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The Future of Events with James Simpson

Last updated May 31st, 2024

Hi, my name is James Simpson, and I’m the director of Copper Candle. We’re an immersive tech creation company who work in Metaverse live events. It’s a big future for us all coming up in the industry.

Interviewer: If you were to outline what you see as the future in our industry, what sort of things would you talk about?

James Simpson: So, particularly for events at the moment, I see a lot of change towards the Metaverse or meta entertainment, as we’re trying to call it. This is an idea that we could start to present all of our events, our experiences, in a virtual 3D space. The 3D world would be unlimited in terms of the number of users that could come to it. It’s unlimited in terms of the amount of equipment or the ideas that could be placed into it. It’s creative beyond your wildest dreams, and it’s accessible to anybody.

Interviewer: In terms of that experience, have you seen it working or being successful? What are good examples that we could think about?

James Simpson: The Fortnite example is the best example at the moment for Metaverse events. Big music artists like Travis Scott, Marshmello, and Ariana Grande have all produced their own concerts in Fortnite. Travis Scott attracted 27 million people to see his concert, which is 27 times more than the Guinness World Record for an in-person concert. So, there’s definitely traction there, and that’s just one of the platforms that you can get into.

Interviewer: And if you were to be cynical, would you say that Covid meant that those things worked? But now we’re all back out face to face, like we are here at the Business Design Centre, people don’t want to experience it virtually, or what’s your take on that?

James Simpson: Covid was definitely a catalyst for this emerging event technology, but it’s here to stay. For sure. I can see it everywhere at the moment. We are finding people who are happy to work remotely or work hybrid just in our normal day-to-day lives. That’s part of the change that the pandemic created. The events industry is getting the same response, and it has absolutely nothing to do with the capacity or the limitations of the live events industry as it currently is. That will continue to operate as it always has done. But what we’re seeing is that there are new markets that are trying to get into this because this new sector is opening up to people who currently can’t go to live events. And that’s a wonderful opportunity.

Interviewer: So, take a show like the one behind you, the podcast show here at the Business Design Centre. What sort of things would change about the delivery and production of a show like this if it was to have that, I suppose, that double edge to it?

James Simpson: A live event show like this one behind me would probably have a double-pronged audience. There would be the audience that’s here physically, and there would be an audience that is responding virtually via the Metaverse. Now, we’ve seen this before with the Zoom conferences, and they’re incredibly tedious to watch. I can speak from experience during the pandemic. I don’t want to do any more Zoom conferences, but it’s a great way to experience a conference when you can walk around as a 3D game character. You can start to build in experiences, test equipment, or listen to people speak in a 3D format, which is a lot more familiar to us as 3D real-life people. In addition to that, events like this can also be designed and created in the Metaverse. The live experience is actually planned by a production team that is working remotely all over the world using these 3D tools as CAD packages, effectively, even though that CAD package is technically Fortnite and it’s a gaming platform built for people to play Battle Royale.

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