A Deep Dive into TYCHO’s Open-Source Community

Scott Hansen, AKA Tycho, and Matt Jones, founder and CEO of Medallion. Join season 6 to discuss Scott’s new open source community, the collaboration with Medallion, and so much more.
Scott Hansen, AKA Tycho, and Matt Jones, founder and CEO of Medallion. Join season 6 to discuss Scott’s new open source community, the collaboration with Medallion, and so much more.

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Background

Mint Season 6 episode 16 welcomes Scott Hansen, AKA Tycho, and Matt Jones, founder, and CEO of Medallion. Throughout the hour, we discuss Scott’s new open source community, the collaboration with Medallion, the similarities and differences between blogging and building a web3 community, bridging fans into web3, finding a balance between documenting and creating, and so much more.

I hope you guys enjoy our conversation.

Time Stamps

  • 00:16 – Intro
  • 04:51 – How Blogging Helped With Community Building in Web3
  • 06:20 – The TYCHO Open-Source Community
  • 07:28 – The Medallion Passport
  • 09:47 – The Connection Between Fans and Creators on Medallion
  • 13:17 – TYCHO’s Balance Between Documenting and Creating
  • 14:43 – What Does Open-Source Mean in the TYCHO Community?
  • 17:02 – Building the Medallion Experience
  • 23:00 – Interoperability on Medallion
  • 25:07 – The Size Intentions for the New Community
  • 28:35 – Unique Features to Come
  • 35:21 – The Communication Strategy
  • 38:20 – The Next Chapter for TYCHO
  • 43:46 – Outro

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Matt, TYCHO, guys welcome to mint. Longtime coming, part of season six. How are we feeling, how are we doing guys?

TYCHO: Good, good. Thanks for having me.

Matt: Yeah, awesome, man. Great to be here.

Man. Is this your podcast debut?

Matt: It is. You got it, my debut. Dude.

Intro

I’ve done so many debuts for people being there first podcast, so I’m stoked to have you on. I’m really excited to dive in into the Tyco open-source community, everything that you guys are doing on medallion. But before we get into all that, okay, let’s start with really quick intros, just so the audience can kind of get an idea of who you guys are. If they’re not familiar, Scott, we can start with you. And then Matt, take it away.

TYCHO: Yep. My name is Scott Hanson. I’ve been recording music as TYCHO and creating visual art as ISO 50 for about 22 years now. And yeah, just kind of out of blog back in the day and did kind of web two, social media stuff here and there, but I’ve always been pretty engaged in community building. And that’s been a big part of TYCHO, so it’s really cool to be talking about this today. You guys.

Amazing, Matt, how about you?

Matt: Yeah. So been in and around music and technology for close to a couple of decades now. started my career, actually putting on concerts back in England, straight out of high school, I suppose would be the equivalent. And then started a b2b e-com company, helping artists sell tickets directly to fans and then later into Song kick and then ran that company. And yeah, it was a wild ride. And then now CEO of medallion, which we kind of, I suppose, you know, got off the ground in earnest at the beginning of this year. And, you know, yeah, we’re off and running. And it’s, it’s really exciting.

Matt, were you the kid in high school that used to rent out like the warehouses and like, try to like scan people for tickets at the front door? Was that you?

Matt: Yeah, no, not the warehouse, it definitely. It was outside of London. And it was like, old, like billiard room holes, like school churches, and things. It was, like, less glamorous, but still pretty cool. Like, it was like a real interesting generation of artists, like, you know, Mumford, and Dao and balls and glass animals and stuff like that. So, it was like, it was amazing to be around. And so yeah, no, it was a cool experience. So yeah, but quickly, kind of moved into technology after that. But yeah.

I feel like we all had that friend in high school that used to sort of do those kinds of parties. But not to get too much into that. Scott, I’m really excited to have you on the show, and kind of cover all of the new things that you’re doing, and the NFT side of things, but I want to sort of get started with more of the early days of TYCHO because you had this music blog, and you’ve been building communities for so long. I would love for you to sort of talk about what role communities have sort of played in your success, whether it be from the blog side, whether it be from the fandom side, the art side, or maybe all the above?

TYCHO: Yeah, I mean, I think it’s been a huge part. And I think it’s, it was the foundation that this whole thing was built off of, is, you know, the blog, definitely attracted like other creative professionals. And I think the music kind of lends itself to that process. For a lot of people, it’s very useful to listen to while you’re working, coding, you know, doing graphic design, video work, stuff like that. So, I feel like the blog attracted those types of people, a lot of those people in the beginning, and then we all ended up collaborating, or, you know, just became friends or met them at shows, things like that, that really connected me to a wider creative network, which I really didn’t have at the time. And I think, you know, because a lot of those people were, you know, were for either ad agencies, or did you know, video stuff, they would end up doing placements for the music, and I think, or they ran blogs or their own. And so, it’s just this really interesting way to kind of get the music out and in through the creative network. So, a lot of the shows ended up you know, we’d be a chosen, you’d realize, like, a lot of these people were either from the blog or their graphic designers themselves. And so that was just always compelling to me that that the music brought it almost like spoke specifically to these people. Sure. And then, you know, obviously later it, it reached a wider audience. And I think those were kind of the traditional social media years. And just slowly we’ve seen, you know, that the message become a lot more filtered. And I don’t feel like there’s the connection there was in those blog days. So, you know, web three, and particularly this platform that we’ve developed with Medallion is particularly compelling to me because it feels like those days, it feels like you’re speaking directly to real people. And, you know, you’re actually connecting with them, as opposed to just hoping for the best and throwing stuff into some random algorithm.

How Blogging Helped With Community Building in Web3

Can you talk more about the features of the blog that enabled for more sort of interconnectedness between readers and yourself and how that sort of translates into what you’re doing right now, in web three, because it feels like almost like web one, ask, you know, the blogging site. Social media feels like web two and like now issuing NFTs and all these tokens as a way to kind of like bond people with aligning incentives is like the new era of that. I’m curious how you sort of see the distinction between both.

TYCHO: you know, I think there’s a few elements, I think the conversational nature of it, it feels connected, they know that they’re directly connected to you. And I think there’s many expectations that set there that that’s really beneficial. I think, another big thing is kind of the feeling of ownership. I think anytime you have this token, it’s like a, you know, we call it a passport for our community. And I think anytime you have that, and you’re able to give that to a fan, it’s a tangible thing, and they feel connected to the space, and they feel like they belong in this space. And I think there’s something really powerful about that. And I think the portability of it is really cool, too, you know, that this thing can be taken to the discord, this can be taken to other communities, this can be taken, you know, or to other platforms, I think that’s you know, a big part of it, and the ability to gate the access and say, like, these people are invested in this community, and they feel the investment. And so, we’re gonna give them more, and we’re gonna give them more of a connection and more content and be able to collect all that in one space. I think those are all kind of, for me, the really powerful aspects of the community.

The TYCHO Open-Source Community

Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I think that’s also a great place to sort of introduce the TYCHO open-source community. What’s the quick one liner? Like, what’s the takeaway behind this new community that you’re starting, Scott?

TYCHO: I mean, I like sharing my process, like almost like, in an educational way. Or at least just, you know, coming up, I always like, you know, idolized all these musicians and producers and wanted to like, emulate what they’re doing. And, you know, it’s just like a black box, you’re just listening to this two-track recording and trying to figure out how they did all these things. And I feel like it’s so powerful for young up and coming artists, or just anybody wanting to get into any creative endeavor, to be able to see the process of another artist, I think it’s so educational to say, like, here’s how they did it, here’s the end result, how can I take that and use it in my, my own work. And so, you know, that’s something I’ve wanted to do more of, but I felt kind of limited by the platforms and the way that you share media and the types of media you can share and all those things. So, for me, this presents a really cool opportunity. I’m going, I’m in the process of making the next record. So, I think this is a great opportunity to be able to share that process with people.

The Medallion Passport

So that sort of like introduces a medallion side of things right, Matt? And Scott, you brought up a really interesting keyword passport. Why passport Matt? Like where does passport sort of fit in the greater vision of what you guys are building a medallion? And why is that like the perfect entryway to kind of like lowering the barrier of confusion and threat that web three typically brings to a fan? That’s not I guess, crypto native.

Matt: Sure. Yeah. I mean, I don’t think we can take any credit for the word passport. I think that was all Scott and that the you know, the, you know, the crew surrounding Scott, I think is like, perfect word for what it is. I think that, you know, it really feels I don’t know, for those who have not experienced it, it’s a TYCHO dot community. And I think it really does, it feels like you are entering this like very unique, special world that is only about TYCHO. And I think that’s really hard to find nowadays. And like, you know, there’s obviously all these incredible platforms out there that, you know, have, you know, a ton of users and a lot of activity, but like they’re not exactly close-knit communities are very focused on one particular subject matter. And I think that, you know, it really is feels like a special place where you can connect and like, you know, find, you know, one you know, essentially one on one connection with the artists is kind of the primary thing that we’ve created there, I think the things that are going to be really exciting that we’ll explore in the future, is like how to develop like fan the fan connections in that same setting. I think the other thing that you know really grasped me when we did this, is it just like it kind of felt like a bit of a rebirth of like, the artists website in a way like you know, the artists website has become this kind of, I don’t know landing page that goes to all these other places and it felt like a kind of redundant bit of real estate where now it’s like, okay, like I go here because I am interested to engage with the artist, in this case TYCHO and I think, you know, now you get that engaging experience and obviously there’s a lot more to come but like I definitely think passport, to answer your question was like a very accurate, you know, word on what we were trying to create there.

The Connection Between Fans and Creators on Medallion

So, when I created an account on the on the website, I sort of saw the entire flow from a product point of view. And Scott, when you were talking about like bringing back the feel the energy, the vibe of the blog days and make We seen that with web three, and the incentive alignment, the ownership components, it really felt like that, like, I joined the website. And the first post initially was like, felt like a blog post, like it felt like, I was very much like directly communicating and kind of like having a direct line of connection with you as the creator, right? As the artist, right? So, props for you guys for sort of like, kind of like bringing that experience together. I’m trying to think, what does that look like at scale, though, for a fan, for a community member? What does that look like at scale for medallion site?

Matt: Yeah, I’m happy to dig into that. And maybe Scott, I’m sure you’ve got a ton of thoughts on this, too. I think the onboarding is really important. I think that a lot of people get caught up in, you know, web three, and blockchain and it becomes like this really abstract world, that not a lot of people feel comfortable talking about, or really don’t really understand. And I think, you know, it’s just another, you know, way the internet is moving forward, right? And like, you know, it has so many powerful attributes. And what we basically tried to do, is kind of bring it to the masses. And I think that you’ve got a lot of, you know, artists that have these incredible legacies, such as TYCHO that have these very vibrant audiences of all demographics. And like being able to build a product that caters to everyone was really the goal, that we were trying to get to with the platform was just like, hey, you can be crypto native or not, and still be, you know, get the same experience and get the same benefits. I think the other thing that was really important to us was making, you know, and this was definitely something that came from Scott, was like making this community free, right? Like, you don’t need to be one crypto native, but two like, you don’t need to pay to like experiences, sure, there’ll be some paid things at some point. And just the same way you buy music, or you go to shows but like, very base level to engage with the community, you can just dive in, and like get all the benefits. So, you know, for us, like those were like two pretty big pillars that we were trying to make sure that we hit because we felt like that is what musicians and artists are really into and like are really important for their communities. So yeah, I mean, Scott, I don’t know if you’d add anything to that.

TYCHO: Yeah, I mean, I think to speak to your earlier point, too, I think having this kind of cohesive aesthetic, where it’s like this is information and content presented in the way that the artist intended it and has designed. So, you know, combining all the great things about artists websites, but with all these powerful new tools, I think that’s the, you know, a really compelling aspect of this. And I think, generally, just the idea that this is so open, and then there can be so much more to this, I think is something I’m really excited about that just to see this thing build and evolve. Because, you know, we’ve been presented with all these new technologies over the years, you know, I’ve been doing this for 22 years now. And I’ve seen everything from mp3.com, to Facebook, to Instagram, and it’s like, you know, they all show you this thing, and it always feels limited in some basic way. And this, this feels very open ended. And so that’s, you know, I think, it remains to be seen what this will become, but I think it has the potential to kind of become whatever we make it.

TYCHO’s Balance Between Documenting and Creating

Yeah, you know, one thing that I like doing on the podcast is sort of, trying to relate these to other creators, because at the end of the day, like this is meant to scale to some extent, right? This fan to artists connection, it’s not just supposed to end with you, Scott, like the goal is to sort of bring that out to many, many more artists. And I think one thing that you’ve done really well Scott, is sort of find the balance between creating and documenting, and a lot of creators that come into web three, they have a hard time kind of on the community building aspect, because they really get the creatorship right, they either get creating music, creating art, they get that stuff, right. How do you find your balance between documenting and creating?

TYCHO: Well, I mean, that’s always come naturally, me just because, you know, photography is one of my favorite pastimes. And I’m a graphic designer, I was a web developer. So, like, I come from that background of creating and posting, you know, content, framing it in a way. And so, for me that always came naturally. And also like, you know, like I was saying before, I always love like, behind the scenes and like seeing a peek into the artist’s process. So, for me, it’s important to document those things, and to have some reference for that, almost like a scrapbook. So, like that always and I’m sending that stuff out to traditional social media. It’s just it feels so disconnected and disparate. And you have all these different platforms. So, I’ve been looking for a place to collect all that into one space and this definitely feels like it.

What Does Open-Source Mean in the TYCHO Community?

Yeah, you know, open source is a term that’s often using like computer science and applies publicly accessible code, right? That anyone can kind of see modify, distribute as they see fit. And I’m curious, where does this phrase sort of fit into the big picture as it pertains to community building? like in web Three, your moats or your stickiness or your flywheel sort of generated by the community that you’re developed. And it’s hard to fork community, right? In your context, like this idea of open source, right? Like, what does that really mean to you in the grand scheme of things? Is it meant for other people to come in and sort of create their own versions of what you’re sort of documenting, producing? Or how do you sort of see that term open-source fit into your new community?

TYCHO: I think it’s a few things, obviously, these communities, like you’re saying, you know, they’re organic, and they’re kind of self-fulfilling prophecies or whatever, however, you want to say, you know, the community creates itself and it becomes what the community kind of whatever direction it nudges it. And so, you know, you can, you can start with whatever you want, you can create a foundation, but it’s going to grow into to whatever it wants to become, in kind of in an organic way. But I think, you know, the other side of it is opening up the process and showing people this is how this stuff is made. And this is how I go about it. And I’m, you know, hoping that they can take that and apply that maybe to their own process or their own process of learning how to do these things. And then I think finally, like, a good example is just, like, I just put out this Dj Mix, and I was creating the cover for it. And I was on, you know, speaking to the community and kind of saying, like, here’s this version of it, this is where I’m at right now. But I want it to become this, what do you think and like, turned out there some other graphic designers and like, they came out, and we did like a back and forth, almost like a real time critique. And like, those are the kinds of interactions and then that ended up becoming the cover, like, I really learned a lot from that process and seeing, you know, because you lose sight, sometimes as an artist of what, of how people are interacting with your work. And this is one of those grounding moments where you remember, like, okay, these are real people. And they’re taking this in, and they’re internalizing it in these different ways. And to really get that instant, real time feedback was just like a really powerful experience, it again reminded me the old days of web 1.0.

Building the Medallion Experience

Yeah, Matt, when you’re designing a product, like medallion, what are some like design principles, you sort of carry in your soul, essentially, as you sort of built like the ultimate experience for creators to be able to bring their fans together, like, what did that look like? And how has that evolved since the initial idea of medallion?

Matt: Yeah, it’s a good question. I think the first answer is, I definitely didn’t do all of it is a big team behind this. And, you know, I’m just one of many contributors here. So big shout out to the team that’s got us this, you know, to where we are, I actually think that the actual concept for the product is not really varied. Like I think it was really simple in the beginning, it was like, how do we essentially bring an artist closer to fans, and I think we’ve thought that the blockchain presented the best. We thought that the blockchain really represented the best way to do that today, like this idea of like, you know, fans living in these kind of closed ecosystems and not allowing artists to build direct connection or valuable connection or have any kind of, you know, control about how they speak to their audience, in what format and what system and stuff like that, really presented the opportunity of like what if we can move, you know, if we can create fans and identity in like, open source or like, you know, in a decentralized environment, that can kind of open up all these new possibilities. And so, the product was really geared around that idea, I think the second thing that we were really focused on was like, giving fans the ability to essentially participate, own, contribute, in a system that like meant something to the artists, e.g., like, there’s a lot of things around web three and crypto right now that kind of live in their own, you know, isolated areas, like whether it’s projects, or whether it’s, you know, all sorts of different things that there are, we thought it would be really valuable to create a system where all of those things could belong on the one roof for that artists, like so in the TYCHO community, in the open-source community, like, you know, there’s going to be like a, you know, there’s a roadmap of things that we’re building and that we built that, you know, really represent what fandom is in relation to TYCHO. And I think having those all-in-one places really gives fans incentive to wanna, you know, own that stuff and like participate and really like kind of show off like their fandom for the artists and I think that that was really absent like today. So really, for us, it was like those two core things. It was like one like, how do we kind of give artists the ability to you know, have a direct connection, one and two, how do we give fans a reason to want to kind of, you know, demonstrate or showcase their fandom. And how would we do that? So, yeah, that’s kind of what the product is doing right now, I think.

What is the like web three sort of enable for communities and fans that web two fail that from your perspective?

Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And I want to go deeper into that. Okay. And the reason being is because when creators sort of, they hear web three, they hear NFTs tokens, they sort of get skeptical, right? And for one that’s sort of building a platform to use crypto primitives, as a way to bring these two parties closer together. I’m curious, what is the like web three sort of enable for communities and fans that web two fail that from your perspective?

Matt: Yeah, I think it’s kind of back to the two things I said, I think for an artist, it’s like, I think Scott can answer this himself. But I think the way, what I’ve heard, and I think the market feedback we’re getting is that, you know, artists want the ability to have a direct connection and the blockchain, you know, enables that for them, like this idea of understanding what your audience does, and being able to reward them better for the things that they do, or having like, a deeper understanding, or being able to generate loyalty and stuff like that, I think is something that is very tricky today. And like not saying it’s not possible, I’m just saying it’s not that obvious. And it’s kind of tricky. And I think for fans, like, there isn’t really a way that you talk about your fandom for a specific is like, you know, if you’ve been to loads of shows, and like listen to thousands of hours of music, like rarely really talk about that, and what? And to me, it seems very fragmented the way that that is today. And it seems to me as well. And definitely, I think the team that medallion, which is like the best place to bring that all together is the artists website, like everything we’re doing is artists branded, or, you know, essentially customized to the artist. And I think, you know, there is this really nice idea of bringing back, you know, the, you know, the first place that you would discover, hopefully an artist, would you go to the artists website. And, you know, I remember the days of like, that was the first place you go to, and now unfortunately, I think it’s like one of the last places you go to, and I think that, you know, we can definitely, I think change that I mean, maybe I’m sure Scott has probably a better answer than I did. But that’s I think, some of the stuff.

Yeah, Scott, I’m curious if you have anything to add to that?

TYCHO: Yeah, no, I mean, that sums it up pretty nicely, I think, you know, it goes back to like, you know, when I was a kid, when I identified with an artist, or I really internalized what they’re doing, you know, you want it this way, it’s almost became a part of your identity, you know, you wear a shirt, you wear a rush t-shirt to high school, and you’re making a statement. And it’s like, people, I think music fans have lost all these little things, like you get the pin at the show, or whatever, all these things that show like, you’re invested in this artist or these artists mean something to you. And it’s part of you now, because you’ve spent so much time with them. I think we’ve lost that ability as fans over time. And I think, you know, anytime we can find a way for the artist, to give that opportunity back to the fans, I think is really compelling.

Interoperability on Medallion

Yeah, I think also part of that from your side. Scott, as a creator is like also talks about this, I mean, you talk about this concept that I’ve sort of seen online as like now artists sort of own their data, right, and being able to curate experiences by having more control, because the middlemen are in the picture, right. Because when you build an audience on social media, right, on these web two platforms, you are kind of gated and limited by the tools and resources and the abilities that they sort of impose on you. And if you want to bring that community elsewhere, it’s almost as if you have to start from scratch. And for example, like when we saw the era of Tik Tok sort of arise, a lot of the Instagram artists that sort of build their audiences, either even on Twitter or Instagram, whatever it may be, now tried to build audiences on Tik Tok like they lost a lot of their edge because they have to start from scratch, right. And a concept that you sort of talked about is like this element of interoperability, right, being able to take your fans and your community across multiple different experiences. Can you sort of talk more about that? 

TYCHO: Yeah, I mean, I think the other big thing about all those platforms is, they were never designed for this purpose. And you’re always using you know, I remember Facebook didn’t even have I think you had to, like set yourself as a public figure or something back in the day, like it wasn’t, they didn’t even really have a mechanism for you know, a band. So, like, none of these things were ever designed for that in the first place. People were just leveraging them because they had large user bases, you know, it’s like, okay, here’s a lot of people I’m sure some fraction of them are fans, let’s use this to get the message out. But it wasn’t particularly designed for it. So yeah, like, obviously, you don’t own the data. You don’t really have any understanding of who these people are beyond like an avatar and whatever name they use. So, like, I think, how do you forge a deep connection with someone who you really don’t even understand who they are, you know, on any basic level. So, I think this tool have been designed from the ground up for artists to communicate with fans, I think is obviously the most powerful aspect of it and it’s something that I think so far you know, we’ve seen it allow through a much more direct connection to the fans. And I think that’s huge for artists in this era. 

The Size Intentions for the New Community

So, this is a question for both of you, are you guys designing this new community to sort of fit and tailored towards a million fans or a smaller group of people that are more of like your true, true fans? Like, how do you sort of see that strategy?

TYCHO: Well, I think, you know, from, I think TYCHO has always been a relatively small but very passionate and engaged fan base. So, you know, we’ve been successful and been lucky enough to be where we are now, because of how engaged this fan base has been. It’s not about this massive scale. And so, for me, this fits perfectly, this is like, I think this will be at least at the beginning, a small, obviously, you know, Instagram is just like a billion people or whatever. And, you know, so you have this giant potential audience, but really, you’re not really connecting with many of them. And even the ones who have, quote, followed you, you still aren’t really, you don’t have access to them in the way that you once did. And so, for, for me, I would rather have a smaller, more passionate, more engaged community that I’m speaking directly with, then some massive potential pool, where you’re connecting with a very minuscule fraction of what’s out there.

Yeah, what do you think Matt, do you think artists should be sort of optimizing for building virality in using web three tools? Or should they really be honing down on their, like their true, true, small, small kind of niche group of fans?

Matt: Yeah, I think this is a fascinating topic. And, you know, there’s a lot of studies out there, there’s, you know, the thousand, true fans concepts. I’m actually, like, personally, I think the way that we’re kind of building the product, and the platform is similar to way Scott is describing it, I think that the metric is moving away from like, impressions to like engagement. And I think that, you know, this idea of like, oh, I’ve got this many followers, but like, one, I have no idea who they are, and I can’t really reach them directly. And be like, you know, if I’m asked to post something, or put something out there, I don’t know how wide it goes. I’m, you know, sitting alongside a lot of other content. So, I think what that really points to is like, this platform that’s integrated into an artist website, where they own the keys to all of their communication with their fans, that metric then becomes is like, how engaged are my fans and like what of my open rates like on my email blasts, and like, when I do post something, how many fans are engaging? And like, I actually think the key thing for us is like, how do we build a dimensional profile of every fan? And how do we figure out how to keep that fan engaged, and wanting to come back and consume more and be more in tune with what the artist is doing. So, for us, I think it’s more about, you know, serving that, you know, call it whatever you want, a subset of fans that are looking to come back and engage more content. And I think that is the way that kind of I personally, I think that is a way that a lot of people are choosing to engage now anyway is like, you know, the bigger, you know, more open platforms are a little more tricky to kind of navigate, and people are like, searching out, like more closed and, you know, more, you know, intricate communities. And I think that’s what we can build here. So yeah, for me, it’s like number one metric is definitely around that stickiness and engagement. 

Unique Features to Come

So, I think that’s also a great place to introduce, maybe like the roadmap essentially, with this new community that you guys are kind of like building collectively, using medallion as the foundation and Scott you kind of creating all the fun stuff around it for your audience to kind of join along the ride. What are we expecting here? Like, what can we expect? What sort of things are you integrating uniquely, that NFT sort of enable, for example? Or just in general, I’d love to learn more about what you guys have in store.

Matt: Sure. Do you want me to go first, Scott? 

TYCHO: Yeah, go ahead. 

Matt: So yeah, I mean, I definitely a couple of caveats. I mean, one obviously, like we can’t divulge everything, but we can give you guys, you know, a good view on what’s coming. I think secondly, like, Scott, and Brian, and the whole, you know, the crew have been like, so instrumental in the way that we’ve crafted a lot of these features and the way that we’re bringing a lot of this stuff to market. So huge tip of the hat to everyone involved there. Yeah, so I think the easy way to explain it, is that we are looking to create platform features that sit alongside everything that I found us today. So, like right now they’d like to sign up for email lists or join platforms like we’ve created the onboarding experience. We’ve just created something, you know, with the contribution mechanic where fans can like, choose to, you know, download assets and contribute to artwork or other things, we’re going to see more of that around music and other things like that. I think the other two milestones will be like music releases and how we do that. And then the other one will be around like a live music experience. I think the other stuff around the edges will be like fan-to-fan engagement features that we build, that really kind of, you know, help fans communicate with one another, discover, and like, share experiences together. But I think like the three, the kind of three milestones that I knew, sorry, the three buckets that I put the roadmap in are like one, giving fans access to things in different ways, two giving fans the ability to own things. And the third thing is around participation, giving fans the ability to participate, you know, one on one with the artist, or in a setting with the artist, but also one on one with each other. 

Scott, anything to add to that?

TYCHO: I think, for me, one of the most interesting aspects of this, is the ability to tell a cohesive story. And I think, to Matt’s point earlier about creating higher fan engagement and having them follow along, I think, you know, any artists journey, you’re it’s kind of a narrative arc throughout your career, but even down to the granule granular level, like getting ready for a tour or making an entire album, you know, when you try to tell that story on social media, people miss entire pages, or entire chapters, depending on what ends up getting fed to them. And, you know, I’ll talk to people I know are really engaged, and people are paying attention. And they’ll have missed shows in their town, or the fact that I’ve been making a new album, like all these big things, and it’s like to be able to tell that story all in one place in a linear way and have this flow and have it be accessible, all in one place and filtered to the fans. That’s huge for me, especially at a time like this when I’m working on an album. Because, you know, at the end of the day, I want to be a storyteller. And I know the story isn’t just the end result, the album, the story is how did you get there? And who did you become along the way? And what happened, you know, throughout, and I think the ability to tell that story in one place and present it the way you want is huge.

Matt, why do you think fans want to own something? And what does that really mean?

Matt: Yeah, I mean, I think for every fan is different. I think, you know, I you know, for some fans, you know, you own something to unlock an experience, like you buy a concert ticket to go to a show, you know, for some fans, they’ll buy, you know, records because will vinyl records because they want to collect every release, some fans never open their records. I never played it, you know, like, I think it’s totally different for everyone. I think just in our head, like I think ownership is just one node of like fandom, right, like participation is another one, like attendance is another one, but like ownership definitely features right. I think, you know, Scott will tell you firsthand, like, you know, we did a you know, there was a preorder recently, you know, that was sold out. And I think, you know, people are always gonna want to buy stuff, right. And I think that, you know, that’s something that I think right now that you don’t, I think it’s really tough and ecommerce to figure out how to reward fans for that stuff, right? Like, you know, I don’t think artists have been given the best tools to figure out, oh, I want to know, you know, how many of my fans have bought every single vinyl release for the last 15 years, or like have been to all of these shows. And I think it’s a shame because I think a lot of us really want to reward fans for that loyalty from the early years. You know, I can’t tell you how many artists we talked to that. They’re just like, that’s one of the number one pain points is like, I want to figure out who was there at the beginning, and like really kind of reward them for being there. You know, and I think probably Scott is probably one of those artists that probably sees a lot of that. And I think for us, like I think web three and blockchain unlocks a lot of those possibilities. I think like the ability to reward people on chain and build loyalty on chain is massive, like unparalleled to what it is in web two. And I think for us, we have, our challenge is going to be able to figure out what that system looks like to make it interesting for fans, because right now is not that interesting, right? And I think that is what we have to figure out. And that will take time, but will also take, it will also mean working with artists that want to push the boundaries of what it is and try and test and, you know, early on in the NFT, you know, adoption cycle, like the environmental impacts was a huge learning curve that a lot of people had to go on. And I think right now we’re at a point where, you know, I think fans are coming back around to like why NFT can feature and why web three is important and like the education issue around the environment is a lot better than it was. And like, I think, you know, some of the L ones have done a really good job of that stuff, especially at polygon, Solana like they’ve done a really great job of like, educating users on why this is, you know, not as bad as everyone thought it was. But do you know what I mean? Like, it takes time to bring this stuff around, as well as kind of trying to say.

The Communication Strategy

Yeah, and I think part of that is developing the right communication strategies to sort of describe what kind of value you’re getting by collecting whatever it is that you’ll be collecting. And I’m curious as to how you guys are approaching that, because, yeah, one of the biggest hurdles is like the second somebody hears NFTs, you know, they get completely zoned out, you know, and Scott, I’d argue your community is actually much different, because you’ve been in the space for a long time, like you were part of the nifty gateway era. You were also I remember us sort of like speaking very publicly about your relationship with Justin Blau and participating in that music festival, the idea that he had very early on, I’m curious how you guys are approaching the communication strategy. And we can, of course, focus on Scott’s community, but also at large, it’s a big problem that sort of faces the entire creator economy?

TYCHO: Well, I think, you know, there’s always going to be, I think, we have a, you know, a pretty tech savvy fan base to begin with, because it’s a lot of creatives and a lot of people in technology, things like that. So, I think a lot of them are much more, you know, accepting of new technologies. But I think, you know, like Matt was saying, the onboarding process is, can be totally pretty traditional down to an email and a log in, and you can, it can be that for you, if you want it to be that simple as a fan, so and that was important to us to keep that open to everyone, and not just people who are crypto native. And I think the beauty of that is that over time, I think everybody’s going to see, anybody who comes in here, tech savvy or not, is going to start to understand the value of this thing as they interact with it, you know, the problem with forcing them to be crypto native out of the gate is that, you know, you’re going to cut out a vast swath of people who probably would be receptive to it if they just experienced it. So, we’re trying to give them this sort of hybrid experience, where you can get in the door, and then you can interact with it as much as you want in the future. And I think most people will see the benefits pretty quickly once they’re in there.

Yeah, I’m curious how you’re sort of integrating your past experience, the past collectors, sort of from like, the nifty gateway area and the and the other NFTs that you sort of issued? Where did those fans come into place?

Matt: Yeah, I think, well, you know, the model that we sort of developed for the discord was to give them access to specific areas of the discord based on holding, you know, token gated spaces. And I think that, you know, that’s gonna be the idea with Medallion is that you’ll have different, they’ll be able to interact in different ways with the community, or they’ll have access to earlier, you know, drops or tickets or merch, things like that. I think that’s all evolving. But the idea is that that will be integrated. And I mean, that’s the beauty of being able to integrate web three here is that there’s portability. So, if you’ve interacted in some way in the past, with us in the web three space that’s going to be portable into this community.

The Next Chapter for TYCHO

Yeah. What questions do you think you guys, you think I’m not asking to you guys, that’s super important to kind of understand this next era for you, this next chapter for TYCHO as a whole.

TYCHO: I mean, for me, the big thing, and we’ve sort of touched on it, but I think it’s worth diving deeper into is just like, from the artists perspective, I think people think of fandom as this artist’s fan relationship, as this one-way street, this artist has a megaphone, and I think that’s been shaped by social media, is this megaphone on top of a hill, just shouting out some message and hoping that someone hears it. And the people who do hear it, maybe they internalize it, but there’s nothing coming back. And like, you have to remember, like, you know, you play these shows in front of all these people. And it can become sort of abstract and you just think like, this is work and this is what we’re doing. But then after the show, you’ll go to the merch booth or you meet somebody, you know, a fan outside the venue, and they have all four vinyl, or they, you know, it’s clear, and they have the shirt and they’re like, I’ve been to so many shows, and it finally hits home like these are people and they’re interacting, this is like, you know, this is affecting their lives and the things that you’re doing have an impact and like you, it’s really easy, at least for me, you know, I’m speaking for myself to forget those things when you’re in a studio almost your whole life and especially with COVID when you didn’t interact with fans that much at all. And so, these are those opportunities to see like, okay, this person is really invested in this and this means a lot to them. Like there’s a reason behind this. I’m not just doing this for a living like this is something I’m so passionate about. It impacts my life in such a positive way, but like it’s also impacting other people in a positive way. And I think to be able to remind artists and have that two-way communication, I think is really important to artists as well. And to our creative vision and to our inspiration. I think that that really helps you kind of like, keep going when sometimes you feel like I don’t know, you know, if you’re falling on deaf ears and who’s even listening to this stuff.

Right. What about you, Matt? Like, what do you think, from like a platform point of view? Like, what am I missing over here? Because this sounds very exciting. You know, this next era, it seems like very multi-dimensional. And from the looks of it, it seems like you guys are actually cracking the code around where fandom meets web three, right. And it really just ties back to me logging into medallion, and like your platform. And based off what you’re telling me, Scott, like you wanted to kind of encapsulate this vision of the first blog era and integrate like web three pruners into that, like, I felt that, you know, like, I really did feel that. But what do you think I’m missing in this entire experience?

Matt: I don’t know if there’s anything you missing. I think one thing I would love to just kind of follow on from an earlier question that you asked, was just around, like the way that NFTs are presented to fans, I think is like a really interesting topic. I think a lot of people have a lot of different opinions. I think that the way that you know, I think to Scott’s earlier point, like the TYCHO community probably skews more towards being more tech savvy, as Scott says. So, like, you know, there’s previous collections and things and like, to your point, nifty drops and stuff like that. But to the more kind of, I suppose, how do I say it, more analog artists, it does present like a really tricky, you know, problem of like, how do you present this new technology, and especially with all the headwinds that it’s had around speculation and you know, the environment, I think that the two things I would want to touch on there, which are really important is, to try and to bring fans into this new era is like, one education on why like, I don’t think that a lot of people take the time to explain why, I think a lot of people talk about like, oh, this community and utility, but I think it kind of ends up being these empty words. And I think a lot of people, a lot of artists in music are confused as to why would I do this? And I think, you know, the why is becoming more apparent when, with what we’ve done with Scott. And what we’re going to do with other artists is like, why would you want to join this as a fan? And why would you want to participate or buy these things? There’s always an answer, I think, and I think if there isn’t an answer, then we shouldn’t do it. And then I think the second thing is about, you know speculation, I think is like I’m not sure that music fans really want to sign up for that, like, you know, this idea of like investing in things or like buying things, because later on it will have, you know, a value, I don’t think those are the kinds of communities that are so actually looking to build. And I think for us, like just nipping it in the bud that this is a safe environment. That’s, you know, not about speculation. It’s about loyalty and rewarding fandom and stuff like that, is another hurdle we have to jump over. And then like you have the environmental thing around the side, which as I said, I think is changing rapidly. But like, I think those are the fundamental two points that I think are really, really pivotal in like this new set of technologies, like rising into the mainstream and like being adopted by, you know, artists, such as Scott, and others.

Outro

Yeah, I think time will tell if we’re taking the right actions to educate people, you know, but definitely, I’m really a fan of how you guys are approaching and I’m really excited for this next step. Before I kind of let you guys go and wrap this up. What are some dates we should keep in mind? What should the community keep in mind? Some final words?

Matt: I think, I don’t think we have any firm dates. But I think towards the end of this month, and early next month is going to be a ton of activity. I would say in general, like there’s been generally activity every week in the open-source community. So, keep your eyes on that.

Any final words from you, Scott?

TYCHO: Oh, yeah. I’m excited to see how people interact with this. And to see how it kind of evolves out of that. It’s, it’s been a great start, and I can’t wait to see where it goes.

Amazing. One thing we’ll have to do, again, is a recap in a few months or so to kind of see the actions that you guys took to onboard people and see sort of what the outcomes were. So, until then, I wish you guys well, and yeah, best of luck.

Matt: Thanks so much.

TYCHO: Cool. Thank you. Thanks Adam, we appreciate. 

Matt: Thanks, Adam. Take care.

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BlockchainBrett highlights his new article “the crypto creator economy”, why he believes content NFTs are the next wave, and understanding the value of collecting content.
Podcast Transcript

Content NFTs.

BlockchainBrett highlights his new article “The Crypto Creator Economy”, why he believes content NFTs are the next wave, and understanding the value of collecting content.