Trump NFTs back in demand, SEC says NFT sales are unregistered securities: Nifty Newsletter

​​Welcome to the latest edition of Cointelegraph’s Nifty Newsletter. Keep reading to stay up-to-date with the latest stories on nonfungible tokens. Every Wednesday, the Nifty Newsletter informs and inspires you to dig deeper into the latest NFT trends and insights.

In this week’s newsletter, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) registered its first unregistered securities sales claim against nonfungible token (NFT) offerings. An OpenSea manager accused of insider trading was sentenced to three months in prison and fined $50,000, and Trump NFT prices shot up after the former U.S. president’s mugshot went viral.

SEC charges podcaster in first unregistered securities sales claim against NFT offering

The SEC has charged a media and entertainment company with conducting unregistered securities sales when it sold NFTs to investors between October and December 2021.

Impact Theory, a Los Angeles-based company that produces entertainment and educational content, including several podcasts, allegedly raised almost $30 million through the sales of NFTs called Founder’s Keys, which were offered in three tiers.

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OpenSea manager accused of insider trading sentenced to 3 months in prison, $50,000 fine

A federal judge has sentenced former OpenSea product manager Nathaniel Chastain to three months in prison for wire fraud and money laundering related to insider trading on the platform.

In an Aug. 22 announcement from the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said Chastain had been sentenced to three months in prison, three months of home confinement and three years of supervised release in addition to being ordered to pay a $50,000 fine and forfeit ill-gotten Ether (ETH) from the NFT trades. Inner City Press reported he would be required to surrender himself on Nov. 2, with Chastain’s lawyers planning to appeal the decision and request bail.

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NFT marketplace Rarible sees uptick after commitment to royalties

NFT marketplace Rarible has seen a substantial uptick in trading volume during the 24 hours following a public statement in support of maintaining NFT creator royalties.

It comes as competitor NFT marketplaces such as OpenSea have reversed support for royalties and royalty enforcement — prompting other NFT projects to also begin rewinding support for OpenSea. Data from the analytics platform DappRadar shows that 24-hour fiat trading volume on Rarible jumped nearly 585% — reaching over $45,000 on Aug. 23.

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Donald Trump NFT prices spike following release of mugshot in Georgia criminal case

The price of NFTs featuring Donald Trump surged after news outlets released a photo of the former U.S. president as part of his criminal case in the state of Georgia for allegedly attempting to subvert the will of voters in the 2020 election.

According to data from NFT marketplace OpenSea, the floor price of Trump’s line of digital trading cards first released in December 2022 increased more than 62% from 0.138 to 0.224 Ether on Aug. 24, shortly after the former president’s mugshot became public. The image, which shows Trump looking angrily at the camera amid his surrender at the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office, has gone viral as the first mugshot of a current or former U.S. president facing criminal charges.

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Ordinals still make up the majority of Bitcoin txs despite the price collapse

Ordinal inscriptions have continued to dominate activity on the Bitcoin network over the past week despite the cryptocurrency’s recent price decline and suggestions that the hype around Bitcoin NFTs has died.

On Aug. 21, Ordinals developer “Leonidas” pointed out that the Bitcoin network had 530,788 transactions over the previous 24 hours, with 450,785 being Ordinals-related transactions.

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Thanks for reading this digest of the week’s most notable developments in the NFT space. Come again next Wednesday for more reports and insights into this actively evolving space.