Blockchain solutions for the online music industry – Article from #1 2020

New technological developments are changing the legal status of copyright. As blockchain technology seems to be revolutionising modern times, it is difficult to underestimate the hype around this technology. This article introduces various legal aspects of the application of blockchain technology in the copyright sphere, with specific reference to the analysis of the online music industry in its modern status. Within this framework, it could be assumed that blockchain technology might represent an opportunity to reimagine and revamp the protection of copyright by implementing a blockchain-enabled system with the characteristics of being trustworthy, transparent, more affordable, highly standardised, time-stamped and automated. Although still in its infancy, the potential application of this technology in relation to the music industry is of particular interest, as it appears to offer solutions to problems that artists, musicians, performing artists, and composers have encountered for decades. It promises a way out of the current deadlock between artists and intermediaries and it offers a foundation that can bring together the entire value chain and revamp the music industry by letting go of the outdated, hierarchic framework. The complexity of the current system will take some time to unravel and rebuild. Nevertheless blockchain applications could lead to better protection of ownership, to artists having more say in deciding how and to whom the works are licensed and to faster, prompter remuneration of holders in the music industry, allowing artists to make a living out of creating music.