Sports lovers are a passionate set of humans. They love their icons to a fault and will do anything to connect with them, share them, be identified with them and be a part of their story. Unfortunately, the opportunities to do this are rare as there are no platforms that act as the much-needed link to facilitate this connection. As such, the craze and rave of fanbases and clubs die down the moment an icon stops active participation in the sport — even if their memory stays alive in the minds of their most passionate fans. Among these fans is a desire to renew the love, support and passion the world once had for their heroes. Interestingly, this can be brought about by blockchain technology.
The advent of blockchain technology has changed the conventional landscape for every industry the technology has touched, be it finance, supply chain management, sport or anything else. From traditional content creation to art and music: the way people relate to these things has changed with the arrival of digitization and tokenization enabled by blockchain technology. This new token economy offers the potential for a more efficient and fairer financial world, where people can get adequately compensated for their passion. Part of this revolution has been the tokenization of media assets: art, music, videos, digital collectibles and more. These unique items are known as Non-Fungible Tokens, or NFTs.
NFTs are a core use case for blockchain technology. They are cryptographic assets with unique identification codes and metadata that are specifically designed to prove authenticity. The underlying coding is like other crypto assets, but with one main difference — NFTs lack the property of fungibility. Fungibility simply refers to the ability to exchange equivalent items of identical value — a $20 note is identical to another $20 note, not just in appearance but also in value at any given point in time. When you borrow $20, you don’t have to return the same note because this type of currency is fungible.
NFTs instead, being non-fungible, are not identical and can’t simply be exchanged for an equivalent. Since they are assigned unique identification codes, you can’t find that exact same token elsewhere on the internet, thereby creating scarcity and driving up the value of the tokenized asset. NFTs allow buyers to own a unique or limited digital asset and the risk of theft and plagiarism is removed due to inbuilt authentication mechanisms that establish provenance and ownership.
NFTs have many use cases, from personal identification through to things like artwork, real estate, music or collectibles. The world is catching on too — according to a report by CoinDesk, the NFT market surged 2,100% to over $2 billion in Q1 Sales in 2021. And this is where SportsIcon stands out. We take the concept of sport and icon fandom to the next level by leveraging the core values of blockchain technology and by being the first platform that allows fans to connect with the greatest sportspeople of all time through NFTs. With this, fans can own a part of an icon’s story forever, or one day trade it.
SportsIcon creates cinematic NFTs in collaboration with athletes that commemorate the journey through their lives and sporting careers that made them the icons they are. While regular digital content can be shared unlimitedly online, digital content in the form of an NFT becomes a unique asset that has provenance, originality and authenticity.
In addition to NFTs, SportsIcon is working to build the sports metaverse — a niche of the broader metaverse dedicated to sports fans and players. Metaverses are virtual worlds where individuals can connect with others. We often think about Virtual Reality metaverses, but this doesn’t necessarily have to be the case — any online game or social network has a piece of metaverse in it, although the true potential of these digital connections is only now being fully explored.
We launched SportsIcon to meet the specific needs of fans, athletes, teams and managers. The problem we saw had two faces: first, people became detached from their sporting heroes after the athlete’s active participation in sport ceased, and second, athletes and managers were unsure of how to engage with the burgeoning NFT market. Fans want to connect with their icons, and sports legends want to give something back to their fans — what was lacking was the framework to do so.
At the same time, the continued growth of the NFT and metaverse industries were inspiring incredible new applications for the technologies — which is why SportsIcon was born. SportsIcon is a Flow blockchain-based platform powered by $ICONS, the native token of the ecosystem. $ICONS is a utility token with which platform activities such as NFT trading, incentivization, and governance will be carried out. Our mission is to create an extraordinary community by connecting fans with the greatest sportspeople of all time.
This whitepaper introduces SportsIcon, our tokenomics and the potential of this blockchain-based project.