If anything has the ability to completely alter how the music industry looks going forward in this era of digitization, we would bet on the blockchain approach. Sound familiar? You must have heard it in all the talks of bitcoin and cryptocurrency. A blockchain model basically is a linear progression system where the middlemen get eliminated and a direct link is created between the user and the artist in terms of information exchange, sales, and streaming. Take, for instance, the music industry only. From artists having to sign with a record label at expense of making profits. To list it on platforms like YouTube which minimized the barriers to entry and made it accessible for many out there, however, still at the expense of their income. The crucial merit of the blockchain is its promising profits for the artists who have struggled to make money despite the success of the industry as a whole. Also, to other contributors like the songwriters, lyricists, and composers according to their contribution and stake.
Smart Contracts and Revenue Management
It is one of the most crucial features of blockchain technology that makes the model such a hit in the music industry as it bridges the gap for artists’ not getting their profits that has long prevailed. A contract is composed and signed before the release of the song and entails the basic details, conditions, and payment information that makes it possible to make immediate transactions to all the listed parties after the song is licensed.
Record keeping and Meta-Data Analysis
Another important feature it brings is of maintaining records and transparency while ensuring anonymity. It has a record-keeping system known as a ledger. But, unlike the accounting ledgers, it’s decentralized and the information is stored in boxes and passed down to the next boxes in line. An alphanumeric number is assigned to each node (user) as their identifier in the chain making them pseudo-anonymous, where no personal information is disclosed of the node and can’t be traced back to them. The feature allows artists to have a better understanding of their fans by keeping a keen eye on the streaming activity which reveals the pattern of the fan. According to this then the artists can plan their next albums benefitting both the artists and the fans!
Intellectual Property Protection
Along with blockchain technology providing us with tamper-proof data where no centralized authority or party can alter the data, it also tracks the activity of the music being put out. For instance, an artist lists the song through blockchain, and that very second they will be assigned an alphanumeric identity code recording the time and the details of the artist and the song. Ensuring an original copyright date if a copyright claim is ever registered protects the artist’s work from being misused which has happened long before. This allows creators to use the artists’ songs with their consent in return for a profit.
Lastly, Blockchain technology’s ability to make things transparent, enhance the security of the payment process, and reduce the cost for users to enjoy the songs put out by their favorite artists. Now the fans know the specifics, for instance, which instrument the artist is using and when is it being used. They can also make suggestions to the artists based on that. Many apps that have adopted the technology let the fans enjoy music for free if they have listened to it a couple of times or have a minimal fee to use the app in return for giving them tokens to be used within the app like Resonate. The technology is promising for the artists and the fan. However, it is crucial to note that it is still in its early stages so imagine what can it do when established and adopted by the masses.