30Sep09

Social Media has changed the way many industries function on a daily basis.  The industry and business of music is an example.   Record labels, producers, music stores, performance rights organizations, lawyers, managers, broadcasters, booking agents, venues for live music performances, journalists, educators, and of course the artists are all integral parts of the industry and are all affected by social media on a daily basis.  Through this blog I hope to shed light on the changes taking place today, and the implications they will have for the future of music.

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So another Thursday has rolled around and again here I am.

While living in France last year I was deprived of Pandora Radio.  At first I was lost. But then I discovered Deezer. Although it is not exactly the same thing (no station system) it was a great way to listen to music for free.

But nothing really beats Pandora and in the two weeks I have been home I have enjoyed my personalized radio stations once again. Even a few new ones including Florence + The Machine (totally recommend!).

I do have a thought though: can I merge two different accounts? There has to be a way. Let me know if you’re more Pandora-literate than I 🙂


I have a confession to make: I jam out hard-core to music in the car. I am not a shower singer but turn the music on in a car and I’m gonna belt it out!  This past year I did a lot of driving in France as an Au Pair.  Just ask the kids and they will agree that I’ll sing just about anything.  My most recent car jam session favorite is Rihanna’s “We Found a Love.”  The beat gets me going and I think she is actually singing nicely which is not always the case with Rihanna.

But then I watched the video (clip in French) and I am a bit disappointed. Not so much by her outfit, whichshocked the man who owned the fields in Scotland where she filmed it a month ago, but more I was shocked by her message.  What was she trying to get across in a video portraying a self-destructive relationship?  We are all aware of her history with Chris Brown and the tragic ending but it seems to me Rihanna has not moved on.  She has chosen to twist the abusive relationship saying it’s ok to be in a partnership where you’re not being positively lifted up but instead dragging each other down to drugs, S&M, physical violence, verbal abuse, etc.  She got hurt so now she will do the hurting too.

“We found a love in a hopeless place”  might mean that life was hopeless and these two people found each other. But the problem in the clip is that then they stayed together in a hopeless place.  In the beginning of the video she even states that she wishes for the bad stuff in the relationship so that she can have the good.

Why not make songs telling woman to be strong and find healthy love, positive relationships?  Just last night I was reading my Marie Claire October issue (being back in The States means my subscription is once again useful) where Reese Witherspoon talks about her work with Avon.  One of the aims of Avon’s Foundation for Women is to combat domestic violence.  Reese’s article focused on her recent trip to Russia and Poland where domestic violence is an unspoken issue.  In Russia there are no laws against the crime and in Poland 12 percent of women have experienced domestic violence.  So why doesn’t Rihanna, after being involved herself in a case of domestic violence, do as Reese and Avon and try to change the negative?  Instead she is making racy videos that say being strong as a woman means taking the hits (literal and figurative?) and hitting back.


Hiatus

16Oct10

So I am currently living in France. Took a position as an Au Pair for a year. It’s been a month and so far so good 🙂

Check out my new blog: becoming french

Due to the amount of internet, and amount of time I want to be taking behind a computer screen while I am in France (not much if you know what I mean) I am going to focus on that blog for now. I’ll be back soon/might update occasionally–when music news hits my French ears, but I can’t promise every month.

Thanks and please check out my new page!!!!


For the past week I have been without a computer.  I am moving to France for a year and wanted to get it cleaned out and updated before traveling to another country.  So today when I got it back, I was playing around with the features of Mac’s Snow Leopard operating system (I know, I know, I should have had this installed like a year ago) and when I opened my ever opened iTunes I was introduced to a new form of social media: Ping!

Gaga_Ping

I am not sure I have totally jumped on the band wagon with this one, but I have made an account and am attempting to figure it out.  For those who haven’t updated their own iTunes to discover this new attraction, Ping allows you to connect with other iTunes users.  You create a profile and then “followers” can see what you purchased, what genres you enjoy, which artists you follow–this being the key to music industry’s use of social media: being able to talk directly with artists you love.

My first artist follow was Ingrid Michaelson.  iTunes actually suggested it to me (providing suggestions like this is a common feature on social networking sites. For example Facebook now asks you to reconnect with friends, or asks why you aren’t friends with a certain person based on the fact that 12 of your friends are connected with that person, yata yata yata).  Even Ingrid is trying to get used to this program as she says, “i keep trying to post things but then nothing happens! testing testing…”

So it will be a learning process for us all.  Wonder if it will be a hit?

Problem I have so far: I don’t really want people seeing what music I buy.  Solution: privacy settings allow me to screen followers before they see my information.

Have you tried Ping? Is it helpful? Does it allow you to find new music or artists?


I was doing some research on music and social media and came across this video.

So after getting a laugh out of the video I was interested in the creator’s qualifications as a social media guru.  Turns out Pete Codella knows what he is talking about!  As an accredited PR counselor, social media and marketing advisor he is a great reference for communication junkies like myself.  I have added his site to my favorites and am excited to learn more about PR and social media; especially now as I search for a job where I can use my media communication skills.


Yesterday I received an e-mail.  It read:

Dear beth f.,

The Lala service will be shut down on May 31st.

In appreciation of your support over the last five years, you will receive a credit in the amount of your Lala web song purchases for use on Apple’s iTunes Store. If you purchased and downloaded mp3 songs from Lala, those songs will continue to play as part of your local music library.

Remaining wallet balances and unredeemed gift cards will be converted to iTunes Store credit (or can be refunded upon request). Gift cards can be redeemed on Lala until May 31st.

Thank you,

Lala

Being an avid user of Lala, this news upset me.  Being a journalist, I wanted to investigate the reason for this change.

In December Lala was purchased by Apple and according to what I have read, nothing has been changed until now.  The biggest question out there is what does Apple have up its sleeve this time?

Apple is a very secretive company and they usually announce their newest technologies during the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference scheduled for June this year.  This event is a huge deal (considering it costs nearly $1600 to attend!) and seems to be a perfect stage for announcing a new music streaming service (similar to Lala).  Some speculate that the new service will allow iTunes to be used without software.  This would make access to iTunes available through devices such as iPhones and iPods.  Sounds reasonable considering The selling point for Apple is instead the way that Lala stored music allowing for a personal music library that could be played on any browser.

Personally I enjoyed a free listen and a small 10 cent fee to “rent” it.  But this process can not be used by iTunes because of the non-transferable license solely between the music labels and Lala.

I will be waiting patiently for June, to see what Apple’s true plans are.


Hello and Happy Easter to everyone.  I just got back home from a relaxing weekend on the James River.  My friend Maggie and her family have just moved into a gorgeous home there and I celebrated the holiday with them.  

During one of our many delicious meals (Maggie’s mom is a great cook) I once again was reminded of social media’s influence in our world.  Maggie’s family friend works at the Children’s Museum of Richmond. When I brought up my interest in new media she said that her experience with such sites was limited (jokingly attributing that to her age).  She did however notice the importance and the usefulness of having people who do understand new technology.

According to her, many moms had been tweeting about having headaches while on the museum floor and therefore the gift shop decided to sell Advil.  The museum used Twitter to listen to its clients wants…pretty neat.  The museum also uses a Facebook page.  These tools are used by parents I’m sure, but it would be interesting to see if there are ways to reach children through new media.  Are children even a target audience for social media?  What is the age bracket do you think? And is it getting larger as we become more technological in our day-to-day lives?