The event ticket is dead, long live the event ticket
State of Awe Epitome #1 | The Latest Wonders in Experience Design, Festivals and Gatherings
January 23, 2022
State of Awe is a stack of trend digests and elemental essays on topics that capture the heart and mind of experience designer, Jordan Kallman at The Social Concierge.
INTENTION: The Epitome is a collection of essays on the experience economy, gathering design and culture. These essays have evolved out of a long-form, twice-monthly digest that was released regularly from March 2020 to July 2021. My intention with Epitome is a deeper writing style, exploring three key experience economy mega-themes: the loss of legacy ways of doing things, the rise of the Metaverse, and the increasingly distributed way we choose to organize ourselves. The writing is meant to inspire your own experiences, by diving deeper into arguments we feel are relevant to the future of gatherings. Epitome essays will be published semi-regularly, released on Sundays without a set schedule.
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If you would like to explore the digest topics we covered between March 2020 and July 2021, you can find a topic catalogue here. An explainer on the three mega-themes being explored in essay form, can be found here. Past writings and digests can always be found here.
TL;DR? The key arguments of this long-form essay have been highlighted in bold text. The central tenets of the essay are further spotlit with a ⚡ emoji. If you are short on time you can skim read these emphasized statements. Bonus points if you engage or retweet my Twitter thread on the topic: TL;DR vibes go here.
“Show me your wallet”, he says.
Sounds like the plot crescendo of a big city back-alley shortcut gone wrong. But no, this is not a story of a nefarious assailant trying to relieve me of the cash tucked away in my jeans.
Instead this is a tale of an unusually common request from door security at the entrance to an event. While attending a NFT conference in New York late last year, my schedule was packed with an absurd number of gatherings. And, here I was, waiting at the next venue on my social dance card.
The hulking door guy at this DJ show was peering into my digital wallet, stored on my phone, seeking validation that it contained a specific digital JPG. During the week of NFT.NYC this was a routine occurrence. You see, this JPG represented my ownership to one night of culture. It was a social token that would propel me past the entrance and into the waiting throngs on the dance floor. A dance floor full of people who, of course, all owned a similar JPG.
This was a glimpse into the future. One where the event ticket, as you know it, is dead, and its resurrection is something you should care about. Why? It could make your social life worth a fortune. At the very least, it will usher in a social club golden era. I invite you to follow me down the rabbit hole while I explain.
A Long-Standing Problem of the Experience Economy
Our social lives are filled with experiences of all types. From the mundane, like passing conversations on the weather or watching Netflix with a friend, to the remarkable, like the birth of a child, your wedding day or a live performance of your favourite artist. The vast majority of your social experiences are free or facilitated by another activity. It’s not often you purchase an event ticket to have a conversation with friends. You might, however, buy a drink at a bar or register yourself for a team sport to unlock the appropriate setting. Conversely, a small minority of experiences, those “curated or commercial ones”, are gated and require a ticket or some proof of access. These live, one-off, ticketed experiences propel a huge economy.
Due to the intangible and complex nature of our social interactions, the total size of the experience economy is understandably difficult to calculate. Airbnb’s S-1 filing prior to the company going public estimated the total addressable market for their “Experiences” marketplace at a striking $1.4 trillion dollars globally. Since 1987, the share of consumer spending on live experiences and events relative to total U.S. consumer spending has increased 70%. And almost three quarters of all Millennials say they’d like to increase their spending on experiences as opposed to physical things over the next year (Eventbrite). The experience economy, no matter which way you measure it, is massive, growing, and arguably, very good for us (digest #4 covered some of the well-being research).
⚡ Yet the way we access experiences really hasn’t evolved to serve our growing need. Sure, we digitized physical tickets within the last decade, exchanging physical passes for a barcode delivered to our email inboxes, but the core problem of yesteryear still exists: there is no easy way to verify that a ticket is authentic once the initial purchase of that ticket has been made. Between the box office and the venue gates, scams and frauds abound. For the consumer, not having verified ownership of their right of entrance comes with a huge range of second order consequences, including paying artificially inflated secondary market prices, buying fraudulent tickets, and giving away value to undeserving market players that should, by rights, be the property of the experience creator.
There is no doubt that the “unverified ticket problem” is a big one for the experience economy. And while most people would choose to banish ticket scalpers to a far away dungeon for their disingenuous role in society, the “verified ticket” solution itself probably won’t be celebrated by the masses with parades down Main Street. Or might it?
What if verified ticket technology is just the gateway to a new era of socializing, connecting and transforming oneself through a community of others? I am here to tell you that this is exactly the case. A verified ticket super stack will revolutionize the vast majority of one-off events that drive the experience economy, both virtually and IRL, into “always on” and persistent social clubs. It will supercharge the communities you are part of, create new identities for you to role play, allow you to solve bigger problems in collaboration with more people, provide stackable social utility, and open up an infinite combination of loyalty and effort rewards. The future reality of tokenized technology and verified access is more exciting than you realize. Indeed, for some, it will turn social lives into assets that store value.
Imagine a reality where your lived experiences are a new class of asset, just as valuable as the home you live in or the car you drive. This is the reality I can see materializing. It begins with verified access. And it is fascinating.
Why We Desire Experiences and the Hidden Problem They Create
Before we can dive too deeply into a discussion on how stored social value of experiences is changing, it is important to understand what we derive from the experiences we attend now. It is through the lens of these benefits that you will come to see how a verified token will be an exponential technology for us all.
Deservedly a comprehensive essay topic itself, it is important to appreciate that experiences are made up of two central rewards: substance, which I’ll call “social utility”; and status, which I’ll call “social capital”.
The social utility you gain from participating in an experience can be both essential and significant: pleasure, a feeling of connection to others, nourishment, a great memory, the solution to a problem, or even some form of personal transformation. Social utility is an inward-facing reward.
Attendance at the vast majority of experiences is driven by the inward-facing social utility we receive in return. When invited to attend an experience, most people first ask themselves, “how much am I going to enjoy this?” Enjoyment and pleasure compromise one dimension of the social utility you gain from an event or experience. But there are hundreds of different social utility dimensions to an experience. You might ask yourself, “who am I going to meet?”, or “what will this experience teach me?” These are two other solid examples of the accumulation of social utility through an experience.
Over the long-term horizon of an experience’s lifecycle there is no more powerful growth engine than a high degree of utility for its users. “Come for the tool, stay for the network”. Utility rewards grow a particular attachment, and deep relationships, that over the longer-term are hard to pull away from.
On the other hand, the accumulation of status, or social capital, is an outward-facing reward that humans are driven to seek out. It has been clearly demonstrated that social standing dictated success in our evolutionary process (sources). As tribal animals, our survival depended on our being accepted into a supportive community. But once inside any group, we’re rarely content to enjoy the lower rungs. We’re driven to rise within it. To do so, we are trained to find the most efficient path to maximizing our social capital. The accumulation of status triggers massive emotional outcomes in the brain that rival most of the other social rewards we collect (source). Social capital is the outward-facing reward we desire when attending an experience.
In the short-term, the perceived social capital gains of attending an experience drive its popularity, as we tend to share our participation in these events to advance our social standing. On the other hand, the social utility of an event drives engagement, builds relationships and grows community as participants return time-and-time again. Combined, they create the flywheel of growth. Experiences that provide both a high degree of substance (social utility) and a big return on status (social capital) are the most in-demand experiences on the planet because they return the greatest quantity of value to the attendee. These experiences charge a heavy premium for access.
⚡ If the highly visible problem of the experience economy is the “unverified ticket”, the arguably more important, and much more hidden problem is that tickets lack any additional storage capacity for social utility and social capital. Access to experiences has for a long time been represented by a scannable barcode. Photos, check-ins, and status updates on social media stand as digital memories you can share. Merchandise lets you rep your personal association with that lived experience. Outside of very rare examples, these items would never really be considered assets. Why? The future value of these items, particularly to anyone but oneself, is most definitely questionable. Bundling them together to increase social utility and social capital is also not possible with unverified ownership.
What if the “ticket” to your favourite band was also limited-edition art you could later sell to a fellow fan? What about possessing a digital photo from a favourite trip that granted you benefits long after you left your vacation spot? Or what if we are thinking about event tickets all wrong? And instead of providing access to one night of fun, they provided you access to a continuous community who love the same things you do? Strange ideas, I know. But these ideas of stacked social utility and accumulated social capital are not just conceptual, plenty of examples are alive and roaming in the wild. Let’s go deeper down the rabbit hole and I will show you where to look.
The Metaverse and its Impact on Gathering Culture
Since the onset of the pandemic, the term the “Metaverse” has exploded from fringe conversations to one of the buzziest technology words. Facebook even co-opted it as their name. But the status games are starting to stack up around it. Why? Here’s an easy way to understand it:
Before the dawn of the internet, the experiences you took part in were exclusively IRL. Sure, there may have been a piece of technology facilitating some of it, say a telephone. But generally speaking, the introduction of the internet opened up the opportunity for increasingly online and digital experiences.
To Shaan’s point above, the growing cultural relevance of the Metaverse does not mean that we will be living inside virtual worlds akin to Ready Player One or The Matrix anytime soon. Our acceptance of the word is a signal. What we desire, what is culturally cool, is shifting towards digital things.
Within a short future timeframe, I expect your “hey did you hear” conversations to revolve around digital things more than physical things. Even by this time next year, you will desire virtual items that you cannot fathom wanting today.
Take this pop culture reference as an example, one that uses art museums as a measuring stick. Even a few years ago, it would have been very hard to believe that a digital projection exhibition would be recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s most visited museum featuring art by a single artist. But it happened, and it is a sign of our growing appetite for digital experiences.
As we move into the near future, our virtual items and desirable things will accumulate in Web3 enabled digital wallets. These digital wallets will be the only logical choice to store your digital goods. And adoption rates are already skyrocketing.
Looking far into the future, and so long as digital wallet adoption rates continue their rapid ascent, it is not hard to imagine a world where the digitization of every existing asset is a reality. But even further to this point, a nearly infinite number of new assets will be created. Substance and status will be stored in things previously unimaginable, and the outline below provides illustration by way of a few stellar case studies.
Once our mimetic desire flywheel starts churning over on virtual items, you can quickly expect experiences to be leading the pack, the access to which will be governed by transparent, verified and visual tokens. You will love owning many, will be proud to show off some, and will trade away those you no longer find interesting. Before you know it, your event ticket will be unrecognizable from today’s inbox barcode.
Tokens of the Fungible and Non-Fungible Variety
So how is this going to work? Why will a JPG change our social lives for the better?
Most of you will have, by now, heard someone in your circle talking about NFTs. Or perhaps you have a computer-savvy sibling who trades cryptocurrencies. These activities provide a glimpse at the dawn of Web3, and it is so early in the adoption cycle, you’re probably not taking it seriously enough. Regardless of your belief in this future, the data doesn’t lie and the ownership of tokens of all types is growing exponentially. You only need to project that growth out a few years to appreciate the potential influence these tokens could have on, well, nearly everything.
Token ownership comes in two types: some are fungible, and others are non-fungible. There is quite a bit already written on the topic, so if you’re still catching up, here’s a must-read mega-thread from one of the best subject matter experts in the game (Punk 6529 is an anonymous writer):
What most people misunderstand about the much hyped non-fungible token craze is that NFTs are not JPGs. Because NFT token technology can point to literally anything (I recommend clicking through to the thread above for an explainer), a non-fungible token can represent anything. It just so happens that a large majority of the NFT craze right now uses these tokens to point to JPGs.
To pull from Punk 6529’s thread above, “I could issue 100 6529PartyTokens and say ‘whoever has one, can come to my party on Saturday night’. And the lower the number, the more priority you get in line.” If you remember my story from the top of this essay, I found myself in that exact situation when standing at the door to the venue in New York.
As an article in the Harvard Business Review summarizes in a recent feature on how NFTs add value, non-fungible token technology is a tool for designing new markets and redesigning old ones. ⚡ Cryptography-verified tokens unlock clear property rights, making possible new types of transactions never before imagined, and allowing programmable features and characteristics that expand over time.
Take the @BoredApeYC (BAYC) as an example. This collection of avatar JPGs started out as digital illustrations of bored apes. Yet over time the owners of these NFTs have formed a tight knit community and unique culture. It has transformed into an exclusive membership club. This most recently culminated in a celebrity-packed surprise #ApeFest, funded through royalty economics, for its token owners during NFT.NYC. To get in, you needed to own one of their very pricey NFTs. It was the hottest ticket in town. The gathering was co-organized by a variety of Ape NFT owners.
But storing social utility in a ticket doesn’t require non-fungible illustrated animals. @FWBtweets is also a tokenized community, albeit fungible. Their $FWB tokens are all identical in nature. And you need to own any seventy-five of them to enter their digital spaces and IRL parties. They even developed a dApp called Gatekeeper that checks your wallet for those tokens, doubling down on the verified nature of “their tickets” (you can read more detail in this deeper dive). This team continues to innovate on stored social utility.
As you can see, the polaroid image of how tokenized technology will revolutionize our social lives is beginning to appear. Cryptography-enabled technology solves one of the longest-standing problems of the experience economy: the ability to implement a ticket verification process that automatically manages the trust of who owns that ticket. But in the two examples above, both the fungible and non-fungible tokens do more than just verify your ticket. $FWB stores future social utility to community events and digital spaces. While BAYC goes even further, embedding their celebrity-studded music events behind digital tokens taking the form of JPGs. Visual tokens, I should mention, that come with serious community and industry street cred.
To store value, an asset requires both present and future value. For quite possibly the first time ever, a technology unlocks a way to store both using the medium of social experiences.
The length of this essay will clip in most email inboxes. Continue reading online to understand how the event ticket will change, what the token ticket super stack will look like and why your social life will be an asset.
Tokens and Ownership
Via NFTs, every digital thing you have rented from central providers is now ownable without the help of an intermediary or the implied trust of a custodian. This includes simple things to understand like domains, images, and video game characters. It includes rented space like places to write, locations to view photos and threads to write messages to others. And more complex identity assets like status, followers and community.
Via the fungible token spectrum, on the other hand, we can effectively represent fractionalized ownership. It is the ubiquitous fungible token that will form the ownership foundation of tomorrow’s organizations (another likely future essay).
Cryptography will even enable the ability to own intangible things that were, up until now, impossible to possess. Never before could you own your attendance at an event. Now? Verified via blockchain and represented by a token. @POAPxyz is an ecosystem for the preservation of digital memories. It allows you to mint a badge based on an event that you attended, experience that you took part in or location that you visited. Long after centralized customer databases have expired, your attendance at that experience will remain imprinted on the blockchain.
Photographic memories? Sure, they are yours. But never before could you add utility to them in unique ways, all verified by a global supercomputer. @CathSimard_ released her most precious photograph as an NFT and embedded a 5-day Rocky Mountain adventure within it. The purchaser owns both a valuable piece of art and the opportunity to enjoy the photographer’s company on a once-in-a-lifetime nature experience (source).
Now imagine an infinite combination of tokens that store utility and endow future privileges that represent new and exciting things about your social life. Imagine avatars that represent you at digital social events, verified membership cards that grant you access to your social clubs, messages from others in your wallet full of new connections, records of attendance to special events, and badges of loyalty demonstrating your loyalty to the creators you love. All of them owned by you and tradable to others.
How a JPG Makes Social Lives Better
No doubt there are a few of you screaming your objections at this imagined future. There are deep questions at the intersection of technology, financial instruments and inequality of opportunity. Non-fungible tokens, and cryptocurrencies in general, are one of the most divisive technologies ever created. But taken as a whole, I am a firm believer that technology advances are additive and not societal zero-sum. Each advance comes with inherent consequences, and yet adds more to our lives than it takes away.
As tokenized asset classes rapidly expand the supply of intangible things that store value, our social lives will be a benefactor. Each person's journey of cultural ownership and social community can be exponentially unique to them.
A rise in ownership culture will open up interesting society-balancing opportunities:
Token ownership is non-discriminatory. In fact, buying and trading anonymously or under a disguised pseudonym is relatively easy, forgoing race, religion, gender or social class, to name a few. As the user experience of Web3 improves, even those of an older age will more easily be able to navigate the new system.
Token ownership will allow you to gain inclusion more easily. Joining an interest group demands a cumbersome search and takes time to navigate the social nuances of acceptance. With verified tokens, entire ecosystems of interest groups will pop up, at every regional level, allowing you to easily buy or earn-in with ease. Additionally, it will be easy to transfer memberships to friends, much like borrowing a streaming service subscription today.
As the social coordination elements of token ownership develop, we could see the evolution of the labour movement. Here’s an optimistic take. But imagine self-governed, fully owned worker rights organizations. Just one of the possibilities that may be afforded to the more efficient organization of collectives unlocked by token ownership.
Verified token resales allow for a commissioned royalty to flow directly back to the creator of the token. For the art world, this is revolutionary as it allows the artist to collect on resale royalties they haven’t previously been able to capture. For the experience economy, this means we get to cut out traditional ticket scalpers and instead reward the creators putting on the experience. It is more difficult to predict the specific ways these royalties will transform community value, but once the flywheel of royalties begins to spin, community-focused creators will undoubtebly find ways to continuously reinvest their royalty profit, for the sake of further token value.
The underlying economics of asset ownership and verified royalty resale unlock tremendous opportunities for experiences, and the communities they serve. One of the fundamental reasons there isn’t more choice in the festivals, events and gatherings you attend is that they are just so expensive (and risky) to produce. By unlocking a better economic model, you will have more choice and those experiences will attract greater resources. It will permit the investment in the spectacular, increasing the variety of the events and experiences we choose to participate in.
The Tokenized Ticket Super Stack
Welcome to the tokenized ticket super stack.
By applying trustless verification to intangible experiences, a super stack of experiential rewards is possible. Here’s a visual breakdown:
⚡ We desire experiences for the social utility they add to our lives and the social capital they enhance us with. Verified tokens make both inward-facing rewards and the outward-visible rewards more tangible, which in turn, allows us to account for and value them more effectively.
The verified and transparent ownership of a token enables the establishment of rights for things that were previously too intangible to own or transfer. As ownership is publicly verifiable, it can come with surprise benefits. Damien Hirst, the iconic British contemporary artist, airdropped a fresh piece of art directly into the wallets of all current holders of his original NFT release (with a resale price tag that will surprise you). On the creator side, economic resale royalties really do unlock unique ways to delight loyal token holders. Otherwise, one of the world’s most renowned living artists would have failed to justify the free gift of thousands of pieces of artwork to collectors he has no relationship with.
Nested social utility has the potential to change expectations in so many ways. Because there is only so much social utility you can consume at one time, inevitably, this will result in stored value over a longer period of time. Put in real terms, this is the essence of memberships. @Poolsuite, the home of viral hits Poolside FM and Vacation sunscreen, launched an executive membership club for Internet leisure in the form of NFTs. They promise to make ownership a member-only good life, “concerned with entertainment and excitement more than profit”. With nearly 3,000 members, this is social club utility at scale.
Symbolic status (social capital) is being conveyed in a variety of unique visual ways across the NFT spectrum. @brtmoments is releasing their CryptoCitizens initiative across the globe, requiring you to mint one of their 1,000 generative characters physically at one of their galleries (check it out). Minting a @cryptovenetian or @cryptonewyorker gives you equal rights in community decision-making and financial matters, with a reserve number in each city set aside for residents of that city who have never before owned an NFT. They are visual characters that represent a digital version of your city life. And once you have a CryptoCitizen, you are part of the social club.
⚡ The tokenized ticket super stack combines a powerful combination of rewards into a single stacked up asset, one that can store both present and future value. It will do so by solving one of the experience economy’s most visible and long-standing problems: a lack of market-making property rights. The super stack ticket just won’t look like a ticket, and the events they represent won’t be the same events (as we know them both today today).
The Event Ticket will Date like a Floppy Disk
Those of you who grew up during the dawn of the Internet, will remember the floppy disk. This storage container has evolved so many times over the past 25 years that they are now effectively invisible to the average person. Today, we store value in the cloud, storage capacity has grown exponentially, and the floppy drive is confined to the recesses of computing museums. The same evolution will rapidly take place with access to experiences, and the ultimate ticket form will be unrecognizable from its current inbox barcode appearance.
I see this taking shape in a number of ways:
The first signs of a transition appear with token-driven, digitally native communities like the Bored Ape Yacht Club, Friends with Benefits, or Poolsuite (outlined above). Tokens grant you membership access to IRL experiences, established community, and virtual benefits. These “always on” social clubs have already begun to show promise.
Massive multiplayer video games both new (see Star Atlas as an example) and established (Fornite is a great example) begin to use NFTs to integrate ownership culture within their games. These video games continue to evolve into popular virtual gathering places that can be accessed at any time of day, from any time zone.
Progressive pop culture brands, music groups and films begin to launch NFT collections that will have experiences attached with them. The Adidas partnership with BAYC, the Kings of Leon album, and The Matrix feature film avatar drop are great examples. These examples are all loyalty programs with different wrappers that reward holders over time.
Traditional gathering institutions, such a restaurants, begin implementing a membership model. Earlier in January, Gary Vaynerchuck, the free-wheeling and very successful entrepreneur, did exactly this.
Annual or regularly recurring events and festivals with hyper engaged communities begin integrating tokenized ticket systems that double as merchandise and art. The big events that get this right end up launching tokens that focus on the top of the ticket super stack (i.e. symbolic status / social capital).
Large-scale social organizers will realize there is as much, or more value in super stacking rewards to holders over time (driven by royalty resale economics) versus constantly reselling event tickets to a new audience at the beginning of each new event or social cycle.
One-time experiences, like destination tours, begin to integrate longer-term utility into tokenized badges, imagery and memorabilia with the aim of increasing remote loyalty and return purchases from attendees after they take part in the experience. One-time travellers become life-long memory holders.
At one point, there’s a consumer tipping point and the technology is fun and easy to use. Tickets, as they are known today, disappear from view and are replaced by tokens within digital wallets. We stop talking about tickets to events, and instead, focus our cocktail conversations on the ownership excitement for the communities to which we belong.
Cloud file storage just looks so completely different to the floppy disk, and the user experience is incomparable. With the changing nature of tokenized tickets, the experience economy will be similarly flipped on its head. As this technology advances, the user experience will change so dramatically that we won’t be thinking about access to experience in terms of tickets. The value of experiences will be stored differently, and the user experience will be revolutionized in the process.
Your Social Life as an Asset
A complete picture of our future social lives is coming into view, and the potential is exciting.
Access to experiences has been plagued by an inability to verify ticket ownership
Tickets store value that we desire, made up of both end user social utility and, for certain experiences, a promise of increased social capital
Culture is shifting towards a desire for digital things over physical items, unlocking an opportunity for increasingly virtual consumer goods
⚡ Cryptography-enabled tokens solve the core issue of ticket validation. But the technology also unlocks the storage of additional value, both in utility and status, well into the future
Ticket storage capacity of both present and future value rises exponentially, which forms the basis for a new experience economy asset class, driven by community engagement
The ticket super stack emerges as the new standard for experiences. Owned tokens include symbolic and visual status elements, chain-able social utility and deep potential for loyalty and royalty rewards. The flywheel of desire spins faster and we socially coordinate more efficiently by combining tokens with others. ⚡ The premise of “going to an event” changes into “being part of the social club”, as social utility and social capital build over time.
Your social life ceases to use tickets and instead, the asset takes on visual forms and conceptual mind-space we could never before have imagined. In ten years time, the standard ticket barcode is a relic of history, much like the landline rotary phone or the computer floppy disk
Your social life is more varied, more vibrant and more dynamic than ever before.
Web3 will test new economic models as the social utility and the social capital of gatherings, events and experiences is represented in fresh ways through the ownership of tokens. The future will be full of tokens, both fungible and non-fungible that will represent wild new reward stacks.
Your social life will be an asset, or I suppose more accurately, a collection of many assets. Some will be used regularly, others stored in a vault. All of them on display. Through token ownership, we will see the birth of a full-time socialite class, economically-driven by trading social access. While not for everyone, this rapid evolution of community will benefit us all.
The experiential token explosion will usher in a social club era like we have never before seen. Where each of us owns our place within large communities that have a purpose, focused around a central core theme or interest. Event formats and their frequency will shift to meet the growing “always on” community desires.
Of course, the future is uncertain. Our world is changing faster than ever, fragmenting society into hyper-segmented interest groups that, at times, remain insulated. As the entire cryptography technology sphere expands, regulation in dominant markets could stop the development of these assets in their tracks. But I feel that were regulation to be introduced, the most extreme forms would have already arrived and as such, I foresee this space and the technology behind it only growing in prominence. Why? Simply put, it is fun to own these things and at times, economically profitable.
If this technology unlocks what I think it will, the economics of the experience industry will be forever changed. As Jim Barksdale famously said, the only way to make money is bundling and unbundling. Well, I expect a bundling bonanza for the experience economy. ⚡ By bundling up utility, access, and the status of an event ticket into a visual token, experiences and the communities that support them will thrive like never before. Suddenly, “right-click, save as” doesn’t have the same ring to it.
Web3 will unlock the open functionality of digital ownership just as our culture shifts to value digital things as much, or more than certain physical assets. Token ownership will demonstrate the power of community contribution. Just wait until gatherings are powered by combined investor ownership, club membership, personal brand value, and loyalty incentives all at once.
The event ticket is dead. Long live the event ticket.
Thank you to three helpful editors of this essay including Connor Nechelput, Oliver Finlay and Derek Sawkins. Unsurprisingly, all three are great writers who I deeply admire.
An ending aphorism to consider: The feeling of awe replaces time with euphoria. Awe is the essence of timeless wonder.
The premise of “going to an event” changes into “being part of the social club”, as social utility and social capital build over time — This is huge. A shift toward ongoing community will benefit our public health as well. I just hope they aren't just internet communities!