For your benefit and mine, I keep track of just about every stat this industry produces (and then some) within MTT Stats (I am always a bit behind. Feel free to contribute).
One of the more interesting items I came across lately was the graph below (produced by Bridge Ratings).
From Bridge Ratings: “While a solid 40% of Pandora’s consumers rate the service “Excellent”, a large component of Pandora’s users find the music flow or unfamiliar music quotient to be less comfortable compared to their experience listening to terrestrial radio streams.”
In a nutshell (no pun intended), this research reminds us that even if someone could find (for consumers) all the best (not rubbish) new independent music, those exposing new music to consumers must utilize established major label content to create a satisfactory listening experience (for most people).
There are two ways (that I know of) around this:
- Music services embrace tools like Playdar (http://www.playdar.org/) which will (someday hopefully) enable consumers to easily mix the music they (and friends) already own into streams that contain a reasonable dose of unknown music.
- Have the Federal government declare any song that has already obtained mass-market acceptance as part of a public utility; all rates and fees are regulated and shortened to easily enable competing songs to enter the marketplace.
I am always one for less government instead of more, but those that control the established songs seem to have an unfair competitive advantage over everyone else?
You wouldn’t hear me complaining if unknowns / independents were given free access to a limited amount of streams (of established music) per year (and the streams could be pooled); this doesn’t seem much different than resolving radio payola complaints. (No, I don’t think this is similar to the music-like-water thing.)
Hey U2, how about offering every independent 500 free on-demand streams per year instead of crying for more regulation. Think of it as charity…