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SportsCastr, backed by NBA’s David Stern, will pay you in crypto for your terrible hot takes

Nicholas Marinoff


If you like sports, you probably have some strong opinions about your favorite teams or players.

Now, you can get paid in crypto for putting them on the Internet.

SportsCastr—a streaming platform backed by a who’s who of professional sports stars, including Super Bowl champion Vernon Davis and former NBA Commissioner David Stern—allows ordinary Internet users to commentate on live sporting events. Today, the company launched FanChain, an Ethereum-based platform designed to reward sports fans with a new token called FANZ, which is now available to trade on the LATOKEN crypto exchange.

And that means every armchair quarterback on the planet can now start earning crypto from viewers who like what they have to say.

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“What we’re focused on is the fan and fan engagement,” SportsCastr CEO Kevin April told Decrypt. “Fans rely on other fans for authentic commentary, but to date, this relationship has been one-sided, and fans are rarely rewarded for the value they create. What blockchain allows us to do is provide a mechanism of returning value to the fans.”

FanChain users can also send “virtual gifts” to pro athletes in the NFL, NBA, or other leagues, provided they are active on the platform. To become eligible to receive tokens, users need only download and setup a FANZ wallet, April explained.

And while the sports and crypto worlds may seemingly having little in common, April said it’s quite the contrary: both industries are global and “speak all languages,” he said. They both attract audiences everywhere, and neither industry cares about borders, said April, confident that the blockchain industry can do a lot to enhance sports experiences for people regardless of who or where they are.

The FanChain infrastructure remains somewhat open and depends largely on the token’s rate of adoption and how it’s used, according to Apri. But the CEO is convinced that the possibilities for the platform are vast, ranging from sports teams simply offering discounted merchandise to fans who pay with FANZ tokens, to big-name retailers signing on to accept FANZ as a means of payment. 

“To get started, FANZ can be earned and redeemed on SportsCastr to send and receive virtual gifts and tips and unlock premium content subscriptions,” April said. “Users will also be able to earn FANZ tokens by checking in at an event, engaging a sponsor or referring other fans.”

The FANZ token is an Ethereum-based ERC-20 token, but it also has some NFT-like traits, according to April. Since fans are more likely to root for specific teams over leagues, April said developers needed to create a token that could be remain flexible and be embedded with “team-affinity” properties. The tokens themselves can be stamped with team metadata that’s visible when used within the FanChain ecosystem.

“If you go live on SportsCastr and call a Manchester United game, you’ll receive tokens that are categorized as Manchester United tokens,” April said. “Call a L.A. Lakers game, and you’ll receive tokens that associate themselves with the Lakers,” he explained. “When you look at your wallet, your tokens are categorized by team.” 

Fair enough. Now how do we incentivize NBA refs into actually calling a travel on Lebron James?