How Can Blockchain Technology Be Used in Sports?
Easily one of the best-known use cases for blockchain is crypto. Cryptocurrencies are powering the whole ecosystem built around this technology.
However, it is definitely not the only pebble on the blockchain beach. Blockchain is not altogether about cryptocurrencies, as there are other uses beyond crypto. And it is time we looked into one such use. This time it will be about blockchain in the sports industry, how it can be used there, and why it matters.
Do They Have Anything in Common?
Sports are probably not the first thing off the top of your head when you think about blockchain applications in areas other than crypto. However, in fact, both realms share essentially the same value proposition — decentralization.
You cannot really imagine a sport without a dedicated community of die-hard fans and followers; Why is it important? It essentially tells us that blockchain is a natural fit for the sports industry, at least as long as we keep an eye on its ultimate mission — to entertain the spectators, a group of disparate, or “decentralized.”
Blockchain For The Sports Industry
Association football, commonly known as soccer, has more followers around the world than any other sport, with its fan base estimated to be around 4 billion people. Therefore, this is the place where we should look for blockchain solutions.
Their goal is to change how clubs engage with their fanbase and improve the interaction between fans and contribute to a better sense of community. What’s in these tokens for fans? As reported, by buying such tokens, token holders receive membership and voting rights in a range of club-related fan-led decisions along with the ability to participate in community surveys and polls run on the token’s blockchain, in a genuinely decentralized way.
Another area where blockchain technology can make a difference in the sports industry is sporting event ticketing. There are two significant issues that fans face here. The first is counterfeit tickets, and the second is ticket scalping when a regular fan has no chance to buy tickets to a major event at face value. Blockchain deals with both of these issues in a highly-effective way, preventing forgery and cutting down on speculation.
It is not surprising that many event organizers are starting to use blockchain for ticketing. For example, earlier this year, UEFA announced that over one million UEFA EURO 2020 tickets would be distributed to fans via a blockchain-enabled mobile application. Blockchain tickets are immutable, allowing the attendees to easily verify their tickets’ authenticity and trace them back to its original seller should such a need arise.
These two cases are not the only examples on the list of blockchain uses in the sports industry. There is a decentralized ticketing platform by EventChain to help organize events in sports and elsewhere. There is a crypto sponsorship platform by Sportyco.io to crowdfund up-and-coming athletes. And, you won’t believe it, there is also a former baseball pitcher, Michael Schwimer, who came up with the idea of tokenizing young and aspiring athletes in whom everyone can invest for the share of their future earnings once they strike it rich.
One of FLETA’s partners, KardiaChain, cooperates with the Vietnam Football Federation to decentralize data such as player records, interactive systems, and player management, linking match results on blockchain. With this system, KAI token holders can play prediction games through KardiaChain’s DApp, ON Sports, and donate to their favorite football players.
Blockchain has made inroads into quite a few very different industries, with varying degrees of success. Blockchain technology is most helpful where some form of decentralization already exists.
And that’s basically why blockchain in sports matters as it makes the experience more fulfilling and rewarding to both sides of the interaction — for the fans and their favorite team, club, or athlete.