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Saturday, 28 January 2023
5 Ways Warner Music is Using Blockchain to Revolutionize the Music Industry

5 Ways Warner Music is Using Blockchain to Revolutionize the Music Industry


The music industry is ripe for a technological revolution. From streaming services to digital downloads, the way we listen to and pay for music has changed significantly in recent years. It’s not just the way we listen that’s changing, but also how we as artists, producers, managers and record labels market our music and get it out to our audience. The outdated processes and intermediaries of the old record label system are cumbersome and ineffective in today’s digital age. A report by Deloitte found that the global recorded-music business was worth $17bn in 2016, down from $19bn the year before – a decline of 15%. This comes after decades of declining revenues in this once booming industry. With increased digitization, faster internet connections and an abundance of new streaming services, there has never been a better time for innovation within the music sector. Here are 5 ways Warner Music is using blockchain to revolutionize the music industry:

Peer-to-peer music payments with Bitcoin Cash

One of the most obvious uses for a blockchain-powered music platform is peer-to-peer payments with cryptocurrencies. When an artist creates a track, they will be able to set their own price for downloads and streams. The music platform will automatically send the amount based on the artist’s settings, either to the artist’s wallet or to the record label if they have one. Each transaction will go through the blockchain and be publicly audited so that no one can tamper with or falsify the numbers. This will allow smaller artists with a dedicated fan base to earn more money by setting their price lower, while larger artists that have millions of followers will be able to set a higher price for their music.

Smart contracts for automating royalties

With a smart contract, artists can automatically be paid royalties as soon as their track is streamed or downloaded. The terms of the contract will be set by the artist and will be implemented on the blockchain as a code that is guaranteed not to be tampered with. The contract will notify the music streaming platform and the producer, label and publisher of the track so that royalties can be distributed accordingly. This process will be fully auditable and transparent, with all of the information and transactions recorded on the blockchain for anyone to see. This will eliminate the need for intermediaries and manual processes that slow down the payment of royalties and are often rife with corruption.

Music licensing platform with Ethereum

Blockchain technology can also be used to track the ownership of music copyrights and licenses. When an artist sells the rights to use their track in a movie or on a TV show, they will use the blockchain to register the terms of the contract and the ownership of the track. This will allow the rights to be reliably tracked and prove that they were transferred to the right people at the right time. A similar system is used by the Intellectual Property Asset Management (IPAM) industry, but it is highly centralized and therefore vulnerable to manipulation. By switching to a decentralized blockchain system, the entire music industry will be able to reliably track ownership and monitor where their work is being used.


Record-keeping and ownership tracking with Ethereum

As well as licensing rights and payment tracking, blockchain technology can also be used to track the ownership of physical assets like vinyl records. In the same way that digital files can be tracked and verified, a blockchain system can be used to track and verify the authenticity of vinyl records. Labels will be able to prove the authenticity of their vinyl tracks by registering ownership of the records on a blockchain platform. When a customer buys the vinyl, they will be able to verify its authenticity and see the public record of ownership. This will allow customers to confirm that they are buying an authentic item that hasn’t been tampered with and that comes with a legitimate certificate of authenticity.

decentralized database and file storage

Artists and record labels will also be able to use blockchain technology for decentralized database storage and file storage. This will enable them to host and store their own files in a secure and reliable way, without any risk of being hacked or having their assets stolen. They will also be able to create their own database and control who has access to it, making it an effective platform for managing their own digital assets. A decentralized database will be accessible by anyone with an internet connection and is therefore an ideal way to host files that are publicly accessible like a music artist’s website, social media accounts and videos.


The music industry has been slow to adopt new technologies, but it looks like it is finally ready for a technological revolution. Although blockchain technology has been around for a while, it only recently became powerful enough to run real-world applications. Now that blockchain can process millions of transactions per second and host large data sets, it is well-equipped to revolutionize the music industry. Warner Music has already implemented several blockchain solutions within its business and is set to launch its own music platform. With such a high-profile company leading the way, other record labels and artists will soon follow. It’s likely that within the next couple of years, blockchain will be an essential part of the music industry.

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