Practicalities of Using NFT Technology in Event Ticketing

Using NFT technology in the ticketing industry naturally means we have to do things differently from how centralised ticketing platforms work.

Tim Bishop
Tim Bishop
May 8, 2022
5
min read
NFT Digital logo
SeatlabNFT

An NFT event ticketing marketplace helping artists foster closer connections with fans, eliminating fraud and reducing the impact of scalping.

Transitioning to a new technology must be frictionless to achieve mass adoption. Ultimately, why would anybody be interested in moving away from something they’ve been using for a long time to something else just because it’s new if it means having to overcome additional hurdles to do so?

“Built it, and they will come” isn’t entirely accurate.

It’s more like “build it, and they will come, if it’s easy…

Using NFT technology in the ticketing industry naturally means we have to do things differently from how centralised ticketing platforms work. Our goal is to identify these aspects of the process and put things in place to ease any bottlenecks.

Fiat On/Off Ramp

One of the biggest hurdles we are overcoming in the widespread adoption of NFT ticketing technology is how users make purchases. Currently, users have to purchase NFTs with cryptocurrency, which is unavoidable down to how smart contracts and dApps function.

We’re making the process simple. We plan to integrate with a fiat on-ramp provider like Moonpay to facilitate purchases with fiat currency. While the transaction itself will be completed using a stablecoin with the underlying chain being the NEAR Protocol, the user can initiate the process as they would any other online transaction. This way, event organisers can utilise the stability of a stablecoin to ensure that proceeds are not subject to market volatility.

Having a fiat on/off ramp fundamentally integrated into the SeatlabNFT marketplace in this way means there is one less step involved for users when migrating over to our platform.

Processing Refunds

The fact that blockchain transactions can’t be reversed is one of the biggest attractions to many people. And it’s an essential component in many applications. But when it comes to ticketing or any other e-commerce transaction, there needs to be a way of issuing refunds.

We’ve addressed this on the SeatlabNFT marketplace.

Within the seller dashboard, you can see the current holder of each NFT ticket; you can either issue refunds yourself or authorise user-initiated refund requests. When a user requests a refund, all you have to do is verify it; once verified, funds will transfer from the seller’s wallet to the ticket holder’s wallet. The platform will make a request to the decentralised database to ensure that the ticket is marked as refunded to void it.

NFC Scanning

Near-Field Communication, or NFC for short, is the technology in your smartphone that allows it to communicate with NFC terminals simply by being tapped against one.

Think Apple Pay or Google Pay.

When paying using either Apple or Google Pay, all you need to do is tap your phone against a terminal and verify the transaction using either fingerprint recognition or facial recognition. The process takes seconds and is a highly efficient way of paying, especially when dealing with large numbers of people.

Using NFT technology to issue and verify tickets is fundamentally an excellent idea. Still, if staff members had to manually check each person’s ticket by typing their wallet address into a block explorer, it would take forever to admit people into a venue. Queues would quickly build up, which would make NFT ticketing highly impractical.

By integrating the NFC technology already present in smartphones into our NFT ticketing system, all event-goers would have to do to gain entry to a venue is tap their phone against a terminal at the entrance.

SeatlabNFT’s tickets are stored in our mobile wallet, which means Near-Field Communication is the perfect tool to bridge the gap between the blockchain and physical entry gates at venues.

Transaction Speeds & Gas Fees

One of the biggest considerations we had when choosing our tech stack was transaction speed, scalability and gas fees. All three of these things are related to one another.

Using NEAR Protocol as our ecosystem to build on was an obvious choice, thanks to how the team is approaching scalability. They are implementing a sharded blockchain called Nightshade.

In short, sharding is when a blockchain is effectively broken down into smaller pieces, or shards, so nodes don’t have to process the entire blockchain. Splitting a blockchain into shards and processing them synchronously means the NEAR Protocol can handle many times more transactions than other Gen-2 and Gen-3 blockchains.

When a blockchain becomes congested, the gas fees needed to process each transaction increase exponentially; look at the current gas fees on the Ethereum network.

NEAR allows us to process thousands of transactions simultaneously at almost no cost. And the minimal gas fees that are incurred by people minting and selling NFT tickets on the SeatlabNFT platform, are covered by the SeatlabNFT Treasury in full.

Below is a comparison of the transaction times and gas fees of some of the leading Gen-2 and Gen-3 blockchains.

SeatlabNFT is changing the ticketing industry

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