New Money poses lethal threat to cable TV

Thursday 24 March 2016

A new initiative takes aim at the inefficient and reviled cable TV sector, using a market-driven content platform fuelled by digital currency Sollars and $ense.

Cable TV is a loathed industry. We all love high-quality content, and there's never been more great TV around. What we don’t appreciate is paying the high prices the cable companies demand. Unfortunately, there are few like-for-like alternatives to cable, which is why viewers are turning away in their droves for platforms like Netflix and even YouTube, which offer a lower-quality viewing experience at a price they’re willing to pay (typically $7.99, or free with ads). The market is ripe for disruption, and that’s just what New Money intends to do.

New Money: the free market for content

Solomon Adekale, founder of Sollywood TV, recognised the fundamental problem in the content industry when he was studying in film school. It was simply that content wasn’t being correctly priced – and the big guys had the market sewn up. You were either in with them, collecting a fat paycheque, or you were out in the cold. There was very little middle ground.

‘Back in film school, we had enough of Hollywood telling us our content was worthless,’ he explains. ‘From the very first day we start shelling out thousands of dollars for that education not once are we taught that our films are worth anything but the fee we have to pay to have them shown at someone else’s film festival. It wasn’t “Premium”? So there was no money to be made at all? Hogwash! Basic economics says otherwise. We spent money to make our product. It should be worth something. Not even 3 cents? And that’s sort of how it hit me...’

His answer was Sollywood TV: a free market platform where any content provider could sell their material at a price that viewers would be prepared to pay, whether that was $7.99 or $0.07 – or even less. The platform would take a 10-20% fee, and the rest would go to the creators.

Sollywood TV, fuelled by Sollars and $ense

There's a small problem with this kind of approach - at least, there is if you stick to the Old Paradigms of Old Money, with its vested interests and chokehold on the sectors it relies on to survive. It relies on a large number of people each paying a small amount of money. And as far as fiat goes, that's a problem. It’s not possible to pay $0.50 with a credit card, let alone $0.05. The transaction costs make it completely unviable.

That's why Solomon’s platform will run on Sollars and $ense – digital equivalents to dollars and cents, maintained at parity with their fiat cousin, but with the advantage that digital money is ideally suited to micro-transactions. Sending just a few $ense is as efficient as sending thousands of Sollars. The creation of a digital currency – New Money – as an integral part of Sollywood TV means it can operate at the kind of scales required to work.

Kickstarting New Money

Rather than look to VC or traditional investors, Sollywood will be funded by a Kickstarter campaign aimed at mobilising grassroots support from those it is designed to serve. The KickStarter is largely an effort being undertaken by members of the Bitshares community to reach that audience of mainstream consumers. The New Money project will be partnering with Cryptonomex, OpenLedger, ShareBits and the Muse project for the upcoming Kickstarter and technical development. The combined teams represent Bitshares’ community of expert programmers, developers and industry professionals who understand the intricacies of building new payment systems and working with content. They are set to begin production on the video in April. They will also be debuting elements of the system’s features through this Kickstarter – showing how New Money will challenge and disrupt a $200 billion business model.

For more details, sign up for their newsletter on the launch site or check out the blog to get the latest information on their Kickstarter and everything going on with the project.

Further information

This post was sponsored by Ronny Boesing and CCEDK.

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