Honestly, I don’t mean to be unfriendly about it, but being webmaster and admin on a public site and project lead for public projects for over 5 years has been a bit of a drain on my ability to distinguish between nice, cool, well-meaning virtual friends and the people I actually rely on, my real world friends and family, and right now, I need the latter. I have several friends who separate, blend and mix these things seamlessly but I’ve had less success at doing that.
Acting as a representative for other organizations, responsible for the public face of these projects made it a constant struggle to not be misunderstood simply by speaking as I do around the people that know me. My non-virtual friends and family occasionally forgive me, but more important, they always know where I’m coming from.
I love the idea of streamlining communications between my friends and family but I don’t know what it means to have 100s of ‘friends’ where I have no clue who they are. I’m sure it makes sense if you’re Tim O’Reilly but not for me. My understanding is that many of these public people have the equivalent of an unlisted number or a fake name for hotel registering and have ‘private’ Facebook and Twitter accounts they use for their personal life. That sounds like a lot of work to me but it may come to that.
People have been complaining bitterly for years that music is hard to find on ccMixter. I was getting it from all sides, but the typical comment was something like “I need instrumental music for my YouTube video… why is that so hard to find?” It was embarrassing. Nobody wanted hear some long winded explanation how we couldn’t target a content seeking scenario with any gusto on a content creation site.
Yesterday the new music discovery portal for exactly these cases was launched: dig.ccMixter.
There you can’t do anything except search for music, listen to it, download it and get plenty of help on how to attribute it. We have some pre-canned queries for instrumental music for videos, podsafe vocals music, electro instrumentals for game developers and just for kicks some others like chill cubicle music. And of course, we make it brain-dead easy to find the other thing people are looking for: commercial free – royalty free music.
I’ve had the idea and desire to do something like dig.ccMixter for a long time (about as long as people have been complaining) but I knew I couldn’t pull off the user interface/web design that the site would require. Enter ArtIsTech Media who said “Let’s do it!” and we lucked out by nabbing nvzion who many of you know from the beautiful work over at BlocSonic.
As it is, thanks to trackbacks we know that 1 out of 10 uploads are already being used in videos, podcasts, compilation albums, etc. When we went out looking for other, non-documented (but attributed) uses, our calculations told us the number was closer to 1 in 6 uploads.
I’m really hoping the number of trackbacks quadruples thanks to dig.ccMixter because the musicians certainly deserve it, and I hope dig.ccMixter lives up to it.