What Is NFT Metadata & How Does it Work? Full Guide

NFTs (non-fungible tokens) have a feature that is known as metadata. It is not that “meta” the “meta” from Facebook. So in this post, we will discuss what is NFT metadata? To understand NFT metadata we have to discuss some basics first so you can easily understand what is NFT metadata. Let me first recall what is NFT? And what is a smart contract? So we can dive into NFT metadata.

As you can understand by name NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are unique digital assets and can not be exchanged or replaced by any other digital asset. NFTs can be image, audio, video, or music digital files. So how they are unique? Because these digital assets are tokenized on the blockchain with a unique ID. So it can not be replicated.

If a video film is NFT so how it will be hosted on blockchain because it can be a 2 to 3 GB file. Or a high-quality image that has a 2 to 20 MB file size. If we host these files directly on the Ethereum blockchain it can cost a lot. A 1 GB of data that you host on the Ethereum blockchain can cost you around 17,500 ETH. You can calculate by multiplying the current Eth price. It can cost a lot and not possible to host files directly on the blockchain. So NFTs are not hosted on the blockchain they are saved somewhere in the database or cloud and their metadata is hosted on blockchain smart contracts.

Related: What is NFT and How does it Change Living?

What is a smart contract?

A smart contract is a program that is generated with coding for specific NFTs and it is hosted on the blockchain. A smart contract works on pre-defined conditions. If the conditions are fulfilled smart contract performs relevant actions like payment processing.

What is NFT metadata?

So as I have mentioned above NFTs are not directly hosted on blockchains because they are huge in size. NFTs can be different in file types like JPG, JPEG, PNG, or GIF. NFTs are stored off-chain. And their relevant data about file type, description, and transaction history is hosted on a blockchain that is called metadata of NFTs. Metadata has all the information of an NFT on a smart contract and points to the NFT. Because NFT exists somewhere off-chain.

Related: What is Blockchain Technology and How does it Work?

How to check and verify the metadata of an NFT?

You can verify on-chain data about any NFT by checking its metadata. If you are a non-tech person and do not know anything about coding. You can still check the on-chain data of an NFT and can track transaction history and verify its ownership. There are multiple tools available to check the metadata of any NFT.

Etherescan is one of the best tools to check to verify and track any Ethereum-based NFT.

You can use many tools to check the metadata of NFTs without having blockchain knowledge.

Check the metadata and other information through the smart contract:

You can check metadata and other information like the claim of ownership, royalty cuts, artists, and transaction through smart contracts because it’s stored in the smart contracts.

You can check this information by accessing smart contracts. You can check this data in smart contracts under the “details” section. A complaint NFT with the current standard should have the following details.

  • Unique NFT token ID
  • Contract Address
  • Blockchain information that is used
  • Metadata status
  • NFT protocol for encoding like ERC-721.

Metadata doesn’t show you the name of the owner or information about the owner it just shows the blockchain address of the NFT owner until the platform allows it. There are three metadata statuses edible, centralized, or frozen. In edible metadata information can be changed by the developer, in centralized metadata information can not be changed by anyone including the developer, and frozen metadata NFT can not be sold or transferred because it is categorized as suspicious. There are many things in these metadata statuses that we can discuss but will discuss this in another post.

Final thoughts – what is NFT metadata:

So in this post, we have tried to cover what metadata NFT is, how to check metadata on NFT, and what information you can check with this. So that’s how you can check metadata and other information by following the above instructions. If you have any suggestions or questions do not hesitate to ask. I would love to answer. Give it a share if you like this post.

Related: How Much Does It Cost To Create An NFT – Real Analysis

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