HomeCryptocurrency and MetaverseASTN And RMIT Deliver Blockchain In Sport Masterclass

ASTN And RMIT Deliver Blockchain In Sport Masterclass

RMIT ASTN blockchain in sport

ASTN And RMIT Deliver Blockchain In Sport Masterclass

On Wednesday, 24 November, the Australian Sports Technologies Network (ASTN), in partnership with RMIT University, delivered a live online masterclass on the opportunity for integrating blockchain technology in sports.

Ahead of the event, ASTN director, Dr Martin Schlegel spoke with Ministry of Sport about the partnership with RMIT and the potential for blockchain integration in sport, click here for the full interview.

The event saw members from the RMIT Blockchain Innovation Hub present, including Distinguished Professor Jason Potts, Associate Professor Stuart Thomas, and Associate Professor Chris Berg, as well as Dr Schlegel and participants in the ASTN pre-accelerator program, Ken Lee, and Tyrone Grupel.

Speaking at the masterclass, Potts said: “The best way to understand what blockchain technology is, in the context of why it is relevant for sport, is to think of it as the third generation of the internet.”

“The first generation of the internet gave us email.

“The second generation of the internet gave us Facebook, Google and e-commerce.

“Now we are at Web 3, where blockchain allows us to move from the ‘old’ industrial economy to the new digital economy, when not only can we send messages to each other and look at funny cat videos and so on, but we can do programmable contracts, identity protocols, payments, finance, banking, governance, property rights and asset registries and all of the base layer economic administrative infrastructure without having to place all out trust in government departments and big companies,” he said.

Discussing the connection to how blockchain technology will disrupt the sports industry, Potts said every industry or sector that relies on trusted information can, and probably will be rebuilt economically.

“It’s better economic infrastructure, which is the significant point of disruption,” Potts said.

“Sport is to a significant extent about the production of content.

“It’s made of information, about people and about events.

“All of that can be managed more securely and even monetised for the good of content creators, especially the athletes themselves,” he said.

Moving on to how blockchain is at work right now in sports, Thomas spoke about current developments in NFTs that are being rolled out by major sporting codes and teams.

“NBA Topshots is the most well know so far, but major sporting codes and league teams in Australia and elsewhere are planning or releasing their own NFT platforms and markets,” Thomas said.

“Where an NFT differs from a simple trading card is that it can be much more – they can be video clips of amazing player moments, they can be displayed, and traded in global showrooms and marketplaces, and they can even be programmed so that athletes and licensees receive a cut from ongoing trades.

“Another kind of token with big potential in sports is the “Social Token”, which can connect athletes, clubs and leagues to their communities of fans by rewarding them with perks like preferential ticket pricing, special ‘airdrops’ of NFTs and even ‘hang outs’ with their favourite stars,” he said.

Thomas went on to explain another way blockchain-based digital tokens can be used is to give athletes greater agency over their careers and incomes, by connecting directly to sponsors and supporters, even selling tokens as ‘shares’ in their future contract incomes.

Berg talked more about the future of digital ID in sports, with new ways of managing and “making the best of performance data, managing training records and even freer and more open disclosure and tracking of doping.”

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