The CNN TV network has put an end to its web3 experiment, according to a statement released on Monday night (11).

In a statement also shared on twitter, the company said the decision was made to “say goodbye” to the Vault project. No specific reason was given for the change.

The Vault was created last year and offered buyers NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) celebrating major events featured on the company’s news.

“Vault was originally launched as a six-week experiment, but the support and involvement of our community has allowed us to expand this project into something much bigger,” the Vault team said in the statement.

But the news outlet’s original announcement last year made it clear that the company expected the project to last longer than the initial six weekly drops, promising that future NFT distributions would include a wider range of topics and formats “as it grows.” that the vault grow and adapt to its community of collectors”.

Users criticize the “rug pull”

The community expressed shock at the abrupt termination of the Vault on the project’s Discord server shortly after the announcement, with some even calling the move a “rug pull scam.”

Users pointed out that in the past month, Vault was creating a lot of suspense for the release of new features and distributions.

In documents hosted on the project’s website, CNN’s exclusive benefits and products offered by this project are still listed as “coming soon”.

Answering questions from upset collectors, a CNN employee who goes by the name “Jason” on Discord confirmed that there would be some form of “distribution” to compensate those who bought NFTs.

“Distribution will be done either by FLOW tokens or stablecoins deposited in each collector’s wallet,” he wrote. “We are currently working on the details, but we expect the distribution value to be approximately 20% of the original mint price of each Vault NFT.”

He added that the collections will remain active and the project’s Marketplace will remain live.

The Vault’s Story

At the time of the Vault’s summer 2021 launch, CNN said the project represented an opportunity for collectors to acquire a piece of history.

In addition, the TV network partnered with startup Infinite Objects to offer – to select buyers – a type of physical case, which allowed them to show their purchases physically inside their homes, as well as on user pages in the Vault.

Users did not need any cryptocurrency to purchase the project’s NFT, with payments collected through Stripe, although they had to create a digital wallet with Blocto to make transactions. The project was built on the Flow blockchain.

Topics worked on by the NFTs ranged from US elections to space launches. One recent collaboration with Jeremy Fall, launching the “Probably Nothing” collection, celebrated Nelson Mandela’s release from prison.

It’s unclear how much funding CNN raised from this project, but based on starting auction prices for sold-out NFTs, it’s likely that the value was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

CNN’s director of new products, Jason Novack, spoke to Business Insider magazine in April, and stated, “NFTs are unlocking entirely new possibilities that didn’t exist until very recently — including being a strong source of revenue.”

*Translated by Gustavo Martins with permission from decrypt.

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