Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Qchain - Universal Marketing and advertising on blockchain technology

The cultural theorist, Marshall McLuhan, coined the expression “the medium is the message” in his 1964 publication, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man. The phrase signifies that the qualities and properties of a medium dramatically influence the reception and perception of messages transmitted through that medium. Fifty three years later, the phrase has pertinent application to today’s vast umbrella of digital content and media. When we think of digital media, we think of speed, adaptiveness, and responsiveness. Consumers have come to expect those qualities in the messages that are being delivered through the Internet and the products and services that facilitate the digital ecosystems. Qchain aspires to be a platform that embodies those qualities exactly for advertisers, marketers, publishers, and content creators

Qchain is open. Source code for our product releases will be available for all to see on our GitHub, such that potential users can gain further confidence in the security of our code and the fairness of our product. Observers will be able to see that our code does not harvest or siphon off user data to a central source. Rather than profiting off of user data in underhanded means, our open development will reflect our honest intentions to facilitate secure advertiser and publisher connections, where data is only privy between those agents directly participating in the transaction.

Qchain is decentralized. There is no central authority. This eliminates centralized overhead such as hosting and server costs and will result in lower fees for advertisers and higher payouts for publishers. Hence, decentralization leads to financial benefits, privacy benefits, and convenience for both advertisers and publishers. Additional benefits include the nonexistence of central mandates on minimum investments in campaigns for advertisers and faster, direct payouts without withdrawal minimums for publishers.

Qchain is fair. We offer an excellent value proposition for all three types of capitalexchanging agents that participate in the system: advertisers, publishers, and hosts. We will describe the interactions between these three agents in finer detail in the ensuing sections. The independent host is a new addition to the traditional advertiser-publisher duality that will further the decentralization of digital advertising by eliminating the need for a traditional central host. 

The resources being transferred between the agents will come in the choice of two tokens, one for each blockchain technology that Qchain will interface with. The ERC20 Ethereumbased token will be called Ethereum Qchain (“EQC”), and the NEM-based token will be called XEM Qchain (“XQC”). Advertisers, publishers, and hosts can agree on terms over whether they choose to carry out their smart contracts in EQC or XQC, depending on blockchain technology preference. As Ethereum and NEM are both respected and rapidly maturing blockchain technologies, we feel that giving our users the flexibility to choose between two next-generation technologies is beneficial.

Qchain Ecosystem Agents

The Advertiser. The Advertiser accumulates a supply of EQC and/or XQC for an ad campaign. The Advertiser creates the media resources and content for the campaign, and then contracts with Publishers to serve the ads to users. The Advertiser can choose to either be automatically matched with compatible Publishers based on the ad criteria each party has specified or personally select particular contracts to enter into with Publishers. The Advertiser offers some amount of payment per conversion, click, impression, or action to be split between The Publisher and The Host.

The Publisher. The Publisher agrees to display media resources and content produced by The Advertiser for a set period of time on its website in exchange for a number of tokens per click, impression, or other factor. Publishers can specify criteria for advertisements that they are willing to serve, including ad type, genre, content, payment range, duration of time, and many more options.

The Host. The Host serves as a member of a decentralized network of transaction verifiers. For a percentage of the token payment, The Host agrees to provide bandwidth and compute capacity to execute checks that verify the legitimacy of the ad activity occurring on The Publisher’s website that pertains to a Qchain ad contract. Thus, The Host serves as a referee of the transaction between The Advertiser and Publisher. If The Host has sufficient resources, they can optionally offer to act as a content delivery server for The Advertiser, mitigating the need for The Advertiser to independently obtain online storage of its media content. 

A Unified Interface
The Qchain web application will have a straightforward and unified interface for publishers, advertisers, and hosts. As eBay allows an agent to be both buyer and seller, Qchain will
allow an agent to be both publisher and advertiser. An accessible navigation menu within
the interface will allow agents to navigate seamlessly between publisher, advertiser, and
host functionality of the application. The publisher section will list and sort the active
and expired smart contracts in which the user is serving as the publisher. It follows that
the advertiser section will list and sort the active and expired smart contracts in which
the user is serving as the advertiser along with information detailing total and remaining
payout capital balances per contract. In either case, parties can access summary statistics
for their contracts and detailed analytics regarding their payments and payouts. Within
the publisher and advertiser sections, a simple toggle selection will allow publishers and
advertisers to switch between interacting on the Ethereum or NEM blockchains. Located
underneath the tabs to access the advertiser and publisher interfaces will be the button to
access the smart contract marketplace, where advertisers and publishers list and solicit their
offers and proposals.

Smart Contract Marketplace 
Qchain will launch with an advanced and augmented direct buy marketplace. For the marketplace, we take inspiration from Craigslist. Advertisers and publishers will be able to view and filter from a database of available offers, solicitations, and proposals from each other to open negotiations. To allow advertisers and publishers to easily find each other, there will be separate advertiser and publisher subsections within the marketplace; publishers can search specifically for ad content, and advertisers can search specifically for places to display their content. Advertisers will be able to sort publishers by the specific thematic content of the publishers’ website (e.g. American politics or computer science), the type of website (e.g. blogs or forums), and the type of ads publishers are accepting (e.g. banner ads or text ads and display ads or native ads). So, for example, advertisers will be able to filter offers to find all specific ones from blogs that cover environmental issues and are looking for banner ads. Similarly, bloggers will be able to search for all advertisers that are asking to display ads within, say, posts about renewable energy, and then bloggers will be able to adjust their content accordingly to appeal to the offer. Additionally, both advertisers and publishers can specify parameters such as the timespan, price range, and price cap of a desired contract. Once an interested advertiser or publisher has selected an offer listing, they will be able to directly message the other party through the app to gauge interest and begin negotiations. Of course, for advertisers and publishers looking for maximum simplicity, one will also be able to use our automatching functionality. Through this function, advertisers are automatically paired with publishers if they have both submitted contract requests with compatible terms (e.g. content genre, ad type, and price range), without having to engage in any negotiations. 

Network Security 
To ensure the integrity of executed code and transferred data, contracts between advertisers and publishers are verified by a pool of randomly selected hosts. The host network is inherently a massively distributed system with automatic failover. This not only makes it robust to occasional hardware failures of a host, but also provides a layer of protection against denial-of-service (DoS) attacks, which are becoming an increasing concern on the worldwide web. This is critical because it protects advertisers and publishers from malicious parties that may wish to suppress unpopular speech or speech that they disagree

Host Reliability 
To ensure that the network maintains reliable uptime, all hosts within a pool will ping each other to mutually check that they remain online by measuring packet loss. For high value or critical ad contracts, advertisers can specify service level agreements (SLAs) with respect to the uptime of nodes managing their content, and hosts will check each other to verify if they are meeting their SLA obligations. Hosts that fail to meet these SLAs will have their commissions deducted according to the contract’s specified penalties for failing to meet the terms of an SLA. The payout structure of an SLA-enabled contract is therefore as follows:
This ensures the performance and accountability of the host network. The minimum for a payment to a host is 0, so SLA penalties cannot make a host’s balance negative. If a host does not meet the SLA for 48 hours, it is removed from the pool and replaced by a different randomly selected host satisfying the contract criteria.

Token Allocations
The Ethereum Qchain (“EQC”) and XEM Qchain (“XQC”) tokens will be used to engage in transactions and access the services on the Qchain application. The EQC token will be ERC20-compliant. A static maximum amount of 375,000,000 tokens will exist for each blockchain after the respective Ethereum and NEM token launch crowdsale, such that there will be a total maximum of 750,000,000 tokens. The crowdsale will be targeted for commencement in late summer or early fall. The allocation of our tokens is presented in the following figure. The proportions will be equivalent for both XQC and EQC token launches.
  • 60% of our tokens will be sold in the crowdsale.
  • 15% will be earmarked for use in bounties and promotions. Promotions will be used to introduce publishers to our platform to kickstart our adoption.
  • 10% will be saved as a contingency reserve in case recovery from an emergency is necessary.
  • 15% will be held by the founders and team to be used in the Qchain ecosystem or serve as an additional contingency cache.

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