Every year, new literary works enter the public domain on Public Domain Day on January 1st, as their copyright expires. This date is usually a very long time after a work was created: In the United States, for example, copyright protection lasts 70 years after the author dies, while in the Philippines it’s 50 years. For great works of literature, this system works. Novels like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Wizard of Oz, or The Great Gatsby are all timeless, worthy of reading and studying even today. The same goes for Jose Rizal’s El filibusterismo and Noli Me Tángere, and the epic poems Florante and Laura and Ibong Adarna here in the Philippines.
This system makes less sense with certain works of non-fiction, which we encountered first-hand when we published our recent book, The E-Hustle: What the Country's Best Digital Leaders Can Teach You About Launching and Growing Your Online Business. The first print run for The E-Hustle sold out in less than a month. Apart from doing a second print run and also turning it into an ebook and an audiobook, we wanted to make the content accessible to more Filipinos. With the country entering a new normal, more Filipinos need to be equipped with the knowledge necessary to build an online business. Copyright expiration would last until close to the futuristic sounding date of 2100, by when the content would all but surely be laughably out-dated. We needed a sustainable model to get the book into the hands of more readers in the Philippines, while it was still helpful and relevant to them.
Around this time, we chanced upon non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Some authors, publishers, and content creators were already doing interesting things with the medium, including issuing limited edition runs of new books. We wondered whether NFTs could be useful for not only new releases, but old ones as well. This line of thinking brought us to the idea of Public Domain as a Service (PDaaS), whereby we could issue books or chapters as NFTs. The purchaser of these would own the digital art representing the book or chapter, but also unlock a utility that serves both the public good as well as the NFT owner.
Upon purchase of the NFT, the content will be released into the public domain, providing readers with valuable, timely insight and information into current events, major trends, and relevant skills. The NFT owner will also be credited in this release, incentivizing individuals or groups who want to be associated with the book topic in particular or the public domain in general to back these projects as a patron. We hope other authors, publishers, and content creators experiment with the PDaaS model and that our execution described below will help you determine yours.
NFTs as a bridge to more Public Domain content
Bookshelf PH is launching 17 individual NFTs, each representing a chapter from its recent book, The E-Hustle: What the Country's Best Digital Leaders Can Teach You About Launching and Growing Your Online Business. These chapters are built around exclusive interviews with some of the top entrepreneurs, technologists, and business leaders in the Philippines, including:
- Steve Sy - Founder and CEO of Great Deals E-Commerce Corporation
- Charles Ryan Sy - President of Dropify
- Dannah Majarocon - Managing Director of Lalamove PH
- Martha Sazon - President and CEO of GCash
- Dino Araneta - Founder and CEO of Quad X
- Martin Yu - Director of Shopee Philippines
- Nina Ellaine Dizon-Cabrera - CEO of Colourette Cosmetics
- Kim Lato - CEO of Kimstore
- Ben Wintle - Founder and CEO of Booky
- Ace Gapuz - CEO of Blogapalooza
- Hiyasmin Neri-Soyao - Co-Founder and CEO of Shoppertainment LIVE
- Francis Plaza - Co-Founder CEO of PayMongo
- Mario Domingo - Founder of Neural Mechanics Inc. and DARC Labs
- Agnes Gervacio - CEO of MDI Novare
- Zen Han - Vice President for National Sales of OPPO
- Stefano Fazzini - Co-Founder and CEO of MetroMart
- Michael McCullough - Founder of KMC Solutions
our execution of pdaas
These NFTs will be auctioned on our collection on OpenSea, the largest marketplace for NFTs in the world and one that has drawn significant attention on account of users transacting in such high volume and often large value for its digital art, collectibles, and other items.
Each NFT for The E-Hustle will also involve digital art - a holographic adaptation of the original chapter cover, which will belong exclusively to the purchaser - as well as a utility: The chapter will be compiled with the others released into the public domain and distributed through E-Commerce for Everyone, a year-long online and offline campaign mounted by Bookshelf PH from November 2021 to November 2022 that aims to get this guide into the hands of 1 million Filipinos.
Each NFT owner will be credited as the presenting sponsor of the book before it is issued to the public domain.
As presenting sponsor, the individual or group who owns the NFT will be acknowledged in all marketing and publicity collaterals for E-Commerce for Everyone. The campaign will include activities across public relations, social media marketing, online webinars, blog writing, influencer marketing, and more. Sponsorship would thus be ideal for any person or organization that wants to position themselves as an e-commerce enabler in the Philippines.
In addition, the NFT owner will also be described as an advocate for the public domain to the broader crypto and blockchain media, given their support of a new model - Public Domain as a Service - that aims to incentivize more authors, publishers, and content creators to release valuable content to the general public in a timelier manner than copyright expiration would allow.
The Public Domain as a Service collection on OpenSea can be found here: https://opensea.io/collection/public-domain-as-a-service
The individual NFTs corresponding to each chapter from The E-Hustle can be found here:
1. Building Brand Success on the Four Pillars of E-Commerce
Steve Sy, Founder and CEO of Great Deals E-Commerce Corporation
2. Thinking Outside the Box: How Dropshipping Encourages Sellers to Get Creative
Charles Ryan Sy, President of Dropify
Dannah Majarocon, Managing Director of Lalamove PH
4. From Your Wallet to Your Phone: The Changing Face of Cash
Martha Sazon, President and CEO of GCash
5. Above and Beyond: Going the Extra Mile for E-Tailers
Dino Araneta, Founder and CEO of Quad X
6. Engaging Buyers and Sellers in the E-Commerce Space
Martin Yu, Director of Shopee Philippines
7. Scaling Sustainably: Solving Grocery Woes in the Metro
Stefano Fazzini, Co-Founder and CEO of MetroMart
8. Building an Authentic Brand Identity
Nina Ellaine Dizon-Cabrera, CEO of Colourette Cosmetics
9. How Can I Help You? Building a Customer-Centric E-Commerce Business
Kim Lato, CEO of Kimstore
10. One Step Ahead: Building a Fast and Forward-Thinking Digital Marketing Strategy
Zen Han, Vice President of National Sales for Oppo Philippines
11. Appealing to the Filipino Through Engaging Content
Ben Wintle, Founder and CEO of Booky
12. The Cool Kids: The Influencer's Role in E-Commerce Marketing
Ace Gapuz, CEO of Blogapalooza
13. The New Frontier: Leading the Livestream Revolution
Hiyasmin Neri-Soyao, Co-Founder and CEO of Shoppertainment LIVE
14. A Strong Foundation: Paving the Road for Online Payment
Francis Plaza, Co-Founder CEO of PayMongo
15. Innovation Amid Disruption: When Flexibility Becomes a Pathway to Prosperity
Michael McCullough, Founder of KMC Solutions
16. Training for Tomorrow: Upskilling Organizations for E-Commerce
Mario Domingo, Founder of Neural Mechanics Inc. and DARC Labs
17. Fast Forward: Helping Companies Transform with the Digital Revolution
Agnes Gervacio, CEO of MDI Novare
If you have any questions or comments about our OpenSea listing, or wish to collaborate on other initiatives relating to Public Domain as a service, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.