As we have seen, Steem continues to nosedive in value and I suspect this may be related to the continuing uncertainty generated by the lack of a clear anti-piracy policy and/or copyright protection policy here.
There are now full movies being uploaded to DTube and directly profited from via the STEEM blockchain and people appear to think that doing this poses no threat to us as a community - but they are very wrong about that. We only need to look at the history of the torrent sites that are unreachable via the normal internet channels in much of the world, plus the imprisonment of some key figures in that scene, to realise that just because a blockchain is hard to shut down - that does not mean that the websites that are required to access the blockchains are themselves hard to shut down.
Steemit and Steem are a noble experiment in anarcho-capitalism, but the rest of the planet is not joining in that experiment presently and furthermore, the governments that operate the courts are especially not participating in that experiment!
For the moment, the activity on Steemit is too small to draw major attention from the major publishing companies in the entertainment industries, but I can guarantee that if Steemit becomes significantly larger in the next year and people continue to upload copyrighted movies/music to it and profit from it - then significant threats to the system's future will arise. In short, the corporations involved can be typically pretty ruthless and unscrupulous in their dealings with others and they will not go silently into the night!
It is not going to be enough to downvote posts that contain copyrighted movies because the material will still be available on the Blockchain. It is also unlikely to be enough to point to the operators of the File Sharing Networks that DTube uses and to say that these people are the ones that must enforce controls, because they are probably not going to be able to do that and so they are more likely to then just shut their nodes down completely.
There appears to be 2/3 possible options here for Steemit:
- Implement a video/audio fingerprinting system like Youtube has done and renumerate copyright holders for uploads as Youtube does - instead of the uploader getting the payouts.
- Enforce manual removal of obviously copyrighted material (requiring active teams of humans to do so). (Messy).
- Prevent video sharing services like DTube from Using STEEM's Blockchain (goes against the entire idea of STEEM and will be unpopular).
A Clash of Ideologies
Steemit and Steem are deliberately designed to force to the surface, the metaphorical 'pus' that has been building up for decades in our society regarding the control imposed by governments and the will of the people to thrive and be free.
I feel that the lack of commentary on this issue by the main people at Steemit is probably part of the reason why the site is not thriving as many expected it to do. I personally would not be investing large amounts of money into a blockchain that could become a major target of world governments in any moment - especially when there's not even an official statement made on the topic from those who figurehead the network.
What do you think?
This is a complex topic in many ways, but generally the only comments I have seen from people here have been either:
- Yes, it's a big problem.
- Who cares.
Neither of these are inspiring!
What do you say?
Wishing you well,