A four-day conference exploring how digital ownership and emerging technologies interact with the arts, sports and entertainment has landed at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
Veecon is the brainchild of serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, better known as Gary V.
It is billed as a phenomenon “featuring icons of business, sports, music, art, Web3 and popular culture in conversation to build lasting relationships, share ideas, and connect with the community.”
Veecon is expected to attract over 10,000 spectators from around the world, who will hear from 150 speakers, from new age guru Deepak Chopra to filmmaker Spike Lee and the ubiquitous rapper Snoop Dogg.
The tickets were sold as NFTs, which are non-fungible tokens that are sold on the blockchain, which is a digital ledger of transactions. Most conferences will dive into possible applications for NFTs.
Ami Barzale, chief product officer of Krinkle, a shopping rewards optimizer, described NFT’s ownership as “digital bragging rightsAn NFT, which can be an image, song or video, can be copied and enjoyed by anyone in the world, but only one owner.
The NFT market, still in its infancy, with people willing to pay for digital assets, is what Barzelle experienced firsthand. He said that for fun, he paid $100 for a video clip of Tiger Woods and later sold it for $5,000.
There is an inherent doubt and fear about buying and selling things that don’t exist in the physical world, which Veecon is aiming for.
During a media lunch on Thursday, Vaynerchuk said it will take education, communication and time to make people more comfortable with the idea of NFTs and blockchain.
“Many of us, either us, or especially our parents, are incredibly scared and uncomfortable” of using credit cards for online purchases, he said.
And while there were some early problems with fraud and theft, security measures were eventually developed. This will be soon enough for blockchain, he said, predicting how all asset sales will be recorded in 20 years.
“Education and communication solve everything,” he said.
While the conference, which runs until Sunday afternoon, focused on NFTs, there is much more to learn about their place in the new world of blockchain.
“NFTs are really fun for collectibles, but it is only a small part of consumer blockchain,” Vaynerchuk said. “We will eventually interact with NFTs because they will be our airline tickets, they will be our receipts, they will be our tickets to US Bank Stadium, they will be our membership cards. Right now, we are using plastic, QR codes or email confirmations for many things. Which I think will eat away at blockchain because it’s a better technology for those things. It’s going to take some time.”