Is NFT Utility a Challenge? Learn How Cocky is Setting New Standards
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) continue to attract special attention within the cryptocurrency sector, even though the initial hype surrounding them has subsided a little, and even though crypto continues to suffer its way through a bear market. After Collins Dictionary made non-fungible token its word of the year in 2021, the burgeoning NFT sub-sector continues to grow steadily, with trading volume still topping half a billion dollars per month.
However, while NFTs still manage to sell for large sums, finding a genuine real-world use case for non-fungible tokens remains something of a conundrum. Musicians and bands have released albums in conjunction with limited-edition NFTs, while names such as Bored Ape Yacht Club are branching out into new areas, yet it's arguable that non-fungible tokens have yet to find a 'killer app' that provides actual utility to their holders.
This is a valid criticism, but it's one that may not remain valid for much longer. Significant players within the music and gaming industries, for instance, are convinced that NFTs have a meaningful future within their sectors, and there's one new player within the music and entertainment that serves as a good example of this.
This is Cocky, a self-styled "lifestyle club" that uses NFTs to offer access to a variety of music events, both in-person and in virtual reality. By linking non-fungible tokens to the attendance of actual events, Cocky anchors them in the real world, ensuring that they will have value insofar as they refer to something other than themselves.
What is Cocky and How Is It Linking NFTs to Music Events?
Launched only a few months ago, Cocky aims to use NFTs in a variety of interesting ways in the context of live (and virtual) music events.
At its most simple, Cocky will issue a collection of 10,000 NFTs based on the Ethereum blockchain. These NFTs will take the form of "visually stunning" cans (i.e. soft drink cans), as picture below.
According to Cocky's website, these cans will be based around 51 skin variations, which alter their basic designs and styles. Where things get interesting, however, is that these NFT-based cans will alter depending on the Cocky events holders attend.
For instance, the cans will have one of three possible lids (black, silver and gold), which vary according to the user's tier and which provide the holder with unique benefits at Cocky events. These lids are randomly assigned to NFTs, providing their holders with such perks as accommodation, subsidized transport and bar tabs.
More interestingly, a user's NFT receives 'passport stamps' when attending new events. The more events they attend, the more their can mutates, increasing its rarity and potentially increasing its value on the second-hand market.
The combination of these mutations and randomly assigned lids/tiers will likely make buying Cocky NFTs on the secondary market more desirable to traders, since ownership would confer future benefits on holders, as well as enabling attendance of events.
This is precisely where utility enters the picture, since holding a Cocky will become useful and valuable to its holder, enabling them to enjoy real-world experiences and obtain special VIP benefits while doing so.
As for these experiences, Cocky's website and Twitter reveal that these will be (at least for now) "world-class" electronic music events. It plans to stage anything from two to four in-person festivals or events each year, as well as more regular virtual events.
With the virtual events, they will be streamed by Cocky on its own platform, whereas the physical events will take place at "spectacular locations across the globe." None of these locations have been revealed yet, but Cocky is certainly promising big things by using the word "spectacular."
The Roadmap and Pre-Mint Sale
Helpfully, Cocky has released its roadmap on its website, revealing that it will release the location -- as well as open registration -- for its first event in the final quarter of this year. This first event will then take place in the opening quarter of 2023, attendance of which will confer mutations onto the NFTs held by participants.
As for actually obtaining Cocky's NFTs in the first place, its pre-mint sale has just begun, with interested parties able to register via a visit to the platform's official website.
Overall, Cocky's plans are certainly ambitious, with its roadmap and FAQ suggesting that Cocky is positioning itself as a kind of Bored Ape Yacht Club for music events. While it isn't explicitly stated anywhere in the platform's online materials, it's likely that its events and NFTs will be aimed at the higher, more luxury end of the market, at least judging by its promise of beautiful locations around the world.
This would mean that ownership of Cocky NFT could potentially provide ordinary holders with the opportunity to rub shoulders with a more 'upmarket' demographic. Needless to say, time will obviously tell whether the rich and/or famous will go for Cocky's NFTs, as they did with BAYC.
Assuming that Cocky can secure good lineups for its music events and good facilities, there's every chance it will attract a decent crowd and community. If this does turn out to be the case, then its NFTs could end up becoming valuable, since they will grant entry into a world where music lovers can enjoy singular experiences and meet likeminded people.
The Future of NFTs
In other words, Cocky's events will help non-fungible tokens become more than a nice digital collectible to have in your possession. And this is something that NFTs have been trying to evolve beyond for a couple of years now, despite the initial hype.
Encouragingly, there are other indications that NFTs may start offering some genuine value to their holders, beyond speculation. This is evident in the use gaming developers and publishers are aiming to make of non-fungible tokens, while it's also evident in crypto-native projects such as Bored Ape Yacht Club moving into the metaverse.
It will take some time to things to mature the point where NFTs make a valuable contribution to their holders' lives, yet it's clear now that the industry is well aware that it needs to do more than simply offer a promising vehicle for speculation. And with Cocky's plans to attach NFTs to real-world events, it seems that it has begun to do just that.