Still, is it fake or art?
French luxury brand Hermes won its first instance case against Mason Rothschild's MetaBirkin NFT. In U.S. court practice, this was the first case of lawsuits against NFT products.
Hermes will receive compensation for damages of $133,000. Experts note that the precedent could affect the entire industry, in which artists continue to create unique NFTs without a legal framework.
Despite Hermes' victory in court, the proceedings will probably continue. Lawmakers will also have to determine the extent to which the owner of physical trademarks is entitled to claim their uniqueness in a digital context.
Hermes initiated legal proceedings against MetaBirkin and its owner in early 2022. The claims stated that the NFTs created "violate Hermès' intellectual property rights and trademark and are an example of counterfeit Hermes products in the meta-universe. In turn, Rothschild said the NFTs should be classified as works of art and protected by a separate legal amendment.
The company owner called MetaBirkins "a playful abstraction of an existing fashion culture reference point" and a commentary on "fashion's history of animal cruelty and its current initiatives of fur-free and alternative textiles."