YellowHeart Founder/CEO Discusses New ‘Socially Responsible’ Ticketing Platform

The Chainsmokers
Michael Zorn / Invision / AP
– The Chainsmokers
The Chainsmokers tear it up for the crowd at the Budweiser Made In America Festival at Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia Sept. 3.

EDM duo The Chainsmokers and their manager / Disruptor Records CEO Adam Alpert are hoping to give artists control of how tickets are resold by teaming up with industry executive Josh Katz to form the YellowHeart ticketing platform. 

Described as the “first socially responsible live event ticketing platform,” YellowHeart is autonomous and full decentralized. The platform will run on a public blockchain and allow artists and their teams to sell directly to fans. Rather than standing by the wayside as brokers in the secondary market make billions by reselling tickets, artists utilizing YellowHeart will get to set maximum resale prices and earn a share of tickets resold via the platform. 

“With The Chainsmokers, we’ve been outspoken about the issue of scalpers for years, and are excited to partner with YellowHeart to provide a smart and effective solution that gives control back to artists and fans,” Alpert said in a statement. “As we continue to build this platform, we are focused on the issues that matter to us and our peers across genres. As you would expect, we’ve received incredible support from others in the industry who plan on joining our mission over the coming year.”

– YellowHeart
Pollstar reached out to YellowHeart founder and CEO Josh Katz to learn more. Katz is also the founder of El Media Group, a custom music and video provider that works with top hospitality brands. Prior to forming EMG in 20004, he worked at Arista Records, Jive Records and BMG Entertainment. 
Can you discuss how YellowHeart is socially responsible
YellowHeart is social responsibility because the company is built on an ethos and ethical framework solely to maintain a fair and transparent ticketing marketplace. YellowHeart is built on a public blockchain which fosters fairness via no central authority. This allows for all transactions to be consensus driven and makes it impossible for third parties to game the system.  It keeps everyone honest and identifies any bad players. This is the socially responsible way for artists and teams to sell tickets to their fans.  Our mission is to attract socially responsible artists who care about their fans paying face value and offering fair trade, un-manipulated supply and demand driven ticket exchange. We encourage these artists to use YellowHeart to benefit their fans. 
For readers who aren’t familiar with blockchain, how does it work?  
Blockchain serves as a public ledger, where all transactions are recorded and available online through a public record. In this case, each ticket sale goes through YellowHeart, and therefore all revenue will flow through the public ledger. Each ticket that is sold will have a unique key that is tied to a user’s identity and sits in their virtual wallet, eliminating forgery.
Will primary tickets be sold through YellowHeart, or just secondary sales?
Both! Once a ticket is on YellowHeart, it is always controlled by YellowHeart including when listed on secondary markets and via third party resellers, and all sales / transactions of that ticket will be connected, verified, and monitored through the platform. Artists will have the ability to set the rules for every ticket issued at their concert, show, or event. Since everything will be sold through the platform, it eliminates the seller’s ability to evade the artist’s rules because we are able to track the entire ticketing transaction lifecycle.  We also hope to achieve un-fragmented views of ticket inventory owned and for sale.  
Will artists have to give their approval for tickets to be sold through YellowHeart or can any tickets be resold through YellowHeart?
Artists will have to give their approval to sell through YellowHeart. Any artist will be able to sell their tickets on a marketplace that works with YellowHeart’s contracts. 
An announcement says “The YellowHeart platform will not impact the traditional user experience – no additional steps or added layers will be applied to finding and purchasing tickets to see a favorite band, sports team or show.” Do you mean as far as signing up for the service?  
The user experience of purchasing tickets will not change and there will be no added complications to purchasing tickets. The change is in the transaction of the tickets, as all primary, secondary, etc. vendors will have to adhere to the rules of the tickets. This is the crux of YellowHeart, it puts the power and control of the ticket profits into the hands of the artist instead of the pockets of the third-party scalpers.
Can you give any details about when YellowHeart is scheduled to launch? 
Venue betas are scheduled to begin in the second quarter of 2020. Full launch will happen in the second half of 2020.