✖️ Peak attention economy, the economics of dance music, and some cool music hacks 👩💻
This week’s edition is all about the economics of attention and money. We’re in a matured music and entertainment streaming landscape and are now starting to see more clearly what such a thing looks like.
It’s an exciting time, with many new opportunities emerging due to difficulties becoming more obvious and easier to bring to light.
Enjoy and see you next week!
In this article Mark Mulligan describes what he and his team at MIDiA refer to as ‘peak attention’. Asking the very interesting question: now that media entertainment has taken over all of our time, what will strategies for success look like?
Iterating on the piece I wrote last week about services all trying to boost the number of listening hours per user, one could imagine a scenario where 'attention’ as a currency suddenly inflates and becomes scarcer in a landscape of high quality content oversaturation. What does that do to companies success metrics? Investment? How will it force them to update their business models?
“This isn’t a gold rush, it’s an arms race. We don’t know if there is any pot of gold,” warns an executive at a big media group. “Once the music stops, there will be carnage. It might take three to five years, but there has to come a point when we come to our senses.”
Penny Fractions’ David Turner runs a thought experiment on Spotify’s mission to enable a million artists to live off their work. Considering what would that look like, artists having access to data, but also healthcare.
Brand partnerships and performance royalties come under the microscope in part two of Angus Finlayson’s exploration of artists’ income streams. Interviews Mat Dryhurst (with a great observation on how artists can leverage platform economy), BMAT’s Liz Muirhead, Gunnar Haslam, Cherie Hu, Telefon Tel Aviv, and Patrice Bäumel.
Terry Matthew: “Paradoxically, though economists are now skeptical of the Theory of the Long Tail, people – including artists and management – still base their careers on it. It’s one of the guiding, unquestioned principles of doing business in the digital world. Axioms such as “getting on all platforms” and “going where the people are listening” are music industry fortune cookies, urging everyone to fall into place in an economic system that works for almost no one.”
Over the weekend an online game’s economy spun out of control and created an absurd situation.
“The root of the current crisis, as is so often the case when weird metagames emerge from massive multiplayer systems, is Planet Zoo’s simulated economy: the animal market, which lets anyone online buy and sell beasts from each other. It was working just fine when I reviewed the game. But any attempt to simulate an economy risks also simulating economics, which is what we call it when millions of individual, rational decisions act together to create utter madness on a grand scale. Now, unfortunately, economics has happened to Planet Zoo.”
Worth a look, even if you’re not based in Berlin. Kyle Pennel made this tool that puts gigs in the city on a map. You can change the date to see what’s going on where on those dates. All artists are linked with Soundcloud profiles, so you can browse around an area of the city and hear if there’s anything to your liking. He got the gig data by scraping concert listings on venues’ websites, as well as Facebook events.
Great way to get people to go see more music, instead of e.g. going to a movie, dinner, or just staying at home and watching Netflix. Hope the project gets backing from local music organisations.
This tool lets you search for Spotify playlists, and then lets you one-click-query those tracks in digital music stores and DJ pools. Nice for DJs who use Spotify for digging.
Could be improved a lot by automating the queries, so it would grey out tracks that don’t have a match in the store.
High on my wishlist is a tool that would let me one-click-purchase entire Spotify playlists.
One of the reasons why I don’t purchase more music, is because it’s tedious and time intensive to search each track on Beatport, add them to carts, etc.
Regular insights about the future of music, media & tech. Written & composed by @basgras.
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