French authorities take note after fake tickets and gatecrashers spoiled the UEFA Champions League final experience for many soccer fans in Paris last month.
The disorder before the UEFA Champions League final game may lead to the widespread adoption of nonfungible tokens (NFTs) for ticketing at sports events in in France. The country previously stated that it intends to use NFT tickets during the 2023 Rugby World Cup and 2024 Paris Olympics.
Mass ticket counterfeiting was one of the causes of the chaotic scene at the May 28 soccer championship. It turned into a major embarrassment for the country after police used tear gas to restore order and the match between Liverpool FC and Real Madrid was delayed. French Government Olympics envoy Michel Cadot submitted a report to the Office of the French Prime Minister last week that recommended steps to prevent disorder at sporting events in the future, including the universal use of NTF ticketing.
Implementing the new ticketing system in advance of the rugby event and Olympics “would make it possible to prefigure the planned systems and to break in the working methods, as well as the reflexes of multi-actor management to face difficulties,” Cadot was quoted as saying in the report.
The French system foresees issuing nontransferable digital-only tickets using blockchain technology and QR codes. Tickets would be distributed by SMS not long ahead of events and activated within a security zone around the venue.
Prevention of ticket counterfeiting and scalping is one of the big draws for NFT ticketing, as it increases security at events and profits for their sponsors. Other functions, such as VIP area access or receipt of souvenir items, can be programmed into NFT tickets as well. Ticketing is just one of the ways NFTs have of penetrating the sporting world. NFT collectibles have been part of many teams’ marketing strategies since 2020 and are growing in popularity. They can even be programmed to include fan engagement tactics like voting and access to physical collectibles.