Darkblock and Unlock Protocol Team Up to Enable Web3-Native Subscriptions to Content

With this integration, creators can now harness the combined power of Unlock and Darkblock to sell recurring subscriptions to onchain content.

By Whit Richardson, Darkblock on

Editor's note: Originally posted on the Darkblock blog.

Today, we’re excited to announce Darkblock has integrated with Unlock Protocol to give creators more flexibility in how they deliver exclusive content to their fans. With this integration, creators can now harness the combined power of Unlock and Darkblock to sell recurring subscriptions to their content and enable other time-based access to onchain content.

NFTs have redefined digital ownership, extending far beyond the realm of digital art. The teams behind Darkblock and Unlock recognized this and have for years been building toward a shared mission — empowering creators with web3-native ways (i.e., permissionless, decentralized ways) to form and engage with their communities, moving them closer to creative sovereignty.

While Darkblock has been at the forefront of decentralizing content, freeing it from the walled gardens of web2 platforms by enabling creators to encrypt and permanently attach their multimedia files to NFTs (creating token-bound content), Unlock’s unique contribution to this evolving space has been enabling creators to leverage NFTs to explore web3-native subscription and membership-based business models.

Giving creators access to both capabilities is why Darkblock’s integration of Unlock Protocol is so powerful.

Flexibility and Customization

One of the key highlights of this integration is the freedom it provides to creators.

Stella Achenbach, founder of The ALANA Project, sees all kinds of groundbreaking opportunities by integrating Darkblock and Unlock into her tech stack.

“The capabilities offered by utilizing Darkblock in combination with Unlock Protocol is something I’ve been seeking for a long time,” Achenbach says. “It provides us with the opportunity to build our community and sell subscriptions to exclusive content, all in a web3-native way that doesn’t rely on centralized platforms or solutions, which is a game changer for us.

“We’re beginning with selling subscriptions to ALANAmagazine and exclusive holder content, and we see the potential for so many more use cases as we continue to build and deliver value within our community.”

Watch the video below to see how creators can use Unlock Protocol to deploy a smart contract (referred to as a “lock”) and mint an NFT (referred to as a “key”) with specific conditions and time-based constraints on digital ownership, then use Darkblock’s no-code app to encrypt and attach multimedia files to those NFTs that, by virtue of a simple checkbox added to the workflow, will only be accessible to an NFT’s owner based on time constraints the creator set via Unlock.

New Business Models Unlocked

This level of customization now available to creators empowers them to experiment with various, web3-native business models, whether it’s renting content or other digital assets or selling subscriptions or memberships that come with access to exclusive content.

Subscription-Based Magazines

Imagine launching a subscription-based magazine powered by NFTs. With Unlock Protocol and Darkblock, creators can offer their readers exclusive content through NFT memberships. Whether it’s monthly issues, premium articles, or interactive multimedia experiences, this integration paves the way for innovative publishing models in the digital age.

Web3-Native Patreon

Creators can take their memberships and subscriptions to the next level by building a web3-native Patreon-style platform. With Unlock Protocol’s NFTs, creators can grant members access to premium content for as long as they remain members. Darkblock’s integration ensures the content is encrypted, stored in a decentralized manner, and accessible in diverse ways.

Time-Based Rentals

For creators such as musicians, filmmakers, or game developers, this integration introduces the concept of time-based rentals. Use Unlock Protocol to mint NFTs that grant time-based access to the token-bound music, film or 3D game assets enabled by Darkblock protocol.

Enabling the Future of Web3 Content

The integration of Darkblock and Unlock Protocol marks a significant milestone in the world of NFTs and content distribution. It’s a powerful example of how blockchain technology can empower creators and revolutionize the way content is monetized and shared.

If you’re a creator looking to explore these exciting possibilities, we invite you to join us on this journey. Watch the video below that demonstrates how easy is it is for a creator to use Unlock to mint their membership NFTs, then use Darkblock to encrypt and attach content to those NFTs that will be accessible based on the time-based conditions set via Unlock.