Decentralizing Content Creation (episode #1) — How Can Blockchain Help With Monetization? A Short Introduction to the Topic
Here Come the Content Creators
Content creation takes work. Starting from the ideation stage, going through the first draft and arriving at the publishing stage, a lot of resources are being consumed in generating content in today’s digital world. Web 2.0 is all about participation, is what you would call a “social web”. With the evolution of social media came around a new type of actor on the digital stage: the content creator. Generally speaking, we humans are all what Aristotle named “social animals”, individuals that take part in the construction of society, and that are in turn constructed by it.
Ever since the beginnings of human communities, people learned crafts, created a finished product and later claimed to be compensated for the effort they exerted. Initially, the product-payment exchange was made directly between the creator and the buyer. Later on, we created centralized structures that employed individuals to make use of their skills and abilities, paying them a just amount of money in return for their work. This transition was made according to the social contract: individuals exchanged part of their liberties, in turn benefitting from the state’s protection and access to resources and places to work. People needed to feel safe.
Having the Freedom to Create Content and Monetize Accordingly
With this safety came the need to control. Employers developed mechanisms to quantify the time and effort spent on getting to a certain result. Individuals began to be boxed in, and the division of labor took its place in all working sectors. Now, creators of any kind were no longer remunerated for making an entire product, they were asked to fill in a production spot for creating a finite item. It was the time of the factories and assembly lines. Slowly, society further evolved to complex business models, and technology followed along, providing new means of creating value for the employer. In time, tools transitioned from manual labor, nowadays it is almost exclusively digital.
With the digital wave came the social media platforms. Initially cheap, simple and easy-to-use means of content production. People were happy to connect and share their lives with others all around the world, being recognized and incentivized for the online display of their lifestyles. Little by little, many of them grew in recognition, and as with all social networks, reliable opinion leaders emerged. They were trusted in their recommendations, expertise or craftsmanship. These are what were later called content creators, the influencers we all know today. But as their social recognition grew, so did their need to be compensated for the time spent creating.
The Problem With Centralized Content Creation Applications
Content monetization methods were introduced as a way to reward the effort creators were making in both engaging users and bringing new ones to the respective platforms. But accountability coming from a centralized structure will always make way to loss of trust and cause indignation, as people may not feel recompensated at their true value.
In time, direct monetization platforms like Patreon appeared on the digital scene, using the content as a crowdfunding method, directly incentivizing creators and offering immediate access to the revenue they were asking for the end project. Patreon’s trust began to drop as it received accusations of being “politically biased” when it banned several accounts belonging to conservative users, among which was the podcaster Sam Harris. As our world is becoming more open-minded and freedom-seeking, content creators are not so well-tolerant of rules, censorship, and regulations due to the hidden agenda content distribution companies may have.
Decentralizing Content Platforms Using Blockchain Technology
Content creation is being controlled by gatekeepers, online freedom of speech is being impeded. As that happens, monetization will always have an intermediary and creators will keep searching for alternative ways in which to get compensated for their work. Decentralization can be their smart choice. Especially blockchain platforms, encouraging peer-to-peer networks.
Decentralized platforms are basically digital systems that rely on each member’s equal participation in building the structure. Because of the token economy, blockchain technology can be used to build content delivery applications, in which creators and their curators (audiences) can help each other through a reward mechanism that works both ways.
It offers fans a stake in their favorite content creator’s growth and incentivizes the improvement of the content itself. The rewards can be offered for consuming content, at the same time rising the creator’s success within the network. Basically, the system rewards the creation and consumption of content, the community support acting like a rewarding mechanism, helping creators grow as they produce more and more content.
Monetize Content Via Blockchain Peer-To-Peer Networks
Content monetization is strongly tied to the available technology that allows creators to put their skills and talents in practice. The more they create, the more they’ll need a trusted system to cater to their monetization needs, growing audiences and need of feeling free doing their craft. As the creators’ number grows each day, we are expected to make use of the new technology that suits their monetization needs.
This is the beginning of an article series here on Medium, discussing all the implications regarding content creation, hosting and storage capabilities. We are here to support the development of your most daring projects. We are going beyond the cloud. Join us in the journey to decentralize the Internet as we know it. Welcome to SWAZM! Come talk to us on Telegram, connect on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, visit our website and find out how can we best help your business operations.
SWAZM is the next-generation decentralized storage and compute platform, designed to enable horizontal scaling of distributed applications. SWAZM facilitates effective decentralization by creating a new complete infrastructure solution with a reliable transfer network, storage capabilities, and compute containers. Tailored solutions aiming to improve your decentralized project.