The Artist’s Dilemma

Franz Schubert: Died unappreciated and penniless at age 31

· Digital ownership? Almost impossible

· Centralized platforms: Bureaucratic system of labels, artist managers and distribution services — have largely choked the smaller artist who is unable to negotiate sponsorship deals with big brands, and who rely on direct artist-to-fan sales

· Platforms: Monopolies where artists earn small amounts and not enough to survive

· Social media: Creating content value for platform owners

· Fans: Providing free marketing services for content creators by up-voting and liking content but no reward). (To get more fans, content creators can buy followers and become expert at social media marketing/networking — now facilitated by bots.)

· Algorithm’s: Promote certain content and not others therefore demonetizing artist opportunities (based on ideology/preference of platform owner)

· Growing a fanbase: Would like to share content while also knowing that their artists are getting rewarded (the good old days of tape recorders) to enjoy art together (art is not a single experience but is also a shared experience)

· Inability to protect copyright or even own rights to own content (signed away or used in a way that artists feel infringes on the artists rights (Pepe the Frog)

· Accessing cash/money up front to fund artistic projects and provide original and independently created content

· Accessing funds and networks to build a fanbase, promote and distribute content and earn the money outright

· Current financial services fees and systems to determine credit worthiness for loans and funding (art projects often need funding up front)

· The growing impact of bots and AI earning money/funds/attention on platforms

Some crypto initiatives to solve the artists’ dilemma

Artists were first adopters of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies/assets.

There are various options already created or in progress:

Opus Foundation










I am curious to hear from creatives building the blockchain eco-system

· As an artist/content creator, have you used any blockchain protocols or cryptocurrency payment platforms for your content?

· What aspects do you find useful and address some of your challenges?

· What roadblocks did you encounter? Was it the technology itself, copyright, building an audience, payments/rewards/eco-system (art galleries, collectors, etc)?

· What needs to be done to achieve mass adoption and make it worthwhile for independent artists and content creators?