Justin Bieber ‘Company’ NFTs swerve US due to ‘regulatory uncertainty’

There were some excitable headlines last week around the release of some NFTs seemingly offering a share of Justin Bieber’s royalties.

As ever with this sort of thing, the devil is in the detail.

Launched by web3 firm Anotherblock, the 2,000 NFTs do indeed offer a share of the royalties from a Justin Bieber track – 2015’s ‘Company’ – just not HIS royalties. Instead, they’re based on the royalties earned by the track’s producer Axident.

“Every token represents a 0.0005% ownership of the music streaming rights,” explained Anotherblock. The NFTs were sold for 0.017 ETH each (around $27.5k) in a drop last week.

What kind of return can buyers expect? They’ll have to do their own research on that front: the listing does not include any info on the track’s current stream totals and payouts (and Axident’s share of them).

It has just over 500m lifetime Spotify streams, and according to our check on analytics platform Chartmetric, is averaging between 150k and 175k of daily YouTube views.

The terms and conditions also make it clear that the owner of one of the NFTs “waives any audit rights against Rightsholder with respect to the accounting of the DSP royalties“.

Meanwhile, fans and crypto-speculators in the US weren’t able to participate. “U.S. citizens cannot access minting and royalty claims due to regulatory uncertainty,” according to Anotherblock.

The question of how and when NFTs are unlicensed securities is a live one in the US, with one non-music firm, Impact Theory, recently settling SEC charges to the tune of $6.1m in that regard.

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