Kodak hit headlines this week when the company announced a plan to launch “photo-centric cryptocurrency to empower photographers and agencies to take greater control in image rights management”. In other words, the venerable camera company is getting in on the bitcoin hype.
Shares in Kodak, which had been largely flat for the previous three months and steadily declining for the five years before that, more than doubled in the following 24 hours, as the company insisted that it was not simply pumping out “hot buzzwords”.
“For photographers who’ve long struggled to assert control over their work and how it’s used, these buzzwords are the keys to solving what felt like an unsolvable problem,” Kodak CEO Jeff Clarke said. Instead, the company says, it can apply those technologies – as well as further buzzwords including “artificial intelligence technology” that enables photographers to “receive payment faster” to build a sort of decentralized stock photo library.