Dealing with copied content

Continuing the discussion from Streaming large video files with a distributed network:

I think from this and other discussions we can establish that one won’t have much at his disposal to deal with copied content. The only (so far) way to lessen the problem appears to be reputation system (not in works yet).

As I’ve been thinking what I could do on SAFE Network [edited - please stick to agreed lexicon at least on this one! :smile: ] when testnet3 hits the Internet, I always return to this problem of dealing with copied content and conclude that it’s going to be difficult to protect it. The moment it’s available is the moment when it can be copied (to another public MaidSafe site, or anywhere on the traditional Internet).

I don’t think MaidSafe should come up with an idea what to do about it - the problem is basically unsolvable. Perhaps it’s the free market showing us that intellectual property doesn’t exist (I don’t quite subscribe to that, but let’s return to practical matters).

Considering all that, I don’t see a way to monetize content I have. Even if there was a reputation system, I’m quite sure a MaidSafe version of some Torrent site would have a higher reputation than any one individual (except maybe top 100 entertainers in the world).

My question to potential content “monetizers” is: do you believe you can monetize your content on SAFE Network [edited]?

I just don’t see a way to make it feasible. Fortunately I’m not a full time author, so I wouldn’t necessarily need to make a lot of money, but even making more than $10/month seems impossible unless one has a very small circle of customers and/or sells access to a product of very low value (not worth copying).

I see $50/mo as a bare minimum that would justify my screwing around with payments, setting things up, running the s/w, keeping it up to date, etc. For less than that, I could as well post the content for free and surround it with Google ads I hate that idea, but that’s what you can do without much effort and marketing - just setup a Web site and tweet/FB about your posts, and you’ll do quite okay with a minimal effort. Compare that with the amount of marketing you’d have to do to get 100 visitors a day on MaidSafe (and the first visitors would be MaidSafe-based pirates). That’s why I estimate the extra cost of marketing on SAFE Network [edited] would be at least $50/mo (if not many times higher).


What we are looking at is Pay the Producer, so first up-loader of a chunk has their wallet address stored at Data Managers. (don’t upload secret stuff with a public Id etc. more to that, but just for now this is secure (nobody does upload with public Id)).

So create a song etc. upload and each chunk is linked to an id (wallet address) you own. On every farming success 10% of the amount goes to that address. So folk will say hey that reduces farmers ‘take’, but it does not as the network balances the rate to compensate farmers anyway.

Then others will say, but existing data can be uploaded (like a hit song from today) and the up-loader gets rewarded, not the artist. This is true and probably cannot be helped, I am not sure we want to.

However, any new artist / producer of content (like web site/blog etc…) who uses SAFE as a mechanism to share gets paid, as they should. If the artist does not want this they can send a ‘delete’ for the chunks, they will get removed from the producer field.

This then means we don’t care who copies the metadata and promotes it as the payment is on content. So we encourage new sites (on SAFE) to display the stuff, whatever it is.

It’s a small change in the DataManager just now, tiny in fact and a small change to farming algorithm, but potentially could be quite revolutionary as it will encourage use, encourage uptake (for new artists writers etc.) and just removes any middle people from the producer of content to the purchaser (you don’t purchase, just browsing and playing is enough to make Get’s happen).

The debate will be over the change in farming distribution, but it is worth having as this could be a critical component. BTW I dislike the 10% 5% split stuff, the network should evolve enough to calculate these % itself and I hope it will, but like the upgrades, it will require some pretty deep thinking.

Anyway it’s a pretty neat wee idea that could have a huge impact.


I suspect file security on MaidSAFE will be better than what we have now… There really is no way to prevent somebody from screen scraping your video and pasting a copy on the network, but you could build a player that has very set permissions, and share files only with who you intend to share files with etc…

4,000 subscribers at 2.50 dollars per month is a pretty insanely nice living. The fact that the currency is built into the platform does make everything a lot more seamless and tidy, compared to going through paypal as a middleman or getting a CC processing setup etc… You see a lot of folks on Youtube who are apparently making a living at it. Youtube is taking a decent sized cut out of their margin… Many of them are making money from sponsors… (Warrenbait) I suspect if the model works there, it could also work slightly more efficiently on SAFE.


I really like David’s idea. It would definitely encourage people to use the network and that’s what we want isn’t it?


So on n99 we will put a field for the content provider to put their wallet watermark.



Actually, this is a great adoption opportunity.

If the SAFE community sees (a hit song from today) and suspects it’s not from the original artist… they could invite the Agent or Manager to use N99’s APP (wink, wink) to upload the next album before public release. No need to sue in court, giving more money to lawyers, who can’t stop it anyway.

This might reduce piracy, while giving direct income (Safecoin) to those who are just starting out. Hopefully, we have a future where all content is uploaded on the SAFE Network first!

Catch me, I’m floating away…


I keep thinking about this often too. I see two ways to approach this question

  1. is what @dirvine proposed, make the network farm automatically, and yes thieves will benefit (especially on popular old content); But also, why use pirated content if the authentic artist is (potentially) free - rewarded by the network not by the user - as well? So a reputation system might naturally form where people loving the content will put together a proper “content directory” to the authentic authors

  2. make payments voluntary; the address is present, so it should be a built-in feature for any application - where-ever you’re listening, watching, … a single click is sufficient to donate to the artist. This is directly by the users themselves; not farmed. Maybe this is too conservative. Let it be clear that this does not need to imply that all content is free-ly available. If artists/app developers desire, they can still write an app that encrypts the content, only gives you the decryption key after payment. (The content would be copiable though)


isn’t something where de-duplication jumps in?
if you make a song and someone download it and upload it, it won’t get uploaded anymore,right? so when it plays, the safecoins should go to the first uploader (using data managers?)
if somebody downloads your song, alter it and reupload, then… today’s internet

Pirates will always find a way. Let’s say a blockbuster movie shows up on SAFE and someone added their own wallet to it as being “the creator”. Next you’ll see that others remove 1 second of the movie and upload it with their wallet etc.

I think the best way to go around this is when companies provide very good service. So think of Netflix, they’re still very big even though you can get quite some amazing ease of use with Popcorntime.

TL;DR People don’t have a problem paying for good content. They won’t have on SAFE either.


That was discussed in the “parent” topic - its trivial to modify the original.

That may be correct, but as I stated at the very top, if I’m a small time creator, say < $100/mo, I would have to invest a lot of time to get people to pay me for my content. People might pay for my content to Joe the Upload King.

David’s idea may address that, but for small authors one of main problems seems to be economies of scale for getting people hear about you. It’s like when you search for a “rare” torrent. Maybe there are sites that focus on “rare” torrents, but you will probably go to the largest site anyway. If it’s findable and any good, it’ll be on the largest torrent site.

I realize there are limits of what the platform can do for small timers, at least until such time we get search engines, reputation, etc.

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what if the network made it public record how much the network rewarded in total for that piece of content ?


That would be interesting. Even if one couldn’t do much about it, at least he’d know what’s going on and it’d help him better tailor his approach. Those who copy would also benefit from that info, but not as much.

Less even I think, because SAFE is integrated it’s easier. In addition, many people are conditioned to be careful when spending money, but SafeCoin won’t feel like “money” to many people, so this habit doesn’t kick in.

Pay-to-win games exploit this psychological quirk to get people to spend more than they want (or can afford) to on the game. They first let players buy lots of in-game currency/tokens by giving them significant bulk discounts. Then, because the fiat currency is already spent, and because players feel rich in terms of in-game currency, they become lavish with it. There’s a pretty good South Park episode about this phenomenon.

Add to that that farmed coins may feel even less like money because no fiat was spent on it in the first place…

EDIT: I don’t think this works for crypto-currency investors though, because their attitude towards the tokens is entirely different.


after some time there will be sites on the safe network just like on the actual internet. sites that will have a bigger financial power to invest and advertise than a simple author. so the small author will have to adhere to those sites, because they have the money to increase in reputation very fast. those sites will continue their today practice: content surrounded by ads (the idea that you hate). these sites can charge the users for real money, safecoins, bitcoins or age of empires2 gold (which is waiting to be regulated as a cryptocurrency, haha). never think the only method of payment will be the safecoin. when speaking of monetising, a big question i think it would be the money that come into the network from outside of the network.

This creates a line in the sand for all content up until the network is live, so basically everything which currently exists will be uploaded by whomever wants to reap the reward. So, if fairness is the desired result then long term this works but very not good for rewarding the correct individual short term. For ‘old content’ some system for group voting the correct creator/owner of the content would be a fix I guess. Pretty impossible to implement this though as the network would have to know all content which currently exists in order to be able to distinguish whether to apply first uploader rule vs group voted content creator rule, hmmmm…

I’m not so sure this is something in my mind that the network should to do innately, even if it could be done well. It doesn’t seem to serve the security, privacy, freedom principle even if it is arguably a ‘fairer’ system. I might feel different when the network is no longer just an idea in my mind and a tangible thing to play with, so take these musings with a pinch of salt from someone not at all close to the problem:)


another socialist or communist idea would be to limit the maximum amount of safecoins as an income per vault (let’s say per month). any surplus would get distributed in the community, so the coin will not be held in a few big places.
this way there would be very little copyright infridgement

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But, but… copyright is best served cold!?

Seriously though, I don’t see how limiting vault income affects copyright infriNgement. Content you upload doesn’t land in your own vault.


It’s a new day a new dawn, perhaps. Like tapes, the Internet and then on through napster, netflix, spotify etc., it all changes. Perhaps something where at least new content is rewarded fairly will be good.

Older content then may be problematic, but if say Bob Dylan thought Jeez man there is somebody getting rewards for my music. Then he should release lossless copies (high def like flac etc.) and let folks know he has a site or places where his real stuff is played (the original high quality copies) and then real fans will go there for better copies and to support their artist.

I think this may force out the lossy stuff like mp3 etc. where there is doubt even over health etc. with our brains filling in missing bits, or seeing low quality movies (yea you youtube). IF there was a medium that said, hi put your best quality here, FLAC music, 8K movies and lets get real. Then we may see a huge difference. Not only rewarding the correct people, but rewarding our own tired brains from low quality digital media.

It could have really nice side effects, if people see the opportunity to do the right thing, release everything for near free (small upload cost), but be very well rewarded if it’s good.

ofc there may be other bad effects (the selfish gene kicks in and people try and game, but gamers gonna game). I feel there is a real opportunity here though, especially for artists, not a spotify we take almost everything or annoy listeners with bad adverts, or Apple give us 30%, but here’s 100% go wild and make more great stuff we liked the last offerings and paid, your welcome to do more and save your wasted time in stuffy offices with Teflon suited execs and just make inspiration stuff and share to everyone as widely as you can.

Yes I dream, but I chase them as well :slight_smile:


The ad model is going to die one way or another. Its already dying. It will mean we get media based on representation instead of missrepresentation and that will help with accountability in every context.