Entertainment is becoming less about watching and more about interaction, all thanks to the power of NFTs. With dynamic NFTs, fandoms and collectors are now beginning to enjoy utility-packed and community-driven experiences. In this NFTLA Live Twitter Space discussion, Jeff Kelley, Eathan Janney, and Josh Kriger talk to those at the forefront of this exciting evolution: Dillon Rosenblatt and Ryan McMahill of Autograph. They discuss their dynamic NFT offer Signature Experiences that gives sports fans a unique chance to connect with their favorite athletes. Dillon and Ryan explain how they produce NFT collectibles that immortalize sports legend Tom Brady, which includes real-time analytics, statistics, and even a photorealistic 3D scan of his body.
Listen to the podcast here
NFTLA Live Twitter Space: An Inside Look At Signature Experiences By Autograph With Dillon Rosenblatt And Ryan McMahill
Welcome to this special Twitter Spaces session of the show. We’re also producers of NFTLA. That’s an event that leverages the entertainment and sports scene of Los Angeles for an experience that fosters curiosity, connection, and co-creation. That’s why we’re hosting this very special NFTLA-focused Twitter Spaces event. We’re joined by Dillon Rosenblatt, the Cofounder and CEO of Autograph, and Ryan McMahill, Head of Creative at Autograph. If you’re not familiar with Autograph, it is an NFT platform that brings together the most iconic brands and legendary names in sports, entertainment, and culture to create unique digital collections and experiences to better connect fans to the things they love.
Their partnership and advisory group reads like a who’s who of brands and people that move the needle, including DraftKings, Lionsgate, Sam Bankman-Fried, The Weeknd, Tony Hawk, Tiger Woods, and many more. Welcome, everyone that’s here. Welcome to our guests, Ryan and Dillon. Let’s start with a quick intro around the horn and a little background on each guest. Let’s tell us a little bit about you, Dillon. Let’s start with you. Where are you coming from? What got you to this point?
In Autograph, it has been an amazing first year in business. We have cultivated a strong community and taken steps to make some of the most iconic names, athletes, and properties feel comfortable in Web3. Our journey is getting started, though. Our first year was centered around drops on DraftKings Marketplace and being able to curate interesting experiences for our community and things that would have otherwise been impossible without an NFT.
The reason that we’re here is to talk about how we’re bringing our community into the next chapter of fandom and helping to live up to our mission of building what the future of fandom should look like. It’s a hazy North Star now, but I believe it ends with having an experience where fans are no longer in a one-way conversation with their icons and the things they care about. They are more connected in a more real way to the actual partners and rewarded for the time and effort they spend. That’s a quick background on me. I’m happy to talk about where we have been and where we’re going as much as you would like.
It’s an incredible mission as someone who has been a fan and an entertainer in music and things like that. It’s a strong pull. People want that connection. It’s beautiful when you can build it. Those are the greatest artists and the greatest communities of fans.
I’m super excited to chat with you and follow up here. It’s great to have Ryan on as well. I wanted to give him a few seconds to give a little bit about his role and background and a bit of the history behind it.
I appreciate it. I’m super excited to be here. Dillon, I, and the entire Autograph team have been heads down looking at building the next generation of our product here. We’re super excited to talk through it. I got a call from Dillon to come on this wild ride with him. It has been crazy. We’re all aware of the experience of building something so brand new and fresh and learning every step along the way.
We’re excited to take those learnings and launch into the next phase of what this Autograph experience is like for our users. Dillon nailed it. We’re looking to marry this creative exploration of storytelling along some of these athletes, icons, seasons, and their lives. We connect them with their fans and users in a way that brings them along for the journey in much more than that one-sided relationship that we all experience while watching sports from the comfort of our homes or even the seats in the stadium. We want to make a two-way conversation there.
It has been exciting figuring out how to revolutionize this fandom and this space in a way. My role there is to focus on leading the creative vision for those things and everything from the concept of the NFTs themselves. We’re going to talk a lot about the dynamic NFT that we’re excited to talk about all the way down to our new branding and that announcement. I’m proud of the team we have been able to build. I feel fortunate to work with some of the best producers, strategists, art directors, and 3D artists in the industry. That’s going to come through and shine when you see this next NFT.
You’re working with some incredible people. I love to call back what you said. Things are moving so fast. I was watching the trailer for what we’re going to talk about. I don’t know if we mentioned it yet so I won’t say what it’s called. The person who’s number one involved is watching that and being baffled and inspired by how quickly people are moving in the space and doing cool stuff.
It’s good to see you involved in that. I alluded to it. There’s so much goodness in the NFT world. It has been centered around sports-related ventures for some things. We look at NBA Top Shot. It was a huge mover when things got cooking here. Autograph has some killer releases worth talking about here. Tell us about Signature Experiences. Who wants to jump in and chat about that a little bit?
I’m happy to. This thing has been my, Ryan’s, and the whole Autograph team’s baby. The way that I like to think about it is this is a first-of-its-kind fan experience. None of it would have been possible without the existing community helping to get us to this idea and this concept that I believe stands apart and stands alone in the market.
If you think about NFTs that promise utility, the majority of roadmaps do. This packs a lot of the things that I believe the sports and memorabilia collectors have been craving all into one. The actual NFT is a dynamic NFT that takes you throughout the season with Tom as he goes and conquers different opponents. I won’t take the wind out of the sales there, though. I’ll let Ryan speak more about that because it’s his awesome work. I’m excited to announce also something that I believe is pretty rare.
That is such a big deal. You’re talking through it, but you said you’re riding along with Tom Brady through the season. This is going to be fascinating to get more details on. I want to put a pin in that because that is super revolutionary and exciting.
I appreciate that. Maybe now is a good time for Ryan to talk a little bit about the actual NFT that we’re putting so much work into, if that’s all right.
I’m super excited about it. Dillon has heard me and our team talk about it quite a bit since the beginning. A lot goes into building these things, as I’m sure some of us here are aware. We’re excited to have the foresight to be able to look into what it’s going to be. We’re all aware that every season at this point is a historic season for a man like Tom Brady, but it’s to be able to take a look at what’s going to unfold over the course of this next season and some records he’s going to be beating. People are obsessed with following this journey.
I get excited about telling that story visually through art in a way that’s going to find its way into these NFTs. Here’s a little bit of a teaser and a leak. The concept itself is to lay the foundation for the battles ahead for Tom and the Bucs. We’re trying to figure out how to create this story after every game, build a scene to commemorate whatever happened on Sunday night, Monday night, or Thursday night before, and bring those users along for the journey to visualize that.
We did a deep dive into the way that 21st-century football fan is experiencing their sports. We find everything down to the mechatronic mascots for broadcast football all the way down to real-life analytics. We wanted to bring a lot of that as a Web3 NFT company to the forefront along this journey and provide a lot of that data and that information.
Being so close to this stuff, it’s crazy when you look at Brady’s numbers and records next to anybody else around him. Sometimes it’s hard to appreciate how insane some of this stuff is. We wanted to make sure that data, those numbers, and all of these things inherent within this space find a way visually into this NFT as well in a beautiful artistic representation of what’s happening week by week throughout the season. After every game, you will get all his stats and all the information we can and present from there.
This is Josh jumping in as a long-time Brady fan who has followed his entire career. You can’t think of a better way to connect fans to a guy that has such a deep and rich history than what you are doing with all this utility. A year goes by fast. I think back to the original press release that went out that you were doing this, Dillon and Tom. For us, it’s on the moment because the early adopters always are doing the craziest stuff. The real building takes time. 2021 was about experimentation and exploration for the industry as a whole. I can’t think of any other project that has matched this type of utility in its totality. People have been trying to figure this out.
It has been great. Projects that launch in 1 or 2 weeks are still around. It’s incredible, but there has been some real building going on in the background like what you are doing here. It’s exciting. I was trying to refresh myself. Tom Brady joined the NFL in 2000, if I’m not mistaken. He has evolved, disrupted the game in a lot of ways, and kept fit over all those years, learning as he goes and evolving how he does things. You are applying the same thing, only it’s Web3. Everything is on fast-forward.
I’m feeling this interesting and unique experience of the wave of Web2 overlapping with the wave of Web3. I was excited about the wave of Web2 and maybe not as involved but what got me excited was these interactive web page things where you could take some data and do something cool with it. We’re seeing some of these shared bike systems. Citi Bike in New York City would publish your data.
You could take that data and create some cool visualization of all the bikes riding around the city of New York or something like that. It’s fun to see you breaking into the same type of taking data and doing something cool with it but engaging with NFTs in an interesting way. It takes it to a new level. It’s also fun. There’s a fun echo there of the way that tech moves.
Let me ask real quick because I don’t think we got into the full spectrum of the utility there. We want to geek out on the dynamic nature of the thing here for sure. Talk to us a little bit about that spectrum of utility. This is an amazing element you are tying in here. I wanted to try to elevate it. If you could give us some background on that a little bit more, that would be much appreciated.
I’ll go from table stakes to unique in that order. One thing for sure is that we are going to be having merchandise for all of our community as you’re welcomed into this program. Some of that is going to be designed in partnership with Tom’s brand, BRADY Brand. They brought in some of the most amazing designers and directors in the world. Between Ryan, his team, and that creative team at BRADY Brand, the community will be able to design some bespoke merch. I believe that’s going to be the second merch beat along the way as well. There are going to be community collaborations.
We made it unique, but every project says, “Merch is coming.” From there, there are going to be these unique NFTs that Ryan and his team are working on that are both rewarded for attending events, which we will get to, and also a combination of giving them for sale. The reason that we might want to sell some is that we can keep the quantity more scarce rather than having 2,500 for every single holder. We do think that these are records that deserve to be celebrated as well. We will bring them to this community exclusively and get them out in a variety of different ways.
This is probably a tie. The digital events are something I’m excited about. When I looked at our community experience overall, this defines the community experiences in the space across the board. I don’t want to overstep, but they’re in some way defined by the communities interacting with each other in Discord, on spaces, on Twitter, and all of the above. I started thinking, “How can you build a richer and more engaging community experience that scales as a utility?” That’s where we have built out the digital experiences on Autograph.io.
Whether it’s another project jumping board or for TB specifically, creators in his network are going to be announced, whether they’re fantasy football experts, people that love the Patriots or Buccaneers, or people that love Web3 and collecting. We’re going to have people coming on weekly in a token-gated environment to livestream and interact with our community. It’s a different way to engage with creators that scale no matter where anybody is in the world. We think that’s pretty unique compared to a lot of offerings we have seen in the space. It’s something that we’re proud of having built.
The last piece of the puzzle is the Brady IRL event. There are going to be three regional tailgates that a portion of the community will be able to attend, limited to 250 people. The reason why it’s not 2,500 is we thought four parties for 2,500 people in a span of however many months would be expensive and exhausting, but more than anything. We will do some regional tailgates for people in Boston, Tampa, and LA to meet up. Finally, there’s one big end-of-year bash for all token holders, which we’re excited about. All 2,500 holders will have access to this event, where Tom Brady himself is going to be in attendance.
We’re working on getting more exciting people to attend. We’re going to curate that experience and, along the way, take a lot of input from the community as to what that should look like. It’s a long list of utilities. There’s a lot of other stuff that we’re going to roll out that’s in a similar vein, but overall, I’m excited to have a highly curated, utility-packed experience for this community. I have to thank them because they have helped guide me in the right direction as to what to build for the product offering, which is a step towards the future of fandom.
Thank you for doing watch parties in LA. There are a ton of Patriots fans and Brady fans as a result in LA that have followed his whole career. Once you’re a Brady fan, you’re always a Brady fan, even when Brady changes teams. You are in LA. It’s great that you chose LA as one of the hubs for the fan experience. That’s exciting. Ryan, I would love to take a journey through your creative journey and geek out a little bit about the programmable nature of these dynamic NFTs, how you built that, and how Huddle is going to evolve the concept of a dynamic NFT.
Starting at the very beginning, here’s one of the things that I was always eager to do with Tom, a man like that has got a super busy schedule. He’s training to continue to be the greatest football player of all time. One of the things we wanted to do with him was to start with a full-body 3D scan of him. Our technology there has been incredible. We worked with a partner to complete this photorealistic capture and create this real-life model of Tom, which is the foundation of why we’re able to do what we’re able to do in such a quick turnaround.
We have this body scan in this eternal perpetual likeness of Tom with detailed form, color, and multimillion-point fidelity. That’s the foundation of what’s allowing us to move so quickly through this space. As you can imagine, building out the scenes that I’m describing now without that would probably take weeks and months for us to build, but to have this posable Tom Brady model started this for us. What we’re going to do is build a storyline of laying the foundation of where Tom and his team are going to travel over the course of his season and where they’re going to do battle.
We want to create this visual storytelling of Tom and his teammates taking on their opponents week by week within these different settings, whether it be Dallas for the opening of the season into games at home in Tampa Bay. We’re going to have unique environments every week that are going to be changed as well as unique scenes that are being built. The last few seasons of Tom are all historic.
We want to freeze some of those moments in time and create these visual and beautiful stories for people to remember this 10, 15, or 20 years from now forever on the blockchain to be able to look back at what happened week by week throughout this season for Tom. To tie it all off at the end, bring in that data and the real-time analytics, statistics that we’re able to bring, and potentially any records that he’s breaking, and bring those into the actual art and the NFTs themselves in a visual nature. It’s exciting and complex. It’s keeping me up at night for sure, but we’ve got an incredible team working on it. I can’t wait to show you how beautiful they all look.
I have this sense, like I did with Dillon earlier. With every little thing you say, I want to pause and say, “Let’s talk about that.” Interestingly, I made an interesting tie-in here. We did a recording of an episode with Collab.Land and Nuggets, which are working in the personal identity security space. I find that interesting because we’re talking about digital identity being a part of your identity.
Dynamic NFTs: Dynamic NFs aim to marry the creative exploration of storytelling to connect athletes with their fans. This goes beyond the one-sided relationship from watching sports at home or in stadium seats.
It’s such a fascinating move forward to see somebody like Tom Brady creating a complete digital scan of his entire form and exploring what happens when you take your identity, extend it in that way into the metaverse and the Web3 space. Do these interesting analog things, which are going right alongside what’s going on in real life, and integrate the data. Data is another thing that we talked about in that episode. Some of it is ours and should be private and some should be public. We should own our data and have a more thoughtful relationship with it. This is all coming in here too. It’s fascinating.
I geek out over the data piece of all of this. As Dillon mentioned a few times, we’re still looking into where we continue to take this journey. We will always find ways to bring that into the foundation because it’s important in this space. If you look down to Fidenza and some of the high-end art pieces here, a lot of this intersection of technology, art, and this beauty is like, “How do you take that data, those numbers, or those zeros and ones and create color, life out of them, and any story?” That’s the reason I jumped into this company. That’s why we’re all super excited to wake up in the morning and work on those things.
There’s so much rich data in sports to work within the season related to the player or the team and how they’re competing against other teams. There’s a lot for someone like yourself to mess around with in that sandbox.
We’re scratching the surface.
I’m cutting here and making the audience aware. We’re all aware and we know it’s coming, but we didn’t mention that we will open things up for Q&A for folks in the audience here in a bit. If you do have your questions, think through them and what you want to share. If you’re long-winded, we will kick you off. Be careful and thoughtful with your words.
We will see where this audience is coming from. We’re almost midway into this Twitter Space. We want to do something to thank you for spending some of your time with us. Everyone is busy. We launched NFTLA tickets, which is exciting. They’re already flying, which is interesting in a Web3 world where everyone is a little bit last-minute. Thank you to all our supporters out there. We’re going to give one person in the audience a chance to get a complimentary GA ticket to NFTLA.
What you’re going to have to do here is you’re going to have to retweet and quote this very Twitter Spaces with a question for these guys about Autograph. We’re going to choose one winner to ask their question and receive a complimentary GA ticket via DM. Go ahead and think about your question, quote this Twitter Spaces, and encourage people to join. Who knows? We may see you in real life in LA from March 20th to the 23rd, 2023. Go ahead and take a moment to do that. Everyone who’s here, get your chance to get an NFTLA ticket.
What kind of quote are we thinking, the world’s greatest fan experience? What are we going for here?
They can shout out what they think about this or a question for you like, “How much sleep do you get every night putting this together?”
It depends on the week.
Shoot that out. We’re excited to have somebody win that. Those are flying out the shelves. It will be a literal hot ticket. I see Zach, our Head of Events, with his hand up there. I wanted to give the floor to him to ask his question.
Thanks, Jeff. I have a question for Dillon and Ryan. Sports, at its core, are built on our human competitive spirit. Inside this world of the mega fan club, what opportunities are going to be there for the community members to exercise their competitive spirit? I can imagine Pats versus Bucs going on but do you have any other plans of harnessing that sports fan competitive spirit?
The best way that we can do it is within the community. We have a Collector’s Score where people show off their different collections, signatures, and all of the above. There are going to be a lot of community games that we host in parallel. A lot of it is programmed by Autograph, but also, we love when community members, here’s a shout-out to @Stags, put together community games that we run in our Discord.
That is going to be a way that people will be able to express their fandom and engage against each other in a more systematized building-out-a-game way. We haven’t gotten there quite yet, but that’s a pretty good idea. Our goal is to set up this foundation of amazing utility, this dynamic NFT, and all the above and learn from our community about what they want next. If they tell us, “We want to compete Patriots versus Bucs,” it’s our job to spin this up and get it going.
I’m going to guess it might lean towards that direction. When you put the idea in people’s heads, they might run with it. It’s going to get some momentum.
Patriots and Bucs can unite over Tom Brady. We don’t need to put them at odds.
We’ve got some folks that are interested in asking some questions. I saw some hands raised there and got some notes about that. Do we want to see what folks have to say?
For sure. Have we brought anybody up on stage? Is there anybody raising their hand in the audience here?
I see our friends at Multiplied that run our NFTLA Twitter Spaces. Ivan is an audience. We could bring Ivan or Multiplied up to say what’s up.
I’ve invited Ivan to speak. I already invited Multiplied. I don’t know if they’ve got someone manning that account. They’re coming on if they would like. To anybody else, if you’ve got a question, you can request an invite to speak. We will bring you up here. In the meantime, we’re diving a little bit deeper into the analytics piece. Ryan, you’re super excited about that. Number one, do you have some background in that? Is it something that you’re getting the opportunity to work on at this moment? Number two, what has it been like working on that component? Did you have to source math nerds, stats nerds, and developers for that particular thing? Was it pretty well integrated into a typical development team?
We wanted to keep this first go-around simple. We wanted to spend as much time as we could memorializing and contextualizing Tom’s achievements. At its core, the stats at face value are heroic and impressive in themselves. We freeze these moments in time. We want to make sure that there are numbers and data for us to always visit back to and maybe tap into at a later date and into future projects.
At the very beginning here, a lot of our emphasis is going to be based on real-time game statistics, the progression of those statistics, Tom’s seemingly unbeatable records as they progress throughout the season, and memorializing those things. As we continue to develop on this project and further projects in the future around these Signature Experiences, we want to lay a foundation for us to continue to build into and build on.
In terms of the team itself, in my opinion, one of the greatest achievements in my career is the team we have been able to build here at Autograph all the way down to some incredible creative technologists on our team that are at this moment in time in a closet in our office nerding out over numbers and letters and how those can come together to create beautiful art. I wish sometimes I could give everybody a sneak peek into some of these rooms where we’re prototyping things and exploring new things, but it has to have a strong foothold in what we’re doing every step forward. We’re excited to kick it off, start with the basics, and build from there.
Who can argue with geeking out over numbers and letters? I taught my kid to count by twos. He was completely floored. He learned you could count by 3s and 4s.
That still trips me up and gets me excited at the same time. I hear you.
I see Ivan has a question here from Multiplied. I believe we have you on as a speaker, Ivan. Feel free to chime in.
Josh, thanks for hopping me up here. I wasn’t able to join at the beginning. As always, it’s a bit complicated. Everyone in crypto seems to never have too much of a set schedule. I enjoyed the chat. There’s something interesting about the future of dynamic NFTs. I wanted to direct a question here. Anyone can answer it. I was having an interesting conversation about how you can historicize how an individual or holder has interacted not just with their NFT but with the project behind it.
Is there a world example in which if we have an NFT that gives me access to certain events or memorabilia purchases, can we record this individual’s actions over time, see how engaged he is, and then be able to reward that individual based on this almost tiered schedule by looking at his actions? Second, how interesting would it be when this individual sells their energy and the unlocked features that he aggregated into his particular NFT collection and increase its value and be priced and carried over to the new buy-in?
I lost you a little bit on the tail-end there, but Dillon, if you want to chop this one up in half, I can tackle a little bit of the first question and you can tackle a little bit of the second. Ivan, your question about keeping a ledger of our users’ actions and engagement within our company and our offerings and creating dynamic elements of that certainly is something we love to build over here. As Dillon mentioned before, we have jumped into this Collector’s Score. We’re looking to continue to reward our users for the ways that they engage with the Autograph community.
That has always been a core foundation for me within the NFT space, specifically with events and experiences. How do we reward our users for their loyalty in a way that creates a visually stunning representation of their actions? We’re all aware here. It’s certainly a complicated thing. It’s something we’re working through and something we’re super excited to continue to keep sinking our teeth into and figure out the best way for that to come to life within the Autograph ecosystem. If you don’t mind, too, you can repeat that second question. I lost a little bit of it.
There are some technical difficulties here potentially, but I like the idea of individuals that have been rewarded for their loyalty by looking at the ledger. When the NFT is sold, there are these loyalty rewards for folks that are unlocked by the member. One, how do you see it potentially carrying on to the next owner? Two, can we get to a place where the rewards unlocked by that NFT are priced into that particular NFT sale? Meaning we could have a collection of 10,000, but that doesn’t mean that every one of those 10,1000 has the loyalty history of that moment.
That’s a great thought. The space at large has tried a variety of different things to reward customer loyalty and continued fan loyalty. The way that we have looked at it is through our Collector’s Score. Everyone on Autograph.io that collects and connects their account to Autograph has a score that is calculated through their collection. We’re going to continue developing and refining that score and bringing in new aspects that are meaningful to fandom.
I do think that having them tied to the NFT itself and having the NFT change compared to the rest of the collection and compared to what that fan experience was is a cool option. Potentially, one that is cooler is maybe it sticks with your wallet address. You’re able to accrue some type of token of your fandom. By that, I mean not in the fungible sense, but there’s some memento and keepsake that describes your fandom along the way.
The nature of dynamic NFTs and the potential of dynamic NFTs are massive and can be massively innovative. Our first offering is us. With everything we do, we take a test-and-learn approach, but we are iterating. The first one is about taking fans on a simple journey. We have the loyalty handled through a Collector’s Score. As we get more comfortable with these dynamic NFTs, we will be able to try more unique things for the next partner that we launch and the next fan experience we host.
To me, it’s more of a thought exercise, but there’s an infinite world of possibilities when you start thinking about dynamic NFTs. The way we’re holding NFTs becomes an experience in itself. Thanks for that answer.
It is interesting to think about the dynamic nature. Wherever your wallet address travels around, there could be a bunch of little co-ops but having them instead high to your token. In the world of fandom, whether it’s an Ethereum fan token, anything you do around the ecosystem is ascribed to it. My point is as these networks develop, it will be more possible. We can play with that from there. I do love it as a thought experiment for sure.
Dynamic NFTs: Dynamic NFT constantly evolves based on what the community wants to get next.
Thanks for that interesting question, Ivan. We appreciate that. We’re going to bring on someone else if they’re ready. Alex Fan or @AlexoFantastico, what do you have to say there?
What’s up? I’m a big fan, Dillon. Thanks for all the info. I’m excited to hear about the dynamic NFT, especially with the live data around it. I’m curious what your thoughts are around this product compared to some of the stuff that Dapper, Top Shot, and those guys are working on with Moments.
To be clear, the data is more into the media itself and the stats from the week prior versus being scraped off-chain or anything like that. To set expectations, it’s more of an exercise for us of capturing Tom’s specific data internally. The dynamic nature of it is pretty special and a first step. When I look at our product, I see that this Tom Brady Signature Experience is all about the community and the utility.
It’s one main NFT that’s going to give you access to a variety of different things versus something more similar to Dapper, Top Shot, and our past product lines where you were collecting for the sake of owning Moments and being a part of this collectible game journey or whatever it will be. This, for us, is much more squarely an experience that gives you behind-the-scenes looks and access. That’s a little bit different, in my opinion.
It sounds cool. As you scale this thing, would you be focusing more on the athlete or the particular event of, let’s say, the historical significance of a game or a situation like that?
The goal is to have this be about the individual athletes in their journey. As these games develop and there are more milestones that our partners hit, there’s an opportunity to do this again. Is the part that gets you the most excited the dynamic NFT?
I think so. I’m curious here, also. As a follow-up question, are you looking to ever expand out of live sports or events? Autograph has a lot of potential of reaching outside of athletes as a whole category.
For our next round of product offerings, we did a lot of work with some of these exciting music festivals, but we overall are going to focus again back on sports, our bread and butter. We have done amazing work with music festivals and are going to continue to roll out some of our entertainment properties. For the first chapter of our business, it was 90-10 sports. Now, it’s going to be more like 80-20, but rather than a festival activation, we’re going to take some of the properties that overlap more closely with our sports audience. We have done some work to support that and tried to bring them to life.
There was some overlap between the @Saw audience and some of these DraftKings users, but for some of these other properties, Ryan and his team have been working behind the scenes for months to plan out what this art and this experience should look like. The way that I think about it is there are communities of positive engagement across the web, whether it be around a famous TV show on Reddit or Facebook looking for new ways to engage and entertain themselves.
Autograph has a unique opportunity to work with that property owner to provide them with something brand new and something that’s going to take them on, whether it’s a year, a month, or an NFT that’s dynamic based on their behavior. We have the ability to get them excited and give them a new offering to engage with digitally versus waiting for Comic-Con every year.
That sounds exciting. I appreciate that context.
Dillon, I would love to move the conversation a bit back into your history to see how you’re able to pull this all together. In the most respectful way, the reader can’t see you but we know you. You seem so young, fresh, cool, and not stressed out. You pulled so many cool things together and have all these connections in entertainment and sports. How did you get here to be able to pull things together with Autograph? Josh wants to know how you get to know Tom Brady a little bit better.
First of all, I agree with the majority of the things you say. I am lame. None of that is true in the past. I am lucky to be in this position and to be running this company. I grew up in LA. I was able to build a pretty impressive network overall. My personal journey has been one of wanting to be an entrepreneur and trying different ideas across different spaces. When I saw an NFT and this groundbreaking technology after investing in crypto for an extended period, it was game over for me. I was like, “This is the break that I’ve truly been waiting for.” I couldn’t be more grateful and excited to be in this position.
As much as we have amazing partners and I did a good job of helping birth this thing, it would not be possible without one of the most talented, supportive, and committed leadership teams that you can imagine. The whole team internally is looking at this space for the long term, whether it’s winter, summer, or hot or cold. We’re going to be building the same way and going after building what we believe is going to be the most unique fan experience in Web3.
Dillon, it’s Swaggy. I got this now.
We’ve got a question from 7 Rings.
Dillon already touched on a little bit about what Facebook, Instagram, and Meta, they’re pretty much all the big same company, are doing as far as onboarding new people and getting NFTs onto people’s phones through Instagram and Facebook. Dillon has talked a lot about people in the NFT and Web3 industry as a whole. Only about 1% of the population even knows what an NFT is.
Having Instagram and Facebook going into this marketplace plays a critical role for a company like Autograph and what Dillon and his great team here are doing. I wanted to express that and get Dillon’s thoughts on how he feels about that as well. It’s another great way to onboard the masses and educate the people so we can provide them with these real-world experiences.
They all have the pleasure of diving into the Autograph community and Autograph Discord and meeting the amazing people like Swaggy that make the Autograph nation what it is. We and the investors that backed us, which are some of the top and leading names in the field, believe that Autograph has an outsized chance of bringing the next billion people into Web3 and NFTs, whether the application is squarely what we’re looking at in driving fan experiences or my hunch, something entirely different in 1, 2, or 3 years. We’re going to be around. We’re going to be building.
The options for fandom are limited. People are working with what they have, but there’s a huge opportunity for somebody to rethink and reimagine what a more connected digitally-native fan experience could look like both to enhance the watching experience. More than anything, the time when you aren’t watching or the time when you’re a fan in your home, and you want to get closer to the game. I’ve spent my time Googling YouTube highlights of the players and teams that I’ve cared about. There has to be a better and more social way to make that happen. Autograph is going to be working day and night until, hopefully, we’re the company that figures that out.
That’s an ambitious goal. It’s interesting reflecting on the progression of media, entertainment, and technology over the past several years. I remember vegging out and watching TV shows all day. That was the worst that could happen with entertainment. It was more optimistic. At least you were watching YouTube videos when you had that vegged-out day. You could be interactive about it, choose what you want to watch, and learn something. It wasn’t just flipping between the channels.
What I see is a quite promising and optimistic evolution of entertainment and consumption moving towards being more interactive and less watching and letting other people have all the fun. You’re on the right side of history as you’re moving towards that, Dillon. We do have a question from Queen.ETH who has been patiently waiting with their hand up. Queen.ETH, you are a speaker. You’re welcome to see what you got. We will be wrapping up pretty soon here. It’s great to hear what you have to ask or contribute.
Thank you very much. I also go by @ElwayGirl4Life. I’m doing so many drops. That’s my Autograph name as well. I hold a pretty decent collection. I do appreciate the rewards and the utility. I’m in a lot of communities and I participate in different types of projects, but most of my focus is on the licensed aspect of it or the idea of having this licensed IP.
You would be surprised how many times I’ll be in spaces with licensed IP and say, “How would you like to have a first-in-the-blockchain Tom Brady?” They don’t even know. They’re like, “What do you mean? Where is that at?” I find myself trying to get the word out there to people who don’t necessarily want to take that risk with OpenSea and that feel more comfortable with a licensed brand that they know.
One of the challenges is getting people to understand this is licensed. This is by Tom and Dillon. You’re first in the blockchain. I see interest go up. I don’t know why or what the plan is to onboard more people, but sometimes I say, “Guess who else we have. We have Wayne Gretzky and Tiger Woods.” People are like, “What?” The more the word gets out, the better that this platform is going to do. I see you adding utility, which is strengthening the brand and the NFT. That’s my take on it. I try to do my part.
I appreciate that and you. We catered to an amazing but particular audience. We were on DraftKings Marketplace. If you look at comparable projects with valuable licensed IPs, they spend time in their ecosystem and the Ethereum ecosystem. This Signature Experience is our first step into building out that Autograph-owned and operated presence. I do think the world will start to spread in an even more meaningful way. It’s funny. I talk to people that aren’t in the space, but they know the Autograph name. People that are in the projects that are similar and analogous to us sometimes go, “I heard about that once or twice.” It’s going to come from building out our presence and accessible solutions for people to buy. I appreciate the sentiment, for sure.
Eathan, we’ve got an interesting question from the audience. It’s someone we know from Miami who asked the question without any personal bias, let’s bring up John from Award Pool, who asked an interesting question. John, you are going to NFTLA. Eathan, can you bring up John?
What I’m going to do is bring on Lady Rocket real quick to deliver her question, and then we will bring on John. Lady Rocket, welcome.
Thank you. I’m from Los Angeles. I’m a big fan of NFTLA. My part of this great opportunity is my platform. Copernic Space provides a vessel to get incredible personalities directly to the moon, both as an NFT or a digital image and physical image as well. Here’s an invitation on behalf of my incredible team at Copernic Space and also Lunar Outpost and SpaceX to connect with us. If there is a place where Mr. Brady has not played yet, it’s the moon. It’s also an effort to celebrate our return to the moon of us Americans. I appreciate you letting me share because I want to mention that this is the anniversary of the passing of someone who is quite special, Neil Armstrong, who placed us Americans on the moon.
Do you have a very specific question for these guys?
Would you like to see your player on the moon? I am exploring opportunities with the Rams both as a trophy on the moon plus more. I am very happy to hear your comments.
Dillon, are you ready to take Autograph to the moon?
Autograph and Tom on the moon. I appreciate anyone building awesome things in this space. I believe Tom has conquered a lot but mostly on planet Earth. I’m sure as time develops, he will make it to the moon.
We have had multiple guests on the show who want to go to the moon. We will be putting together a bit of a space bus coming up soon, probably. We have had guests that are going to space. Here’s a shout-out to Mike Mongo, a great guest as well.
A collector reminded me. Here’s a shout-out to @BartenderJack1. We do have the @Moonfall collection. We minted people for free that went to see a movie and got to redeem Moonfall NFTs. Autograph in the moon is synonymous.
Speaking of movies, Dillon, Jeff told us this. MoviePass is coming back. Did you see that?
Dynamic NFTs: Autograph’s dynamic NFT is the first of its kind, providing a utility-packed and community-driven experience for our collectors to get them closer to their beloved athletes in an unprecedented way.
I didn’t read it, but I did see the headline. What do we think?
There’s some intel.
Let’s briefly answer this question from John. He was curious about what’s next with athlete representation and the opportunity to create the next IMG with Athlete Direct. I’m sure this is something that comes up from time to time in what the future of athlete management is and how that relates to NFTs. Do you have any predictions there, Dillon?
The athlete management portion and how it relates back to these NFTs is a topic I honestly haven’t done a whole lot of thinking about but I do think as the space develops at large, whether it be NFTs, blockchain technology, or all the above, there are going to be more innovative contracts assigned and more people that are able to benefit from the reach, the tech, and all the above. I need to give that a little bit more thought.
It starts earlier with younger talent. It may happen in more creative leagues than these professional leagues, which have a lot of history, legacy, and frameworks built into them. I saw a documentary about the sneaker movement and the streetball movement. Those guys did some innovative things. Anything is possible there with more of the ground-up representation in sporting leagues and whatnot, probably before the professional side of things.
We have seen people benefit from this technology already that are in that cohort. As it develops more and people get more comfortable with it, they will see an opportunity to use NFTs the same way some of the leaders of the creator economy have.
Should we start wrapping this thing up? Are there any last-minute things we want to let people know about?
First of all, Dillon and Ryan, thank you so much for being with us. Thank you for what you are doing in your way to elevate the space and sports and bridge gaps. We love to talk about closing these gaps in Web2 and Web3 and making Web3 a place where everyone can enjoy themselves and have unique and special digital and physical experiences. I’m excited to follow along your journey with this collection, be in the mix, and hang out with my boy, Tom. Let’s quickly give Zach a chance to say what’s up. We had a big announcement of our own, followed by Autograph’s big announcement. Zach, what’s going on in the world of NFTLA?
It is on. NFTLA is live. If you want to learn more, you can go to NFTLA.live. A small block of early bird tickets is now available. Recent history suggests those might fill out rapidly. If you’re thinking about joining us on March 20th through the 23rd of 2023 in Los Angeles, NFTLA.live is where you want to be. For those who don’t already know, NFTLA is a lot more than a conference. It’s truly an experience and a bright moment on the calendar. You can wait and funnel in later, but you might as well get registered.
NFTLA.live is live. It’s from March 20th to the 23rd, 2023.
If Josh lets me, I’ll be speaking there. We will see.
We’ve got a strong probability of that. We might as well throw in here that we are building our Living Tree NFT project. There’s a whitelist building for that. That’s easy. You can go to EdgeOfNFT.com/spaces to get on that whitelist. That’s behind-the-scenes growing, pun intended, as we evolve here. If you want to get on the whitelist, it’s EdgeOfNFT.com/spaces and NFTLA.live. Should we do our outro and make sure before we do that, we check back in with Dillon and Ryan and get specifically where readers can go to hear more about Autograph and The Huddle?
Check out Autograph.io to sign up or Autograph.io/TomBrady for the bespoke landing page. In summation, this dynamic NFT is leading to a first-of-its-kind fan experience in this space. I’m excited to provide a utility-packed and community-driven experience for our collectors to get them closer to Tom in an unprecedented way. We appreciate all of you. Thank you for having us.
This was a blast. We pulled it together. I’m pretty sure it noticed as well to make this announcement work for everyone. We appreciate everyone sticking around to the end. It has been a pleasure and all the people that contributed questions. We have covered the basics. Thanks for exploring with us. Remember to head to NFTLA.live to score early bird tickets to our bigger, bolder, and better but also just as intimate and impactful NFTLA happening in Los Angeles from March 20th to the 23rd, 2023. Tickets will never be this cheap. Quantities are limited at this level. Thanks again for sharing this time with us.
Thanks for having us.
Thanks, everybody. We appreciate it.
Keep an eye on our socials for that winner.
- DraftKings Marketplace
- Citi Bike
- BRADY Brand
- Discord – Autograph
- @Stags – Autograph
- Ivan – Twitter
- @AlexoFantastico – Twitter
- @Saw – Autograph
- 7 Rings – Twitter
- Queen.ETH – Twitter
- @ElwayGirl4Life – Autograph
- Award Pool
- Lady Rocket – Twitter
- Copernic Space
- Mike Mongo – Previous episode
- @BartenderJack1 – Autograph
- @Moonfall – Autograph