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Kickback - incentivizing event attendance through crypto economics


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An introduction to Kickback (, an Ethereum blockchain application which uses crypto economics to attempt to solve the problem of no-shows at free events.

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Kickback - incentivizing event attendance through crypto economics

  1. 1. Incentivizing event attendance through crypto economics ickback Ramesh Nair / @hiddentao Co-founder
  2. 2. “Crypto-economic incentives” Actors are driven by economic incentives, standard game theory applies. The rules and logic are underpinned and enforced through cryptography, i.e. the blockchain. Frees us to just focus on ensuring the incentives are correct.
  3. 3. Meet-ups are great… …FREE meet-ups are even better! But there are 2 big problems…
  4. 4. A common problem: No-shows • Hard to plan and budget for
 • Low turnout can “break” an event
 • Discourages future participation
  5. 5. With common solutions… Introduce scarcity Do fewer events
 Limit to fewer max. people Early RSVP deadline Spend more $$ Marketing and promotion
 Pizza, beer, gifts
 VIPs Ask for more commitment Jump through hoops to sign-up
 Chase up no-shows and query them
 Monetary solutions…
  6. 6. Monetary solutions * Charge if no-show Pros: Participant only charged if they don’t show up
 Cons: Requiring card details will deter some people. Paid tickets Pros: Will increase turnout due to higher perceived value of ticket*
 Cons: No longer free, and upfront payment will deter many people Deposit they get back Pros: Will increase turnout*. Still effectively free for participant if they show up to the event.
 Cons: Need to collect money and then give it back. Could still deter people due to upfront payment. Cumbersome payment
  7. 7. Remember the fundamentals… “If I don’t need to pay I’ll happily sign up, because it isn’t costing me anything” “If I have to pay then I need to think carefully about it. I wish it was just free” “I signed up, but it was free, so it’s ok if I change my mind now and give it a miss” “I signed up, and it cost me, so if I change my mind now I’ll have wasted my money”
  8. 8. Deposit they get back “If I don’t need to pay I’ll happily sign up, because it isn’t costing me anything” “I signed up, and it cost me, so if I change my mind now I’ll have wasted my money”
  9. 9. Deposit they get back How can we make the logistics of this easier? Enter smart contracts! Ethereum Smart Contract Withdraw Ethereum Smart Contract Finalize attendance Ethereum Smart ContractRSVP
  10. 10. Additional incentive If I don’t turn up my initial commitment gets split among everybody else did turn up! Ethereum Smart ContractRSVP Ethereum Smart Contract Withdraw This is how Kickback currently works!
  11. 11. Does it work? • 7 events at #DevconFour 2 • 500 people RSVP’d
 (>$2k in contract) • Avge. 60% turn up rate
 (low due to the type of events) • Avge. 50% payout profit • 10+ London Ethereum meetups 1 • 112 people RSVP’d • Avge. 90% turn up rate 
 (was 50% prior to using Kickback) • Avge. 11% payout profit 1 Profitable for participants Turn up rate inconsistent 2
  12. 12. Inconsistent turn-up rate Not suitable for certain event types Need a cutoff time for arrivals Deposit needs to be higher >$5 Not suitable if there are multiple similar events at same time
  13. 13. Criticisms UX / flow Concept
  14. 14. Potential improvements Withdraw anytime, 
 reuse as deposits Different payout
 strategies Better guidance for organisers, e.g. deposit size Fiat -> Crypto 
 on-ramp +1 RSVPs, 
 transfer registration
  15. 15. Second problem: Sustainability “I would love to use 
 Kickback but I don’t 
 want to pay” “I wish I could keep my costs down so that I could run more meetups”
  16. 16. What’s a good solution? Make Kickback free Charge
 attendees Event
 sponsors Companies 
 want Potential new users/customers Token
 distribution Brand
 awareness Organizers
 want Minimal
 costs Participant
 incentives Larger audience Sponsorship
  17. 17. Do it on-chain Sponsor
 Money PotaddToPot Sponsor Sponsor
 Money PotbidForMoney Organizer Sponsor
 Money PotacceptBid Sponsor Sponsor
 Money PotwithdrawMoney Organizer We would like to 
 integrate with existing 
 on-chain systems
  18. 18. 2019 onwards… Sponsorship
 model DAI / ERC-20 support
 (Khyber/Bancor) New withdrawals
 architecture Raise funding! Subscription
 Pricing FIAT on-ramp for
 non-crypto users Ethereum Scalability
  19. 19. Incentivizing respectful communities EventBrite Meetup Patreon Kickback?
  20. 20. Find us online @_jefflau@makoto_inoue @hiddentao @wearekickback
  21. 21. Thank you!