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Spotify CEO Daniel Ek says working musicians can no longer release music only “once every three to four years.” Spotify's stock value hit all-time highs of $50 billion this summer.


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Once upon a time a musician had the other musicians in the city/village he lived as competition.

Lets say you play violin/guitar, there is a few other people playing in your town, youre known as the town violinist/guitarist.

You live in a hunter gatherer village there is maybe one or two other musicians.Maybe a few more but not thousands.You're respected as such.You're the music guy in the place.

There is maybe 5-10-20 competitors in a bigger town.You have decent chance making a living.

Then cities.Maybe the ones in near-by regions come around sometimes.A few more competitors.

Then the world changed and you were in competition with people in other countries that are traveling.The pool gets bigger.

But now with the internet and total globalization you're in competition with the whole world directly.The pool is HUGE.

No matter what your talent is you're in the race with the talents of ALL the countries in the world AND on top of that you have the whole ecosystem going against you, marketing, big labels, streaming services.

It's like there is 10 millions people going to the same job interview as you, some may have massive contact to get in and the job wont pay and rip you off hahaha

The game is rigged from the beginning against musicians to make a living off it in the modern context.

If bread could be downloaded-streamed, and be in competition with the bread from every bread maker in the world, the local baker wouldnt make a living either.

You gotta do it for the love of it.

Maybe you'll be lucky and make a living but probably not.

Support music all you can and still make the music you love, but it's a crazy new big scale, big profit, globalized-and-not-so-much-at-human-scale world we live in, and things like artists are not the priority.

But eh loads of good music tho.

It's kind of a golden age in a way as well.

LOTS of good music from all over the world.

Double edge sword of modern life and modern technologies.

What is better before? or is it better now?

In some ways yes it's better now but in some other way definitively not.These are the cards we are dealt with.

 

 

Edited by fxbip
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"your art must conform to to the market, specifically the type of market that I control" the absolute narcissism of the rich

Never used Spotify, never will

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but you could probably score a gig in your hometown if you put some effort into it, maybe get to know an ildsjel (this is a norwegian word/expression, literally translated it's a firesoul, I can't find an english synonym for it, someone enthusiastic, a driving force in a scene, someone that has a burning passion) in the process, maybe some of those people have connections, maybe you can use those connections if your stuff is good enough, play another city, meet other ildsjeler etc etc etc,  or you could just make tunes and smoke pot, maybe throw some of them online and have a good time with it either way, but that probably won't get you anywhere. I think it's still viable to make a living off music/reaching an audience, but sure, the competition is fierce.

Edited by Silent Member
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Bottom line is that we live in an age dominated by greed as the dominant value.

Greed motivated individuals and societies doesnt care about having a healthy cultural landscape and ecosystem very much.

Money is god.

I'm grateful there is still things like cultural institution and donators amongst all of this because if not for it things like orchestras and museums would disappear pretty fast.

 

Edited by fxbip
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5 minutes ago, Silent Member said:

but you could probably score a gig in your hometown if you put some effort into it, maybe get to know an ildsjel (this is a norwegian word/expression, literally translated it's a firesoul, I can't find an english synonym for it, someone enthusiastic, a driving force in a scene, someone that has a burning passion) in the process, maybe some of those people have connections, maybe you can use those connections if your stuff is good enough, play another city, meet other ildsjeler etc etc etc,  or you could just make tunes and smoke pot, maybe throw some of them online and have a good time with it either way, but that probably won't get you anywhere. I think it's still viable to make a living off music/reaching an audience, but sure, the competition is fierce.

I've done all thoses things and it's a rich journey of amazing musical experience, amazing human experience and growth.

You do beautiful gigs, meet amazing people, feel the passion.

But there is no money in it.

Maybe i'm not good enough.I'm not Beethoven.I just make tracks.

But i know the whole game is rigged too.

I personally dont have any illusions of it.I don't think i'll ever make a living off music but that's ok.I don't really care that much.

I do my thing.I love music.

That's enough for me.

 

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1 hour ago, fxbip said:

Bottom line is that we live in an age dominated by greed as the dominant value.

Greed motivated individuals and societies doesnt care about having a healthy cultural landscape and ecosystem very much.

Money is god.

The reverse of this is what I've written about earlier - it's also about the consumers thinking that the 11,99 (6,49) €/month entitles them to any and all music the world has to offer, which devalues the work of the artists and lines the pockets of extraction capitalists like Ek.

All the streaming and on-demand services have built a divide between producers and consumers by hammering home the idea that you don't want or need to purchase to own a (physical) copy of anything, because you can rent everything on a monthly basis so that the rent-seeking tech-bros can cash in on other people's work by providing the oh-so-indispensable service of on-demand delivery, making serfs and peons out of both artists and their audiences - artists because it's almost impossible not to give in to the demands of the services and audiences because it's so cheap that it's almost impossible not to pay so little to get so... much... music. Greedy "service" providers, greedy audiences by proxy - the artists lose.

Edited by dcom
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Yeah once people get so much music for free or very little its hard to get them to pay 20 bucks an album.

I often say buying music in this day an age is a choice basically.

It's a choice you make to support the artist and ecosystem.

But we all know that if you offer people to choose between paying for something or having it for free or very little the vast majority will choose the easy way.Cause free stuff.

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1 minute ago, fxbip said:

But we all know that if you offer people to choice between paying for something or having it for free or very little the vast majority will choose the easy way.Cause free stuff.

It's the tyranny of convenience.

Quote

Convenience has the ability to make other options unthinkable. Once you have used a washing machine, laundering clothes by hand seems irrational, even if it might be cheaper. After you have experienced streaming television, waiting to see a show at a prescribed hour seems silly, even a little undignified. To resist convenience — not to own a cellphone, not to use Google — has come to require a special kind of dedication that is often taken for eccentricity, if not fanaticism.

For all its influence as a shaper of individual decisions, the greater power of convenience may arise from decisions made in aggregate, where it is doing so much to structure the modern economy. Particularly in tech-related industries, the battle for convenience is the battle for industry dominance.

 

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8 minutes ago, ignatius said:

film heading in the same direction as music? 

Everything’s heading in the same direction as music. Quite convinced of that, and have been for a while. Press / photojournalism was first in line, a tad before music.

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18 minutes ago, Nil said:

Everything’s heading in the same direction as music. Quite convinced of that, and have been for a while. Press / photojournalism was first in line, a tad before music.

yep.

and it's probably beyond the scope of this thread, but i think it's pretty clearly tied to the growing wealth gap in America/most of the 'first' world. almost no one would mind spending a few hundred/couple grand extra a year on journalism, music, film, theatre, art, etc. if they were making decent wages and had the time and lifestyle that allowed them to enjoy and appreciate these things. 

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capitalism is fucked up not for any of the karl marx shit but mainly because eventually it finds a way to turn everything into smooth jazz

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One of the big technology-semantic coups is the conflation of everything into content so it can be provided as a technology-delivered service - it's like entertainment, it subsumes everything - aloof and serious, art and kitsch, shit and diamonds. It turns everything into pink slime so it can be tube-fed to armies of semi-passive consumers imprisoned by convenience and cheap monthly subscriptions.

Edited by dcom
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if the infrastructure used for distributing music is controlled by a smaller group of people than all of the musicians in the world, then those musicians WILL be exploited.  the governments don't care about music or else they'd create nationalized public utilities for distributing and selling music.  or else there is no free music market.  the music industry must be socialized to overcome these issues.  all of them can be pinpointed back specifically to capitalism

27 minutes ago, dcom said:

One of the big technology-semantic coups is the conflation of everything into content so it can be provided as a technology-delivered service - it's like entertainment, it subsumes everything - aloof and serious, art and kitch, shit and diamonds. It turns everything into pink slime so it can be tube-fed to armies of semi-passive consumers imprisoned by convenience and cheap monthly subscriptions.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1844/manuscripts/needs.htm

<How the multiplication of needs and of the means (of their satisfaction) breeds the absence of needs and of means is demonstrated by the political economist (and by the capitalist: in general it is always empirical businessmen we are talking about when we refer to political economists, (who represent) their scientific creed and form of existence) as follows:

(1) By reducing the worker’s need to the barest and most miserable level of physical subsistence, and by reducing his activity to the most abstract mechanical movement; thus he says: Man has no other need either of activity or of enjoyment. For he declares that this life, too, is human life and existence.

(2) By counting the most meagre form of life (existence) as the standard, indeed, as the general standard – general because it is applicable to the mass of men. He turns the worker into an insensible being lacking all needs, just as he changes his activity into a pure abstraction from all activity. To him, therefore, every luxury of the worker seems to be reprehensible, and everything that goes beyond the most abstract need – be it in the realm of passive enjoyment, or a manifestation of activity – seems to him a luxury. Political economy, this science of wealth, is therefore simultaneously the science of renunciation, of want, of saving and it actually reaches the point where it spares man the need of either fresh air or physical exercise. This science of marvellous industry is simultaneously the science of asceticism, and its true ideal is the ascetic but extortionate miser and the ascetic but productive slave. Its moral ideal is the worker who takes part of his wages to the savings-bank, and it has even found ready-made a servile art which embodies this pet idea: it has been presented, bathed in sentimentality, on the stage. Thus political economy – despite its worldly and voluptuous appearance – is a true moral science, the most moral of all the sciences. Self-renunciation, the renunciation of life and of all human needs, is its principal thesis. The less you eat, drink and buy books; the less you go to the theatre, the dance hall, the public house; the less you think, love, theorise, sing, paint, fence, etc., the more you save – the greater becomes your treasure which neither moths nor rust will devour – your capital. The less you are, the less you express your own life, the more you have, i.e., the greater is your alienated life, the greater is the store of your estranged being. Everything ||XVI| which the political economist takes from you in life and in humanity, he replaces for you in money and in wealth; and all the things which you cannot do, your money can do. It can eat and, drink, go to the dance hall and the theatre; it can travel, it can appropriate art, learning, the treasures of the past, political power – all this it can appropriate for you – it can buy all this: it is true endowment. Yet being all this, it wants to do nothing but create itself, buy itself; for everything else is after all its servant, and when I have the master I have the servant and do not need his servant. All passions and all activity must therefore be submerged in avarice. The worker may only have enough for him to want to live, and may only want to live in order to have that.>

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2 hours ago, dcom said:

One of the big technology-semantic coups is the conflation of everything into content so it can be provided as a technology-delivered service - it's like entertainment, it subsumes everything - aloof and serious, art and kitch, shit and diamonds. It turns everything into pink slime so it can be tube-fed to armies of semi-passive consumers imprisoned by convenience and cheap monthly subscriptions.

 

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imagine a utopia where spotify payouts were proportionate to the listener's actual listening habits. the monthly £9.99 get split across the music the user actually listens to, rather than into the clown's pocket and spread a few fractions of pence in disproportionate flat rates across the board.

even if spotify were to hoover up a 60/40 split or something, that 40% shared equally over a user's monthly listening would be leagues above what we have now, and it would probably make spamming/farming on spotify really fuckin unviable too (as if thats a priority for Ek tho, the more the merrier)

lol wot a mess

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Just write more music, idiot"
*honk honk*

rQGtLbm6WhwoRXdmeJimJhIJZG3vH9cFYCYXTvdezmHyX25N17aTyAuFVxXp5ZxWLXctvK0l_HtJK62Ii8CpRhYhnEcaHnwMsDr32BxAP_-nzIHHd2CqkY2GWbTNp_yu1rcGO0Wm

 

 

Edited by mause
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I have considered writing a wee bot for some light to moderate spotify playfarming on my own tracks and hosting it in a free tier aws ec2.

You know, so I can earn a few extra pence per decade.

Does watmm have any other sneaky cunts that have already done any thing like this? It would probably be a more useful outlet for my computer skillz than what I do at the moment, which is write custom code for our smartthings which doesn't work and sends my wife mental when the lights randomly come on bright green, or just not at all.

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How do we wage war against this spreading sickness, the mechanizing process, this subsumption of everything under the banner of "content creation"? Well, first we must understand the nature of the term "content". A con-tent: this of course suggests something which is antagonistic towards, which acts as the opposite of a tent. And what exactly is a tent? That's right, it is a freestanding structure based around the displacement of media (often some sort of fabric) in order to create a sort of tension which shelters.  The tent provides shelter, it provides a sense of distinction, a locale, a particularity. Content, on the other hand, acts as a relaxing of tension. It does not displace or significantly challenge the medium which it employs, but rather it creates a kind of slackening. It is the generification of aesthetic forms.

Consider the phrase "pitching a tent", and its particular meaning. We could fairly assume that to "pitch a content" would entail a polar opposite meaning. And indeed, I can say for fact that (having listened to more than one person tell me their idea for becoming a content creator), that receiving a content pitch feels like the opposite of getting a boner. Pitching a tent suggests that one has developed (at least temporarily) a monomaniacal fixation on some particular aspect of Being, a silencing of the usual mental chatter as some particular object of fetishistic fixation takes hold of one's entire soul. To experience the pitching of content, alternatively, suggests a displacement from any sort of point of focus, and entry into a vague dopaminurgic purgatorial zone in which there is no sense of direction or purpose, and yet one is filled with a vague tension, the sense that "something isn't right"

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1 hour ago, azatoth said:

Doesn't playfarming breach the TOS and it will get you tossed from Spotify if caught?

probably. it's a risk. i mean.. giving up that $10 a month in income would be devastating. 

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My bot would (theoretically cos I haven't made it yet) appear like there were 5 or 10 people who like my trax so much they have them on 18hrs a day every day. Is that inconceivable? Yes, because my music is shit, but what if it wasnt?

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