Muxtape forced to dump original model; prepares for relaunch

By on September 26, 2008 at 1:40 PM.

Muxtape forced to dump original model; prepares for relaunch

Talk about great reads. Muxtape founder Justin Ouellette finally let the cat out of the bag today and published a lengthy report of his recent trials and tribulations. For outsiders looking in, reading about dealings with the unmitigated disaster that is the music industry is like a guilty pleasure. Rage seems to build with each passing paragraph and one can’t help but think, “are they really this stupid?” Ouellette’s recount of his experiences in recent history fits the mold perfectly. The behind the scenes plan for Muxtape was anything but ill-intentioned; Ouelette had some pretty big ideas and spent a great deal of time reaching out to labels in an effort to move music consumption forward in a very symbiotic manner. In fact in the midst of an extended series of meetings with major labels that seemed to be progressing, albeit slowly, the RIAA struck without warning and dropped an axe that would force Muxtape to go offline. It registered a complaint with Amazon Web Services, Muxtape’s host, that required Muxtape to dump a launrdy list of content within one business day or risk having his data deleted and servers shut down. The rest, as they say, is history.

Ouelette has plans to relaunch as a service geared exclusively toward bands:

The new Muxtape will allow bands to upload their own music and offer an embeddable player that works anywhere on the web, in addition to the original muxtape format. Bands will be able to assemble an attractive profile with simple modules that enable optional functionality such as a calendar, photos, comments, downloads and sales, or anything else they need.

This is a far cry from the original Muxtape model and it will likely have a much more difficult climb in terms of being widely adopted. Here at BGR, we’ll certainly be keeping an eye out for the relaunch and we wish Ouellette all the success in the world. As for the RIAA and music industry in general, it is becoming increasingly difficult to support any means of music distribution that puts money in their pockets. The dilemma of course is in order to financially support the bands you enjoy, you are also feeding the hand that bites. Talk about a catch 22. Whatever, music industry. Keep doing things your way because it seems to really be working out well for you. We’re sure people will be lining up in droves to buy music on microSD cards. You know, just like how we all went running out to get their hands on Ringles. That went over really well.

Do yourself a favor and hit the read link.

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Muxtape Takes Fire from the RIAA

By on August 19, 2008 at 5:47 PM.

Muxtape Takes Fire from the RIAA

It looks like the big guys aren’t the only ones feeling the wrath of the RIAA these days, and it’s only bound to get worse. Muxtape, a service that allows users to upload music from their personal libraries to create an online mixtape, currently services less than 90,000 unique visitors per month according to Compete. That won’t keep it under the RIAA’s radar it would appear, as the service went down yesterday with the note “Muxtape will be unavailable for a brief period while we sort out a problem with the RIAA” on its homepage. A post on the Muxtape blog provides the following message:

No artists or labels have complained. The site is not closed indefinitely. Stay tuned.

It’s funny; rather than embrace this newer wave of online music providers, it appears that labels and the RIAA are intent on destroying these emerging technologies and completely eliminating new revenue streams that have the potential to become massive. By putting a fair royalty scheme in place, the RIAA stands to pull in hundreds of millions of dollars in the short-term and this figure would only increase as internet radio stations and other online music sites continue to gain momentum. Instead, the RIAA is trying to run these sites into the ground in order to maintain the current power structure – even if that means losing out on all of this new money. Users of sites like Muxtape aren’t going to replace their “free” listening habits with purchases, they’re going to find other off-shore sites with similar functionality. Apparently for the RIAA,  “nothing” is better than “something” when that “something” helps illustrate just how useless the current record label model is these days.

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