Sunday 22 April 2018

Will Photochain and Copytrack chain KodakCoin on its tracks?

Photochain and Copytrack are two powerful entrants in the image rights space powered by Blockchain
When it comes to image rights and honour and reward for photography, there are challenges to the photographers and users alike.

I am a scholar and a typical private sector powerpoint addict. Those ppts that carry line of text kill me. So I prefer to make, and clearly admire presenters who have less text and more images.

And it is not without a reason.

An image is worth more than 1000 words, so they advise!

In real life, when one chooses to stick to the 5-by-7 (or 7-by-5) rules on powerpoint slide designs, it means one has to employ a good selection of relevant images to convey the message.

That is where trouble easily sets in!

It is easy to know protected images because most are watermarked and even cropping them won't quite remove the watermark. Fortuitously though, one may be "lucky" to have such a clean copy of an image.

The consequences of copyright violation are dire.

BUT that is half the story. Because the process and costs of copyrighting an image are time-consuming, complex and out of reach for most average photographers who upload billions of images to social media daily.

So, two problems need urgent solutions. Simplify the copyrighting and simplify the monetisation of those images as well as allowing the OWNER the power to track the usage.

Current image rights providers are tailored for corporate consumers. The everyday photographer has no means to enter that space.

This means that sometimes, a great photoshot made by a novice photographer ends up being usurped and copyrighted by IP thieves.

The solution is Copyrighting powered by Blockchain.

Copytrack is developing an own Blockchain to power copyright, tracking, and monetisation of images.

Photochain is taking this to the next level. Photochain is going to utulise the Copytrack Blockchain. In fact, Marcus Schmitt, the CEO of Copytrack is on the advisory board.

What I have seen on their Whitepaper so far, Photochain promises to offer a platform for armature photographers and artists to sell their images to potential consumers, with impressive returns of >90% of the price going to the image owner! Today's situation is heavily tilted towards benefiting the image-rights operators. The artists and photographers have little to celebrate for their work today. From brazen thefts to exploitation by the image-rights companies, the artists basically waste away unappreciated.

That is sure to end.

The Photochain model uses PHOTON (PHP) to power the purchases of the images. Tokens are meant to simplify transfer of the benefits because this solves the problem of international money wire transfers while allowing the recipients to convert their tokens to fiat currency through token trades in exchanges.

As with every utility token, the value of PHP (like that is Copytrack) is bound to spike once the blockchain is up and the model is running. One would expect that with time, there would be fewer PHP in circulation with increasing demand. That would lead to a relative increase in prices.

The run for image tokenisation has attracted KODAK as well! With KodakCoin, the reluctant adopter of the digital photography is trying to reinvent itself. With KODAKCOIN, Kodak is teaming up with WENN Digital to try and steal the thunder from the combined muscle of Copytrack & Photochain.

Whether that will happen is a matter of time. What is clear is that Kodak will be trying to chase a model which left the staples a long time ago with Copytrack and which is being fast-tracked by Photochain.

Will KODAKCOIN even take off? From reading their introduction, it seems like a WENN Digital initiative borrowing on the "branding" of KODAK to sell.

Will a photography and artist community that has grown increasingly suspicious of "big corporation" trust their art and efforts to reap benefits with young entrepreneurs who would grow with them, like Photochain, or would they hitch a tired horse like KODAK which sees appending "Blockchain" to their name as an effort to resurrect their tired brand?

Time will tell!

Obviously the Blockchain-powered Photochain would simplify the interaction between the "seller" and the "buyer". This is because the copyright belongs to the contributor while Photochain only provides a "shop-front" while Copytrack blockchain helps track the copyright. This means that the art is OWNED by the artist as opposed to today's model which "transfers" ownership to image stack companies. That is €mpowerment and I love it. That is recognition for the small-time artists and they should welcome this.

DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed herein are my own. I am NOT qualified to advise on financial investments. Investing in Crypto and ICOS is a risky affair. Only invest what you are ready to lose.

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