While music-generated revenue doubled in 2021 to over $15b in the United States alone, artists are suffering from shrinking payouts through labels and digital streaming platforms that dominate the current music industry, often taking 80% revenue share or more. Many artists are forced to accept less than a 15% share of all revenue generated through their intellectual property (IP). Media powerhouse Ayozat is set to launch a new platform, RightsMint, to empower artists to take back control of their IP, enable decentralized IP ownership through NFTs and provide a fair, transparent and sustainable solution to issues within the music industry.
RightsMint’s vision is to empower artists and fans alike. The platform lets artists sell a share of their master album IP to fans. This is mutually beneficial because, the more money the artist makes, the more fans make too. Aside from the upfront revenue artists can generate to produce their music, fans can help increase the value of the artist’s IP by telling friends about their music and growing the artist’s fan base.
Ownership is important in the music industry, as whoever holds the masters and the publishing IP rights, therefore has control over the asset and financial gains made from it. Often record labels, not artists, own the majority stake in these master albums. Smaller artists can struggle to make a living wage from their own music because of this. Especially as record labels often prioritize providing resources to their most successful artists. And even successful artists earn less than they should, given the misreporting and considering the potential profits involved in a $50 billion industry.
As the master recordings are usually cost-prohibitive for fans, RightsMint is designed to allow artists to sell shares of their master album ownership. This means that it will be affordable for fans to buy the rights to the music that they love.
The RightsMint platform will use Web3 innovations like blockchain and NFTs to decentralize IP ownership by helping users safely transfer and hold their assets. RightsMint NFTs are built on blockchain which makes them secure and virtually impossible to fake, alter, or duplicate. This level of security is essential because users are dealing with valuable assets.
“Bringing real high value assets on chain, having trustless ownership and transparent ledger in a real world use case is what’s RightsMint all about” said Umesh Perera, RightsMint and Ayozat founder, adding “these high value assets are media copyrights, which generate revenue year on year offering new levels of sustainability”
Ayozat brings a lot to the table as RightsMint’s parent company. The media and technology company has extensive media distribution capabilities, which can help artists listed with RightsMint to grow their presence and profile exponentially. One of the reasons artists sign bad deals with record labels is in order to get access to media distribution. By getting distributed by Ayozat, a brand is given exposure on multiple platforms and forms of media, including being featured on TV and on the radio, all of which help grow an audience substantially. And Ayozat, which has over 140 TV channels on its distribution network, as well as its own online and satellite TV channels and a video-on-demand platform, is well-placed to help artists with the distribution.
Due to launch late this year, RightsMint is designed to provide an alternative to those parts of the music industry that is fundamentally broken. Record labels are so entrenched at the top of the music pyramid that they haven’t felt the need to modernise. By using NFTs to help democratise and decentralise IP ownership, the RightsMint platform creates more transparency and sustainability in a move that is set to disrupt the music industry’s current paradigm.