Blockchain, smart contracts and the music industry


Intellectual property rights are a main issue especially in music business. Digitization, the rise of social media, online distribution and streaming systems as well as the consequent trend for disintermediation have substantially changed the music business in the last decades.

The singer and song writer Imogen Heap, who is a great advocate of using technology to interact and collaborate with ones fans, initiated in 2015 Mycelia as one possible solution to that problem. On 5 October 2015 she released her single “Tiny Human” on Mycelia, which is an experimental, alternative music distribution platform based on blockchain technology.

Mycelia is…

A foundation, created for the purpose of building and protecting a verified database for the music community creatives, their work and their collaborators. It’s an open database that describes the whole music industry so that everyone involved can be acknowledged and rewarded.

It’s a foundation from which to create, champion and maintain the ethical, technological and commercial standards required to run a fair trade music industry.

It’s an idea to evolve the music industry to a state in which those who actually make the music, lead the future of their own business and help others to work efficiently and effectively with them.


Blockchain is a new technology, that enables a decentralized, trusted, public ledger of transactions, that everyone can inspect and no single user can control. It is more or less a cryptographed, distributed database, that can be the perfect place to store property rights, credentials etc. With so called smart contracts property right remunerations can get easily administered. Smart conctracts are computer protocols, that facilitate, verify, or enforce the performance of a contract. Because of lower transaction costs even small payments to right holders can easily be transfered.

So far musicians still rely on collecting societies to get remunerated for their property rights. In GIG we included an easy export feature for royalty reports (Settings / Export for Royalties). One can extract a csv-file with ones concert data. The csv-file can be opend in any spreadsheet and edited for the various target groups.

EVENT TIP! On 20. June 2016, 7pm at the university of music and performing arts Vienna the founder of the BlockhainHub Shermin Voshmgir will talk about blockchain, smart contracts and applications for the music business. More Info




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