How 'the Blockchain' Could Actually Change the Music Industry


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The blockchain is a decentralized system, with no single entity controlling it. The servers keeping its backbone upright are scattered across the globe, and for that reason the technology is transparent; everyone can see its anonymized data. It could also replace notaries, as every transaction is time stamped automatically and receives a unique ID. No exchange rates apply either, because cryptocurrencies are oblivious to borders. And because there are no intermediaries involved, monies are transferred instantly.

PeerTracks, according to its president Cédric Cobban, is a “music streaming and music retail platform that allows for fan engagement and peer-to-peer talent discovery.” PeerTracks will use the blockchain for its transactions, paying streaming revenue on a per-user-share basis, meaning that the revenue each user generates will go directly to the artists users are actually listening to.

PeerTracks hopes to garner marketing dollars – it aims to stay ad-free for users – through “artist tokens,” a concept comparable to baseball cards. Consider it A&R, gamified. Every artist on PeerTracks can create their own token, bearing their face and name. The artist sets the amount of available tokens. “Since it is limited edition,” Cobban explains, “once you create your tokens, you can’t create more.” The idea is to create a type of sub-cryptocurrency, the valuation of which directly reflects the appeal of an artist.