Idol’s Medium Mondays: How Does Blockchain Benefit Content Creators? [IDOL_MM_002]

If a blockchain is just a distributed ledger of transactions, how does blockchain actually benefit content creators? To answer this question, we will take a look at three areas where the potential of blockchain can be realized.

Peer-to-peer transactions

One of the benefits of blockchain technology is the impact that it has on payments and transactions. By creating a distributed network of nodes and implementing a mechanism for transactions to be verified, blockchain enables peer-to-peer interaction on a completely new level. This has immediate implications in the content and entertainment sphere.

For example, payments are often done through a third-party, who takes a fee by being the platform for exchange. While this should be fair in theory, there is a risk of unfair pricing or predatory business practices solely to generate extra revenue, particularly against lesser-known, up-and-coming content creators. By removing these intermediary fees, we can enable the peer-to-peer distribution of payments and assets, ultimately increasing revenue for creators and decreasing costs for consumers.

Autonomous distribution

Content creators often rely on services or agencies to share and upload their content to their audience. However, in order to be profitable, these services and agencies often charge a variety of fees in exchange for access to the platform or network. For example, some will take a percentage of all ad revenue, while others will charge per sale of an asset.

Smart contracts (programming logic that runs on the blockchain) are able to disrupt this practice, opening the door for innovative business models. For example, an artist may automatically distribute music through a smart contract, where royalties are automatically paid and content autonomously distributed. They may also use smart contracts to replace conventional contracts, easily licensing their content out to companies and/or fans.

Copyright

In an increasingly digital and online world, piracy and intellectual property theft are rising issues that demand to be addressed. How can one’s content, ideas, and projects be protected through irrefutable proof? This is where hashing and blockchain can play a part.

By hashing any particular file, we are able to receive a deterministic output (given that we use the same hash function). With this, we are able to be completely certain about the current state of any given file: if you hash two files you believe to be the same and the outputs do not match, then you can conclude with 100% certainty that the two files are different (or one file was altered in some way). Now, by uploading this hash onto the blockchain, we are able to give this file a definitive time-stamp (verified by the network) of when it was uploaded. Assuming that the upload time is directly after the time it was created, we now have a mathematical, irreversible, and immutable way to prove the existence of a particular stream of data at a given time.

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