Music Streaming in Web3

Priyanshu Taparia
3 min readApr 6, 2022

Shocking - The music industry generates $43bn in annual revenue but only 12% goes to content artists. Universal music group’s yearly revenue in 2021 was more than the earnings of all the artists put together. 🤯

I knew the artists were being run over by record labels and centralised distributors (Spotify, Apple) and made most of their money through concerts and sponsors. But given that Spotify is still loss-making, I couldn’t help but wonder how the remaining 88% was being split and how disincentivized smaller artists were.

Regardless, artists and fans deserve better! 😪

The music industry hasn’t kept pace with changing times, whereby the production, licensing, and economic values are still being squeezed by redundant intermediaries and middlemen. Artists not only get the bare minimum economic value from the process, but they are also devoid of timely payments, publication rights, and licensing. 🙄


Audius platform aims to solve this by leveraging blockchain technology to hand the power back to artists and fans. It does this cleverly using tokens to allow artists to directly publish and own their music, share incentives with early backers/platform node operators, build a community, and run governance initiatives - effectively disenfranchising the record labels and centralised distribution platforms.

In true blockchain fashion, Audius brings the vision of a community-owned streaming platform to life. Neat! 🤩

Business model?
The platform revolves around an intelligent use of tokens:
- $AUDIO: Platform native tokens needed to be staked by node operators (to run the Audius protocol), and artists/music curators (to unlock exclusive features and services on the Audius platform). 90% of the token revenue goes to the artists/music curators, while the remaining 10% goes to the node operators
- Artist tokens: Tokens controlled directly by the artists to build and engage their community, through exclusive content, stage access, giveaways, merch etc
- Stablecoins: Fans can use stablecoins for accessing paid content on the platform. A % of the stablecoin transactions would be captured by Audius (source of revenue for the $AUDIO token).

The ownership/distribution of tokens and community protocol governance democratises music streaming and as per our initial premise, hands the power back to the artists and fans. 💪🏽

What’s next?
As of the time of writing this, Audius has 4.5M MAUs, $332M in staked $AUDIO, and continues to attract thousands of artists and node operators to lay the platform’s foundation. Music streaming can be a user’s first interaction with blockchain-based platforms, and Audius is extremely well-positioned to leverage its community, NFTs, Defi, and tokenomics to usher masses into the web3 world. 🚀

Roneil Rumburg Forrest Browning

Script Capital Ascolta Ventures, LLC Binance Labs Blockchange Ventures General Catalyst Pantera Capital Multicoin Capital Coinbase

#Audius #blockchain #crypto #defi #NFT #web3



Priyanshu Taparia

MBA student at London Business School. Worked at GoJek and Uber previously. Know a thing or two about Mobility, Marketplaces, and Payments.