What NFT Ticketing can do and why we need it
When I first confront new Web3 project, the most important questions to ask are:
Are they solving “real” problem?
When solving this problem, is Blockchain/Crypto/Web3 really necessary?
Web3 is cool, but depending on circumstances, it may be unnecessary and rather inefficient.
Goal of this article is to find out whether Seatlab satisfies above questions. If it passes both questions, it’s reasonable to say that Seatlab is a Web3 project with bright future.
Present of Ticketing Industry
Ticketing is a big industry which valued at about $28.49B in 2021. Tickets are needed for music shows, festivals, sports events, and business meetups and minting, supplying, and distributing these ticket is what the companies of ticketing industry is doing.
The biggest player of this industry is Ticketmaster with revenue of $11.5B per year which is several times larger than the sum of revenue of second, and third biggest player, Eventbrite and Stubhub. Ticketmaster is typical company which makes money based on high market share and ripping high fees from customers.
Scalping in ticketing means when malicious actors use bots or macro to buy popular tickets in few seconds and after it’s sold out, they sell it in secondary markets with enormous premium. In case of famous artists and sports events, ticketing often ends in seconds as soon as it starts. When it happens, true fans would give up or pay enormous premium to scalpers in secondary market for the ticket.
Ticket fraud is when you buy ticket in online, but it turns out to be fake or it doesn’t arrive.
Unhealthy Secondary Market
It’s connected to the previous scalping issue, but secondary market of tickets has some problems. To be clear, secondary market is necessary. however, there are some problems such as scalpers ripping off too much premium and event creators not getting any profit from the secondary sales.
No Way To Reward Event Attended Fans
If event creator wants to reward fans that attended the event, there’s no way to do it. If the number of attendees is small, we can meet them one by one, but if number exceeds certain amount, it’s impossible, and rewarding in digital form is much harder work to do.
Current ticketing industry is stumbling because of the global pandemic circumstances. However, as needs for offline event will grow, not decrease, I expected it would get back on track as soon as the pandemic is over. Rather, it is great timing for new player to appear and shake the industry.
Additionally, when the biggest player of certain industry is just making profit based on its market share without differentiated technology, it is the easiest industry to innovate. And ticketing industry is prefect example for this.
Seatlab is NFT ticketing marketplace protocol based on NEAR blockchain. Through Seatlab, event creators can mint ticket as NFT, and users can buy ticket in the marketplace. Users can buy and sell NFT tickets in marketplace.
How It Works
Event creator can list their event’s ticket as NFT form in Seatlab NFT marketplace. By using smart contract, event creator can set several conditions about the ticket such as ratio of the royalty split of secondary sale, upper limit of secondary sale price, and transferability of the ticket after the first purchase.
Ticket buyers search for the desired ticket in the Seatlab Marketplace and then purchase it. At this point ticket buyer should pay for 5% of purchase fee. If ticket buyer holds $SEAT, which is the native token of Seatlab, he can get discount proportional to the amount that they hold. Half of purchase fee goes to the $SEAT token stakers and other goes to the Seatlab treasury.
$SEAT has two utilities; a) discount for purchase fee and b) can be exposed to the protocol’s revenue from the purchase fee.
Solutions To Existing Problems
Seatlab prevents scalping by eliminating the economic incentives of the scalpers. Setting high ratio of the royalty split of the secondary sale or making it non-transferable would make scalping unprofitable business.
As Seatlab NFT marketplace trades tickets as NFT form, if malicious actor tries to fool buyers with fake ticket, it’s easy to be recognized because the fake ticket and legit one’s token address must be different.
Unhealthy Secondary Market
As I mentioned above, if event creator set the upper limit of secondary sale price, we can prevent resellers putting enormous premium. Also, setting the royalty split of secondary sale for event creators and artists can make them profit from the secondary sales.
No Way To Reward Event Attended Fans
Through Seatlab, it’s very convenient for event creators to reward the fans that attended specific event. Event creators can just snapshot the wallet address which holds the corresponding NFT and airdrop certain reward. And this procedure can be easily done by using seller dashboard of Seatlab.
For user who has no experienced about NFT marketplace before, creating wallet and buying cryptocurrencies are not easy thing to do. To eliminate this entry barrier, Seatalb integrates the fiat-on-ramp service by Moonpay. It allows users to buy ticket by fiat on Seatlab NFT marketplace.
NFT & NFC
Before Seatlab, to enter the festival or event venue, I had to show the paper ticket or mobile purchase history to the staff. This procedure is highly inefficient and makes long line just to enter the event. To solve this, Seatlab bounds NFC to each NFT tickets. With Seatlab, I can just place my phone on NFTC tag just like Apple pay or Samsung pay works.
Gas Fee Cover
In Seatlab, there are two situations where gas fee can occur. First is when event creator mints the ticket as NFT and second is when users buy and sell tickets through marketplace. In both cases, Seatlab covers gas fee behalf of event creators and ticket buyers. In NEAR, there is feature called Prepaid Gas, which developers can cover gas fee for the user and Seatlab use this feature to make users no need to care about gas fee.
What I Think
I think Seatlab passes the above two questions that we set, however, there’s some points that I want to mention which would make Seatlab become much successful in future.
Better Scalping Preventing Solution
Giving high royalty split to event creator or making ticket not transferable could be problematic. If certain ticket buyer is in situation where he can’t really participate, he have to bear the big loss because of high split ratio or he cannot sell it in secondary market. Also, if we use eliminating economic incentives as preventing scalping, scalpers would do their best to find the vulnerability and eventually find certain ways to make money with it in future. So, I think Seatlab needs more fundamental solution for preventing scalping.
Adoption & Education
Adoption & Education is the most important factor to Seatlab’s success.
FIrst, no matter how Seatlab has efficient and improved technology, at user’s perspective, if the event that user want to attend is not on Seatlab, user wouldn’t use it. Because of that, Seatlab should onboard as many music festival, sport events, and business meetups as possible. To do this, Seatlab is preparing the $1M fund for event creators. This fund would incentives event creators to use the Seatlab for their ticket.
Another important factor is to how introduce Seatlab and eliminate the bad stereotype of NFT to music & sports fans. Currently, NFT has bad reputation to entertainment fans that it’s bad for environment and it’s just tool to exploit the fans. So, it’s crucial to appeal that Seatlab doesn’t affect environment because it uses NEAR, which is PoS chain and fans can buy ticket more fairly through Seatlab.