Blockchain-Based Music Project Announces Major Industry Partners

On February 1, 2017, the dotBlockchain Music Project (dotBC), announced their collaboration with industry partners, SOCAN (including its subsidiary, MediaNet), Songtrust, CDBaby, and FUGA, to solve the complex data, rights, ownership, and payment issues that currently plague the music industry.

DotBC uses blockchain technology and open source systems to develop a new cataloging format that they hope will be adopted as the media industry standard. The new partners will provide dotBC with a library of more than 65 million sound recordings from independent and major record labels to create a decentralized global database of music rights. Using the dotBC codec, (.bc), each track will carry all data (Minimal Viable Data) that is associated with it and will exist in a blockchain-based system. This process allows for transparency in copyright, licensing, and artist royalties.  

ETHNews talked with co-founder, Benji Rogers, to discuss this announcement and what it means for the music industry:

“We are aggressively aiming for quarters two and three to get the majority of the work done. The tagging is what will be the most interesting part, but the teams are pumped and we are excited to be committing to code.”

The “tagging” Rogers refers to is a method of authentication similar to “tags” on Facebook photos with the name or identity of a friend. DotBC uses a system that allows contributors (musicians, artists, and songwriters) to accept or deny the information associated with a tag.

DotBC is touted as “blockchain agnostic,” which means that the company will not designate which blockchain to use when accessing the global database. Because dotBC is still in a testing phase, they are open to using any and all blockchains that facilitate the specific needs of their processes.

“At the moment, the system is Blockchain agnostic, as in we would need to see which system(s) the members want to use and which system could handle the transaction volume. As such, we would love for Ethereum to be a part of the discussion. I am a massive fan and follow the project closely but at the end of the day, it's not for dotBC to dictate which Blockchain would be used. It's definitely an open door.

Bitcoin is probably not an option due to transaction volume and cost. We haven't run anything with Ethereum yet, as we used the Bitcoin Blockchain to prove the concept. We are open to it, as well as Fabric, Sawtooth, and MediaChain etc.”

Rogers informed ETHNews that dotBC will soon publish a detailed architectural roadmap to their Slack and Medium channels, as well as their email list. It is Rogers’ hope that the roadmap for 2017 “will show both the technical arc and also how all of the parts will fit together.”

Rogers concluded with:

“[New developments] will give outside developers and blockchain providers a better sense of how they can engage with the system. It is our hope that we get not only companies but also individual artists and songwriters, DJ’s, and musicians, so that they can all be represented within the system fairly.”