March 23, 2010

structure and questions for meeting by curt

Since our mission is to know as much as we can for our future research, we should be most time listeners rather than potential users giving advice. I suggest: first, we should ask them to do a brief introduction of what they already accomplished. We take notes carefully and fill them into our questions (then we will skip them). Then we start asking through our structure.

I. Situation

A. How long has this project run already?

B. How is this project funded and what expectation are you holding financially?

C. How many users registered till now? How are they formed? Percentage of musician/ broadcasters / consumers?

D. Feedback from users? What are they satisfied by and what more do they want from you? What progress and future plan are you sticking to?(Well this is the next two parts:))

E. How do you assess your competitors? Who are they and what do you think your advantages are?

II. Assessment of 'market'

A. How do you define your target users of your service? How do you estimate amount of potential users? The percentage?

B. How do you estimate the broadcasters' demand of songs?

C. How do you estimate the amount of supply (artists and labels) and what do you think of the imbalance between the two? Or you don't care at all...

III. Design

A. What product does this service cover? Only Music or plus videos or even more?

do they have interest from all genres, as well as different industries, or sway towards certain ones (i.e. dance music and DJs). If they do, could this alienate users from other genres adopting their system?

- Customer service – what kinds do they offer (email, phone or online ticket style systems)?

B. What are the conditions of admission? Only verified or anyone? If verified, go to C; or else, go to D.

C. How do you verify users? How do you deal with massive workload and impossible verification?

D. How do you deal with massive users and abnormal behaviours? Upload old music for fun? For entertainment? Upload leaked out or piracy albums for sharing? Harassment towards broadcasters?

E. Confidentiality in certain condition to protect from leaking out? What functions do labels have?

F. Technology which is too much so I put it as the next part.

G. How do you level your user's privileges by fees? And by characters(artist broadcaster label and listeners)? Or you don't at all?

H. Do you have your own recommendation system If yes, go to next one; else skip next one.

I. How do you decide what to recommend? How does this work? Front page? Or email? Or message in site?

J. Are you going towards social media service like myspace? If yes, How do you distinguish yourself from then? Why should the media choose you better than them?

K. Can labels recommend themselves? How?

IV. Technology

A. What is your capacity? How many users, music length and formats? Expiration period?

B. Format and quality?

C. Response time? Speed? Downloadable or stream-able? Or Both?

D. Do you send music files out by Email? If yes, how to prevent spam?

SPECIFIC Questions for providers

FatDrop: explain fee for use (£50 sign up / £30 subs), verification (anyone who pays)

Fastrax: everything put onto CD - how would they get around this? how does the system work?

Soundcloud: verification of users (professional vs fun), how to prevent harassment (spam), how to create work environment for professionals

We need trials - can this happen?

ps...

This is very incomplete and some questions are maybe too trivial. As the meeting goes on, our assumptions might be thoroughly changed and we gotta be flexible. But I do think it is very good for us to have a complete question list in advance so that we can make sure to get the whole picture and not lose key details. After all, we have only this one chance to contact directly with distributors.

However, I still remain one biggest question of my own: I don??t think it is a good idea to be open-register and available to the public. No DJ or editors need another Myspace to seek out new music, which is a sea of noise content and impossible to work out things. In my opinion, this project should be based on and serves professional process (rather than the mass) and daily works demand (rather than the mass entertainment). What do you people say?


- 2 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

  1. Great stuff Curt – lots of the ‘right’ kind of questions.

    I think we could also ask about:
    - percentage of users from particular genres, and do they have interest from all genres, as well as different industries, or sway towards certain ones (i.e. dance music and DJs). If they do, could this alienate users from other genres adopting their system? (and would they be willing to change to allow more users?..)

    - Customer service – what kinds do they offer (email, phone or online ticket style systems)? Are the customer service teams based in the UK? Has there been demand for specific customer contact points from certain users?

    - – -
    The point you make last re- open-register vs closed ‘professional’ systems is a strong one. To forge ahead and serve professional needs fully, the system must fit professional work methods, and not simply browsing and ‘friend’ collecting as is the case with Myspace.

    What are the main differences between SoundCloud and a file hosting system such as Megaupload, where users can host files for others to download? To find out more about the companies aims and future planning objectives (as you identified) may shine a light on where they see the company going for users and themselves.

    24 Mar 2010, 00:31

  2. Michelle

    Hi Curt,

    Great work. I think you have taken a lot of our discussions into consideration and formulated some great questions in good order! I agree with you RE the open register. There are already Online radio stations that provide that sort of service. Our system should be niche or selective because of the benefits it has for labels, distributors and artists. Its a tricky one because we might not want to limit ourselves like the BBC. See how tomorrow goes… what the distributors have to offer, and lets take it from there. They might be able to give us some good answers to questions like these.

    Good luck with it all. Thinking of you all!

    Mich

    24 Mar 2010, 19:15


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