You can pretty much set your watch to the latest tech trends by following the release of Bjork albums. Following her previous iPad app album, and various forays into VR, she's now apparently including a little bit of cryptocurrency for anyone who buys her new album. Let's hope the SEC doesn't have any issues with that.
Photo: Associated Press
According to Fast Company, Bjork fans will soon be able to purchase her new record with cryptocurrencies or old-fashioned fiat money on her website or through her record label. Going that route will also entitle listeners to 100 AudioCoins, a music-centric ICO that is built on the back of bitcoin. Currently, those coins add up to a value of about 26 cents ($0.34). But hey, if it follows bitcoin's 480 per cent rise in 2017, it could be worth around $US124 ($162) within a year. It's like Bjork is paying you to buy her album!
Celebrities such as Jamie Foxx and Paris Hilton have been jumping into the game of endorsing ICOs quite a bit lately, and it can be a nice way of knowing which ones you shouldn't invest in. The New York Times recently profiled the bumbling 20-somethings behind Centra, a digital token that Floyd Mayweather endorsed. Among the many shady details surrounding the company, the founders briefly listed an older man as the CEO of the company who turned out not to exist, despite his now-deleted LinkedIn profile. And earlier this week, the SEC issued a warning to celebrities and individuals that they should think twice about providing ICO endorsements because if anything turns out to violate the law, they could be held legally responsible. But in this case, you, a Bjork fan, wouldn't really be risking much. You'd get the album and a gateway drug into speculating in cryptocurrencies is just a bonus on top.
Kevin Bacon, CEO of British blockchain startup Blockpool, tells Music Ally that his company will be helping Bjork's label with the crypto-processing. "This isn't about jumping on a bandwagon or trying to get rich quick," he said. "It's about doing things where you use blockchain and the crypto benefits in ways that people haven't thought of yet."
AudioCoin's big gimmick is that it can be mined by streaming music on an obscure service called Aurovine. It's an interesting idea that will definitely benefit from having someone with Bjork's notoriety spreading the word. And it seems the artist's involvement won't stop at album sales. Bacon said that Blockpool is working with her to determine other AudioCoin rewards that will be provided to fans over the next two years for things such as going to concerts.
Despite Bacon's claims and a press release on Blockpool's website, there doesn't seem to be any official acknowledgement of this plan from Bjork or her team. Music sites such as Resident Advisor have previously reported that the album will be available for purchase using cryptocurrency, but again don't cite their source. Gizmodo has made repeated attempts to get confirmation from Bjork's spokesperson and her record label. So far we've been told by one person that they weren't completely up to date, and have received no other word.
The new album is titled Utopia (yes, it's fitting for the out-sized promises of cryptocurrency) and it will be released on November 24.