BMG, Global Music Rights, Outdustry, Phoenix, Sentric, Warner/Chappell and Warner Music Group are among the major players testing a decentralised music rights database launched by Techstars Music graduate JAAK.
KORD, built by JAAK using Ethereum blockchain technology, gathers and connects metadata from record labels, music publishers, performing rights organisations and others to create a global music rights database. Ultimately KORD hopes to function as an open protocol to record, assign, and monetize intellectual property rights.
It's a problem that has vexed the music industry for years, and several previous attempts to solve it have not gained traction or failed outright. The solution, according to the founders of JAAK, can be found utilizing blockchain technology.
"JAAK’s aims are close to my heart, from my earliest days in music as a fresh faced graduate at Warner Music Group 12 years ago, sifting through the terrible data coming in from the early digital music services, where some services were still reporting sales based on homemade metadata with no identifiers, to my last role at Omnifone leading global licensing, where the average streaming service took 12–18 months to license and required no less than 25 licenses," says the companies Beck Brook. "After listening to a few music blockchain startups I was initially sceptical about the application of blockchain in the music industry, buried deep under 100’s of licenses I didn’t buy into the narrative that using a blockchain solution would make all the industries woes magically disappear. After meeting the team at JAAK I suddenly saw the application, it wasn’t magic, but it was a lot better than what we currently have."
After current music pilot is complete, JAAKs will open a broader "sandbox" to others in the industry. Their broader buy-in will determine the usefulness of the KORD database as a true global rights repository.