Former cricketer Virender Sehwag has clarified that he is not associated with a website selling NFTs made up of “original copyrighted cricket player art”. An NFT or a non-fungible token is a digital asset that represents real-world objects like text, artwork or music and records their ownership with the help of blockchain. NFTs exploded in popularity earlier this year, as speculators and crypto enthusiasts flocked to buy the new type of asset, which represents ownership of online-only items such as digital art, trading cards and land in online worlds, according to news agency Reuters.
On Thursday, a Twitter user asked Virender Sehwag on Twitter if he is associated with Hashcards, a website selling digital cards with the cricketer’s likeness on them. Responding to the user, Sehwag clarified that he is not associated with the NFTs being sold on the website.
“Hey @virendersehwag is this your official NFT? People are buying assuming it is official. Their homepage says ‘original copyrighted cricket player art’,” the Twitter user asked, sharing a link to the website which leads to digital Hashcards with Sehwag’s artwork on them.
“Not associated with these guys,” Sehwag responded, calling the use of his name illegal and unauthorised. “A clear case of FRAUD – unauthorised and illegal usage. Dukaan band karani padegi inki (will have to shut down their business),” he wrote.
Not associated with these guys
A clear case of FRAUD – unauthorised and illegal usage. Dukaan band karani padegi inki https://t.co/MZzdXESWi3
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) August 12, 2021
According to their website, Hashcards are a collection of 2100 NFTs made up of “original copyrighted cricket player art, motion design, as well as traits and meta-data that differentiate the NFTs from each other.”
For 2021, the company released Hashcards based on 100 iconic cricket players, including Sehwag. Each of the 100 cricket players has 21 Hashcards across 3 different types indicating scarcity – Unique (1 NFT per player), Super Rare (7 NFTs per player), and Rare (13 NFTs per player).
Virender Sehwag’s tweet calling out Hashcards, meanwhile, has been amplified by a number of people on Twitter.
“NFT investors have criticized hashcards for announcing Cricket NFTs, but selling unofficial caricatures,” wrote one Twitter user.
NFT investors have criticized hashcards for announcing Cricket NFTs, but selling unofficial caricatures. It is believed that the gaming company has hired Sundar Raman, who faced match-fixing allegations in the past. Cricket fans be careful of such projects https://t.co/fhBTezTdPL
— Rajasekar (@sekartweets) August 12, 2021
“Hashcards should issue a clarification on the NFT issue,” another said.
Hashcards should issue a clarification on the NFT issue rather than playing hide and seek. The silence is giving rise to more doubts! https://t.co/En4tExkxgE
— Kaushik LM (@LMKMovieManiac) August 12, 2021
A fan pointed out that the Hashcards do not use the names of any cricketer to avoid copyright issues.
Sir its an art with no real name mentioned of the players. Smart move by the website as there is no case of copyright infringement. Just like video games use similar names but not exact names to avoid any copyright issues. pic.twitter.com/lxaNLuty0n
— Mahade (@prawzd) August 12, 2021
Meanwhile, Bangladeshi cricketer Shakib Al Hasan also took to Twitter to call out Hashcards, urging his fans not to buy from them. “I have not authorised these guys to use my image or name to promote or sell their cards through NFT,” he wrote.
I have not authorised these guys to use my image or name to promote or sell their cards through NFT. This is FRAUD, please do not buy from them. I will be announcing my official NFT soon. https://t.co/Q2Q75jehsW
— Shakib Al Hasan (@Sah75official) August 12, 2021
Recently, a viral post-turned-meme from Pakistan was auctioned off as an NFT on the occasion of Friendship Day for a whopping $51,530 (roughly Rs. 38 lakhs).
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