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NFT utility to remedy ticketing dilemmas? Experts weigh-in

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NFT utility to remedy ticketing dilemmas? Experts weigh-in

The 2022 Champions League final will have a checkered position in the competition’s history book. Real Madrid emerged victorious over Liverpool inside the Stade de France, but the pandemonium outside the stadium before kick-off highlights the need for innovative solutions to events ticketing.

Counterfeit tickets played a massive role in the chaotic scenes that played out in the French capital in June 2022, as fans broke into the stadium precinct while authorities rebuffed many. French authorities estimated that 35,000 people had arrived at France’s national stadium with fake tickets or none at all, in addition to the 75,000 fans that had legitimate tickets for the grand final.

Black market ticket sales and touting have been part and parcel of the sporting and events world for decades, but the advent of blockchain-powered ticketing looks to be a promising solution. Nonfungible tokens (NFTs) are multi-faceted in that they ensure the credibility of tickets and enable Internet-of-Things (IoT) functionality while also serving as a unique digital collectible to commemorate an event.

The NFL has already tested the waters with NFT ticketing, having distributed around 250,000 NFT tickets after launch in November 2021. Fans that attended the NFL’s Super Bowl LVI were also eligible for commemorative NFT tickets — all at no cost. How that NFT ticket looks and what it incorporates are up to the creators. The NFL’s NFT tickets are minted on the Polygon blockchain and feature different animated visual elements.

The French envoy for the 2024 Paris Olympics has also suggested the use of NFT ticketing solutions to manage attendance for the events, as well as a trial run at the 2024 Rugby World Cup, which will also be hosted in the country.

NFTs are multi-faceted in that they ensure the credibility of tickets and enable IoT functionality while also serving as a unique digital collectible to commemorate an event. How that NFT ticket looks and what it incorporates are up to the creators. The NFL’s NFT tickets are minted on the Polygon blockchain and feature different animated visual elements.

Cointelegraph reached out to a handful of industry participants that already make use of blockchain-based NFT ticketing to gauge the impact of the technology.

Amsterdam-based event technology firm GET Protocol issues tickets that are minted as NFTs on the Polygon blockchain when a user buys a ticket in their mobile app. Tickets are tied to mobile numbers, which is a key part of eliminating ticket touting.

Related: There’s more to NFTs than just PFPs — 5 ways nonfungible tokens will transform society

Users can claim the actual NFT when they scan the ticket QR code at the given event, which links to their GET Protocol wallet. This is where digital collectibles and other exclusive benefits can be extended to users.

Colby Mort, who heads up NFT strategy at the company, told Cointelegraph that NFT tickets help add transparency to what is traditionally a “blackbox” industry. All tickets are transparently viewable in real time, which helps prove ticket authenticity, given the immutability of the underlying system

The secondary sale market is also formalized. Tickets can only be resold within the system, giving organizers control of tickets, revenue, data and direct contact with holders. Tickets are also given extended life cycles, both pre- and post-events, with GET Protocol exploring decentralized event financing for an upcoming Lewis Capaldi art show in Iceland. This explores fundraising initiatives with technology that could benefit smaller artists and creatives.

Digital collectibility is a major feature of post-event NFT utility but Mort also pointed to its potential as a community-building tool for artists and event hosts.

“NFT Ticketing for a lot of mainstream audiences is the ‘light bulb moment’ of understanding the underlying utility of an NFT combined with the familiarity of the collectible side of NFTs as all NFT Tickets can include a digital collectible.”

Josh Katz, CEO of NFT marketplace YellowHeart, told Cointelegraph the ticket industry is plagued by issues around authenticity and scalping which are mainly driven by the ease of forging or replicating paper tickets with modern hardware.

The finite element and exclusivity of tickets also results in mass reselling at inflated prices. Katz noted that the online ticketing market is expected to be valued at $68 billion by 2025, while secondary sales could generate $15 billion in sales of which organizers and artists forgo their rightful share:

“NFTs, on the other hand, can help solve most — if not all — of these issues. For one, the open and transparent nature of blockchains makes it extremely easy to verify the provenance and authenticity of NFT tickets, so it’s substantially harder for scammers to fool people.”

Kats also highlighted the freely programmable nature of the smart contracts powering NFTs, bringing dynamic benefits to holders and issuers. This also addresses secondary market sales, where NFTs can be programmed to deliver a percentage of sales to the artist or event organizer.

Mort insists that a focus on form and function has been important for their ticketing solution’s success to date. Ticket buyers use fiat currency to purchase tickets linked to bank accounts or cards and access and interact with their NFTs through an app.

“Since our inception in 2016, we’ve prioritised abstracting away the complexity of blockchain and NFT technology, but over the last year we’ve seen a huge demand from ticketing companies and event organisers to explore the Web3 side of their ticketing with post-event NFT claiming.”

GET Protocol was built to be blockchain agnostic, given that customers and clients will use the event and ticketing marketplace without having to understand the underlying technology. 

Striking a balance that ensures ease of access for new users while harnessing the programmability, utility and immutability of blockchain technology is a key theme highlighted by both Mort and Katz in the adoption of NFT ticketing. 

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Chainlink eyes 25% rally ahead of LINK staking launch in December

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Chainlink eyes 25% rally ahead of LINK staking launch in December

Chainlink (LINK) looks poised for a 25% price rally in the days leading up to its staking protocol launch, based on several fundamental and technical factors.

Chainlink’s price rallies ahead of staking launch

The staking feature, which will go live as v0.1 in beta mode on Dec. 6, comes as a part of the so-called “Chainlink Economics 2.0” that focuses on boosting LINK holders’ reward-earning opportunities for “helping increase the crypto economic security” of Chainlink’s oracle services.

Earlier, Chainlink users had to launch their own nodes to receive rewards in LINK tokens. The staking feature effectively opens new avenues for them to earn LINK rewards that could, in theory, boost demand for the token.

Additionally, demand for LINK’s parent platform, Chainlink, as an oracle service provider, should also increase.

David Gokhshtein, founder of blockchain-focused media company Gokhshtein Media, believes it could happen in the wake of the recent FTX collapse.

The analyst highlighted how traders have been seeking more clarity on exchanges’ reserves after the FTX fiasco, which can boost demand for oracle services like Chainlink and, in turn, push LINK’s price higher.

$LINK is definitely being overlooked. With everything that’s happened and with the new “Proof of Reserves” being pushed out there, ChainLink will be used to push that data out there.

— David Gokhshtein (@davidgokhshtein) November 26, 2022

Chainlink Labs launched its proof-of-reserve auditing services to exchanges on Nov. 10.

The speculations have helped LINK’s price rally in recent days. Notably, Chainlink’s price gained 35.50% eight days after bottoming out locally at around $5.50 — trading for as much as $7.50 on Nov. 29, its highest level in two weeks.

The LINK/USD pair now eyes further upside in the near term, price technicals suggest.

A failed LINK price breakdown

LINK reclaimed its multi-week rising support trendline on Nov. 29, three weeks after losing it in the wake of the FTX-led market sell-off.

In doing so, the Chainlink token also invalidated its prevailing ascending triangle breakdown setup toward $4.

It now trades inside the pattern’s range, eyeing a rally toward the upper trendline near $9.40, up 25% from the current price levels, by the second week of December, as shown below.

LINK/USD three-day price chart. Source: TradingView

Michaël van de Poppe, market analyst and founder of Eight Global, also anticipates LINK to hit or cross above $9

#Chainlink showing a ton of strength, also expecting continuation there to happen.

If I didn’t have a long yet (but I do), then I’d be targeting for something like this in which I’d be looking at $9 area for a TP. pic.twitter.com/rRdv4eL91H

— Michaël van de Poppe (@CryptoMichNL) November 29, 2022

Moreover, a bullish continuation move above the $9.40 resistance could have LINK eye $16 next, the ascending triangle breakout target.

Related: Binance publishes official Merkle Tree-based proof of reserves

Conversely, slipping below the triangle’s lower trendline again risks bringing the breakdown setup toward $4 back in play, down about 45% from current prices.

This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading move involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making a decision.

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Non-whale Bitcoin investors break new BTC accumulation record

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Non-whale Bitcoin investors break new BTC accumulation record

Some non-whale Bitcoin (BTC) investors seem to have had zero issues with the cryptocurrency bear market as well as fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) around the fall of FTX, on-chain data suggests.

Smaller retail investors have turned increasingly bullish on Bitcoin and started accumulating more BTC despite the ongoing market crisis, according to a report released by the blockchain intelligence platform Glassnode on Nov. 27.

According to the data, there are at least two types of retail Bitcoin investors that have been accumulating the record amount of BTC following the collapse of FTX.

The first type of investors — classified as shrimps — defines entities or investors that hold less than 1 Bitcoin, $16,500 at the time of writing, while the second type — crabs — are a category of addresses holding up to 10 BTC, $165,000 at the time of writing.

“Shrimp” investors have reportedly added 96,200 BTC ($1,6 billion) to their portfolios following the FTX crash in early November, which is an “all-time high balance increase.” This type of investor collectively holds 1.21 million BTC, or $20 billion at the time of writing, which is equivalent to 6.3% of the current circulating supply of 19.2 million coins, according to Glassnode.

In the meantime, “crabs” have bought about 191,600 BTC, or $3.1 billion, over the past 30 days, which is also a “convincing all-time-high,” the analysts said. According to the data, the new milestone has broken a previous high of BTC accumulation recorded by crabs in July 2022 at the peak of 126,000 BTC, or $2 billion, bought per month.

Bitcoin net position change for addresses holding up to 10 BTC. Source: Glassnode

While crabs and shrimps have been accumulating record amounts of Bitcoin, large Bitcoin investors have been selling. According to Glassnode, Bitcoin whales have released about 6,500 BTC, or $107 million, to exchanges over the past month, which remains a very small portion of their total holdings of 6.3 million BTC, $104 billion.

The behavior of shrimps and crabs seems to be interesting given the latest industry events, with Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto exchange becoming a subject of a massive industry scandal involving alleged fraud and funds misappropriation.

On the other hand, some big Bitcoin investors have claimed to keep being bullish on Bitcoin despite the ongoing crisis, with the government of El Salvador starting purchasing BTC on a daily basis, starting from Nov.17. Twitter CEO Elon Musk also expressed confidence that Bitcoin “will make it” despite the current industry issues, but there might be a “long crypto winter,” he said.

Related: Exchange outflows hit historic highs as Bitcoin investors self-custody

In the aftermath of the fall of FTX, Bitcoin immediately lost about $6,000 of its value, plummeting from around $21,000 below $16,000 in mid-November. The cryptocurrency has been slightly recovering over the past few weeks, edging up to no higher than $17,000.

At the time of writing, BTC is trading at $16,500, or up around 1.7% over the past 24 hours, according to data from CoinGecko.

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President of Bank of Brazil Shows ‘Open Finance’ Digital Real Concept Featuring Stablecoin Integration and Payments Functionality

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President of Bank of Brazil Shows ‘Open Finance’ Digital Real Concept Featuring Stablecoin Integration and Payments Functionality

digital real

Roberto Campos Neto, president of the Bank of Brazil, explained the role that the Brazilian central bank digital currency (CBDC), the digital real, might play in the future of personal finance. At an event, Neto explained the concept of “open finance,” showing a “super app” that featured PIX (a payments network) functionality, and also integration with other stablecoins already available.

Digital Real Might Connect Directly With Cryptocurrencies

The proposed Brazilian CBDC, the digital real, is ostensibly growing to have more and more functions. Roberto Campos Neto, president of the Bank of Brazil, showed the concept the bank has for the finished version of the currency. On Nov 25. at an online event, Campos Neto introduced the ideas that the institution has for the currency, under the “open finance” name.

This idea includes the integration of the digital real, which is still under development, with traditional and decentralized financial structures and institutions. A “super app,” that will allow customers to hold stablecoins and the CBDC, was also shown in the event, showcasing the connection the system will have with the already available PIX payments network.

On the app mockup, Campos Neto clarified:

This is basically a teaser of what this integration I’m talking about will be. Instead of having several apps on your cell phone, from several banks, you will have some kind of integrator.

In this way, the app will allow the users to have a complete picture of their savings, traditional or crypto-based, in just one place.

A Push for Digitization

While the digital real concept has been in development for quite some time, there is no estimated date for its completion, as the central bank and other organizations continue to test the different implementations and functions this new coin would have. However, Campos Neto stated that the currency will be a bridge to decentralized finance, as the country pushes towards monetary digitization.

On this, Campos Neto explained:

The digital real part is a bridge to the defi environment. We are bringing the digital world to the banking system. Several other central banks are doing the opposite. They are actually pushing digital out of banking.

However, contrary to what Campos Neto states, several central bank digital currencies are already being tested by myriad central banks. The European Union is currently studying the implementation of a digital euro and is expected to regulate it soon. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York is also piloting an interoperable network of central bank wholesale digital money, and a proposal has surged in Argentina to eliminate physical money.

What do you think about Campos Neto’s open finance concept for the digital real? Tell us in the comments section below.

Sergio Goschenko

Sergio is a cryptocurrency journalist based in Venezuela. He describes himself as late to the game, entering the cryptosphere when the price rise happened during December 2017. Having a computer engineering background, living in Venezuela, and being impacted by the cryptocurrency boom at a social level, he offers a different point of view about crypto success and how it helps the unbanked and underserved.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

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