Why Creators Should Move to Blockchain-based Copyright Registration

May 18, 2023

If you are a creator, protecting the right to your work is a must for many reasons. By copyrighting your art, you get the legal right to control how your work is used, distributed, and reproduced. In other words, you set up a barrier for others from using your creation without permission or due compensation. 

Copyright also helps protect the integrity of your work. This means that you have a legal tool to prevent others from making changes without your consent. 

Ultimately, copyright protection is what drives creators like yourself to continue building great things while knowing that they can protect their intellectual property and be compensated fairly for the work.

What is copyright registration?

Copyright starts with copyright registration. It is a process that serves to protect the rights of creators by recognizing their original work. Traditionally, copyright registration methods have been slow and expensive. Plus, the old methods may be prone to errors and inconsistencies.

Imagine your hard work as a creator being stolen and used without your permission. This is not only about personal discomfort and frustration, but also about financial losses. We all know that feeling of powerlessness when you see your art misused. 

Remember the viral meme "Pepe the Frog"? Well, here is an interesting story about it. Matt Furie created this character back in 2005. It was initially meant to be a harmless and fun addition to his comic book series. Unfortunately, the author never copyrighted it and the character was transformed into a symbol of hate by certain far-right groups.

Furie began a legal campaign to reclaim his copyright and prevent the unauthorized use of Pepe as a hate symbol. Even though the author failed to regain control of the character, this case highlights the importance of copyright in protecting creators from misuse and exploitation of their work. In other words, creators should be vigilant about copyright protection and consider potential consequences of failing to do so.

What can you do to register copyright fast and in a reliable way? During our technological age, even slow and less reliable processes can be improved. Blockchain offers a promising solution to how copyright registration can be optimized and streamlined. So let's spend a minute talking about this blockchain technology to understand better how it can help with copyright issues.

What is blockchain?

Let's define blockchain in simple terms. Blockchain is a decentralized digital ledger that securely records transactions and data. In this way it is an ideal tool for copyright registration. Blockchain allows creators to register their work in a transparent, tamper-proof, and efficient manner. Plus, this technology makes the registration process faster, cheaper, and more reliable than the traditional methods of copyright registration.

How does blockchain work?

Blockchain is actually a big innovation, which gives us new ways of storing and sharing information. It creates a transparent chain of data used within a decentralized network of computers. Here is how it all works together.

A blockchain represents a series of data blocks. Each block contains a group of transactions or pieces of information. When new data is added to the blockchain, it is placed in a fresh block, which is then connected to the previous block in the chain. This connection creates a linear and chronological sequence of blocks, forming the blockchain.

The key to blockchain's transparency is in its decentralized nature. If a single entity stores and controls traditional databases, a blockchain is distributed across many computers. These computers are known as nodes. These nodes work together to confirm and record new transactions.

When a new block is added to the chain, the nodes in the network must agree on its validity through a consensus mechanism. This process ensures that only accurate and approved information is added to the blockchain. After the validation and addition, the new block becomes a permanent part of the chain. The decentralized approach makes it almost impossible to manipulate the data on the blockchain. This is an important aspect that ensures transparency and security.

Blockchain also uses cryptographic techniques, which is another huge benefit for creators. Each block contains a unique code, called a hash. The hash serves as a digital fingerprint, making it easy to identify and verify the contents of each block. Also, each block also contains the hash of the previous block, creating a direct link between them. This mechanism of linking hashes makes the blockchain immutable.

These technical details are useful in understanding why blockchain is a desirable technology for difficult areas to manage like copyright protection.

Blockchain benefits for creators

Blockchain used for copyright registration has many benefits for creators. In this list we outline just the most obvious ones.

Like a lot of other services on the internet, registration is much faster than with traditional services. Blockchain allows for instant registration of your creative work in real-time. This provides an immediate proof of authorship.

If you tried traditional registration systems, you know that the price may be steep. With blockchain you don't deal with intermediaries, which reduces fees for creators.

Blockchain-based copyright registration can offer worldwide protection, which makes it easier for creators to enforce their rights.

Blockchain is secure due to how it works. It provides a transparent record of ownership, which helps reduce the risk of fraud and copyright disputes.

Blockchain and IP management

Blockchain does offer a faster, cost-effective, and more secure way to register copyright ownership. This technology is already being used for IP management. 

It is now possible to register, verify, and transfer patent ownership. You can also register trademarks and get certificates of authorship with several blockchain-based services. 

By registering the right to their creative work, creators have much more protection at their fingertips. When someone tries to claim ownership of their work, the blockchain can be used to settle disputes. The original creator can show the unchangeable, time-stamped record as proof of their authorship and ownership. This helps protect the creator's rights, even for unregistered IP.

What else is in store for creators?

Using blockchain technology offers a lot of potential to the creative community. It can help create new business models and opportunities for IP monetization. We believe that blockchain is that driver that will transform the way creators interact with their work and monetize it. Let's take a look at a couple of real-life examples.

Example: A musician can tokenize their song's copyright and sell it as an NFT. Fans can buy, trade, or collect these tokens, providing the musician with a new source of income. 

So tokenization of IP rights is one of the top opportunities here. You probably heard about NFTs (non-fungible tokens). So blockchain enables the tokenization of IP rights and helps turn them into digital assets. These digital assets (in the form of tokens of NFTs) can be bought, sold, or traded on blockchain platforms. This is definitely going to create more new revenue streams for creators.

Example: A photographer can create a smart contract that automatically pays them a royalty each time their image is downloaded or used in a publication. 

Blockchain-based smart contracts can automate the licensing and royalty payment processes. If a creator embeds terms of use and payment details directly into the smart contract, this can help receive royalties immediately when their work is used or licensed. 

Example: A designer can sell their artwork directly to consumers through a decentralized marketplace by offering various licensing options and price points. 

Yes, blockchain can power decentralized marketplaces where creators can sell or license their work directly to users. Such platforms eliminate intermediaries, reduce fees, and provide creators with more control over pricing and licensing terms.

Example: A group of writers can collaborate on a novel. Each contributor's share of royalties is tracked and distributed automatically through a blockchain-based system.

Collaborative creation and revenue sharing is another use case for blockchain. Creators can securely track their contributions and automatically distribute royalties based on their agreed terms. 

About Licens

We are License, a decentralized commerce platform designed for tokenized copyright licensing. Unlike traditional centralized marketplaces, Licens offers a unique, fair, and transparent solution for creators to license their content directly to end-users. With Licens, creators issue NFTs as proof of copyright licenses and earn LICA tokens for added revenue streams and platform governance.

We stand out with our zero-commission model, allowing creators to keep 100% of their royalties. Our platform offers NFT licensing, distributed storage, P2P payments, and creator control over license types, prices, and audience connections. As a community-owned platform, Licens aims to become a Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO) governed by creators, licensees, developers, and partners.