Joshua Henslee

Here’s what a video platform could look like on BSV, as explained by Joshua Henslee

The potential use cases of what can be built on BSV are endless. This week, Joshua Henslee put out a new video discussing what a video platform could look like on it. 

How Henslee’s video platform on BSV might look

Henslee opened by saying that he’s not going to build it, so feel free to run with this idea if it takes your fancy. He also acknowledged that Streamanity already exists on BSV but that his idea would be very different from it.

Describing his initial thoughts, Henslee noted that while BSV does offer the capability of storing videos on the blockchain, it doesn’t necessarily have to. That could be expensive at current rates, and so one option could be to store the hash on-chain and the videos elsewhere. 

However, he explained that the social graph between the content creators, the users, the subscribers, etc., should definitely be on the blockchain. For example, if you subscribe to a channel, a log of that would be stored on the blockchain.

What would be the point of this? It would enable content creators to do things like see who the first 1,000 subscribers were and reward them with community NFTs, etc.

Replacing the ad-based model with micropayments

The ad-based model of the current internet is responsible for many problems. Apart from the social issues caused by algorithms being programmed for maximum engagement (fueling outrage etc.) to generate maximum ad revenue, Henslee covered some others:

  • Ads are extractive. They sit between the content creator and user and extract value for corporations. Micropayments would remove this middleman and allow users to pay creators directly. Of course, the platform owners could take a small slice, too.
  • Things like minimum payouts would disappear. Right now, YouTubers and other content creators have to reach a certain threshold before they get paid. This is because it’s too expensive to use current payment rails such as bank transfers to pay any less than, such as $50. Again, this all changes with a micropayments platform like BSV.
  • Asking for small fees for interactions such as comments would reduce spam such as digital currency giveaway scams and would make trolls pay to spew venom and say nasty things. While they wouldn’t necessarily eliminate spam, they’d certainly reduce it and make it costly.

The need to create seamless experiences

Highlighting some of the issues with early attempts at these things such as Streamanity, RelayX, etc., Henslee mentioned how they need to integrate so that there’s no need for a user to do anything manually and so that if a platform goes down, there’s no risk of losing items like NFTs.

Henslee argued that it all needs to be woven together so that things like community NFT issuance happen automatically and is stored on-chain. This would keep information and money flowing seamlessly and generate lots of transactions and miner revenue.

“Bitcoin will make Patreon look like a two-legged dinosaur. There’s just no need for it,” Henslee said.

Noting how Patreon subscribers get benefits such as interacting with and messaging the creator, Henslee sees this ultimately being replaced by Bitcoin. For example, those who tip the creator frequently could get an NFT which then allows them access to an exclusive chat room with the creator.

Henslee also explained how the arbitrary process of platforms issuing badges, such as blue checkmarks, could be merit-based rather than arbitrary. For example, badges could be issued when certain engagement thresholds are reached rather than when a channel gets 100,000 subs.

Paywalls and revenue splitting

Right now, paywalls are the most popular way to monetize content. Henslee thinks this is a mistake because it turns lots of users away. With additional options like tipping to answer user questions in live streams, the paywalls aren’t necessary.

As for splitting the revenue, it can be done in all sorts of interesting ways via templates. If you tip a content creator $1, perhaps the researcher, the video animator, and others get a slice of the action. This could lead to recurring revenue for everyone rather than the one-time payments to freelancers.

Censorship is a growing issue

This is an issue that Casey Hamilton and Ryan X Charles touched on in a recent video and planned to address.

Henslee believes that important channel data being on-chain would allow creators to bring all of the data with them to another platform. If you get banned on YouTube, you lose your subscribers, but if they’re stored on-chain, and you move to another platform, you can bring that data with you, and the channel remains intact.

This will create a competitive environment where users can simply switch platforms if they encounter problems with the one they’re using. This creates an incentive for platforms not to ban users as they will no longer have a monopoly. Likewise, niche platforms could develop for specific types of content, further reducing the risk of bans.

Finally, Henslee touched on the need to raise the limits back to what Satoshi Nakamoto originally set them at, which was over 4GB per transaction. 

“People are going to upload videos, just like they did in 2009,” he said.

Watch: CoinGeek New York presentation, Micropayments for the World: APIs, Tokens and Computation

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.

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