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The Rise of Blur

by Brian Armstrong

Glassnode, a blockchain intelligence platform, recently released a report analyzing the resurgence of the non-fungible token (NFT) economy on Ethereum. The report noted a 94% increase in gas consumption from NFT-related transactions on Ethereum over the past two months, with the median transaction gas price rising to 38 gwei. This is higher than the cost of gas during both FTX’s fallout in November and Binance’s bank run event the following month. The report attributed the growth to the emergence of Blur, a new NFT marketplace and aggregator that launched in October. Blur has already begun to dominate 78% of NFT transfer volume using a “zero-trading fee model with optional royalty payments.” Blur has attracted a community of professional traders, unlike OpenSea’s historical target audience of “creators and collectors.”

Despite the growth of Blur, overall NFT adoption appears unaffected. Glassnode’s data indicated that the growth of new addresses on Ethereum remains 40% under what it was last February, meaning that Blur’s users appear to primarily be existing Ethereum users. However, the discovery of NFTs on Bitcoin has triggered a wave of adoption for its 2021 Taproot upgrade, with Stacks, a related protocol that also enables NFTs, climbing 50% over the past week.

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