DJ Gareth Emery thinks the way musicians get paid royalties from online music sites is mired in outdated technology and wants to use Blockchain to get artists what they deserve.
Streaming services need an upgrade
According to Emery music streaming sites like Spotify and Itunes domination of online distribution suck up an undue amount of revenue, have too much influence on which artists flourish, and who never gets to be known.
“Careers can get made or broken by being in those playlists,”
So he launched Choon in a bid to right those wrongs and bring accounting transparency and fair financial distribution to an industry that has continually put the artist last.
Emery’s solution is two-fold, firstly Choon’s playlist selections will be human free. Depending instead on an algorithm to build playlists in order to eliminate bias and cronyism at the basic level.
Second is to update the process of assigning and paying royalties to artists based on how frequently their music is streamed and that is where Blockchain comes in.
Choon’s goal is to simplify the accounting process to the point where artists can easily track how often their music is played, what their royalties are and even get paid on a daily basis if they want.
“(the) way of doing royalties and accounting was basically designed in the days of jukeboxes and sheet music and has been grandfathered in across every new innovation”
The open nature of the Blockchain based system created to power Choon is such that the DJ says he would be happy to have others build from it, even Spotify if they want. Thanks to the transparency of the system Choon will pay 80% of its revenue back to artists as royalties. The potentially bad news is that the 80% royalties are artists will receive are going to be paid out in Notes.
Good royalties, bad Notes?
Not surprisingly a company built on the back of Blockchain plans to pay artists in its own Ethereum based cryptocurrency called Notes.
The streaming service plans on launching Notes as an ICO after which it will become freely tradable. Emery understands that a lot of artists may be deterred by being paid in an unproven cryptocurrency at a time when the market is going through some volatile adjustments.
It’s no surprise that the service will launch more on the level of SoundCloud than Spotify with about 400 artists who own their music. To this Emery says he’s not interested in attracting the stars of today, he wants the hit-makers of tomorrow.