As the end of 2018 approaches, some major blockchain players have been looking at what 2019 may offer, taking note that emerging technologies have already found a comfortable home within the music industry this year.
Blockchain is the first that springs to mind, and as Accenture Consulting wrote in a recent post, “with blockchain on the horizon, every company of every industry must re-evaluate their role in the value chain — where once again, the music industry is leading the pack.”
How then has the music industry taken this leadership role if these claims are accurate? Alan Goodman compares the influence of blockchain in the years to comes as perhaps rivaling that of MTV which completely revolutionized music sales and gave something back to the creators of the music:
“Thanks to MTV there was a whole new ecosystem around music. We didn’t just see video making as something that propelled musicians. Musicians were suddenly at the fulcrum of new businesses, and new ways of thinking about business.”
Goodman has another role apart from being a founding member of MTV. He is now current Chief Brand Leviator at blockchain payment solutions company Aeryus. He adds:
“More recently, we’ve seen how musicians who understand community building can control their own destinies by conquering social media, crowdfunding, and digital channel creation. But blockchain will have a massive impact on how we do business in music because of the revolutionary decentralized infrastructure.”
Not all in the music industry support Goodman’s utopian view of the future. But Adrian Miller, CEO of Xyion and architect behind recording artist Anderson Paak, doesn’t see much changing in the year to come regarding blockchains impact on the industry and is one of those who believes that the hype surrounding blockchain is little more than just that. He argues:
“Enterprise sales to a few large incumbents is one of the hardest things to do and it can take years, maybe a decade to see results. From that standpoint, I don’t understand how these blockchain-based systems make enough money to exist at scale because they are trying to provide a lower cost and faster solution compared to existing databases.”
He maintains that blockchains are no better than the databases the industry has grown up with, and are slower and more expensive on the whole. Miller says he’d prefer to continue his blockchain research but also pursue more traditional ways of promoting his artists, through promo and album releases.
Facundo M Diaz, Executive Director at Reality Code Foundation, sees extended reality (XR) technology as the future:
“Many artists are finding ways to creatively explore new business opportunities in XR. With approximately 171 million VR users, and AR in every mobile device, the motivation for the music industry to expand their business in these new technologies is huge, but they still need to understand the best way to create something that inspires users to pay.”
He sees 2019 as the opening up of musical talent through adopting XR technology, “creating new and amazing ways to experience music”.
Finally, Bryan Calhoun, head of Digital Strategy at Blueprint Group, an entertainment management firm representing top recording talent, sees ticketing as the area in which blockchain will make the biggest impact.
“I think the two biggest opportunities revolve around rights management and ticketing. Both are going to take time to get done correctly, but companies like Dot BC, Tari, and Big Neon are, respectively, leading the way with exciting projects that have traction.”
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