The eternal barrier to distribution of content, like films, music, and art, has always been the middleman. How many rock stars, Hollywood actors, and artists have gone through much grief, and had their craft suppressed or diluted, because of struggles with record companies, movie studios, and art galleries? Even in the age of streaming, accessible content providers like Netflix, there’s still a significant barrier to distribution from third party platforms. The appearance of a certain show, comedy special, movie, you name it, on an online streaming service is entirely dependent on what deal the creator manages to strike with the distributor. If only there were a better way.
Thankfully, now there is. LBRY, a new content distribution platform, seeks to completely revolutionize the world of online content. Instead of building a centralized service that contains, and disseminates, all content, LBRY turns the whole system on its head by having no centralized control. Instead, drawing on blockchain technology, it encrypts and separates packets of data across numerous private server space providers. Users buy access to content directly from the creators. Think of it as the perfect marriage of bitcoin and BitTorrent.
Why is any of this important or revolutionary? For a couple reasons. First, it allows content creators to be directly compensated for their creations, without remained beholden to a middleman taking the lion’s share of the reward for the creator’s hard work. Second, it removes control over content from any one party. As it stands, a content distributor has full control over what, if any, of a creator’s content it wishes to publish, as well as any profits. With LBRY, no one can stop you from publishing your content, or getting compensated. Power is exclusively in the individual’s hands.
We’re entering an unprecedented era of free-flowing information. The days of large companies playing the role of gatekeeper between creators and their audience are numbered. At this point, it looks like LBRY is leading the charge.
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