Another component of blockchain technology is that it is a
harbinger of transparency. Because all transactions are recorded, there is no
“black box” in which any single participant can hide their actions. The reason that
this transparency is so revolutionary is that many of our existing systems are
opaque and convoluted, allowing malicious actors to take advantage of the dark
alleyways, so to speak, and steal data and value without repercussions.
Blockchains provide “streetlights” so that there are no
hidden passageways. Some people have made the “too much of a good thing can hurt
you” argument about this added transparency. In the long run, however,
transparent pricing does nothing but good for buyers and sellers in the
Within the advertising ecosystem, the AdLedger consortium was founded for the purpose of deciding the rules and
standards governing data exchange within a peer-to-peer blockchain network.
Participants include players from both ends of the supply chain, from
advertisers to publishers. Such collaboration will be essential across
industries before blockchain systems will become a universal reality.
It is, however, inevitable that should blockchain technology
achieve mass adoption, the role of intermediaries will shift — “shift” being
the key word. Many critics of blockchains’ potential have argued that
blockchains will do away with intermediaries. This is not necessarily true.
Case in point: though the peer-to-peer capacity
of blockchains has the potential to render banks obsolete, Goldman Sachs,
Morgan Stanley and others are investing in blockchain technology. In music, streaming services act as
intermediaries between artists and consumers, but Spotify recently
acquired Mediachain Labs,
with a plan to use blockchain technology to address the industry’s attribution
problem. Essentially, by commodifying the generalized services of
intermediaries, we encourage competition, which is the greatest driving force