The indy bands may be coming as the specter of new business models in the arts is raised following SingularDTV’s laying out of an enthralling new vision that may empower artists.
“The revolutionary convergence of network and data that allows artists and creators to leave gatekeepers and intermediaries behind and seize control of their intellectual property rights and value flow has begun,” Zach LeBeau, SingularDTV’s CEO, boldly proclaims.
After a few years of work at very much the pioneering edges of ethereum where they “had to build the tools to build the apps before we could even start building the apps,” according to SingularDTV, they are now to debut, launching a token creation and management platform, a tokens exchange, and a launchpad.
The idea here is to basically tokenize the artist himself. Denis Jašarević, better known by his stage name of Gramatik, tells his 77,000 followers:
“Owning my token means owning a piece of my intellectual property. Uncomparably more beneficial to fans than getting a t-shirt and a sticker from a kickstarter campaign. This is the future of crowdfunding and content creation.”
It’s not clear whether that is actually contractual and he is bound to share all of the profits of his creative work with the token holders, but SingularDTV says they have created a platform where artists “embed their intellectual property’s rights, revenue and royalties into a programmable token,” with the ethereum based start-up further stating:
“Tokens generated in Tokit are embedded with the intellectual property of a project, when those projects generate revenue, that revenue instantaneously appears in the token for the fans to either withdraw or store.”
At the artist end, there is EtherVision, a platform “channel” where you go around and click on things, as well as where much of the action will likely happen.
“SingularDTV will be launching a peer-to-peer distribution platform called EtherVision in Q1/Q2 of 2018. It is here the GRMTK channel will live,” LeBeau says. Because that’s where the communication between artist and his fans occurs.
To simplify, an artist first has to go through a vetting process for SingularDTV to ensure they are legit. Once that is passed, he makes his “offer,” presumably laying out what royalties he will share, on the Launchpad. As a fan, or perhaps investor, you presumably can browse the launchpad, look at the offers, and see what you might wish to support.
Once that process is over and the artist token is launched, there is a section on the website/platform, called EtherVision, where the artist actually shares his creative work.
“The features allowing for the transfer of royalties will not be activated until content is placed on his platform,” LeBeau says. By his platform meaning the artist’s channel.
The underlying system then automatically distributes profits and rewards from these royalties, although how exactly it does so at a technical and accountable level is not very clear.
Conceptually, “fans fuel his creation while at the same time benefitting from the ownership of Gramatik’s intellectual property and future royalties,” LeBeau says. Therefore, “he will never need to go outside his fanbase for permission to create again,” the start-up claims.
Which is interesting because there is nothing more an artist craves than that creative freedom to express themselves exactly as they please without any dictation by others.
Something that may benefit us all due to the widened spectrum of speech and expression of ideas, with SingularDTV stating that soon after Gramatik launches his token:
“Khushnuda Shukurova will launch the KHUSH token immediately after. The KHUSH token launch will go to fund Detained, a short film about two siblings fleeing their wartorn country only to find themselves outcasts in America.”
That suggests the ancient patronage of arts by the rich might now be opened to us all, and with it, our voice might increase too, but it is all still somewhat experimental, with Gramatik stating:
“You should know that I despise pump and dump and mindless trading. I’m in crypto for the long run, I don’t care about speculation, I care about widespread adoption and I’m totally stoked to be a guinea pig for it.”
The millennial, former Yugoslavia now Slovenia, born 30 something years old, might be representative of many that grew up in the 90s, during the golden peaceful age which memory can itself recall.
No wonder, therefore, he is willing to experiment with something that promises to empower one of the most important pillar in society, the creative artist.
But with it all being an experiment, whether the execution will prove correct, and whether it will actually achieve its aims, remains very much to be seen.