eMusic FAIL

, posted: 7-Jun-2009 16:33

It's one thing that the outrageous cuts in available downloads, the massive increases in prices, the insult of finding out the reason behind these is that eMusic has secured Sony's "back catalogue" - which you can buy from any bargain bin, from any record store on the planet if you felt they were worth the plastic they were printed on...




that eMusic will stop taking new customers from New Zealand because Sony can't be arsed negotiating rights here.  Existing customers like me will be tolerated under a "grandfathering" agreement.  Well they won't have to worry about that - my love affair with eMusic is over.

It's going to be interesting to see whether the die hard fans voting with their cash and spending it elsewhere is going to be enough to signal that this was a disastrous move for them.
Sony clearly isn't moving enough stock from their back-catalogue on iTunes, Amazon and any number of other online stores, so they're trying out the 'fenced in' environment of eMusic.  Have they done their homework on that market?

If they have, it indicates that eMusic's model isn't working currently because people like me, who use their quota of downloads every month, are costing them too much.

If they haven't done their homework, then they're not going to have any people to sell to because these people don't want to buy Sony's back catalogue.  If it's not selling to the iTunes crowd then why on earth would it sell to the indie mob at eMusic?

Perhaps they're divorcing me.  Their CEO is living in Sony dream-land about how nice it will be to be able to buy Bruce Springsteen from their shop.  The 1100 comments (you can't seem to add anymore) may hopefully wake him from his groggy, post-coital slumber.  He certainly got screwed.

So here ends the love affair.

The simple pleasure of discovering a great new band.  The happy hours spent each month choosing how to spend my valuable downloads.  Building up an enormous "Save for Later" list to wander through from time to time.

#eMusicFAIL indeed.  (Just do a search on that or #emusic on twitter).  The gems on eMusic are largely unavailable on the big commercial services.  Let's hope something fills that void, and soon.

More Info:

Update:  a day or so later when I've come down off my high horse and ivory tower of indignation, I concede that eMusic may have to alter its model.  The breakdown of prices of similar websites still has them as one of the cheapest sources around.  It may not have been financially viable for them to continue with other services cutting prices, and labels demanding more returns.

However it would be nice of them to say as much to long term subscribers who have been totally shafted by this shake up.  2c.


Other related posts:
Music for the masses - except in NZ
Radiohead yesterday... free music?
Radiohead tomorrow?

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Comment by paradoxsm, on 7-Jun-2009 19:40

The "sony" tracks are now measley 128kbps downloads, inconsistent album art, will download the 20 or so more free tracks and deep scan them for the codec used.

pooor poor showing.. any suggestions where to get decent indie stuff now?

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John Curtis
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