What is POAP?

Cooper Turley
Published in
4 min readMar 23, 2020

For anyone who’s been to one of Ethereum’s many magical events, you’ve probably seen mystic QR codes floating around on pink rosetta’s with the label “POAP”

Maybe you knew to scan that QR code and redeem the token to your Ethereum address as prompted!

But what did you actually receive?

POAP — short for Proof of Attendance Protocol — are digital badges given to nomads as a way to prove their attendance at any of our partnered events.

Each badge is unique, meaning the only way to get a POAP is to actually be at the event.

Each event has a custom design, meaning POAPs quickly turn into a rare collection of coveted NFTs which can only be earned by travelling the world to one of Ethereum’s most sought after gatherings.

My POAP Collection! :D

We’ve created an intuitive iOS & Android mobile application to showcase your gallery to friends, casually displaying your endless adventures by leveraging the awesome capabilities of the ERC721 token standard.

Download the POAP mobile wallet on iOS and Google Play!

Why Should I Care?

What if you could prove that you were at one of Apple’s earliest off-sights in Silicon Valley before the company blew up?

What if you could prove you were at the hackathon where projects like Gitcoin, Set Protocol or PoolTogether were started?

In a nascent industry like that of cryptocurrencies, POAP offers a new way to prove your commitment to Ethereum before it was cool.

Whether you’re hoping to be the top vagabond on the POAP leaderboard or simply looking to curate a sentimental collection of indestructible, timeless badges — we’ve got you covered!

What’s more, is that POAP badges contain an endless amount of potential which we’re just now starting to tap into! We’ll dive deeper into these in a future article, but for now here are some use-cases which might tickle your mind:

  • Community Polls
  • Conference Discounts
  • Expedited Hackathon Reviews
  • Airdrop Targeting
  • Social Graphs
  • Undercollateralized Lending
  • VIP Parties
  • + more!
Vitalik suggesting a POAP vote to solve the ProgPoW debate!

Where Has POAP Been?

To date, POAP has worked with over 100 events, all of which have led to the redemption of 7000 badges.

Screenshot of unique POAPs from March 2020

Some of the more eternal events include:

  • EthCC (Paris, France)
  • Devcon (Osaka, Japan)
  • Dappcon (Berlin, Germany)
  • EthDenver (Colorado, USA)
  • EthGlobal (Waterloo, Boston, Bangalore, London, etc)

We’ve had the pleasure of working directly with the best and brightest minds in Ethereum and are only just getting started!

Photo take at ETHNYC (2019)

But first, let’s talk about our roots.

POAP’s Origin

POAP was created during ETHDenver 2019 as a hackathon project to reward fellow hackers for their attendance at one of the most versatile events in the world.

We wanted to showcase some of the things Ethereum could do that simply weren’t possible with any other tech stacks, and we believe immutable attendance badges are just one example of that!

The project was — and still is — entirely volunteer-based, meaning that we’ve been lucky enough to receive contributions from top developers, organizers and influencers during this wild journey we call the Ethereum circuit.

Our first Medium post dives into that journey, which we highly recommend checking out!

What’s emerged is an identity system for building digital reputation and enabling social coordination. Now we can start conducting prime research initiatives based on different datasets like:

“How many people who went to ETHCC opened a CDP or adding liquidity to a Uniswap pool?”

Or, something more provoking like:

“What’s the oldest wallet with a POAP? Which one holds the most Ether?”

POAP is the most used Ethereum application that isn’t doing anything monetary. We believe this is just the tip of the iceberg.

What to Expect

In the coming months, we’ll be rolling out a suite of new POAP swag.

Sneak peek at what’s to come ;)

If you or your event are interested in teaming up, give us a shout!

Until then, safe travels!

Connect With POAP


Thanks to POAP & DeFi Dude



Cooper Turley
Editor for

Chance favors the connected mind. Focused on building communities by making crypto cool again.