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Digital code for the first SMS auctioned for €107,000 |  a stranger

Digital code for the first SMS auctioned for €107,000 | a stranger

For the first text message sent worldwide, 107,000 euros were paid at an auction in Paris. The 1992 text message – with the simple message “Happy Birthday” – was sold as an NFT (non-fungible token). This is a non-fungible token, in which the buyer acquires a kind of ownership right to a digital item via blockchain technology.

The first SMS was sent in December 1992 by Neil Papworth, a programmer for Vodafone, to a colleague. Vodafone also offered NFT in the auction, the proceeds of which will go to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

Buyer not disclosed.


NFTs are real noise. The first tweet from Twitter founder Jack Dorsey raised €2.5 million earlier this year. Over the summer, the source code from the web was auctioned around the world for 4.6 million euros.

Expectations were lower for the first SMS. Auction house Aguttes estimated upfront proceeds at between 100,000 and 200,000 euros.

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