It’s almost Super Bowl Sunday 2023 and Rihanna’s Savage x Fenty clothing and lingerie brand has just revealed that it will be launching a limited-edition Game Day Collection in advance of her scheduled Super Bowl half-time performance. The Game Day collection will feature seventeen pieces. The pieces include feature hoodies, sweatpants, varsity jerseys, tops, hats, beanies, boxers, and a bandana. The performance, which is scheduled to take place in Glendale, Arizona at the State Farm Stadium on Feb. 12 will also be prefaced by a three-day retail pop-up experience in Los Angeles taking place from January 27th to January 29th.
At that time, consumers will have a chance to shop the Game Day collection in a store that will feature football-themed mannequin heads and goalposts which will serve as clothing racks, photo moments, and branded giveaways.
Rihanna, the headliner of the Super Bowl halftime show, has consistently attracted thousands of concertgoers for past performances. Her popularity, however, could mean that she may run into ticketing issues as fans prepare for the performance by purchasing tickets to the Super Bowl or by buying merchandise from her highly anticipated collection. This issue may be largely due to counterfeit ticketing which has been widespread in sports since last year., Many fans may expect that her merchandise will sell out quickly For Fenty, who is choosing to add a layer of Super Bowl spirit by offering the collection. Because of this, Fenty’s brand may have to contend with online ticket and merchandise scalpers at various levels. The issue of ticket scalping and selling fraudulent merchandise asks the legal community to consider how we can protect consumers and brands from profiting off a brand’s value.
Proponents of brand protection have cited that the only way to protect a brand is through using artificial intelligence, which includes NFTS. “NFT stands for ‘non-fungible token’. Non-fungible means that something is unique and can’t be replaced. By contrast, physical money and cryptocurrencies are fungible, which means they can be traded or exchanged for one another. Every NFT contains a digital signature which makes each one unique. NFTs are digital assets and could be photos, videos, audio files, or another digital format. NFT examples include artwork, comic books, sports collectibles, trading cards, games, and more.” A lack of NFTs has made it easier for patrons to scalp, resell, or repurchase fraudulent tickets to attend sporting events. Although NFTs have become more popular recently and brands such as Adidas and Patron have cited success while using NFTs, the issue of fraudulent ticketing during sports events will likely continue to pervade the sports industry. Fraudulent ticketing during sports events has largely resulted in delays and congestion for eager fans who often spend hundreds of dollars to attend various kinds of sporting events. The effect of fraudulent ticketing during sports events has affected athletes’ competitiveness in winning games.
Last May, pandemonium ensued at the UEFA Champions League Final in Paris, with claims of fraudulent tickets causing massive delays and bottlenecks at security checkpoints. This resulted in clashes between fans and authorities. If Rihanna is seeking to launch a Game Day Collection in anticipation of her Super Bowl Sunday Half-Time performance, the singer could likely be losing thousands of dollars in merchandise, due to fraudulent purchases in addition to a possible melee due to the limited variety of merchandise being offered to consumers online. Instituting NFTs could be a viable solution to this potential issue since the technology offers complete veracity of the tickets' authenticity. It is not possible to forge NFTs since blockchains are built on top of NFTs Blockchains are systems of transactions made in cryptocurrency.
Using blockchain makes cryptographic hash easier to separate. The complete history of the ticket is then recorded from the moment it is minted through the sale of the ticket and revitalization.
If the Fenty brand is looking to protect its merchandise and the value of her Super Bowl half-time performance, she should also consider RFID tags for any potentially fraudulent activity that could occur in counterfeiting and pirating her merchandise. “RFID tags are a type of tracking system that uses radio frequency to search, identify, track, and communicate with items and people. Essentially, RFID tags are smart labels that can store a range of information from serial numbers to a short description, and even pages of data.” Using this system would allow consumers and the Fenty brand to protect merchandise that is likely worth a large amount of money. If Fenty chooses to implement RFIDs and NFTs, the brand’s value could increase significantly since consumers will have to verify the authenticity of the merchandise which will make it difficult to resell without any repercussions. We’d like to think that fans would rather decide the authenticity of the plays being called on the field as opposed to whether they purchased authentic limited-edition merchandise from Fenty. Introducing NFTs and RFID chips is the best cause of action to ensure that the brand remains intact as we near Super Bowl Sunday.
Lauren E. Johnson is a graduate of Touro Law Center located in Central lslip, New York where she received her Juris Doctor degree. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Political Science from St. John's University and a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice from Boston University. She is the chairwoman of the Metropolitan Black Bar Association Sports and Entertainment Law Section, and has participated in numerous initiatives to propel the fields of fashion, arts, media, sports, entertainment, and criminal justice in a new direction. Her passion for these industries is also evidenced by the many volunteer opportunities in which she has participated.