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Are Music Streaming Services Ethical?


mngosx
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This absolutely nails the problems with streaming music services.  As someone who worked behind the scenes of the automatic music recommendation industry for most of the 2000s and early 2010s the only thing the article got wrong is that it's about 15 years too late.

 

 

This worker is teaching people to use the iPads that will one day replace her. It’s an awkward phenomenon that now pervades a growing cross-section of industries

 

That was where I was already in 2006.

 

https://thebaffler.com/salvos/the-problem-with-muzak-pelly

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This absolutely nails the problems with streaming music services.  As someone who worked behind the scenes of the automatic music recommendation industry for most of the 2000s and early 2010s the only thing the article got wrong is that it's about 15 years too late.

 

 

This worker is teaching people to use the iPads that will one day replace her. It’s an awkward phenomenon that now pervades a growing cross-section of industries

 

That was where I was already in 2006.

 

https://thebaffler.com/salvos/the-problem-with-muzak-pelly

fucking right on the money

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  • 1 month later...

I just had an idea: 

Instead of using a streaming service, why not buy an external hard drive then connect it to your network and upload tracks onto it? Has anyone here tried doing this? If so, how is it?

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I stream random mixes at work, but play from local music at home and commuting.  I like sorting by recently added albums as a parallel to the record collection.  Still using the defunct Zune software on my PC, which is by far the best looking music software ive used..  Got foobar on the phone, and with 256gb+microsd its not so limited like it used to be.

 

On the topic of storefronts such as bandcamp (and the bleepstores that some warp artists have), I like that they are a step in the direction of making the transaction more direct between artist>listener, which is an important step.  I was/am using aphextwin.warp.net (as well as the soundcloud dump) as essentially a streaming site..

 

I just had an idea: 

Instead of using a streaming service, why not buy an external hard drive then connect it to your network and upload tracks onto it? Has anyone here tried doing this? If so, how is it?

Also curious, as Ive wanted access to my local library from work, but havent given it much thought

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This article hits on exactly what has bothered me so much about Spotify, I've been noticing the same trends without being able to articulate what is so fucked up about the way they are controlling access to music replacing sincere, organic genres, scenes, labels, etc. with bullshit tags and descriptors. 

 

 

These algorithmically designed playlists, in other words, have seized on an audience of distracted, perhaps overworked, or anxious listeners whose stress-filled clicks now generate anesthetized, algorithmically designed playlists. One independent label owner I spoke with has watched his records’ physical and digital sales decline week by week. He’s trying to play ball with the platform by pitching playlists, to varying effect. “The more vanilla the release, the better it works for Spotify. If it’s challenging music? Nah,” he says, telling me about all of the experimental, noise, and comparatively aggressive music on his label that goes unheard on the platform. “It leaves artists behind. If Spotify is just feeding easy music to everybody, where does the art form go? Is anybody going to be able to push boundaries and break through to a wide audience anymore?”

 

I admit i use the service a lot but I buck against the way they try to get users to use it - following the artists, playlists, and interests they dictate. I seek out music I like (often from recs IRL, here on WATMM, or even the local radio) and listen to it album by album. If I really like it I try to allocate money to buy it or see the person live. They really do optimize it against someone falling into a niche they like. You can't search by label for instance. Most of the best playlists I find are user-generated.

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CD's are nearly obsolete, getting into vinyl is mega expensive if you don't already own good equipment and most people can't justify paying for downloads when piracy and streaming are more accessible and easier to use than taking a piss. 

 

Obviously streaming platforms as they are right now are far from perfect for reasons stated above but cloud music is the new standard like it or not. 

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I still get the massive heeby-jeebys with cloud based / steaming stuff. I want to know 100% that the privilege of listening to the Wurzels won't evaporate away when my connection dies, or the streaming service arbitrarily changes. I want total, unflinching, permanent control over the music files. I'm a data stalinist

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wtver carpe diem mate

ø„¸¨°º¤ø„¸¸„ø¤º°¨¸„ø¤º°¨

¨°º¤ø„¸slsk„ø¤º°¨

¸„ø¤º°¨F0rEver!!``°º¤-

 

lol yes

 

I get all my music from three sources: slsk, vinyl, bandcamp.

 

Bandcamp is so good, a beacon of light in the dreary, monopolistic landscape of post-2010 internets

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wtver carpe diem mate

ø„¸¨°º¤ø„¸¸„ø¤º°¨¸„ø¤º°¨

¨°º¤ø„¸slsk„ø¤º°¨

¸„ø¤º°¨F0rEver!!``°º¤-

lol yes

 

I get all my music from three sources: slsk, vinyl, bandcamp.

 

Bandcamp is so good, a beacon of light in the dreary, monopolistic landscape of post-2010 internets

man I need to get back to searching and getting stuff in bulk. I'm convinced that in 50 years mp3's (files in general for that matter) usbs and hard drives will be a thing of the past.. everything will be streaming and clouds... I dread the thought...
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I still get the massive heeby-jeebys with cloud based / steaming stuff. I want to know 100% that the privilege of listening to the Wurzels won't evaporate away when my connection dies, or the streaming service arbitrarily changes. I want total, unflinching, permanent control over the music files. I'm a data stalinist

 

same

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I still get the massive heeby-jeebys with cloud based / steaming stuff. I want to know 100% that the privilege of listening to the Wurzels won't evaporate away when my connection dies, or the streaming service arbitrarily changes. I want total, unflinching, permanent control over the music files. I'm a data stalinist

same

didn't see this post.. totally agreed
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https://pitchfork.com/features/oped/how-to-be-a-responsible-music-fan-in-the-age-of-streaming/

 

 

more than 99 percent of audio streaming is of the top 10 percent most-streamed tracks. Which means less than 1 percent of streams account for all other music.

 

Numbers like this are scary (assuming they're correct). There's more to the story, of course, but goddamn.

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https://pitchfork.com/features/oped/how-to-be-a-responsible-music-fan-in-the-age-of-streaming/

 

 

more than 99 percent of audio streaming is of the top 10 percent most-streamed tracks. Which means less than 1 percent of streams account for all other music.

 

Numbers like this are scary (assuming they're correct). There's more to the story, of course, but goddamn.

"But if you’re using a streaming service to listen to anything other than the most-streamed tracks, your money isn’t supporting what you’re hearing."

 

I have been saying this, literally, for years.

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What I would do is wait for my music to get a substantial amount of sales from the people that do want to pay for it and then put it on Spotify a couple weeks/months later. Sorta like an Amazon/iTunes kind of thing where movies get digital releases way after they stop showing in theaters.

 

It would much more profitable if that was the regular model that's for sure. 

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What I would do is wait for my music to get a substantial amount of sales from the people that do want to pay for it and then put it on Spotify a couple weeks/months later. Sorta like an Amazon/iTunes kind of thing where movies get digital releases way after they stop showing in theaters.

 

It would much more profitable if that was the regular model that's for sure. 

But idiots expect it to be on streaming services, and if it's not, well....then it's not worth the effort is it?

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What I would do is wait for my music to get a substantial amount of sales from the people that do want to pay for it and then put it on Spotify a couple weeks/months later. Sorta like an Amazon/iTunes kind of thing where movies get digital releases way after they stop showing in theaters.

 

It would much more profitable if that was the regular model that's for sure. 

But idiots expect it to be on streaming services, and if it's not, well....then it's not worth the effort is it?

 

 

I've noticed this with the more "popular" vaporwave labels - they get a lot of inquiries about when they'll put stuff on Spotify. I don't think those who ask understand the lack of financial incentive to get streaming distro when 1. so few are going to bother to listen 2. it's not worth the money spent elsewhere as a fledging label/artist 3. sample clearance issues can be a pain in the ass (if applicable)

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https://pitchfork.com/features/oped/how-to-be-a-responsible-music-fan-in-the-age-of-streaming/

 

 

more than 99 percent of audio streaming is of the top 10 percent most-streamed tracks. Which means less than 1 percent of streams account for all other music.

 

Numbers like this are scary (assuming they're correct). There's more to the story, of course, but goddamn.

"But if you’re using a streaming service to listen to anything other than the most-streamed tracks, your money isn’t supporting what you’re hearing."

 

I have been saying this, literally, for years.

 

 

the article if followed up was a good one too, back from 2012 - it was staggering to hear about how comically little money Galaxie 500 was "making" off the service. I remember at the same time major label artists were talking about much more they could make via Tidal or youtube.

 

Major mainstream artists and everyone else are in such different worlds, it's pretty crazy. No one really wants to talk about it either, same with musicians having day jobs, artists scrambling to license music to make ends meet - it seems taboo to even bring it up.

 

 

people are so bloody bland

 

edit: that article was a great read actually, thanks for sharing

 

they are - I have some friends / aquaintances who are way more invested in mainstream music than I could ever be, it's bizarre. keep in mind people still bitch about ads and the idea of paying for streaming services while still using them 100% - hell it's made digital downloaders and mp3 hoarders almost seem admirable by comparison

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https://pitchfork.com/features/oped/how-to-be-a-responsible-music-fan-in-the-age-of-streaming/

 

 

more than 99 percent of audio streaming is of the top 10 percent most-streamed tracks. Which means less than 1 percent of streams account for all other music.

 

Numbers like this are scary (assuming they're correct). There's more to the story, of course, but goddamn.

"But if you’re using a streaming service to listen to anything other than the most-streamed tracks, your money isn’t supporting what you’re hearing."

 

I have been saying this, literally, for years.

 

 

the article if followed up was a good one too, back from 2012 - it was staggering to hear about how comically little money Galaxie 500 was "making" off the service. I remember at the same time major label artists were talking about much more they could make via Tidal or youtube.

 

Major mainstream artists and everyone else are in such different worlds, it's pretty crazy. No one really wants to talk about it either, same with musicians having day jobs, artists scrambling to license music to make ends meet - it seems taboo to even bring it up.

 

 

people are so bloody bland

 

edit: that article was a great read actually, thanks for sharing

 

they are - I have some friends / aquaintances who are way more invested in mainstream music than I could ever be, it's bizarre. keep in mind people still bitch about ads and the idea of paying for streaming services while still using them 100% - hell it's made digital downloaders and mp3 hoarders almost seem admirable by comparison

 

 

It's why it really fucks me off that I get labelled a hipster because I listen to vinyl and tapes. I'm supporting the artists I like by purchasing their music on physical formats. I'm going to the gigs (when they happen and I can make it to them).

 

I'm not paying £10 and calling it a day.

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  • 2 weeks later...

https://daily.bandcamp.com/2018/02/12/the-bandcamp-2017-year-in-review/

 

 

2017 was another stellar year for Bandcamp, with double digit growth in every aspect of the business. Digital album sales were up 16%, tracks 33%, and merch 36%. Growth in physical sales was led by vinyl (up 54%), CDs (up 18%), and cassettes (up 41%). Revenue from the 3,500 independent labels on Bandcamp grew 73%, and more than 600,000 artists have now sold something through the site.

 

We launched a new app for artists and labels, added gift cards, improved fan collections, held successful fundraisers for the ACLU and TLC, and we’ll soon mark six straight years as a profitable company that only makes money when artists make a lot more money.

Bandcamp doesn't have the same sorts of numbers as Spotify and the like, so you can't directly compare them, but those streaming services are usually burning money if my memory serves me correctly.

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Target and Best Buy typically have pretty terrible CD selections available (mostly popular stuff of the time and then cheap greatest hits compilations) so it's no big loss in terms of what most people buy around here. Most of the little clusters of vinyl displays are the same typical stuff too (though I did find RDJ album on vinyl at Barnes and Noble recently lol)

 

Nice to see Bandcamp continuing to see growth. It really is the go-to place for me most of the time now.

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