Binded, formally Blockai, has been attempting to turn the blockchain into a tool to allow artist and photographers to authenticate and claim copyright over their images since 2015. Founders Nathan Lands and Oli Lalonde have helped artists the world over protect their images with a secure cryptographic hash. Now, Binded is helping protect your images legally.
While it is true that photographers obtain copyright of their images as soon as they are taken, to claim statutory damages one must register them with the US Copyright office. No matter how tamper-proof the blockchain may be, it does not have legal standing in court.
The modern way to file for copyright consisted of an application through the US Copyright Office’s website. The process is very bureaucratic, requiring multiple steps before the the application sent. Binded is making this process as easy as the press of a button.
When uploading images to Binded’s photo vault not only are images registered with the blockchain you have the option of registering the image with the US Copyright Office. The application fee of $35 for one image or $55 for a collection of images is still required, however, Binded does not take a fee for this new service; making it one of the easiest and least expensive options out there.
Once the application is made, the user receives an email receipt and is notified on a status of their application. The US Copyright Office will still take between 6 and 8 months to process an application. As long as the copyright registration is not rejected, the date you submitted the copyright is what really matters.
As of right now, the application to the US Copyright office is only for images that have been newly uploaded to Binded site, with the option of applying already uploaded images “currently in the works”. There are no foreseeable plans to charge for the new service, Lands has told SLR Lounge.
“We have big long-term ambitions to democratize copyright and become the main way people interact with copyright. Charging extra for registrations seems counter productive to our goals. In an ideal world, we wouldn’t have to charge anything for the registrations at all and we could primarily earn revenue by generating revenue for creators.”
Binded says that the service they offer will remain ‘free forever’. It says their long-term goal is to make blockchain copyright registrations a legal method. “Today it’s incredibly difficult to identify the copyright owner of a file on the web. Binded will change that.” To check out more about Binded or to sign up you can check them out here.