In 2022, Calvin Broadus, also known as Snoop Dogg, bought Death Row Records to regain ownership of his recordings, pay homage to the founding artists for their contributions, and create a label that would engage fans by sharing in the monetization of the recordings. The advent of Web 3.0 blockchain technology inspired Snoop to make Death Row an NFT (non-fungible token) label to engage fans in a new way and to assist artists on the label in regaining control over their creations and their careers. This case introduces the legalities of copyright ownership in compositions and recordings and discusses how royalty payouts work from those copyrights for songwriters and performing artists using traditional downloaded albums versus NFTs. It will examine how NFTs and other Web 3.0 technologies can enable artists to recapture lost rights and gain sovereignty over their careers. The case encourages students to appraise how new technologies enhance an artist’s offerings and consider the social justice ramifications of how marginalized communities can strengthen their positions of power and sovereignty over their careers.
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