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One Musician's Demand From Pandora: Mandatory Analytics 227

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the stick-to-being-a-musician dept.
jfruh writes "Most Slashdotters have been following the debate among the various players in the music industry about how much money artists (and their labels) get from traditional music outlets like radio and newer services like Pandora or Spotify. But Zoë Keating, a professional cellist who has a professional interest in the outcome of this argument, thinks there's one thing missing from all the proposals: more data on who her audience is. Even digital services can't tell her how many people heard her songs or where they're most popular. 'How can I grow my business on this information?' she asks. 'How do I reach them? Do they know I'm performing nearby next month? How can I tell them I have a new album coming out?'" She proposes mandatory reporting of information on listeners as part of royalties.
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One Musician's Demand From Pandora: Mandatory Analytics

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  • I think not (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SSpade (549608) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @01:11AM (#42036987) Homepage

    Geographic distribution and some basic demographics is one thing, and quite a reasonable one, but combine "How do I reach them? How can I tell them I have a new album coming out?" and “I want my data and in 2012 I see absolutely no reason why I shouldn’t own it.” and it sounds like the worst sort of stalkery marketer who'll abuse the hell out of your personal information for a buck.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @01:21AM (#42037045)

    Buy ads like everyone else?

  • what privacy? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Isara (869637) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @01:36AM (#42037145)
    your listening data is already being collected. She may or may not be asking for listener email addresses, but if not, the statistics on your likes and dislikes and other listening patterns are part of the music genome project anyway. How would the artists' ability to view your listening patterns (without identifying you specifically) violate any right to privacy that isn't already given up as part of your agreement when creating an account to use the service?
  • Middle-man Fee ! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @01:39AM (#42037163) Journal

    With all the data already collected actually it's not that hard to generate the dataset that Zoà Keating or any musician required, via data-mining.

    The problem is on who's going to pay for the data-mining effort?

    I reckon that if the Musicians (or any other people) wants the dataset and are willing to pay for it, there will be people who will be more than happy to provide the service.

  • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @01:40AM (#42037173) Journal

    She sells a product, TO THE RADIOSTATION, who then sells it to us. I am quite sure that say, Hostess, would like to have the demographic data from each supermarket, but they can't have it because it is NOT their data.

    It is only the odd nature of content (infinitely replicatable unlike physical products) and bought laws that even has music being counted (number of times played). Physical product makers sell X amount to resellers and that is all the data they get. Why do you THINK they hold product promotions requiring you to send in your address? To get some data on were their products end up because the supermarkets are NOT just going to tell them for the fun of it. The product maker delivers his goods to the supermarket and his involvement ends there. He wants more, he pays for it. Through the nose.

    A supermarket has no obligation, legal or moral to even record, let alone report, how that pallet of cookies was distributed amongst its shops let alone its customers. The amount of entitlement in this Zoe the Freeloading cellist demand is staggering. You want to get in touch with your customers, engage them yourself. It is NOT a broadcasters job to do that for you. Setup a youtube channel or whatever and get people to give them your details, expecting a radiostation to do that for you is everything that is wrong with the content industry today.

    Content is a product nothing more, I buy it the same as toilet paper and frankly I be a lot more upset running out of toilet paper then out of commercial content.

    What next, MP3 players have to upload logs of the play history, so the bills can be send correctly? She wants to force the use of kinect with Pandora to count the number of listeners?

    She wants private consumer data from a commercial entity for free. If it wasn't the content industry this would be instantly discarded in the waste basket of bloody stupid ideas. Really, would you be okay with Hostess getting your address from the supermarket that they got from your credit card?

    NO! Hell, in Holland at least, the supermarket itself ain't even allowed to use its payment data to find out peoples addresses, they have the bank numbers but are not allowed to match them in anyway. That is why loyalty cards are not simply tied to your bank pas which would be far simpler then having a separate card and give far more reliable tracking data (you didn't think loyalty cards existed for any other reason did you).

    But this bitch wants that data. Fuck OFF.

  • by MidnightBrewer (97195) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @02:48AM (#42037507)

    You got something in exchange for your money, so arguably the data is half hers. Also, the data she's requesting still leaves you anonymous, but would allow her to be able to know what age ranges like her music and what parts of the world. This would allow her to be a more successful artist by focusing her marketing efforts to those people who might actually pay to see her in concert, which eventually benefits you as she continues to make the music you enjoy. Everybody wins. Radio doesn't offer that kind of information, and as a result it always goes for the safe money (or the payola, as the case may be) and plays the music guaranteed to appeal to the largest majority of listeners. If you're listening to Pandora then it's likely because terrestrial radio has let you down in terms of selection. Exactly what are you fighting against here? Allowing people to give you what you want?

  • by TheLink (130905) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @03:02AM (#42037575) Journal
    Bullshit. Why should getting something in exchange for the money automatically mean the data is half hers?

    She's got the data on whatever she has sold directly.

    If she doesn't want to incur the costs of selling directly then why should she automatically get the benefits of selling directly to the customers?

    The supermarket and grocery store knows who is buying their stuff and where. If the farmer wants to know where each tomato is going, the farmer is going to have to pay for it. Or set up his/her own store.
  • by bistromath007 (1253428) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @03:06AM (#42037597)
    This post, and the entire thread it's spawned, seems like a perfect example of what is fundamentally wrong with the idea of ownership of information. Something as very basic as "who wants this stuff" is information that would help every business and consumer in the entire chain if it were released publicly, but that doesn't happen, because every single business and consumer in the chain wrongly, stupidly, and greedily claims that it is theirs and nobody can use it if they don't get a cut. Nearly everyone involved in this industry works as hard as they can to screw themselves over, all because they want to be paid for something that literally everybody has a reasonable claim to.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @04:16AM (#42037951)

    You got something in exchange for your money, so arguably the data is half hers.

    She got money, I got music. There was no agreement to get my data. 0% is hers.

    Also, the data she's requesting still leaves you anonymous, but would allow her to be able to know what age ranges like her music

    Just age? Or my full birthday? How about my IP address? Or my real address? Or my credit card number? Does she get to say which information and where the line is drawn? Which "HALF" of MY data does she get exactly?

    Exactly what are you fighting against here? Allowing people to give you what you want?

    That just because I trade my money for something doesn't mean they can get my personal information "just because it's the internet".

  • by bistromath007 (1253428) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:16AM (#42038261)
    You need to complete this thought, guy. An independent artist with a quite limited travel budget is trying to figure out where to perform next. If she has data on where there are large numbers of her fans, she can have more successful shows, allowing her to put on more shows and continue creating, thus benefiting her fanbase. Successful artistry is not a parasitic relationship unless you're some kind of objectivist robot.
  • by icebike (68054) * on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @06:19AM (#42038509)

    That is not the biggest problem I see here.

    The biggest problem is that she still doesn't understand the first sale doctrine. I bought a recording, not a relationship.

    If I want to attend a concert i am perfectly capable of seeking that Information or joining a fan club. Any information she get from me should be at my decision.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @06:26AM (#42038545)

    That is not the biggest problem I see here.

    The biggest problem is that she still doesn't understand the first sale doctrine. I bought a recording, not a relationship.

    If I want to attend a concert i am perfectly capable of seeking that Information or joining a fan club. Any information she get from me should be at my decision.

    She's talking about Pandora, which is a streaming service. You aren't purchasing anything, you didn't buy anything, so first sale doesn't apply.

  • by Mitsoid (837831) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @09:01AM (#42039383)

    I get a feeling her problem is along the lines of:

    1) You paid money (or paid with eyes/ears on an advertisement) to listen to her song
    2) She doesn't know you did so...

    She's not getting "Money for you listening".. or at least, she has no way to know it.. Pandora doesn't tell her how many times her music was listened to... Being in a business.. it IS helpful to know exactly how many transactions you made to get your $500... or .. how many of what song was sold..

    I agree with you.. She doesn't need my name, or birthday, or my financial information.... But if she wants to know I listened to Her Songs X, Y, and Z... and that I bought Her Song A.. She should, in my opinion, be able to get some kind of breakdown of that information (Here is $250, your songs were listened to by 20,000 people.. 240 bought the following songs:)

    This data requires no data mining.. It's data Pandora already has and uses to pay her royalty... and the only cost is from writing the artist a semi-detailed receipt to go with her royalty check.. currently Pandora says "Here's $300, no.. you can't know how many times each song was listened to.. no.. you can't know how many songs people bought"

    Great for us.. Great for Pandora... makes learning what we (the audience) like to listen to and buy impossible without getting the tainted groups of fanatics who seek the artist out on their own..

  • by Jumperalex (185007) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @09:22AM (#42039627)

    Specifically you are correct with regards to "first sale". Generally you are not with regards to the "relationship". That is to say, I paid the rights to have music streamed to me in consideration for monies paid. What I did not pay for is a relationship. What's more, if that data IS provided then I expect some consideration in return. Pandora should not have to provide it free of charge, so they should get a discount on royalties paid, and in return I should not have to pay as much for the service be it fewer ads or lower fees.

    I get her point. She is an artist trying to make a living. As an artist (her not me) I believe she genuinely wants to know who her fans are so she can engage with them more and expand her fan base. Artists want to be seen/heard/etc. That is a very personal thing for an artist. As a person trying to make a living out of it, I also understand her desire to use that very same data to help her market herself.

    What she doesn't get is that it isn't her "right" to know who I am without my explicite agreement. She doesn't have to sell to me, and I don't have to buy from her. We BOTH have the right to demand terms bilaterally.

I judge a religion as being good or bad based on whether its adherents become better people as a result of practicing it. - Joe Mullally, computer salesman

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