RIAA issues first-ever NFT platinum plaque to honor WILLOW for musical milestones

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The Recording Industry Association of America has awarded WILLOW its first-ever NFT platinum plaque to honor her chart-topping hits.

This unique recognition comes as a specially commissioned artwork plaque, collaboratively created by the pop-punk artist, Roc Nation and Infinite Objects. The plaque comes in a distinctive ERC-721 NFT, minted on the Ethereum blockchain.

The accolade recognizes some of WILLOW’s biggest works, including the 3x platinum “Whip My Hair,” 2x Platinum “Wait A Minute!,” 2x Platinum “Meet Me At Our Spot” and Platinum “t r a n s p a r e n t s o u l ft. Travis Barker.”

Each single is represented as a trait of the NFT, with available on-chain updates when new thresholds are officially certified by the RIAA Gold & Platinum programs. The accompanying Infinite Objects Video Print display will dynamically reflect the updated artwork associated with the NFT.

“Collaborating on minting WILLOW’s achievements on-chain and celebrating the artwork in an authenticated Infinite Objects physical display is a true honor,” Infinite Objects said.

WILLOW expressed her gratitude for the chance to participate in the profound journey of music, saying, “I am beyond grateful to have the opportunity to engage in the sacred process that is music… I am so honored to be able to celebrate these milestones in such an innovative way.”

WILLOW has been honored with various accolades in the music industry. She was named to Forbes’ prestigious 2021 30 Under 30 list and awarded Billboard’s Comeback Artist of the Year as part of their Greatest Pop Stars of 2021.

Praised by respected publications like The New York Times and Rolling Stone, her latest album has solidified her reputation as one of the most versatile vocalists of her generation.

Getting to know Gold & Platinum certifications

For over 65 years, RIAA has been honoring artists and their label teams through the Gold & Platinum program while continuously adapting to the ever-changing music industry.

RIAA VP of Media Relations | Gold & Platinum Awards Erin D. D. Burr explained that the organization was thrilled to introduce a groundbreaking approach to official certifications using the first-ever NFT plaque.

Gold & Platinum Awards were initially created to recognize artists and monitor sound recording sales. Over time, these awards have become a symbol of achievement for artists at any stage of their career, whether just starting or releasing a greatest hits album.

To receive a Gold or Platinum plaque, an artist’s work has to surpass a certain number of sales and streams. Each on-demand audio and video song stream is counted with a formula that treats 150 on-demand streams as equivalent to one download sale in meeting the certification thresholds.

A work is certified Gold when it has surpassed 500,000 units in sales or streams, and it will be certified Platinum when it has surpassed one million units in sales or streams. This applies to both single and album releases.

NFTs as awards

While this might be a first for RIAA, this isn’t the first time NFT is used as a form of award. In February 2022, South Korea’s Sungkyunkwan University awarded the first-ever NFT university certificates.

Then at the Smarties Awards in November 2022, MMA India became the first non-profit organization to award digital prizes. The winners of the NFTs can access exclusive assets from MMA Global, including events, case studies, seminars and workshops.


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