CG Conversation Michal Scislowski

Michał Scisłowski: A new revenue stream for the music industry

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Almost 15 years ago, four boys became school friends in Poland. Today they are working together to revolutionise the music industry with a BSV-powered startup called Soundoshi. It’s not their first collaboration: they previously created a software development company together which is still in business.

But now, as Michał Scisłowski explains on this week’s CoinGeek Conversations, their focus is “100 percent on Soundoshi.” The opportunity, as they see it, is to improve the business model for both music producers and consumers. 

“Even if you are generating a few million streams, then you can’t really make a living from Spotify,” Michał says. That’s because revenue is shared between artists on a strictly proportional basis. So if smaller artists have a certain number of plays, what they earn depends on whether or not a big artist happens to release new music and win a large share of Spotify’s total plays at that particular time.

Soundoshi’s solution? “In order to make it fair again, we need to have the same flat payment for each stream, for every artist on the platform. So they all have the same terms and they are competing with each other.”

In building a system like that, “BSV is made for the task.” It will allow the creation of music NFTs so the consumer will own the music they buy—as opposed to simply being given access to it in return for a subscription. 

Artists will be free to set their own prices per track—anything from very cheap for a mass audience to more expensive and as limited in numbers as they choose for a highly exclusive product. All the music will be stored on the BSV blockchain. “In this way we want to avoid any kind of manipulation or censorship.”

The artist would likely have to pay something to have their work put into the system, but “we are exploring the options of maybe having split payments for this. It’s just a few dollars and maybe we can reimburse that from what we are earning on commissions.”

From the consumer’s point of view, Soundoshi is a pay-per-track model. Instead of subscription there will be a top up mechanism to keep your account in credit but in other respects, “everything will be very similar” to the experience on Spotify. 

Just as Bitcoin users can send money to each other, Soundoshi’s customers will be able to transfer ownership of the tracks they have bought. As well as this being a new economic model for the music business, psychologically, it’s a return to an older mode: one of music ownership. As Michał explains:

“We want to reintroduce ownership of the music to the fans, so they will be able to collect their favourite music and build their collections, as we were doing 15 years ago before streaming arrived.”

As to whether Soundoshi plans to destroy the music industry or provide a service to it, Michał is clear: “You always have two choices. You can go for revolution or evolution. And as much as I would love to see the revolution, I understand that we need to go the evolution way.”

That means working with the music industry and talking to music publishers: “we want to offer this industry a new revenue stream.”

CoinGeek followed the inside story of Soundoshi and the other startups who were part of Satoshi Block Dojo’s first cohort, for a CoinGeek Originals film, How to Build a BSV Business.

Hear the whole of Michał Scisłowski’s interview in this week’s CoinGeek Conversations podcast or catch up with other recent episodes:

You can also watch the podcast video on YouTube.

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