LBRY is a decentralized digital content and media app. The LBRY protocol uses LBRY Credits (LBC), or LBRY coin, to enable publishers and viewers to create, publish, and distribute digital content without third parties. At the heart of the LBRY platform is the LBRY blockchain, which uses a Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithm similar to that of Bitcoin. Plus, users of the platform can earn LBRY coins by participating in LBRY coin mining. But, what is LBRY?
In this article, we will explore the LBRY ecosystem, including the LBRY app. Also, we’ll look at the use cases for LBRY Credits, or LBC coins, when interacting with digital content via the LBRY app. Moreover, we’ll look at the LBRY blockchain, LBRY coin mining, and the LBRY YouTube partner program!
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What is LBRY?
LBRY, (pronounced “Library”) is a blockchain-based decentralized digital media distribution protocol and marketplace. The platform is the brainchild of Jeremy Kauffman, co-founder, and CEO of LBRY Inc.. It supports various mediums for distributing and consuming decentralized digital content such as music, videos, and ebooks.
Furthermore, the LBRY ecosystem enables developers to create decentralized applications (dApps) for the LBRY network. Plus, the platform allows creators to monetize content through various LBRY applications. Also, publishers can charge fees for content consumption using the native LBRY Credits (LBC), often referred to as “LBRY coin.”
In addition, LBRY puts authors and publishers in control of their content. The platform is decentralized, meaning that censoring or illegally distributing content without the author’s permission is much more challenging than doing so via a centralized platform. Whereas centralized platforms such as YouTube or Amazon use centralized servers to store siloed data with a single-point-of-failure, content published on the LBRY app is distributed throughout the network.
LBRY is similar to a domain name system (DNS) in that it allocates a unique name to every piece of digital content. However, LBRY stores content securely and transparently on a blockchain. In addition, the official LBRY app is available on various operating systems. Plus, the app has a built-in wall that can store LBC coins to purchase digital content.
The LBRY App
The LBRY protocol underpins the decentralized LBRY digital content platform. Using the LBRY app, publishers can upload free digital content or charge a fee. All fees are paid using the native LBRY Credit (LBC). Also, because the LBRY coin community controls the LBRY app, nobody other than the publisher can remove or censor content on the platform. This includes the LBRY team.
The LBRY app is available to download for macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, and Windows. The LBRY app aims to establish trust among publishers and consumers of digital content. Using a “known, promised set of rules that no one can unilaterally change,” the LBRY app prevents censorship and allows creators to publish and distribute digital content without intermediaries.
When interacting with the LBRY app, users can follow channels, explore new and trending digital content, and create personalized playlists. Also, users can connect to the LBRY app using the official LBRY wallet or the recommended Coinomi mobile wallet. Plus, users can purchase LBRY Credits in-app via a third-party payment provider, Moonpay.
LBRY Credits (LBC)
LBRY Credits (LBC), or LBRY coin as many call it, is a cryptocurrency used as a unit of account throughout the LBRY ecosystem.
The distribution of a total of one billion LBC will take place over a predefined exponentially decaying schedule of 20 years. During the first year of token distribution, we can expect to see around 100 million LBC distributed.
Furthermore, a portion of the LBRY coin distribution adheres to a fixed schedule. Of the total LBRY coin distribution, there is a 10% allocation for strategic partners and charities. Plus, an additional 20% allocation goes towards adoption programs and community incentives. Also, the LBRY team will receive 10% for operational costs and profit, while the remaining 60% is for users of the LBRY ecosystem.
At the heart of the LBRY Protocol is the public Proof-of-Work (PoW) LBRY blockchain. The LBRY blockchain uses a normalized string of characters coupled with a set of metadata to create a “claim.”, All content referenced by a claim is accessible as a LBRY URL. Furthermore, the LBRY blockchain uses parallel Merkle trees to separate names and metadata from transaction data.
LBRY Data Network
The LBRY Data Network stores, interprets, and validates all metadata referenced by the LBRY blockchain. Also, the LBRY Data Network provides a software development kit (SDK) and wallet functionalities to facilitate the building of applications on the LBRY network.
LBRY Coin Mining
LBRY uses a Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining algorithm to create LBRY Credits (LBC) much like the Bitcoin network. Also, to verify transactions on the LBRY app, miners earn newly generated LBRY coins as rewards for securely appending transactions to the public LBRY blockchain. However, the LBRY blockchain uses different hash functions, with different block targeting and difficulty adjustment. Also, LBRY uses a combination of SHA512, SHA256, and RIPEMD hash functions for LBRY mining.
Furthermore, according to the LBRY coin mining schedule, there will be a mining period of 20 years. During this period, a total of 1.083 billion LBC will enter circulation. In addition, block rewards for LBRY coin mining will increase by one LBC with every 100 blocks. After this, the LBRY coin mining rewards will slowly decrease.
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In July 2020, the Odysee video platform was launched on the LBRY network. Odyssey looks and feels very much like YouTube, with a similar user interface and content feed. However, the Odysee video platform benefits from decentralized digital content distribution thanks to the LBRY blockchain. Replacing the now-retired LBRY.TV, Odyssee uses the LBRY protocol to enable developers to build applications that can interact with the LBRY network.
Furthermore, the Odysee video platform requires a minimum amount of LBRY credits (LBC) to upload and publish content. In addition, viewers can use LBC to purchase content and tip digital content creators.
LBRY YouTube Partner Program
YouTube channel sync, the LBRY YouTube partner program, is available via the Odysee platform. When signing up with Odysee, users can quickly sync channels. Rather than competing with the centralized digital content giant, the LBRY YouTube partner program promotes cross-platform interoperability. Furthermore, the YouTube partner program is the most popular way to LBRY digital content! Moreover, signing up takes just a minute and enables YouTube creators to take back control of their content via the LBRY app.
How Does LBRY Prevent Illegal Content?
Unfortunately, most types of distributed digital content platforms make it easy to exchange digital content illegally. Peer-to-peer file-sharing platforms such as BitTorrent, Pirate Bay, and Napster make it easy to obtain digital content illegally.
However, just as many people use Bitcoin for illicit means, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. It was once common to believe that the primary use for Bitcoin was for nefarious activities. A few years later, though, and the fundamental value propositions of Bitcoin and blockchain technology are clear. Moreover, the amount of cryptocurrency used for illegal activity is far less than the fiat currency used for unlawful purposes.
A parallel can to this can be observed with LBRY. Although it is possible to use the platform for illicit means, several factors reduce the likelihood of this happening. Firstly, LBRY uses a public ledger to record transactions on the blockchain. This means there are several identifiers for anyone who uploads content to the platform. Plus, these identifiers are permanently, immutably recorded, and are transparently viewable to anyone.
Secondly, any infringing content on the LBRY platform can be updated or removed by a third party using updateable URLs. Thirdly, another advantage that LBRY holds over sites like BitTorrent is that there are harsher penalties for profiting from such activities. Moreover, such infringements can involve jail time and statutory damages. This deterrent is largely absent in legacy peer-to-peer file-sharing platforms.
Also, because off-chain settlement is needed to purchase most content, settlement providers can block purchases for illegal content or raise the transaction fees to make it prohibitively expensive. Indeed, these mechanisms minimize illicit distribution content in a way that is absent in most peer-to-peer file sharing platforms.
The LBRY Foundation is the heart of the LBRY community, available through LBRY.org. The Creator’s Council and the Advisors Council are the bodies that oversee the governance of the LBRY Foundation.
One of the responsibilities of the Creator’s Council is to validate verified creators. Also, the Creator’s Council helps support the LBRY foundation with decisions surrounding optimizing the experience for creators. As a collective of LBRY creators themselves, the Creator’s Council ensures all creators on LBRY receive the support they need for content creation.
The Advisors Council is responsible for the general direction of the LBRY community, operated by a collective of active LBRY community members. The Advisors Council facilitates community events, projects, and activities to increase engagement and awareness of the community.
One of the projects offered by the LBRY foundation is a weekly podcast. Available through the community Discord group, LBRY community members are free to join every Friday at 2 pm Eastern Time. Also, the LBRYArena is a project specifically designed to increase traffic and engagement through exclusive games and activities. Anyone can join by heading to Discord, find the #bots-and-roles, and type “!addrole LBRYArena” to sign up. Here you’ll discover the LBRYArena competitions, discussions, and announcements.
Another project receiving funding through the LBRY Foundation is the LBRY Tavern. The Tavern is an opportunity for developers to receive funding for creating applications on the LBRY blockchain. Anyone can submit a request for funding by applying through the LBRY Discord server. There are three tiers of funding available for initiatives; tier 1 – 200USD, tier 2 – 400USD, and tier 3 – 800USD. The native LBC makes up this funding. Further, “you must complete one initiative of a lower-tier before you can request funding from a higher tier.”
LBRY Protocol & LBRY Coin Summary
In summary, the LBRY protocol aims to make LBRY the first open-source, inclusive, and transparent digital content marketplace. The platform encourages users to “express their own preferences.” Rather than an algorithm suggesting content based on arbitrary data points, LBRY enables users to decide what content they see.
Furthermore, the LBRY protocol empowers users to decide how they consume digital content and where they purchase it. This, coupled with a compelling incentive model, enables LBRY to offer an open, transparent, and decentralized platform that encourages network participation while minimizing copyright infringement.
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