All the geeks know about it, but not many civilians; in the Blues room this evening, we ended up talking about Web-server stuff and NodeJS. The idea is powerful; one symptom of which is, I keep thinking about ways to make it better.
[Update: It’s now US-only. Can’t play any more.]

Here some ideas that present themselves:

I could spend time describing what it is and so on, but the page title says it all: Play Music Together. Go check it out.

  1. The graphics are a good start, but there’s plenty of room for improvement. In the avatars, in the groove animation, in the feedback meter, in everything.

  2. The tools for managing your DJ queue are primitive. I need keywords and beats-per-minute and so on.

  3. The DJ spots need to be more shareable in popular rooms. Maybe every so often, the person with the lowest song ratings gets booted off the stage. Or there’s a queue to get on stage. Or something.

  4. The database needs cleanup. Which is to say, a way to report when a song isn’t what the label on the outside says. There are a lot of those.

  5. Rooms need a heat indicator, where heat is a function of how many songs are getting upvoted (or gonged), how much chatter is going on, and so on.

  6. I’d like to see “Trending Songs”, “Trending DJs”, “Trending Artists”, and “Trending Rooms”. And there are probably lots more trends lurking in there.

  7. I want a permanent log downloaded of what it was I listened to, so I can remember the good stuff.

  8. Wouldn’t private side-channel chat be useful? It sure is in IRC, and this is kinda like IRC, only with beautiful music.

But hey, I hung out with some cool people and heard some outstanding blues and learned that the Neville Brothers have a wonderful cover of Ain’t No Sunshine and that there’s a woman named Jolie Holland who can really bring it.

Last night, I tried organizing a Miles Davis party, but it fell flat because licensing restrictions keep you from playing one artist more than a few times per hour. But I think the party notion has legs, if you pick a genre. Let’s see... “Guitar noise”. “Love songs”. “Deep funk”. “Modern minimalist classical”. “Canadiana”.

And here’s my first ProTip. Want to run your score up? Find a smallish room focused on a genre you know something about, upload some surprises from your collection, and stay with it a few hours.

Anyhow do drop by and have a look. Do it soon; because, since turntable.fm is simple and fun and convenient and lets people enjoy music in a way they want to, it’ll doubtless be sued into oblivion by the music business.



Contributions

Comment feed for ongoing:Comments feed

From: Gavin B. (Jun 22 2011, at 23:51)

And node.JS how did you conclude?

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From: Ted Han (Jun 22 2011, at 23:59)

Even if you don't know much about the genre it's a rewarding experience.

I grabbed a pair of albums based off what one of the guys in the blues room was playing (thanks Michael Schaefer!). (The albums are http://www.emusic.com/album/The-Mighty-Blue-Kings-Meet-Me-In-Uptown-MP3-Download/11349459.html and http://www.emusic.com/album/Nick-Curran-The-Nightlifes-Player-MP3-Download/10986383.html )

Additionally the search interface for tracks you didn't upload could use some improvement. As someone who knows very few blues artists by name, i basically had to rely on my meager personal collection.

I've also got a pretty eclectic taste in music (yes i know everyone says that), and i'd like to see something more experimental where people try to throw together mixes of disparate things, rather than just "blues" or "jazz". That's part of the fun of listening to good djs, and i'm curious whether it's possible to do collaboratively.

That's not to say that hanging out in the blues channel wasn't a blast :)

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From: hawkse (Jun 23 2011, at 01:10)

Seems like another great, novel approach to music sharing. Awaiting their invitation so I can try it out (not on FB).

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From: Jens Geiregat (Jun 23 2011, at 02:49)

Too bad the Blues room(s) are dead now. I would love to have attended.

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From: JulesLt (Jun 23 2011, at 03:27)

If licensing restrictions are in place to prevent same artist plays, then it sounds like they might be avoiding court cases (i.e. they'd done their homework, rather than launching some great new business idea that would fly - if only they could get the content for nothing).

Mixcloud seem to be doing OK, and they have a licensed model.

There's been a lot of behind the scenes discussion going on, but basically the music industry does recognise the value of these kind of sites for driving music discovery / advertising - as opposed to something like YouTube or Spotify where it is user driven on-demand listening.

It's just balancing that against the existing radio licence model - which is based around stations doing mass broadcasting, and charging relatively high rates for advertising.

I'm presuming that behind the scenes there's something about listener numbers. There's no way they want to undermine the rates they get from a popular commercial radio station streaming on-line. But with radio licences you had the distinction for college and community radio.

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From: Mark Groen (Jun 23 2011, at 04:48)

Can't get in unless I use a proprietary closed source Facebook log in and the captcha isn't working. Oh well, this one died on the vine for me but a nice idea though.

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From: Stephen Borman (Jun 23 2011, at 08:15)

Turntable.fm is innovating within the confines of the DMCA.

The streaming is a DMCA compliant internet radio site. Some of the rules are:

- May not see ahead in a playlist past the currently playing song

- May only play or pause the list

- 3 songs per artist per hour, maximum

- 4 songs from a single album in three consecutive hours, maximum

- listeners may skip ahead only 6 times per hour

The DMCA takedown link is displayed at the bottom of each page to provide Turntable safe harbor for uploaded content.

I don't know how they handle the royalty regulations for internet radio.

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From: Rob (Jun 26 2011, at 02:28)

That site is deeply locked down and broken in many ways.

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From: Gord Wait (Jun 26 2011, at 10:19)

Not available in Canada.. :(

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From: Joe (Jun 26 2011, at 15:28)

I really dislike invite-only sites that require that you know someone before they'll let you in. I guess it's supposed to build buzz by trying to make it seem exclusive, but it just drives me away -- too much like high school.

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June 22, 2011
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