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Thread: General Thoughts on Streaming Services

  1. #1

    General Thoughts on Streaming Services

    When it comes to music, I'm a Spotify user. I have an paid account for my family which allows my wife and I to have out own profiles. I've found that for nostalgia, it has most if not all the classic Rock, Pop and Jazz I would ever remotely be able to listen to. It's also got a huge number of podcasts which I also enjoy. I've also found that most of the obscure new music (Prog mostly) that I want to hear is often available there. All in all, a good experience with Spotify for general listening. I am not addressing sound quality of the music which for my "Hey, Google, play..." listening isn't going to matter.

    For most of the obscure music I want (and this runs along a wide spectrum of genres), my Bandcamp account performs well for that. Bandcamp is also where I do most of my purchasing. I can spend days exploring new things I've never heard whether it's Rock, NuJazz, Electronic/Ambient, Hip Hop (mostly the heavily political kind) or even stock music.

    As an aside and since I work in radio production, most of my stock music listening pleasure is through the service my company pays for which honestly provides access to more than a million tracks across various companies. I sit there at work during my downtime and listen to this stuff saving links to tracks I know I'll need for one sort of commercial/promo or another.

    The TV streaming has been something I've struggled with because I frankly could never figure out how to afford these services. It seems that every content company will soon have their own. I've decided on subscribing to them based on need. For example, if I want to watch a new Star Trek show, I'll subscribe to CBS for a month, binge-watch it, and then cancel the subscription. Next month another one, then another the following month. This keeps the budget steady and predictable month to month and lets me see what I need to see.
    No matter what anyone says, you are the decider of how you will listen to music.

  2. #2
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    When you stream entertainment you’re streaming Communism!

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    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    My problem with streaming music is it's going to be lossy compressed, no way around that. When I'm on the train and/or bus to and from work, I prefer listening to Hi-Res music on my old Fiio X1 player. Not to mention, the data usage on my phone by streaming music would be horrendously expensive.

    As far as streaming video: The way things are going, we'll all soon need to subscribe to a dozen and a half, or two dozen services, just to watch 2, 3, or 4 exclusive shows per service. That will end up costing more than cable, even as outrageously expensive as cable is today. And I'll still need cable for the broadband internet, to be able to stream video.
    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"--Dalai Lama

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    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    Looks like they're stealing your money no matter what.

    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

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    Outraged bystander markwoll's Avatar
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    I tried Pandora when it was new-ish. Even paid for it for a couple of years.
    It lead me to a bunch of new music that I would not have found otherwise. I ended up buying much of it.
    I dropped it a while back for two reasons.
    One, their artist compensation model did not sit right with me. My modest subscription cost was far less than a drop in a huge bucket, and artists were not getting any of it.
    The other, and more important to me reason, is that I have a pretty large collection of music that I have purchased over the years.
    I was not listening to that collection as much as I thought my 'investment' warranted.
    We have an in house streaming system, and I carry a ton of music around with me everywhere ( in good quality format ).
    I would rather buy a cd or download from the artist or label and pay them for their work.

    In the years since then, all of the noise about Spotify, Tidal, Amazon, etc have just reinforced my opinions about how artists should be paid for their work.
    Those companies have just inserted themselves as middlemen in the music ecosystem which was already sucking as much money as possible from the creators of the music.
    Plus I am not interested in being data mined by even more entities.

    A simplistic view, perhaps. But it works for me.
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."
    -- Aristotle
    Nostalgia, you know, ain't what it used to be. Furthermore, they tells me, it never was.
    “A Man Who Does Not Read Has No Appreciable Advantage Over the Man Who Cannot Read” - Unknown

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by mnprogger View Post
    What about a download off of Bandcamp? That's my preferred method of buying since I don't want the object/clutter.
    No matter what anyone says, you are the decider of how you will listen to music.

  8. #8
    Member Steve F.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Splicer View Post
    What about a download off of Bandcamp? That's my preferred method of buying since I don't want the object/clutter.
    The largest profits for THE ARTIST come from BandCamp.
    Steve F.

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    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnprogger View Post
    My problem with this is it needlessly exaggerates in order to get the point across. Who the hell is paying $20-25 for an average album purchase?

    The best apples to apples (no pun intended) comparison imo for the majority of future listeners (not Baby Boomers who cling to their physical mediums) imo is to compare a typical iTunes download at 99 cents to the number of streams needed to make a comparable amount for the content creators. According to recent data, Napster pays the most out at 1.1 cents, so 90 plays is the equivalent of 1 download. The big ones of Google, Amazon, Spotify, and Apple are paying between 1/3-1/2 a penny, requiring 200-300 plays vs 1 download.

    The question becomes, how does one value a stream relative to a download? Would it be by “expected number of listens” for someone who downloads a track? And how do you compare that to someone who would never pay to download the track under any circumstances? Should it be a sliding scale based on popularity (or obscurity) of the artist? I think if one can determine a fair number, that can be used as a baseline for artist advocates in the industry to fight for.

    This won’t really solve the greater issue in this newer model which is “how do I get people to find me and stream my music”?
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  10. #10
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    The question becomes, how does one value a stream relative to a download? Would it be by “expected number of listens” for someone who downloads a track?
    This is a good question. When you stream a movie you often have the choice of either buying or renting it. Streaming music is more like renting the music.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    My problem with this is it needlessly exaggerates in order to get the point across. Who the hell is paying $20-25 for an average album purchase?

    The best apples to apples (no pun intended) comparison imo for the majority of future listeners (not Baby Boomers who cling to their physical mediums) imo is to compare a typical iTunes download at 99 cents to the number of streams needed to make a comparable amount for the content creators. According to recent data, Napster pays the most out at 1.1 cents, so 90 plays is the equivalent of 1 download. The big ones of Google, Amazon, Spotify, and Apple are paying between 1/3-1/2 a penny, requiring 200-300 plays vs 1 download.

    The question becomes, how does one value a stream relative to a download? Would it be by “expected number of listens” for someone who downloads a track? And how do you compare that to someone who would never pay to download the track under any circumstances? Should it be a sliding scale based on popularity (or obscurity) of the artist? I think if one can determine a fair number, that can be used as a baseline for artist advocates in the industry to fight for.

    This won’t really solve the greater issue in this newer model which is “how do I get people to find me and stream my music”?
    I guess I'm the only dumb ass that spends at least that much on a new vinyl...
    Prog's Not Dead

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    Member Staun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    I guess I'm the only dumb ass that spends at least that much on a new vinyl...
    Can you say, dumbasses?
    The older I get, the better I was.

  13. #13
    Progga mogrooves's Avatar
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    I still listen to vinyl, so I don't think about streaming. But, here're Neil Young's "general thoughts on streaming:"

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/20/m...ing-music.html
    Hell, they ain't even old-timey ! - Homer Stokes

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    I guess I'm the only dumb ass that spends at least that much on a new vinyl...
    No, you're not. And 20-25 is little where I live.

  15. #15
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    I guess I'm the only dumb ass that spends at least that much on a new vinyl...
    I hope you’re being cute. The point is that one does not have to (and most don’t) spend $20-25 to legally obtain a copy of an album.
    WANTED: Sig-worthy quote.

  16. #16
    ALL ACCESS Gruno's Avatar
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    I am not a fan of ANY streaming music service. I have my iPod with well over a year's worth of straight listening available from beginning to end. If I don't own a copy of the music, then I don't care if I hear it. I also am not a fan of hitting 'random' on the iPod, so that may be a reason I don't want to hear random streaming. I rather be in full control of my playlist content and quality. The last few years I have been delving deeper into forgotten albums or lost classics in my collection.

    For movies, I have an Amazon Prime account, but I have streamed less than a dozen features and never used it for music. I have Prime mostly for my Amazon purchases. I subscribe to DirecTV and have since 2003.

    I'm one of those that is fine with carrying around an iPod and a compact WD Elements hard drive with my movies/media if I know I will be needing any media. I wouldn't say I am in the get off my lawn phase of life, but it might be get off my walkway.

  17. #17
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Heh. While it may be unpopular, as a result of several discussions here, I ended up getting a Spotify account and then buying premium. My three main listening devices at this point is my phone (120gb of music loaded), my home PC (access to everything I ripped), and my work computer. I use Spotify most at work.

    Spotify offers me the ability to listen to many new releases for a first listen. Some I buy, most I don’t. At this stage in my listening “journey”, I know after first listen if I’ll ever have the interest to hear again.

    The amount of material available on Spotify makes it a no brainer for a voracious music listener like myself. Soooooo many artists and labels have adopted it now, there’s an endless amount of choice. I have playlists that I have made with months worth of music I wouldn’t put on my phone. It’s also useful when you’re quickly looking up a song.

    I know, I’m evil. I would gladly pay more per month if it meant a better payout to content holders.
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  18. #18
    I listen to what I own, if I do not own it, I do not listen - except for politeness when someone is sharing something with me. It's personal with me and I have enough music that I don't need to listen to something I don't own. I am at that stage in life where I can afford to buy whatever music I want. I buy lots of stuff that I will probably never get to listen to more than once, but I like owning what I listen to. No need to test drive anything, other than a few seconds worth. Buy it. Of course, I don't do this with music I hear thru advertising and television and the like... Accidental listening is not something I enjoy, in fact I find it mostly irritating. Tonight someone was playing Taylor Swifts new song - or that's what they said it was. I just tuned it out. Not interested. That describes my feelings about most new music... Prog, and perhaps Classical, or Rock and Blues excepted.
    I got nothin'

    ...avoiding any implication that I have ever entertained a cognizant thought.

  19. #19
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    ^^^ So you never listened to the radio unless it was a song you own?
    WANTED: Sig-worthy quote.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve F. View Post
    The largest profits for THE ARTIST come from BandCamp.
    This is good to know. Although I do buy the occasional item from record companies when the mood strikes for more eclectic items.
    No matter what anyone says, you are the decider of how you will listen to music.

  21. #21
    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mogrooves View Post
    I still listen to vinyl, so I don't think about streaming.
    On the train and bus to and from work, I listen to vinyl records recorded in 24/96 Hi-Res.
    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"--Dalai Lama

  22. #22
    Member Staun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    I guess I'm the only dumb ass that spends at least that much on a new vinyl...
    Miamiscot, like you I've never stopped buying vinyl and yes, the prices are enough to make one scream. When cd's began to take over, vinyl was still on the shelf but the great thing was, you could get them for a song. Stores were all but giving them away just to clear space. I had great fun going everywhere I could that sold albums to take advantage.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  23. #23
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    I don't use streaming for any serious listening.

  24. #24
    Member Jerjo's Avatar
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    I stream some things off Amazon Prime - either new releases that I am previewing before purchase or music that oddly is not available on CD but is available to stream. I also use Bandcamp to check out recommended bands; if I buy I make sure to get both FLAC for my computer and MP3 for the phone.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  25. #25
    Member Jerjo's Avatar
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    Here's a good example. Marillion's Early Stages box is OOP but you can either buy as a MP3 or stream it:

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001KL2M22...v_ov_lig_dp_it
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

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