This idea — is a proposal in the Fund3 of Project Catalyst (Cardano governance system). I wrote about Project Catalyst and I advise you to check it on Ideascale, and maybe submit your proposal in the future funds.
Problem statement :
Ebooks market is highly centralized, censored, and dominated by Amazon Kindle. There is a general lack of marketplaces in the crypto world
Describe your solution to the problem
Aregato — ebook marketplace with blogging and social media features, built on top of Cardano, with Cardano native assets and NFTs
Amazon Kindle dominates the ebook market. Having a monopolist position Amazon takes big fees from the writers’ rewards (30–70% for a digital product!) and at the same time has other disadvantages: censorship risk (look what they did to Parler!, and I know other examples when the author was banned from Amazon for political or other reasons) and delay with payments (you need to wait few months to collect author royalties).
Cryptocurrency and Cardano can easily solve these problems.
Aregato (prototype name) platforms will very low fees taken from the author (maybe 5% or even 3%), payments will be made almost instantly (buyers will have multiple options to pay, authors will receive payment in ADA and native Cardano-based tokens)
So the program minimum is:
To create a marketplace of electronic books, connect writers, small publishing houses, and readers. To create 1 more site, 1 more dapp which will utilize ADA as payment and will increase the number of transactions and will have both intellectuals to find a new audience and the readers to find books.
Well, we don’t want just to capture some part of ebook market share. Amazon also started with books, but where they are now?
Aregato can become the main Web3 marketplace for all the digital goods (music, cinema, art) and even have bigger convergences with the offline world and the IoT and AI areas.
While growing, Aregato can come to new markets, new geographies, and languages, implement certain features, such as.
1. The social network and blog platform for intellectuals
There might be either your own blog platform with a native token, distributed for rewards, or it can be integrated with existing platforms like Hive, ReadCash, Lbry.
Charles Hoskinson says that he the future for a purpose-driven social networks.
This might become the combination of social network and blog platform for the intellectuals in the broad term of this world: people who like to read and write. Authors could build communities and follower base around their books, ideas, etc.
Example use-case: Ron Paul de-platformed. But his team members kept account on Aregato. He’s now active there, and people come and support him, including financial support with ADA, native tokens. There could be certain features, like an easier way to speak with your author if you are his/her supporter, or like in this example — maybe join a political campaign. Merchandise can be sold as well as Ron Paul NFTs, and many things can be invented
2. Investment platform — invest in your favorite digital authors
What if you like and admire some author, but he drinks a lot, and spent all his crypto. But still, you like him and what to support. The author is broke now and he’d rather focus on writing new books than looking for another job. He is sure he has enough supporters like you, so he puts his future book shares for sale (selling 30–40%). This is of course confirmed by a smart-contract written on Marlowe and the details are flexible to setup and protected from future changes by blockchain. Of course, there is always a risk that this writer won’t finish his book.
Example use-case: Charles Hoskinson wants to buy new land close to his farm, but he doesn’t want to sell his ADA. He announced that he’s writing the “Blockchain Governance” book and there is a high chance it will become a bestseller. He is selling only 5% of his book shares, but apart from tokenized participation in the future profits, he also puts a feature that everyone who contributed 10K ADA or more will have a special recognition badge during his AMAs and dedicated signed paperback copy.
3. NFTs (Non-fungible tokens)
Example use-case: Maria is an active participant of Aregato, and she also has the talent to draw. She wants to go on vacation, but she doesn’t want to sell her staked ADA. She is drawing a collection of NFTs, sells them and a vacation trip is funded.
4. Other types of sales, auctions
Example use-case: I’m sad that my podcast proposal was not supported by you in Project Catalyst and I understand that I need to grow it otherwise, so I try to sell 50% of shares for 100K ADA. But nobody buys. I try other shares-percentages and even use native tokens to advertise — but there is no interest. Then I put the whole channel for sale for 10K ADA in an auction mode, one of SPO who’s planning to become active on youtube makes an offer to buy it, then another makes the offer of 12K, and then it’s old for 15K.
These are just several examples, how I can see the platform might develop. As I startup we might change our focus. For example, we’ll see that surprisingly top-popular language on the platform is French (French writers don’t like Amazon ripping them off and there is a strong self-publishing tradition in France and maybe also due to multiple Cardano projects in North Africa). Then we make a focus on the French market, and related integrations (i.e. Atala Prizm integration for payments)
Or maybe we’ll notice that books are not doing well, but there is a bigger demand for NFTs or video-on-demand. Then we’ll reshape our focus and will return to books later.
So this proposal is a prototype and if you are interested — feel free to join, leave your feedback, and vote.