As a $21.6 billion industry that grew by more than 7.4% in the last year alone and an industry dominated by massive streaming firms — including the likes of Apple Music, Spotify, and Deezer, you might be tempted to think that the artists are in a similarly strong position for further growth.
But while it’s true that the music industry is big business, it’s the platforms that are raking in most of the profits, while the artists are frequently fleeced at every turn. As it stands, most platforms distribute less than half of profits to popular artists, while some of the smaller artists get just a tiny fraction of the revenue.
These platforms make it challenging for artists to fully make use of their intellectual properties (IPs) due to strict lock-ins while creative talent is stifled through inflexible algorithms that make it difficult for newer artists or music styles to gain recognition. This is doubly problematic when you consider that these platforms pose an intentional obstacle to direct fan interaction — making it difficult for artists to engage their audience, maximize the value of their works, and properly cater to their fans.
Moreover, current platforms do very little to protect the intellectual property rights of artists and have limited capacity to tackle piracy. This manifests in rampant piracy and limited economic incentives for stakeholders — who cannot be sure that their rights will be considered or protected.
Unfortunately, until only very recently, there simply was no better alternative. But that’s beginning to change, as developers begin to leverage the unique properties of blockchain technology to produce solutions that put the creators first.
The Blockchain Opportunity
Blockchain can be used to bridge the gap between artists and their audiences through a platform that helps artists maximize their revenue by cutting out the middlemen.
Rather than requiring publishers, labels, distributors, etc., to reach their fans, creators will soon be able to use blockchain-powered platforms to interact directly with the consumer — massively boosting efficiency, and clawing back the cut that would otherwise be taken by the intermediaries.
From the consumer perspective, blockchain technology allows users to better interact with their favorite artists while keeping expenses down to a bare minimum. Since artists no longer have to rely on greedy platforms to reach their audience, they also have the opportunity to keep their pricing low and directly reward fans for their engagement.
But more than this, it also allows intellectual property holders to easily manage their IPs over the blockchain, enabling IP holders to store, authorize and trade IP copyrights in a secure environment. This would provide an attractive new source of revenue for creators, who could create bespoke licensing agreements for their IPs while allowing investors and fans to invest in their works to share in the downstream revenue.
Thanks to the rapid uptake of NFTs and the proliferation of NFT trading platforms, artists will be able to easily package and distribute IP rights between stakeholders and directly trade tokenized IPs over the blockchain through the myriad exchange platforms — unlocking the liquidity of a previously illiquid asset class.
NFTs are already beginning to become popular among mainstream artists. With concerts, for example, NFTs can act as tickets eliminating the problem of ticket scalpers. Many popular artists like Deadmau5 and ChainSmokers have already released special limited edition tracks for their fans using NFTs. The right combination of blockchain-based tech and UX could be poised to bring this type of functionality to the masses.
Moreover, as we have seen from the NFT art revolution, creatives are ready and waiting to adopt technologies that help them maximize their skills and audience. Likewise, as evidenced by the rampant growth of fan token platforms and NFT marketplaces, fans are ready and willing to adopt platforms and technologies that help them better engage with their favorite creators and monetize their interactions.
Nonetheless, the transition to a blockchain-based music economy will come with its challenges, not the least of which include lost passwords and educating the artists about the technology. But as with all new game-changing technologies, the early kinks are eventually worked out as adoption grows.
At Master Ventures, we are always looking to invest in projects that not only address a major unmet need but also have the capability to help expose millions to the capabilities of blockchain technology.
Our latest incubator project — Mozik — accomplishes both with an elegant solution that uses blockchain technology and NFTs to empower artists and fans in a way that was simply not possible before.
By providing a platform where fans can directly invest in their favorite musicians and artists have more control over their works, Mozik hopes to power the future of the music industry.
The platform introduces a number of novel concepts and products to help artists not only grow their audience and improve interactions with their fans, but better distribute their content without losing a majority chunk of their revenue to the labels and distributors.
As one of our incubator projects, Master Ventures will be providing an extensive range of support to Mozik, helping it make a splash both before and after launch. When combined with the platform’s heavily experienced team, huge list of awards, innovative technology, and strong backers, we believe that Mozik stands an excellent chance of becoming a disruptive force within the music industry.
Mozik is a blockchain-powered innovation geared towards growth in the music industry by eliminating third parties and connecting content creators directly to their consumers by leveraging NFTs to monetize intellectual property adequately.
About Master Ventures
Master Ventures is a blockchain-focused venture studio helping to build the next generation of blockchain-based Web 3.0 system innovations within the crypto industry. Launched in 2018 by Founder and CEO Kyle Chassé, the company’s ethos can best be summarized in the acronym #BeBOLD: Benevolent, Open, Love, Decentralized.
Master Ventures co-creates with entrepreneurs and businesses worldwide to turn the best ideas into innovative and disruptive products. They do this by investing as strategic partners through offering advisory services to the projects they believe in. To date, Master Ventures has invested in over 40 crypto projects, including the likes of Kraken, Coinbase, Bitfinex, Reef, DAO Maker, Mantra DAO, Thorchain, and Elrond.
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