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This Week in the Metaverse: Best Year Ever for Web3 Trademark Filings, Cristiano Ronaldo NFTs and the ‘World’s First Digital Nation’

Welcome to this week in the Metaverse, where Fortune brings together the most interesting news in the world of NFTs, culture and virtual worlds. E-mail [email protected] with tips.

Just three years ago, there were virtually no metaverse trademark filings, but in 2022 that’s changed for many companies, according to trademark attorney Mike Kondoudis.

“Now it’s just a part of doing business,” he said Fortune.

Since Facebook rebranded as Meta last year, individuals and businesses filed hundreds of related trademarks per month for things like branded NFTS, digital merchandise, or metaverse experiences. The number of metaverse-related trademarks filed each month peaked at 612 in March, and the 4,700 trademarks filed in October have already surpassed the number filed in 2021, according to data compiled by Kondoudis.

For large companies, it has become essential to secure their rights to virtual versions of their products so that no one associates their brand with similar digital versions of their product, as in the case of designer bags Birkin. The trial of Hermes against the creator of the NFTs “MetaBirkins”.

Kondoudis has seen companies increasingly bundle brand demand for a new physical product with its digital version. Companies can file for these marks for a few thousand dollars, which then allows them to avoid costly litigation, often with a simple cease-and-desist letter, he added.

“Virtual products and NFTs will be part of standard branding for brands going forward,” Kondoudis said.

In January, Samsung became one of the first companies to jump into the metaverse, and register a trademark In the process. The company launched a digital version of its New York flagship store called 837X in the Web3 Decentraland virtual world earlier this year and later expanded its metaverse presence to Roblox.

Michelle Crossan-Matos, Marketing Director of Samsung Electronics America, says Fortune that the company created its Decentraland space to help connect with people around the world, especially younger customers. Crossan-Matos, with input from his 9- and 11-year-old children, designed the company’s metaverse experiences to provide customers with an interactive way to experience the brand, and in particular its sustainability initiatives.

“Gen Z and Gen Alpha are going to blow us away with the innovation they can create by joining dots that have no borders. There are no borders in the world anymore,” she said. declared.

Despite declining crypto prices and waning hype surrounding the metaverse, Crossan-Matos said the company will continue to create experiences with the technology. For next year, she said she wants to experiment more with NFT badges or wearables like branded digital clothes.

“The Metaverse will not be determined within the next six months,” she said. “I think it’s a long-term game about how the next generation really wants to interact with each other and with brands.”

But as Samsung doubles down on its Metaverse strategy, the number of Metaverse-related trademark applications filed in recent months shows that others are slowing down. The number of registered trademarks has fallen almost every month since the peak in March, and a looming recession could mean they will fall further in 2023.

“As the economy slows down,” Kondoudis added, “it is difficult to expand a business or start a new one, so trademark filings tend to decline.”

In other news:

Nike launched a new web3 platform called .Swoosh to allow customers to “inquire, collect, and possibly help co-create”, digital items such as virtual shoes or jerseys. The company plans to launch its first NFT products that users can wear in Web3 games from 2023. Nike also said in his ad that some customers might get physical products or an invitation to conversations with athletes or designers.

Courtesy of Nike

Just in time for the world cup, Adidas showcased its Bored Ape NFT, also known as Indigo Herz, in a commercial alongside football stars like Argentina’s Leo Messi and France’s Karim Benzema. The ad features the bored monkey NFT, which Adidas bought for 46 Ethereum, or about $156,000, last year on a box of cereal that Benzema eats in the video. Indigo Herz’s Twitter Account retweeted the ad Monday and incorporated a notable Web3 slogan, “When football is everything, impossible is (probably) nothing.”

Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo in partnership with Binance to release a line of over 6,000 NFTs with animated statues of four rarity levels. The five rarest NFTs will be auctioned on Friday from around $10,000 in crypto. Each rarity level has its own perks which could include a personal message from Ronaldo and autographed CR7 and Binance merchandise.

Tuvalu’s Foreign Minister Simon Kofe told the COP27 climate summit this week that the Pacific island nation will create a duplicate of itself in the metaverse as rising sea levels threaten his existence.

Mario Tama—Getty Images

The Pacific island nation of tuvalu plans to recreate the country in the metaverse in the face of the growing threat of climate change. “As our land disappears, we have no choice but to become the world’s first digital nation,” Foreign Minister Simon Kofe said. COP27 climate summit this week via a video address. In the metaverse, Digital Tuvalu will include islands and monuments aimed at preserving the nation and its heritage.

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