While public interest in the Metaverse has not been completely lost, brands are trying to make the most of its popularity.
Many luxury brands have already jumped on the gamification bandwagon, selling branded skins and buying land in the Metaverse.
We have already visited Decentraland Fashion Week, played the Balenciaga game and regularly watched digital collections move from the mass market to luxury markets.
In addition, in Web3, there is a serious beef between the Hermès brand and artist Mason Rothchild, the man behind the nonfungible token (NFT) MetaBirkins furry bags. This event has attracted public attention to the fact that Hermès uses the skin of exotic animals while the digital fur is just an image. MetaBirkin raises an important issue: “What do luxury lovers pay for?”
Hermès claims that MetaBirkin uses the brand for its own benefit. Their answer, effectively, it that it’s none of their business — artists draw whatever they want. It’s virtual creative content, not a physical product, and not even a fake at all. In other words, a digital bag cannot be the subject of a lawsuit.
In addition, if someone has a digital version of Birkin, they would probably like to buy a real bag by buying a token.
MetaBirkin does not undermine Hermès’ business in any way. Maybe it even attracts a new audience, making a product more hip and modern.
Anyway, this case is a wake-up call for luxury brands, indicating that it is necessary either to launch their digital fashion departments or cooperate with contemporary artists already online.