These days, many teams and even sports are using barcodes to indicate their game worn jerseys. Just recently, there has been word that the barcodes on the World Cup of Hockey jerseys will be scanned before the player puts on the jersey in order to track when the jersey was actually used.
With all those barcodes out there on our jerseys, what do they really mean to us?
The short answer is nothing. The barcodes themselves do absolutely nothing for us. They are not secure, they can be reproduced, they do nothing. Where the true value comes into play is what CAN be associated with the barcode. Tracking and scan data.
We have heard that you can request scan data from Fanatics for your jersey, which should help you to know what games your jersey was worn in, but this begs the question, who is doing the scanning? When are they scanning? Are they scanning the jerseys in and out? Are they timestamped so we know if they were worn for the entire game or just for the period?
There can be a lot of questions surrounding these barcodes. We have seen barcoded jerseys that indicate they are from a specific set, when photo matching shows that is actually incorrect. How many places that use these barcodes do we see additional information from? So far, Fanatics seems to be the first to make the corresponding data available, even if only by request. Is there even data being collected that corresponds to these other barcodes, or are they just for show?