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Ticketmaster Launches Superbowl NFTs

The NFL and other major sports leagues are missing the mark on NFT tickets (so far)

Photo by Adrian Curiel on Unsplash

You have probably heard the news by now — anyone who has already purchased a ticket to this year’s NFL Superbowl LVI will also receive a commemorative NFT marked with their seat number. This is making headlines across the sports world as the NFL joins other major leagues like the NBA to experiment in crypto land. While this is a giant leap towards NFT ticketing, it is fundamentally missing several important factors.

  1. NFTs should not be seen as only “VIP” experiences. While there can be different levels of VIP offerings within tickets, the whole basis of NFT ticketing is that all tickets should be built on the blockchain— whether it’s general admission or a backstage pass. What drives us nuts is how the current NFT market evolved into its complex and expensive environment. When people are spending thousands and millions of dollars to be a part of exclusive communities, it results in the perception of NFTs as high-priced and exclusive commodities. This leads us to the next point.
  2. NFT tickets are more than just collectibles…Major names within global events are attempting to benefit from NFT and web3 “hype” without promoting the actual technological benefits. These benefits include eliminating scalping and fraud, lower fees, blockchain security, resale royalties, and much more. Not once have we heard of the big players advocating these benefits, especially the security aspect. We only hear about “collectibles” and that is a critical issue! As a result, NFTs are being promoted as exclusive additions to tickets that are already highly-priced or being used as a promotional excuse to further increase pricing.
  3. A majority of the media push towards NFTs in the events space is being led by large corporations such as Ticketmaster, StubHub, Fandango, etc. These companies already have strategic partnerships/contracts with sports leagues, teams, movie theatres, production companies, venues, musicians, etc. The same ticketing companies who are promoting NFTs are the ones who enable scalping, fraud, skewed pricing, and corruption. NFT technology actually breaks their power chain and liberates the entire industry. Unfortunately, due to the insane growth of NFTs over the last year, the wild west pricing strategies, and collectible hype, they’ve solely become a branding factor for companies entering the space without addressing the true benefits.
  4. The ticket is the NFT!! Remember, tickets are NFTs and do not have a “collectible” piece of art added to them that you have to claim or register after purchasing normal tickets. The entire basis of NFT ticketing is the fact that tickets are built on the blockchain, the art is already included, and they provide countless benefits to creators and fans, regardless of the event size.

Only Time Will Tell

As we mentioned earlier, this is a great step for the evolution of event ticketing but there are several challenges we’ve highlighted that are hindering its proper development and adoption.

Start by educating yourself on NFT ticketing in general so you understand the benefits beyond just collectibles. We’ve written a blog post that deep dives into the immediate benefits and outlines the proper structure for NFT ticket adoption.

There are several NFT ticketing companies and resources helping lead the innovation:

  • NFT Ticketing Alliance: a community passionate about NFT tickets. Check out their Twitter and Reddit — both have been experiencing rapid growth!
  • NFT Ticketed Events: Twitter account highlighting worldwide events that leverage NFT tickets.
  • Fair Ticketing Alliance: Community/campaign advocating for responsible secondary ticketing and more — Twitter & Website.
  • Companies: GET-Protocol/GUTS Tickets, SeatLab, B.A.M., BetterTicket, YellowHeart, Tixy (us), and several other companies — @ BetterTicket has outlined a complete list of NFT ticketing companies in this article. Also, check out this Twitter thread of different companies in the space.

We are Tixy, a European and US-based startup comprised of musicians, crypto enthusiasts, and sports fanatics on a journey to help event creators and fans of all sizes leverage NFT event ticketing! Sign up for early Beta access here.

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