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Reddit Is Selling Collectible Avatars Backed by the Blockchain

Users will have a license to use the avatars on and off Reddit.

Reddit logo on phone
Reddit is getting some new avatars.
James Martin/CNET

Soon, Redditors will be able to glitz up their profiles and support artists active on the platform by purchasing collectible avatars. The collectible avatars represent "one of the early steps" in testing the benefits of bringing more blockchain technology to the platform, Reddit said in a press release Thursday.

The avatars are backed by the Polygon blockchain and owners will be licensed to use them on and off Reddit.

Users will be able to purchase any number of the 87 avatars soon. Early access to select members of the r/CollectibleAvatars subreddit begins Thursday. Avatars will be purchased where people customize their avatars now and be stored in their Vault, the digital wallet where users now store community points. Reddit says more collectible avatars will be released in the future.

Artists will be paid each time their avatar is purchased and are entitled to royalties for any secondary sales, Reddit said.

The launch comes at a time when other blockchain-tied items, like NFTs and cryptocurrency, though distinct from Reddit's avatars, are facing some of the greatest uncertainty and volatility in their history. Reddit sees blockchain technologies "as one way to bring more empowerment and independence to communities on Reddit," according to the release, citing the decentralized nature of Reddit's "self-built and run" communities.