REWIND: Bandcamp Charges For Free Downloads, Billboard Targets Unsigned Artists, Amazon Shuts Down AmieStreet, Songza Gets A Facelift, & More
(UPDATED2) This week in the music and record industries tons of news broke. Major announcements relate to Bandcamp, Billboard, iTunes, Ping, and Eminem. As well, The Hypebot Hit Song Contest wound down and we are more than happy with the results it garnered. Take a look through this week’s recap of the news and make sure that you didn’t miss any events or commentary.
We expect that with Labor Day out of the way and us entering the holiday gauntlet that the news and PR engine will start churning in full force.
Rewind With The Music Industry's Week In Review:
- Bandcamp announced that users will now have to pay for free downloads. They determined that those who were only using the site to shell out free downloads were burdening those who used the site as an ecommerce platform. Those who sell through the site will get 1,000 free downloads for every $500 USD that they have in sales.
- Billboard magazine is asking unsigned artists to pay $100 to join their “Dreamseekers” network; it’s a subscription service designed to help them get discovered. Hypebot took the stance that this likely wasn’t the best idea that they ever came up with.
- It’s been estimated that iTunes is nearing an overhead of $1 billion a year. Readers were quick to refute the claims made by the app developer and industry analysis site Asymco. Also, app downloads will surpass music on iTunes. While readers were quick to point out that users download free things and quickly delete them--unlike the way they consume music--it’s still worth nothing that time spent away from listening to music is still attention that has gone elsewhere.
- On a related note, Apple has reported that artists hoping to get on their social network Ping should contact their music distributors or labels. Otherwise, your chances of getting on the network are pretty up-in-the-air. In a short, yet sarcastic feature, Hypebot editor Kyle Bylin argued that since Ping has acquired over a million users in two days, those who joined the site might find about a number of things about their friends that they didn’t want to or need to know. Their awful taste in music is at the top of the list, as is their secret passions for Top 40 pop.
- Bylin also had a chance to talk with Jared Moya of ZeroPaid.com. In the two part interview, Jared and Kyle exchange about the notion of embracing chaos when adopting new digital technologies, how music revolutionaries impact the future of music culture, and why new ways of working and living will drive post-crash prosperity in the music industry.
- The Hypebot Hit Song Contest has concluded and the winners have been announced. Mattodowd, the grand-prize winner, still needs to contact Kyle and claim his prize. Contact: kyle.bylinATgmail.com
- Amazon.com, an early investor in AmieStreet, has decided to buy the site and shut it down.
The AmieStreet team is now focusing their efforts on Songza. In accordance with this announcement, a new version of Songza.com was launched and it’s worth checking out. Hypebot reasoned that this move reveals insight into Amazon’s vision of where music is going—from an ownership to a streaming model.
- Hypebot correspondent Hilke Ros (@hilkeros) had the opportunity to attend Music Hack Day in London this weekend (see his overview here) and sit down with David Haynes of SoundCloud and Paul Lamere of Echonest.
- Rapper Eminem has won round-one in his royalty battle with UMG. Songs downloaded from iTunes are not purchased but instead licenses by the buyer, resulting in a higher rate of royalty payments for the artist.
- In his second piece in the series How To Launch A Startup, Artistdata founder Brenden Milligan outlines one of the key metrics that is important to think about when building a startup: market size.