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August 21st site update

 
  • August 21st site update

    Hi everyone,

    Today we released an update to our Visual Radio Player which limits the number of skips to 6 per station, per hour. You can of course, continue listening to the same station. If you listen for longer than one hour or if you retune to another station, your skip “allowance” will be reset.

    We have tried to make this adjustment as smooth as possible by offering you a chance to easily re-tune to another station with one click - probably a good idea if you’re skipping that much :)

    These changes affect subscribers as well as non-subscribers.

    We created a FAQ entry about this topic: http://www.last.fm/help/faq?category=98#1000591

    Your
    Last.fm Team

    • DavW said...
    • Alumni
    • 21 Aug 2012, 15:58
    It's worth reiterating here the contents of the linked FAQ post that this is something we've had to do due to licensing agreements in order to be able to continue to stream music legally.

    We've also checked our listening data and it shows that this is a change only likely to affect a small minority of users, so no need to worry if you just listen to radio normally.

    Happy listening!

    • corneld said...
    • Subscriber
    • 22 Aug 2012, 06:14
    Did not tried this myself (oh well...) BUT ... banning a certain song that is played on "visual radio player" counts as one of these limited number of skips ? (it probably IS, but... don't you think this is pretty unfair to us ? )

    We all know that light travels faster than sound. That's why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak [Albert Einstein]
    • snyde1 said...
    • Subscriber
    • 22 Aug 2012, 10:32
    corneld said:
    Did not tried this myself (oh well...) BUT ... banning a certain song that is played on "visual radio player" counts as one of these limited number of skips ? (it probably IS, but... don't you think this is pretty unfair to us ? )
    Read the FAQ linked above. No, it's not unfair.

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  • Can someone explain to me what licensing agreements have to do with skipping tracks? I don't skip much when I'm listening to the radio, so I don't mind. I'd just like to understand what exactly is going on.

  • could listen to some of the song then skip (scrobble or not)

  • Sort of irritating ...

    I listen to Mix Radio a lot. I don't usually skip, but it seems like when I do, it comes in bunches -- like five tracks in a row. At least I can just change the station and it resets though.

  • I'm not to concerned with this but:

    1. Just the visual radio player? So not (yet) the client? In the FAQ it is present as a general rule for both of them.

    2. a radio station that has been targeted by not so funny people for mis-tagging suffer from this, some like to tag for instance Art Garfunkel as death metal which I assume will not be funny to listeners of that radio station. Is the system in any way able to detect those miss-tagged artist/albums/tracks?

    3. on some occasions I do skip and then I'm often confronted with a bug. Skipping within the first 35 seconds causes an unwanted auto-skip not initialized by me. Does the system 'see' that as a skip by me or as a new offered track?

    4. If I listen to a track for more than 50% and than skip it counts as a scrobble, Therefor it should NOT be counted as a real skip!? Is that assumption correct?

    Opera Next 12.50 beta + Flash 11.4 + XPSP3 fully patched.

    I can't be held responsable for whatever i say
  • This wouldn't be an issue except, lately, it seems I'm getting the same group of songs constantly being played several times a day

  • I am confused ..does this only apply to the website player or also to the mobile apps?

    So without unlimited skips..the only benefit to being a subscriber is being able to listen on your mobile...with skip limitations? what a waste

    • headey said...
    • User
    • 24 Aug 2012, 09:18

    What does the 'six skips limit' achieve for the labels?

    What does the 'six skips limit' achieve for the labels?

    Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.
    Ludwig Wittgenstein
    -but how boring life would be

    headey cocktail
  • What I don't understand is why the free listeners and subscribers have the same limit?

  • ^Because it's not a subscriber perk, or a way to promote subscriptions; it's a requirement of our licenses to stream music legally worldwide.

    headey, I have a fair understanding of the rationale behind this, however I'm not an expert in music licensing and it would be unprofessional on my part to publicly speculate. Our head of legal is away this week but I'll ask him when he returns if we are going to comment further than what is already written in the FAQ.

    If you are interested in finding out more, I would encourage you to read around the topic of music royalties and radio broadcast licensing.

    http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/music-royalties.htm
    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=music+licensing


    I am confused ..does this only apply to the website player or also to the mobile apps?

    Currently it applies to the website radio. Eventually, I believe it will affect all our streaming services, including client and mobile. At this point in time, I don't know when exactly that will happen.

    • [Deleted user] said...
    • User
    • 25 Aug 2012, 01:53

    The corporate 'jungle' ~

    such is life on the web these days ...
    we can bounce about, making 'global tags' ... for a little while it seems. What the Hell, just is what it is ... don't you think?

    Bigger worries out in the 'real world' ... so, for now the 'corporate world' messes about for 3 bucks a month! Big deal, chump change really, is it not? Changes are indeed a pain in the ass at times, but ... such is life !

    http://www.last.fm/music/Fila+Brazillia/_/6ft+Wasp

    You get me ~ keep a sense of humour ! ;)

  • Just another loss of features and one of many limb shots to a slow death of LFM. It's us, "hang on boogers" that keep LastFM from tanking a lot sooner, as CBS had planned.

    Granted, I rarely skip 6 times an hour, due to Custom Tag Radios, being exactly what I want to hear, but what about the "stuck on skip" bug with the new BETA Client(For later implementation)? Is that fixed yet?

    I am sure you staffers have taken into account; those using the new BETA will be very frustrated, several times within the first hour, once this licensing regulation hits the Clients.

    Finally, I have studied these music licensing requirements for several years and I do see the "why" in, why this has finally happened. It basically has to do with time limits on repeated track plays and giving every artist their fare share.

    Summary:

    A compulsory license for webcasting established in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. The compulsory license covers Lastfms' transmissions of copyrighted sound recordings (and the server copies created by Lastfm to facilitate such transmissions), and the royalties that Lastfm pays to SoundExchange, an entity designated by the Copyright Royalty Board to collect and distribute compulsory royalties, are allocated equally among the copyright owners of sound recordings (typically a record label) and the recording artists (both featured and non-featured) on such recordings.

    • alin1 said...
    • User
    • 25 Aug 2012, 08:57
    Just to point out a problem: too bad you had to insert those big Buy buttons everywhere.

    • Fukeru said...
    • User
    • 26 Aug 2012, 01:22

    This sucks

    As the title of my post says I think this sucks. I subscribed for, among other reasons, the ability to skip as many tracks as I wanted to. Last fm has allowed me to find a lot of new artists and when I hear a song that I think sounds cool I look up that artist and skip the rest of the song to go to the next one so I can find more artists quickly. I am not necessarily skipping songs because I don't like them. Maybe I have ADD, but whatever, this is how I use last.fm and taking this feature away feels like the rug is being pulled out from underneath me.

    • [Deleted user] said...
    • User
    • 26 Aug 2012, 03:07

    Fed Up...

    I usually skip around a lot, even on my personal radio. To take that away from me, for 'legal' reasons, is enough for me to seek out other legal internet radio sites. I've had enough. Along with making the mobile version a subscription-based service, this is the final straw for me.

    • headey said...
    • User
    • 26 Aug 2012, 13:00
    Maddieman said:
    it's a requirement of our licenses to stream music legally worldwide.
    http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/music-royalties.htm
    https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=music+licensing
    ok, thanks.
    I didn't read all of your links yet but I think my lack of comprehension in the skip limit thing might be that I've been imagining the labels used lastfm as a promotional tool to get us to concerts or buy stuff (like payola when the labels paid the broadcasters) ; but actually they see lastfm as a revenue stream.

    Ha! For most of the artists I listen to here ("12,731 plays scrobbled on Last.fm" ...or Roberto Carlotti) I can't imagine they're terribly thrilled with their cheques.

    Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.
    Ludwig Wittgenstein
    -but how boring life would be

    headey cocktail
  • Without the "unlimited skip" feature, I would guess, Lastfm are no longer a music discovery engine, foremost : (

  • CrybKeeper said:
    Without the "unlimited skip" feature, I would guess, Lastfm are no longer a music discovery engine, foremost : (

    Not true. I've discovered plenty of music here and I've not used the radio once.

    • kiteo said...
    • User
    • 27 Aug 2012, 23:58

    How's that work then?

    leighdobson said:
    CrybKeeper said:
    Without the "unlimited skip" feature, I would guess, Lastfm are no longer a music discovery engine, foremost : (

    Not true. I've discovered plenty of music here and I've not used the radio once.

  • Irritating

    Similarly to others, I've used LFM to discover new music. I've bought a number of CDs from relatively unknown bands I've discovered here, and without LFM I'd never known them (so some record labels actually got money from me because I was able to freely discover music and skip what I didn't like).

    I was subscriber while it wasn't mandatory. Then LFM become subscription-only in my country so I stopped using it. Now I'm listening from a country where it's (still..?) working without subscriptions.. but looks like I'll stop using it second time as well. Sad, because I love it.

    • headey said...
    • User
    • 30 Aug 2012, 16:44
    CrybKeeper said:
    It basically has to do with time limits on repeated track plays and giving every artist their fare share.

    Summary:
    A compulsory license for webcasting established in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998. The compulsory license covers Lastfms' transmissions of copyrighted sound recordings (and the server copies created by Lastfm to facilitate such transmissions), and the royalties that Lastfm pays to SoundExchange, an entity designated by the Copyright Royalty Board to collect and distribute compulsory royalties, are allocated equally among the copyright owners of sound recordings (typically a record label) and the recording artists (both featured and non-featured) on such recordings.
    I sort of think I understand the words, but when I try to turn them into an example it all goes wrong.

    'time limits on repeated track plays' ??

    By 'featured and non-featured' does that mean half goes to the label then half gets divided between the artist and everyone in the orchestra??

    Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.
    Ludwig Wittgenstein
    -but how boring life would be

    headey cocktail
  • Re: How's that work then?

    kiteo said:
    leighdobson said:
    CrybKeeper said:
    Without the "unlimited skip" feature, I would guess, Lastfm are no longer a music discovery engine, foremost : (

    Not true. I've discovered plenty of music here and I've not used the radio once.

    How's it work? I browse the Last.fm artist pages looking for similar artists and then source the music from elsewhere and scrobble it through iTunes. I prefer to listen to albums rather than shuffle like the radio does.

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