Company leaders love NFTs. Their employees, not so much.
The most recent example came this week when more than 400 Salesforce employees signed a letter pushing back on the company's plans to launch an NFT cloud service that allows people to create and sell NFTs, according to documents reviewed by the Thomson Reuters Foundation. The workers who signed the letter expressed concern over the environmental and economic impact of NFTs, especially in light of the company's recent Super Bowl ad emphasizing its focus on sustainability. (Salesforce has also positioned itself as a climate leader, with CEO Marc Benioff backing controversial climate measures like planting 1 trillion trees.)
"I'll find a company that lives by its stated values," one Salesforce employee told the Thomson Reuters Foundation, adding that he'll quit if the company's plan goes through.
"We welcome our employees' feedback and are proud to foster a culture of trust that empowers them to raise diverse points of view," a Salesforce spokesperson told the publication. The spokesperson said Salesforce will hold a listening session sometime next week but didn't say whether it will address criticism of its NFT plans.
Salesforce workers aren't the only ones to criticize their company's push into digital art that comes at a high carbon cost. Ubisoft employees expressed concern over their company's foray into crypto, with one employee calling the day Ubisoft announced its NFT plans "deeply embarrassing." When GameStop announced its own NFT project, employees took to the official GameStop subreddit to voice their discontent. Other gaming companies, including Team17 and GSC Game World, dropped their NFT projects following backlash from both fans and collaborators.
The reasons for pushing back on NFT plans seem to vary. While Salesforce employees cite climate concerns, GameStop workers said it would be unfair to invest in NFTs while refusing to give store workers a raise. Other gaming employees say adding NFT tech into their games simply isn't necessary.