The Sports Metaverse Enigma

The Sports Metaverse Enigma

Yes, that kid is me!

Exactly 50 years ago, my family made a huge leap. One exciting morning, a man came to install our first landline telephone. This was a great upgrade to the special family whistle we used in my household. Whenever dinner was ready, my mother would stand on our third-floor apartment balcony and whistle to beckon the kids home to eat. Each family had their own whistle back then, a sort of social network. I was proud of our family whistle, still am, and I can still remember it to this day.

Since then…

We have moved from desktop PCs to smartphones, from text to streaming sports in 4K video. Thanks to the mass adoption of the internet, humanity has made incredible strides in science, medicine, and cultural expression. Together, humanity shaped the web and provided unparalleled tools for commerce, communication, and content. Connectivity makes everyone a creator, while connecting businesses with new markets halfway around the world. Few human advances have been so impactful.

What’s the big deal?:

Today with Metaverse, we are witnessing a quantum leap in our history, a progression that provides the framework for entirely new experiences. We stand together at the start of a new era in sports, a new internet, and the beginning of a new chapter for us. The Metaverse can offer us a glimpse into the future of interconnection. 

It may sound far-off or futuristic, but people already inhabit the Metaverse every day. They play massively multiplayer games in VR, attend fitness classes in VR, and even move meetings to virtual workspaces. Those not well-positioned in the Metaverse will soon be left behind. The Metaverse represents staggering change, but also a considerable challenge – in market adoption, data security, and many other regards. 

These early days are just the beginning. Metaverse will soon disrupt established modes in education and enable more accessible learning experiences. It will rock the world of medicine, upend global culture, and forge new frontiers in tourism and above all, SPORTS. 

Privacy and safety issues:

As a father of four children, I have a personal stake in what safeguards are being put in place. We need to be sure that our families have equal access to a safe space in the Metaverse. Here are some of the challenges:

Moderation and Regulation – how will we moderate this new space? Who will be tasked with moderating content and users? Existing Web 2.0 spaces are already lagging far behind users

Gatekeeping: How can we condition access in Metaverse based on age and user-appropriate content in new UGC spaces? In a democratized web3, where will the locks be placed?

Privacy: Facial recognition and privacy standards are entering uncharted territory – how can people protect their data and identity in the Metaverse?

The Promise I made to my kids.:

Perched at the start of this new era, we have the unique chance to shape the revolution – informed by deeper understanding. With the roadmap we carry from the legacy internet, we can avoid safety and privacy pitfalls. With this second chance, we can experience design whose singular purpose is not just to spend more time staring at screens or interacting with technology, but to bridge the distance. In the future, we need to make a promise to our kids. We must unite together and take a firm stand and create a safe, equitable, inclusive, and meaningful platform for generations to come! 

Metaverse in Sports:  

Metaverse will soon be serving billions across the globe. Needless to say, there is massive value “out there.” Virtual and augmented spaces are a huge opportunity in the Sports Universe for us in the HYPE Ecosystem. With mass adoption, the next crop of unicorns will hail from these new Metaverse territories, from an internet that has yet to be born. We must do everything in our power to help talented young founders nurture their bold new ideas – to stretch the very limits of possibility.

This is an amazing moment in human history. Huge industry forces like Nike, Disney, the NFL, and others are already uniting behind this change. The pathways to monetize revenue streams, attract users, and find new co-branding synergies are immense. Unlike other video content, sports have to be viewed in real-time to keep up with the action. No one wants spoilers, and recordings lack the excitement of a live game. It’s a natural fit for the Metaverse and VR. With breakthrough tech and once-in-a-lifetime fan experiences, the sports Metaverse is going to ROCK! 

Big questions about the future & invitation to join an open discussion with Sports Metaverse leaders:

The big questions I get are varied, but if I need to summarize them in one word it would probably be “WOW!” People ask: How can a Sports business leverage the future of Metaverse? What do decision-makers need to know as we approach 2022? What about monetization, cannibalization, etc.? These are all apt questions to ask!

To address these points and more, join us this Thursday, 16 December 2021! HYPE will convene a panel on “Metaverse: The Sports Enigma.” Industry leaders in Metaverse, Digital Content, and Sports businesses will share their ideas and predictions on sports in emerging digital spaces. Tickets are still available, and the webinar is free to attend.

Join the Discussion Here.

I will be there moderating our amazing panel, and personally… I can’t wait

Amir Raveh, President, and Founder of HYPE Sports & Innovation.

Special thanks to Adam Schalit for the great work on editing, optimizing, and proofreading this item.

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