William Shatner’s New Blockchain Startup Promises Provenance for Memorabilia

There’s been much ado about convention-exclusive merchandise over the last few weeks, especially with San Diego Comic Con coming up. And last week, a new blockchain startup by William Shatner earned itself a profile in Forbes, for its efforts to develop blockchain technology for physical memorabilia.

In May, Shatner formed a partnership with Mattereum, a London-based company that logs details about physical objects in the ethereum blockchain. Now, LA-based startup Third Millenia is using Mattereum technology to create “digital twins” of microchipped items. Shatner is the founder of Third Millenia and will serve as an adviser going forward.

The first digital twin is an action figure of Captain Kirk, signed by Shatner himself. Part of the data that will be tracked by the object’s ledger when it goes live will be a video of Shatner signing and drawing an ethereum symbol on the box. Eventually, Third Millenia aims to use the blockchain to legally transfer ownership of a physical object, which would create a detailed history of its past, as well as its authenticity.

Of the application of blockchain technology, Shatner said, “Science fiction is the exercise as complete as possible, as far as you can go, of imagining the future. And we all understand that in the end, humanity, once it imagines something, is inspired to make it concrete, to make it happen, and that’s what has happened. [...] I recognize a prospect of the future. And that is identifying things using blockchain.”

Alison Pitt