Copyright is dead, long live copyright.
Two things are changing quickly for brands around the world: media creation and IP ownership. Media creation is being rapidly innovated thanks to AI models like MidJourney, Runway, and DALL·E. Powerful models mean everyday creatives can make market grade assets and seemingly authentic versions of critically acclaimed artwork, corporate advertisements, influencer content, or other viral materials.
Fake realities are scarier than fake news. We need verified media coming from verified people and verified brands. Alongside this evolution in media creation is a revolution in IP ownership, as an increasing amount of media shifts from private to public domain and technology becomes increasingly open source. People may not want to hear it—but crypto is probably the best solution to protect brands in this new world.
In this new paradigm, crypto uniquely empowers you to own your public or open source IP. When you mint your media, you create provenance and preserve your optionality to monetize the work as you see fit. Pure ownership in an open IP paradigm with the click of a button. The mint button.
Below are some musings on why, in the world of AI replicas and liberated IP, brands should be minting as means of IP and consumer protection. Here are a couple prompts, no pun intended, to get us started: First, AI increases the proliferation of fake/remixed media, and crypto could be a solution. Second, the shift of IP to the public domain compromises private.
Minting enables companies to do a few things well in the public domain:
Own and monetize your IP after it is in the Public Domain
- Mint to create a transparent and accessible history of your IP ownership (provenance).
- Minting is a provable record that you created your IP and YOU posted it to the internet.
- Minting empowers you to monetize engagement with your IP—mints, likes, remixes.
- Do this before others do it for you. Steamboat Mickey is an excellent example.
Steward the transition of your IP into the Public Domain
- Be the team to mint your work rather than letting others mint it for you.
- Become the public point of origin for the IP.
- Provide a canonical instance of your brand's media in the public domain. More on this below.
- Protect the ability to monetize that public, canonical content—if you so choose.
Extend ownership to open source IP (AI Models, Codebases, Design Systems)
- Models are instruments, kind of like a guitar, piano, or paint brush.
- The outputs of models are songs, melodies, and artworks.
- Users of models are like musicians that create timeless hits.
- Minting the model is minting the essence, design, and functionality of the model.
- It is the internet native equivalent of patenting in public.
Create your canon. Mint to globally verify your media. Protect consumers.
We need verification of global media. Minting, aka posting on Zora achieves both. When you post on Zora (mint) you are publishing your media to the world from an account that you and only you could publish from. It sounds simple, but companies should mint, so their customers can easily verify that the content they are viewing and engaging with is indeed from their brand.
These protections include globally, not platform, verified social accounts and media. With global verification comes transparent provenance of branded media. Transparent provenance includes a view of value exchange surrounding the media. Customers now know the funds flow of the ads exchange on the internet because they can see it. And, they can trust that they are engaging with the REAL version of the brand they love.
This new paradigm of media creation and media ownership powered by AI and public IP will make some brands immensely valuable. It’s exactly what memes and samples have done for many kernels of content across the internet.
However, the other side of this coin is that these tools lower the barrier to entry for copycat and impersonated content. A less desirable reality, yes, but one we are all likely to experience as these tools become increasingly sophisticated.
We have to adapt our understanding of IP to new things. Crypto helps us do that. Zora makes crypto easy.