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Token Gating: What it is and How it Works

Token gating is gaining immense popularity as Web3 introduces new experiences to users. This innovative authorization technique allows users to access static or dynamic content based on their possession of one or more tokens. It can be utilized for various purposes, such as accessing exclusive IRL events, digital content, private Discord channels, and Shopify products or perks. As brands and creators are adopting Web3, and the possibilities of the Metaverse are expanding, numerous projects are considering implementing their gating mechanism.

What is Token Gating?

Token gating is a mechanism that restricts access to a specific NFT or collection of NFTs. It allows creators and collectors to control who can view, purchase, or transfer their NFTs. To access a token that is gated, users must hold a specific token or meet certain requirements. For example, a creator might gate access to their NFTs, requiring users to hold a certain cryptocurrency in their wallet to be able to view or purchase the NFTs.

How Does Token Gating Work?

Token gating works by creating a second token that is linked to the original NFT. This second token is used as a key to access the NFT, and users must hold this token to be able to view or purchase the NFT. The second token can be created on any blockchain that supports smart contracts and can be traded just like any other cryptocurrency.

Creators can set their own rules for access, such as requiring users to hold a certain amount of cryptocurrency or have a specific NFT in their wallet. These rules are enforced by the smart contract, which only allows users who meet the requirements to access the NFT.

Benefits of Token Gating

Token gating offers several benefits for creators and collectors of NFTs. First, it allows creators to control who can view and purchase their NFTs, which can help protect their investments. It also allows creators to reward their most loyal fans and supporters by giving them exclusive access to their NFTs.

For collectors, token gating can help to create a more exclusive and valuable collection. By gating access to certain NFTs, collectors can create a sense of scarcity and rarity, which can increase the value of their collection. It also allows collectors to participate in exclusive events and giveaways, which can further enhance the value of their collection.

Examples of Token Gating

Metal band Avenged Sevenfold has an NFT project called Deathbats Club that provides holders exclusive ticket access. Image: Avenged Sevenfold

Ticketmaster has introduced a new token gated ticketing system that is offering artists a token-gated option for exclusive ticket access. The first to utilize the new token gated platform is the metal band Avenged Sevenfold. Owners of Avenge Sevenfold’s 10,000 Deathbats Club Ethereum NFTs were offered early access to buy tickets to the band’s upcoming New York City and Los Angeles arena shows in June and around 1,000 total tickets were purchased between the two shows with the NFT-gating feature. The move follows a trend in the music industry, where artists are increasingly looking to use NFTs to provide fans with exclusive content and experiences. The new system aims to reduce fraud, scalping, and counterfeiting in the ticketing industry, as NFTs can be easily verified on the blockchain in addition to rewarding loyalty.

Here are some other real-world examples of token-gating:

  1. Ownership of a Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT provides early access to fungible token sales or airdrops of $APE coin and access to Apefest.

  2. Ownership of a Crypto Punk enables the purchase of a limited-edition Tiffany's Punk pendant in both physical and digital form.

  3. Ownership of an Adidas Alt allows for exclusive merchandise drops and access to tickets for events and performances specific to your Alt(er) ego.

  4. Ownership of an RTFKT sneaker NFT provides a physical twin in real life.

  5. Ownership of a Flyfish Club NFT, provides exclusive access to private dinners around the world hosted by famous chefs.

  6. Ownership of a Stoner Cats NFT grants access to watch episodes of an animated series created by Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher.


Although gated content and access have been prevalent for a long time, the emergence of cryptocurrency and NFTs has provided creators with a more advanced set of tools to generate fantastic token-gated experiences. We are convinced that token gating will be one of the most significant instances of new monetization strategies in this decade. This is because it represents the most concrete use case and is relatively simple to execute, even for individual creators. Soon we will see no-code solutions that will enable independent creators to easily tokenize their work.

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