The new album is priced at $US 5.50 or the equivalent of 0.0088 BTC (at the time of this writing) while the payment will be processed via BitPay.
Tony Gallippi, Executive Chairman of BitPay commented on the move:
“We are excited to see high profile independent artists use bitcoin and 50 Cent’s trail as an innovator is outstanding.”
BitPay processes the Bitcoin transaction from the customer and notifies the merchant that the order has been paid. BitPay settles the transaction within one business day and offers the merchant the option of depositing in dollars, Bitcoins or a percentage split between the two.
50 Cent is also using the Shopify online store to sell his latest album. The rapper posted a statement on reddit regarding the latest move:
“Stay with [the] times. Technology is what's changing - the business gotta get with it. I take money no matter if its coins or dollars.”
50 Cent is certainly not the first high-profile music artist to show interest in Bitcoin. Other industry giants such as Snoop Dogg and Grammy-nominated Carolyn Malachi have also stated that they are looking to sell their music for Bitcoin. Others, such as the singer-songwriter, Tatiana Moroz, have even gone so far as to release their own coin – the Tatiancoin.
Bitcoin along with online store services such as Shopify are certainly on the cusp of disrupting the music industry even further, which is still reeling from the advent of digital downloading and bit torrents. The new opportunities presented by these disruptive technologies for music artists could potentially make record companies less relevant, if not obsolete.
Today, any artists can be their own promoter and distributor without the necessity of having major label backing for marketing and radio play. With this in mind, we can expect many more music artists to follow suite as people have already posted screenshots via reddit that they have purchased Animal Ambition, with some doing so more in support of the Bitcoin payment option rather than the artist himself.
So is this yet another one of 50 Cent’s genius publicity stunts to promote his latest album? – Absolutely. But a co-sign from such a high-profile artist as 50 Cent will certainly broaden Bitcoin’s mainstream appeal while potentially boosting record sales for the rapper. Moreover, 50 Cent’s reputation as an industry trend-setter could hold true as the latest move could open the floodgates for other independent artists.
As one of hip hop’s most prolific artists, 50 Cent has sold over 30 million records worldwide and is one of hip hop’s most renowned and successful businessmen whose net worth is over 140 million dollars according to Forbe’s magazine.