Internet personality and content creator Chris Crocker minted their famous 2007 “Leave Britney Alone” video as a non-fungible token and sold it for about $44,000.
Crocker launched the sale on the NFT marketplace Foundation on April 9th with a starting price of 10 ethereum (the cryptocurrency used most frequently to buy and sell NFTs), or $23,729.20. Based on the auction history, it looks as though there was a bit of a bidding war over the next week between two people. The sale was finalized on April 12th, with the NFT selling for a price of 18.6942 ETH, which is about $44,477.61. (The identity of the buyer was not made public.)
Crocker posted the “Leave Britney Alone” video in 2007, in which they tearfully defended Britney Spears after her much-maligned performance at the Video Music Awards that year. As Crocker noted in a description accompanying the NFT sale, within 24 hours of uploading, the clip had picked up over two million views and was soon getting covered in mainstream news outlets.
“I made this video as a gender-bending teenage high school dropout in my grandparent’s bedroom,” Crocker said. “I had no idea the impact its message would have, years later, maybe society is finally starting to get it.”
Speaking with Business Insider, Crocker explained why they chose to sell the video as an NFT. One reason, Crocker said, was to reclaim it and its significance after seeing it parodied for years. Crocker also said the clip garnered them unwanted notoriety in the gay community, which, they said, was “embarrassed that I was a representation for them” (Crocker claimed they were even assaulted at gay clubs and received death threats). But Crocker also noted they never made any money off the video, which they first posted to MySpace, but was then re-shared by others on YouTube, where it picked up millions of views.
“I didn’t really get anything from [the video] other than to be put in a box for the next 14 years,” Crocker said.