalties on all marketplaces that they whitelist, rather than being forced to choose. To encourage this, Blur enforces full royalties on collections that block trading on OpenSea.” wrote the team.
OpenSea has adopted a firm position in the debate concerning creator royalties by launching a royalty enforcement tool in November. This tool enables new collections listed on the platform to delegate royalties on-chain and prevents resale on marketplaces that do not enforce royalties, such as X2Y2 and Blur.
However, in January, Blur discovered a workaround in the tool that allowed collections enforcing royalties on OpenSea to maintain their percentages on Blur, helping it attract more and more users in recent weeks. Dune Analytics data indicates a significant increase in user numbers for Blur, with a drop in users for OpenSea.
In the Twitter thread, OpenSea cited on-chain data indicating that approximately 80% of NFT trading volume currently occurs without creator royalties. The platform said it will continue working on finding ways beneficial for both NFT creators and traders.