NFT of the first charity auction SMS – KION546

By Alexandra Mae Jones and John Vennavally-Rao

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TORONTO (CTV Network) – This holiday season, many of us send our Christmas greetings by SMS to our loved ones, a tradition that dates back to the very first SMS.

By simply saying “Merry Christmas”, the first SMS was sent almost 30 years ago.

Now, this moment in digital history is auctioned on Tuesday to raise money for charity.

The Aguttes auction house, on the outskirts of Paris, is open to bidders from all over the world.

Estimated between $ 150,000 and $ 300,000, this text message has been turned into a digital token – an NFT, which stands for non-fungible token.

The message was sent by Neil Papworth, a British computer programmer from Newbury, Berkshire, who was working on the development of a short message service for mobile phone giant Vodafone.

He typed it into a computer on December 3, 1992 and sent it to Richard Jarvis, director of Vodafone, who received it on his Orbitel 901 handset, marking a pivotal moment in mobile history.

In 2017, Papworth, who lives in Canada, said he had no idea how popular texting was.

This text has now been recreated as an NFT, which is essentially a digital receipt proving ownership of unique assets, such as works of art. The NFT version of the text message is an animation of what appears to be an acrylic screen, featuring a replica of the original communication protocol on one side and a visual of the cell phone that received it on the other.

It comes with the assurance that Vodafone will not hit any subsequent NFTs of the first text message ever sent, confirming the uniqueness of the NFT.

This is not the first time that this type of digital collection has made digital history. Recently, an NFT from the first edition of Wikipedia sold at auction for $ 750,000.

“The first book printed, the first phone call, the first email – all of these inventions changed our lives and our communications around the world,” said Maximilian Aguttes, founder of the auction house selling the SMS. “This first SMS received in 1992 is a historic testament to human and technological progress – we are delighted to be able to support the sale of this historic piece for this cause.”

Vodafone plans to donate all proceeds from the auction to UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, in support of the millions of people who have been forced to flee their homes due to persecution or conflict.

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