Free the Music

Wednesday, 23 January 2008
by Richard Jones
filed under Announcements
Comments: 334

A few days ago we sent out some cryptic invitations to a press conference in New York that Felix and Martin are presiding over. We’ve had fun in the office reading the rumors and speculation, but it’s time to spill the beans:

As of today, you can play full-length tracks and entire albums for free on the Last.fm website.

Something we’ve wanted for years—for people who visit Last.fm to be able to play any track for free—is now possible. With the support of the folks behind EMI, Sony BMG, Universal and Warner—and the artists they work with—plus thousands of independent artists and labels, we’ve made the biggest legal collection of music available to play online for free, the way we believe it should be.

Full-length tracks are now available in the US, UK, and Germany, and we’re hard at work broadening our coverage into other countries. During this initial public beta period, each track can be played up to 3 times for free before a notice appears telling you about our upcoming subscription service. The soon-to-be announced subscription service will give you unlimited plays and some other useful things. We’re also working on bringing full-length tracks to the desktop client and beyond.

Free full-length tracks are obviously great news for listeners, but also great for artists and labels, who get paid every time someone streams a song. Music on Last.fm is perpetually monetized. This is good because artists get paid based on how popular a song is with their fans, instead of a fixed amount.

We will be paying artists directly.

We already have licenses with the various royalty collection societies, but now unsigned artists can put their music on Last.fm and be paid directly for every song played. This helps to level the playing-field—now you can make music, upload it to Last.fm and earn money for each play. If you make music, you can sign up to participate for free.

We’re not printing money to pay for this—but the business model is simple enough: we are paying artists and labels a share of advertising revenue from the website.

Today we’re redesigning the music economy. There are already millions of tracks available, and we’re adding more every day. We will continue to work hard to bring this to everyone in the world.

Take it for a spin.

Comments

  1. salimar
    23 January, 15:36

    a subscription service eh? will this matter if you’re already a subscriber, or will we have to pay on top of the yearly $36 after the ‘so many plays’ for a given track? and how will this work with playlists and such?

    salimar – 23 January, 15:36
  2. Ailsa
    23 January, 15:37

    Seriously seriously good work guys! Nice one.

    Ailsa – 23 January, 15:37
  3. dankine
    23 January, 15:38

    indeed, great work. I too am curious about current subscription vs new subscription.

    dankine – 23 January, 15:38
  4. Amr Hassan
    23 January, 15:44

    wow. too bad it’s not working over here in egypt yet.. but it’s great new nonetheless :]

    Amr Hassan – 23 January, 15:44
  5. pacuszka
    23 January, 15:45

    wow. respect. and yeah, is there a difference between old and new subscription?

    pacuszka – 23 January, 15:45
  6. Matthew Ogle
    23 January, 15:46

    We’ve added a piece to our subscribe page which has a bit more info for you guys.

    Matthew Ogle – 23 January, 15:46
  7. salimar
    23 January, 15:49

    yeah i read it, but will it be a fee on top of the regular price? just curious as i just recently (within the past week) re-subscribed for another year.

    salimar – 23 January, 15:49
  8. Matthew Ogle
    23 January, 15:52

    Ooops, forgot to mention that info on the new subscription stuff is only visible/available in our launch countries today (US, UK, and Germany). Apologies!

    Fee is still being worked out but it will be a level above the current subscription. We’ll continue to offer both. :)

    Matthew Ogle – 23 January, 15:52
  9. jeanmaxime
    23 January, 15:52

    amazing!

    jeanmaxime – 23 January, 15:52
  10. Laurie Denness
    23 January, 15:53

    Please, digg this :)

    http://digg.com/tech_news/Last_fm_frees_the_music/

    P.s. I'm the guy with the tshirt, and it came from http://www.thinkgeek.com :)
    Laurie Denness – 23 January, 15:53
  11. Dunk
    23 January, 15:55

    While you are at it, you can vote it up on Reddit, too. It helps if people come to the blog first to get the official account.

    http://reddit.com/info/66cu5/comments/

    Dunk – 23 January, 15:55
  12. Charbax
    23 January, 15:57

    This is awesome. You are awesome.

    The optionnal subscription idea sounds really cool also, perhaps it will bring a download manager and make it possible to download DRM free tracks onto ones Mp3 player. And a link in the Last.fm player that says “Download all songs by this artist” which adds all the songs in the download manager. Which might also use p2p to lower bandwidth costs.

    And ad-supported or subscription based streaming of all the music directly on a WiFi or HSDPA connected device like the Archos and cell phones would be cool.

    I hope that you can make this work in Denmark soon.

    Charbax – 23 January, 15:57
  13. Steve
    23 January, 15:58

    ‘We will be paying artists directly.’

    Now that sounds very cool, being an artist already on last fm (SK123) i was wondering how you are going to do this, will we have a virtual account that gets credited or will you require bank details.

    also will this be back dated ;)

    Steve – 23 January, 15:58
  14. Fred
    23 January, 15:58

    Great news! I expect this to reach other countries soon (especially Portugal).

    Fred – 23 January, 15:58
  15. Neavers
    23 January, 15:59

    You’re awesome guys. :)

    Neavers – 23 January, 15:59
  16. RJ
    23 January, 15:59

    The FAQ will be updated later today regarding paying artists directly. The music manager will be updated today too.

    RJ – 23 January, 15:59
  17. Charbax
    23 January, 16:01

    I posted the paidcontent.org post on Digg: http://digg.com/music/Last_fm_Launches_Free_On_Demand_Music_Platform

    Forgot to specify in the Digg description that this is currently only for US, UK and Germany.

    Charbax – 23 January, 16:01
  18. mcdaddio
    23 January, 16:04

    interesting..

    So I would be unable to stream stuff I can already after a little while? I’m presuming I would only be able to benefit from the full-length tracks in the first place if I have an account/ am logged in..? Or does it work to IPs?

    Just wondering about the artists that pay to get their music promoted- i.e. appear on radios.. so they would be getting their money back easily, while smaller bands that are broke won’t benefit so much?

    Interesting though, at the end of the day I’m glad the artists are getting paid; this seems like a great model for the industry.

    mcdaddio – 23 January, 16:04
  19. nickels182
    23 January, 16:06

    cooool :D:D:D:D

    will i have to pay this subscription as im a subscriber ???

    also there should be a button to play all tracks by an artist, all i see is similar artists, tag radio, etc :)

    nickels182 – 23 January, 16:06
  20. Justin
    23 January, 16:06

    A month after the first time I buy a basic yearly subscription, you guys make a new type of subscription :-P

    Justin – 23 January, 16:06
  21. Sammy
    23 January, 16:08

    If we are already artists presumably everything will update itself right, or do we have to press some buttons first?

    Sammy – 23 January, 16:08
  22. David Jennings
    23 January, 16:14

    Currently the ‘play full track’ only works if I log out first. If I’m logged in (as a subscriber), there is no option to play the full track, just to play the track (30 secs of it) in the Last.fm software.

    Is that the way it’s supposed to work? Surely not… So what am I doing wrong?

    David Jennings – 23 January, 16:14
  23. megadethnatic
    23 January, 16:15

    Subscription service?
    Hey, I hope I don’t have to pay another subscription to be a still a real subscriber. .

    megadethnatic – 23 January, 16:15
  24. Mark
    23 January, 16:16

    ‘As of today, you can play full-length tracks and entire albums for free on the Last.fm website.’

    I thought this was kind of already done with the free streaming already available.

    Mark – 23 January, 16:16
  25. bgod
    23 January, 16:21

    Is the radio/playlist streaming going to be limited as well? Or only the on-demand streaming?

    bgod – 23 January, 16:21
  26. Habeef
    23 January, 16:21

    i noticed that some tracks in my playlist are no longer available (from bands like ratatat, fiery furnaces, grizzly bear and interpol).

    Habeef – 23 January, 16:21
  27. kip
    23 January, 16:21

    Yes, very good job. Must have taken some work to get the royalties worked out!

    kip – 23 January, 16:21
  28. Vimpis
    23 January, 16:22

    Sad it ain’t available in Latvia, but still I’m hoping one day, we’ll here have all the good stuff too.

    Vimpis – 23 January, 16:22
  29. James Wheare
    23 January, 16:23

    David Jennings:

    Change your settings here: http://www.last.fm/settings/website

    Make sure your Music Playback settings are one of:

    • Play everything in the Flash player (in-page)
    • Play previews in-page and radio in the Last.fm software

    Full track previews only work in the in page flash player for now.

    James Wheare – 23 January, 16:23
  30. Eric Haddad
    23 January, 16:23

    The future is here… Thanks guys.

    Eric Haddad – 23 January, 16:23
  31. Allison
    23 January, 16:24

    Why is it that Last FM still make it so difficult for artists/labels who DON“T want their music on your site to get it taken down? Do the artists not deserve a say in this?

    Allison – 23 January, 16:24
  32. Odie
    23 January, 16:25

    Last.fm makes me feel better..

    Odie – 23 January, 16:25
  33. Paul Burgess
    23 January, 16:26

    As Chuck once said, power to the people.

    Paul Burgess – 23 January, 16:26
  34. xmz
    23 January, 16:26

    love U-)

    RESPECT !

    xmz – 23 January, 16:26
  35. ryadeum
    23 January, 16:27

    curious and exited

    ryadeum – 23 January, 16:27
  36. Stefan
    23 January, 16:29

    Not interested in this new service, sorry. I only use last.fm to scrobble the music I listen to on my PC, get music recommendations, and find people who listen to the same type of stuff. I’ve played music from the website maybe 4 or 5 times max. I’m not going to pay more for this.

    I’m actually going to let my “basic” subscription lapse because your customer service is, I’m sorry to say, abysmally bad. When you have your moderators say things like “someone will get back to you after the weekend” to a customer with a serious problem, and you close down for a couple of weeks over the holidays, I can only think you just need to get your act together.

    I love the scrobbling, though :)

    Stefan – 23 January, 16:29
  37. StudleyUK
    23 January, 16:30

    Aaah so THAT’s why the Play icons have changed! I was going to grumble about how they don’t look as good as the old ones, but frankly if we get a bunch of streaming full tracks out of it, who am I to argue? Nice one!

    StudleyUK – 23 January, 16:30
  38. Fiona McLaren
    23 January, 16:31

    Allison: If you have problems with any content on Last.fm you just need to email us at labels@last.fm and we’ll be more than happy to help.

    Fiona McLaren – 23 January, 16:31
  39. Jimmy
    23 January, 16:33

    Great idea! I’ve always wanted to have some free music on this site. One question though: if you are not already a subscriber and looking to get this “new subscription”, do you have to pay for that on top of the already existing one? Or is it some kind of subscription hierarchy where the most expensive subscription gets all the benefits?

    Also, on a purely aesthetic level the new play buttons are less than flattering. They make my profile look fat!

    Jimmy – 23 January, 16:33
  40. Matthew Ogle
    23 January, 16:33

    @Stefan – that’s why we made the basic full-length service free. No need to subscribe! :)

    Matthew Ogle – 23 January, 16:33
  41. Premasagar
    23 January, 16:34

    Well done, folks!

    Premasagar – 23 January, 16:34
  42. Adriaan
    23 January, 16:35

    Please make this service available in South Africa, I beg you!

    Our legal system isn’t very advanced in this field, so you won’t have to pay a bunch of lawyers a fortune to make sure everything you do is legal here. Believe me, ask a lawyer to sort South Africa out for you, we are one of the easy countries ; )

    Adriaan – 23 January, 16:35
  43. Roy
    23 January, 16:36

    That’s great ..and will be even better once you add the Netherlands to that list ..do you accept bribes? ;)

    Roy – 23 January, 16:36
  44. Chris
    23 January, 16:45

    Thank-you, just thank-you :)

    Chris – 23 January, 16:45
  45. Erkengel
    23 January, 16:45

    ok, but why on earth did you have to make the play buttons so damned ugly? ;(

    Erkengel – 23 January, 16:45
  46. shov1
    23 January, 16:52

    i like the new buttons!
    also: how do you play a full album without having to press play in between each track?

    shov1 – 23 January, 16:52
  47. markus
    23 January, 16:53

    This sounds really good. I hope you will take it to Denmark too. :)

    markus – 23 January, 16:53
  48. Jonathan Imme
    23 January, 16:53

    awesome.. i’ve been waiting for that feature and opportunity for years – both, as a consumer and a person, who works in the music business..

    Jonathan Imme – 23 January, 16:53
  49. Floyd-out
    23 January, 16:54

    Simply huge ! Please extend this to France as soon as possible. You’re amazing guys

    Floyd-out – 23 January, 16:54
  50. knowtheledge
    23 January, 16:55

    So in other words Last.Fm is soon to be full of advertising.

    All good things must pass

    knowtheledge – 23 January, 16:55
  51. Brian
    23 January, 16:56

    now everyone can indulge the life we hear

    viva la revoluccion!

    Brian – 23 January, 16:56
  52. bluetooth38
    23 January, 16:58

    Yes will the subscription be going up as I have only just payed in the last two months.I hope we don’t have to paye any moor the subscription should be honored for that least the year.

    bluetooth38 – 23 January, 16:58
  53. BenMH
    23 January, 17:04

    this should be good. im going to find myself neurotically hoarding my 3 free plays now, though.

    BenMH – 23 January, 17:04
  54. jesse
    23 January, 17:34

    i never thought i’d get a tattoo but i’m seriously considering it now. or if there are trademark issues with that, i guess you can have my first born.

    jesse – 23 January, 17:34
  55. mrrogers
    23 January, 17:37

    I love you, last.fm!

    mrrogers – 23 January, 17:37
  56. khabeck
    23 January, 17:42

    I just tried to use this feature and it does not work. I adjusted my “playback settings” and still nothing. I get the same old 30 second snippets from “streamable albums” and that’s about it. Nice try though :(

    khabeck – 23 January, 17:42
  57. chejrw
    23 January, 17:50

    I have to say I don’t entirely get it. I already can listen to whole tracks with the last.fm player. I guess all this new service will do is allow me to choose exactly what I will hear? If I wanted that, I’d just listen to my mp3 collection. The randomness and adaptive suggestion is why I scrobble.

    chejrw – 23 January, 17:50
  58. Matt
    23 January, 17:50

    Yeah Guys nice press release Poor Execution

    12:30pm on the US east coast and the service isn’t up and my settings are Play in Browser

    Matt – 23 January, 17:50
  59. Clare
    23 January, 17:50

    Huzzah!

    Clare – 23 January, 17:50
  60. JOhnny
    23 January, 17:53

    Last.FM FTW!

    Anyone got an invite code to Sleep.FM ? I want to wake my friends up!

    JOhnny – 23 January, 17:53
  61. vebazzo
    23 January, 17:58

    Yes, right now it’s not working for me either… logged in or not. Also, is the site slow or is it just me?

    vebazzo – 23 January, 17:58
  62. Bram
    23 January, 18:02

    Congratulations!

    Last.fm, always one step ahead ;)

    Bram – 23 January, 18:02
  63. Tom
    23 January, 18:04

    A heartfelt thankyou to the last.fm crew for constantly improving my life. Truly a social music revolution!

    Tom – 23 January, 18:04
  64. Mach
    23 January, 18:06

    so where are all these full tracks and albums? i only see a few tracks here and there?

    Mach – 23 January, 18:06
  65. sudip
    23 January, 18:09

    Last.fm client download (5 MB) takes 4-5 seconds to download but when listening to songs buffering takes approximately 65-75 secs and plays for next 10 secs. Isn’t there any solution, to make it at least as fast as youtube, moreover it is only audio :( ? Gotta uninstall it now :(

    sudip – 23 January, 18:09
  66. Philippe
    23 January, 18:09

    Impressing! Let it come to Switzerland ;)

    Philippe – 23 January, 18:09
  67. jan
    23 January, 18:13

    ANYTHING with Sony,EMI,Universal or Warner is wrong. DEAD wrong. It keeps the MAFIA alive.
    Money does NOT directly go to the artists but to companys that earn a lot of money with massproduction. It is a sad day for music fans. A sad day for music.

    please read: http://observer.guardian.co.uk/omm/story/0,,2241544,00.html

    jan – 23 January, 18:13
  68. Al
    23 January, 18:22

    Yes, does this affect playlists in any way? Currently I can listen to my favourite tracks or check out new bands before buying the cd any number of times without having to pay.
    Not so much “freeing” as “limiting existing free plays”.

    And would acts featured on the tag/ recommendation stations be getting the proceeds too, or is it just albums we choose to hear? Because often these are artists who have paid to be heard in the first place, major label acts etc.

    That would also encourage spamming of group recs.

    But keep up the good work! Getting whole catalogues available, I might subscribe yet!

    Al – 23 January, 18:22
  69. Linda
    23 January, 18:23

    Its about time Last.fm shared ad revenue with us indie artists, although I must say the split is underwhelming. ReverbNation has been sharing 50% of ad rev since last July, and you guys are proposing only 10%.

    I love the scrobbling functions when I am exploring new music, but CBS (I mean last.fm) needs to get with the times when it comes to respecting indies.

    At least its a move in the right direction, so hooray for that, I guess.

    Linda – 23 January, 18:23
  70. TMK
    23 January, 18:26

    Please change the font on this blog. It’s unreadable.

    TMK – 23 January, 18:26
  71. Kelly Abbott
    23 January, 18:29

    I embedded the radio player in my blog and no dice on the full-length song playing. Will this feature be enabled for embedded players? Or am I possible doing something wrong?

    Kelly Abbott – 23 January, 18:29
  72. adam
    23 January, 18:33

    I truly hope this new feature doesn’t take away from the current last.fm. What happens to all the unlimited full length tracks that already exist? Do they become limited? That’s bogus… Will the radio suffer? Only three plays per song before it’s retired from random play? That too would be bogus.

    adam – 23 January, 18:33
  73. Mitch
    23 January, 18:42

    All I took from this article is that pop artists are going to be making more from their music than the lesser known bands. Finally, Last.fm is stepping up to break the status quo and set things right.

    Mitch – 23 January, 18:42
  74. Vincentvw
    23 January, 18:47

    So when will this be coming to the Netherlands ???

    Vincentvw – 23 January, 18:47
  75. Greg
    23 January, 18:48

    Kudos, guys.
    I always enjoyed the free mp3s (and was turned on to several artists because of their availability on friend’s and neighbor’s playlists).
    The fact that you guys are paying unsigned artists for their music also just bumped up my respect for you guys quite a lot.

    Greg – 23 January, 18:48
  76. Iceman/Red Zone Records
    23 January, 18:50

    You guys are the SHIT!! Not only did you get the majors to agree, but you STILL look out for the INDIES!

    GREAT WORK!

    Iceman/Red Zone Records – 23 January, 18:50
  77. Marcos
    23 January, 18:56

    Hi,

    Great news!

    Someone knows if this is available for Brazil, now?

    Regards.

    Marcos

    Marcos – 23 January, 18:56
  78. RJ
    23 January, 19:05

    I’ll post in my journal tomorrow (and update this page) to answer the questions that came up in this thread.

    I’ll cover how existing subscriptions will be handled, which territories we will tackle next, rights, payments, conspiracy theories etc.

    It’s almost pub-time in london now though, so unless you want to join us in the Prince Arthur, check for updates tomorrow :)

    RJ – 23 January, 19:05
  79. Nectar_Card
    23 January, 19:18

    awesome work. Can’t wait to see whats in the subscription package.

    2 features I would love to see in the subscription package:

    1 – ability to play multiple tag radio – ie play me music tagged both 90s AND Rock

    2 – when playing personal tags, have the music come up in truly random order (so my lesser known tracks pop up more often in my personal tag radios)

    Nectar_Card – 23 January, 19:18
  80. SideFlower
    23 January, 19:23

    There’s no way to distinguish between “full tracks” and free “full tracks” either when you look at the charts.

    Please consider changing the icons and making them more user-friendly, perhaps with a traffic light code at the top of each page, for example:-

    X – Not Yet Available
    Red – 30 second previews
    Amber – Full Tracks
    Green – Free Full Tracks

    … or something like that. Cheers.

    But I have to say that adding so many songs for streaming is excellent.

    ps – What has happened to the streaming of The Strokes and other artists?

    SideFlower – 23 January, 19:23
  81. Adam Bard
    23 January, 19:26

    Give us some love in Canada? Please? I’ll tell everyone to go to last.fm if you do! Including that guy Bill you know!

    Adam Bard – 23 January, 19:26
  82. Joshua Carmody (vorteks)
    23 January, 19:27

    Very very very very awesome. I’ve always loved last.fm and it just gets better and better.

    I wonder though, when you say “3 times” do you mean you can only listen to it 3 times for free… EVER? Or is it per day/week/month, or what? Also, I assume that listening to a track 3 times using the in-page preview doesn’t prevent it from playing on your radio?

    I can’t wait for this feature to be available for Japanese music!

    Thanks last.fm team.

    Joshua Carmody (vorteks) – 23 January, 19:27
  83. kino
    23 January, 19:28

    i’d love to see the look on everyone’s face who bitched about CBS buying last.fm

    kino – 23 January, 19:28
  84. Josh Scott
    23 January, 19:28

    I like this and don’t like this at the same time. It does speak freedom to independent artists but I personally don’t want to be associated with any RIAA artist or Label. And if this means just being a user on last.fm is supporting them, I may have to reconsider my membership, and this is coming from a die-hard last.fm user!!

    Josh Scott – 23 January, 19:28
  85. Matthew Ogle
    23 January, 19:31

    @SideFlower — we’re easing away from the concepts of preview / full track / full length preview / etc etc etc.

    Basically, we want “I click play and the full track plays to me, for free” to become the defacto standard Last.fm experience. You click play and it works — you shouldn’t have to understand our internal licensing model and technical infrastructure, that’s our job. Yours is listening to awesome music! ;)

    (I appreciate the current design isn’t all the way there yet, but that’s where we’re heading and hopefully explains it a bit.)

    Like RJ, I’m off to The Prince Arthur now and then catching up on some sleep… thanks for all the feedback, everyone. Happy listening and catch you tomorrow.

    Matthew Ogle – 23 January, 19:31
  86. Gordon Brander
    23 January, 19:38

    I love it! And I love the business model. It’s great that paying indie artists directly. It could be a neat shift in the industry. Great work!

    Gordon Brander – 23 January, 19:38
  87. Harry
    23 January, 19:45

    Cool

    Harry – 23 January, 19:45
  88. Fred
    23 January, 19:47

    Doesn’t work for me, I can only play 30 second extracts, with no confirmation that I’m doing it right or wrongly. How about some better usability that shows people whether they’re on the right page, or what they are doing wrongly. I just lost 10 minutes downloading the newest player, fiddling with dozens of settings, but no cigar. Please improve your usability. Btw, I’m getting redirected to lastfm.de, but I’m from Switzerland.

    Fred – 23 January, 19:47
  89. carlos
    23 January, 19:47

    fantastic

    carlos – 23 January, 19:47
  90. Hamish M
    23 January, 19:49

    I’m with Adam, bring it to Canada please!

    Hamish M – 23 January, 19:49
  91. andrew
    23 January, 19:53

    Why isn’t available in Canada yet? Stop screwing us Canadians, there’s over 30 million people up here.

    andrew – 23 January, 19:53
  92. Adam
    23 January, 19:54

    That’s great! I hope it will be available in my country (Czech Republic) soon!

    Adam – 23 January, 19:54
  93. aliceaddict
    23 January, 19:59

    you guys are amazing. last.fm rocks! thank you for all of your hard work.

    aliceaddict – 23 January, 19:59
  94. Jean Azzopardi
    23 January, 19:59

    Don’t forget Malta please!!

    Jean Azzopardi – 23 January, 19:59
  95. einsteinbqat
    23 January, 20:08

    As usual… we maybe right up north, but Canada is always left aside.

    einsteinbqat – 23 January, 20:08
  96. Cypher
    23 January, 20:23

    You should try out http://deezer.com as an option.

    Cypher – 23 January, 20:23
  97. huntre
    23 January, 20:23

    Way fine, folks. Really worthwhile.

    huntre – 23 January, 20:23
  98. VeroAvitar
    23 January, 20:26

    Indeed einstein nice to see canada left out in the cold (pardon the stereotypical cold) however this is still great news to hear and I look forward to it being available up north

    VeroAvitar – 23 January, 20:26
  99. gpberlin
    23 January, 20:29

    Cool! last.fm is amazing.

    But I agree, as now it is not so clear how should it works, and how things are changing for us subscribers.

    gpberlin – 23 January, 20:29
  100. Walt Ostrander
    23 January, 20:32

    It’s beautiful that artists can be paid for the appreciation of their art. Now we extremely poor people can pay homage and still get to experience the beauty of the art. This is a good system.

    Walt Ostrander – 23 January, 20:32
  101. greywulf
    23 January, 20:35

    Congratualtions and well done! That’s great news for music fans and we last.fm addicts everywhere :)

    greywulf – 23 January, 20:35
  102. TJC
    23 January, 20:39

    You’re paying artists from “a share” of the advertising revenues? Are you not collecting money from listeners to listen. Why not share up this revenue?

    TJC – 23 January, 20:39
  103. Mike
    23 January, 20:43

    I think a new blogpost is required with some additional information. Is this only if you directly play a certain song or album, or will this also happen when, for example, I play Music like “Artist A”?
    And indeed the obvious question, what if you’re already a paying subscriber?

    Mike – 23 January, 20:43
  104. pacuszka
    23 January, 20:46

    subliminal message:
    [polandpleasepolandpleasepolandplease]

    pacuszka – 23 January, 20:46
  105. steve
    23 January, 20:48

    as always, canada gets fucked over.

    fuck you, last.fm. fuck you.

    steve – 23 January, 20:48
  106. Janne
    23 January, 20:51

    Sounds very nice.

    If you can put some pressure on the guys at Sonos to support Last.fm, you will have an army of happy subscribers from Europe, since neither Rhapsody nor Pandora works here at the moment. Get Last.fm on Sonos, and I will subscribe in a heartbeat!

    Janne – 23 January, 20:51
  107. lufc82
    23 January, 20:52

    great job guys

    lufc82 – 23 January, 20:52
  108. k.
    23 January, 21:01

    Does this whole “free the music” thing has something to do with disappearing of some artists from the radio? Ie. Basement Jaxx, The Avalanches… They only have 1 or 2 tracks available.

    k. – 23 January, 21:01
  109. spamhoek@gmail.com
    23 January, 21:03

    i like it!
    spamhoek@gmail.com

    spamhoek@gmail.com – 23 January, 21:03
  110. jannon
    23 January, 21:10

    I’m with chejrw. I use the last.fm player constantly to listen to my recs, to tag radio, to similar artists radio, to my friend’s radios, to my group radios.

    What’s going to happen to these? How does the “3 play” policy affect these kinds of streams?

    Seriously concerned.

    jannon – 23 January, 21:10
  111. bilch
    23 January, 21:12

    I just tested this to answer the question asked by several people here: I’m a paying subscriber within the old subscription service. I played Hot Chip’s “Over and Over” over and over, i.e. listened three times to the full-length track. Now my playlist will start playing this track but switch to the next one after 1-2 seconds. I’ll keep away from the explicit “play this track” option from now on. I sure hope listening to the same track via Personal Radio or any other shuffled option for three times won’t do the same. It would make last.fm quite useless to me.

    bilch – 23 January, 21:12
  112. Vincent
    23 January, 21:12

    Wow.

    Vincent – 23 January, 21:12
  113. groeni
    23 January, 21:25

    Fantastic !

    groeni – 23 January, 21:25
  114. Roy
    23 January, 21:27

    This will be a great way to sample songs before deciding to purchase them. I hate the 30 second samples most stores give you – especially for longer pieces of music. I just hope more indie labels join because I get most of my music via my eMusic subscription.

    Roy – 23 January, 21:27
  115. caleb
    23 January, 21:28

    “we’re easing away from the concepts of preview / full track / full length preview / etc etc etc.”

    WHY? as a small label/artist, i think that’s the best thing about last.fm… i like it BECAUSE i can set an album as full stream/preview!

    caleb – 23 January, 21:28
  116. max
    23 January, 21:31

    wow, nearly as good as youtube ;-)

    max – 23 January, 21:31
  117. Steven
    23 January, 21:33

    This is great news… I’ll be ready to pay that subscription. And it sounds like last.fm is adopting some features that made mp3.com so interesting for artists too :-)

    Steven – 23 January, 21:33
  118. ZSRR
    23 January, 21:34

    Great to see this! Keep it up!

    ZSRR – 23 January, 21:34
  119. Ben Lavender
    23 January, 21:44

    Good news on the upgrade, this’ll probably persuade me to sign up for the subscription now! Congratulations guys and good luck with it.

    Ben Lavender – 23 January, 21:44
  120. jackcaughran
    23 January, 21:45

    Doesn’t seem to work for me. — jackcaughran

    jackcaughran – 23 January, 21:45
  121. Sjarel
    23 January, 21:53

    What happens with the artists we used to listen to for free without subscription?

    Sjarel – 23 January, 21:53
  122. hexicola
    23 January, 21:57

    I usually only listen to my radio player on random, so i can hear new stuff. will this block tracks i’ve already heard when i play my neighbourhood radio? if so then :(

    hexicola – 23 January, 21:57
  123. jordan
    23 January, 22:02

    wow at the people bitching about it not being available in their country. i’m sure last.fm tried or is trying to make it available to as much people as possible. there are probably just some licensing issues to deal with first. i know some artists are signed to completely different labels depending on the country.

    i’m confident that this will spread to more countries once everything gets straightened out. i’ll be waiting, last.fm.

    - jordan from canada

    jordan – 23 January, 22:02
  124. Eric Wahlforss
    23 January, 22:04

    Cool stuff!

    Eric Wahlforss – 23 January, 22:04
  125. gad
    23 January, 22:06

    Great work guys! You rock :D

    gad – 23 January, 22:06
  126. Daniel
    23 January, 22:10

    I guess we’ll be paying the subscription now, for free music?

    this is not good…

    Daniel – 23 January, 22:10
  127. Heliopath
    23 January, 22:10

    heeeeeeelllll yessss

    Heliopath – 23 January, 22:10
  128. Taume
    23 January, 22:19

    Crazy News. Keep it up!

    Taume – 23 January, 22:19
  129. Mattias S
    23 January, 22:21

    This doesnt work if you’re in another country? :(

    Will it start to work once you have your subscription service running? :(

    I’ve been waiting for sometthing like this since I started downloading MP3s in 1997.
    I wanna pay a subscription fee and then lsiten to what the hell I want!

    Mattias S – 23 January, 22:21
  130. kbox
    23 January, 22:33

    any idea how long before Canada gets to hear full length versions? are we talking weeks, months or years?

    kbox – 23 January, 22:33
  131. Haggis
    23 January, 22:35

    Why pay to listen to music on Last.fm when you can listen to it for free on services like Pandora? Oh yes that’s right, our RIAA friends made sure that the licensing model was so preposterous that Pandora was forced to finally pull the plug on streaming free music to the UK just a week ago.

    But wait, what’s this? Last.fm is owned by CBS. CBS is a member of the RIAA. The RIAA nailed Pandora. Pandora have to pull the plug. Barely a week later Last.fm are proposing their own monetized music model to help fill the gap.

    I don’t believe in coincidence.

    Haggis – 23 January, 22:35
  132. davidjearly
    23 January, 22:39

    I’ll stick to being able to own my music thanks.

    Get with it. This model is not going to be a hit. You are doomed to failure.

    davidjearly – 23 January, 22:39
  133. Carmen
    23 January, 22:39

    It’s just making it open for me in the application as a 30 second preview… This new feature would be better if it actually worked!

    Carmen – 23 January, 22:39
  134. Schnubbe
    23 January, 22:44

    how does it work now? I search for artost AND title?

    Schnubbe – 23 January, 22:44
  135. Mirko
    23 January, 22:48

    This is amazing news! I’m looking forward to discover how exactly this will work. I hope a small country like mine (Croatia) will be included :)

    Mirko – 23 January, 22:48
  136. faber
    23 January, 22:58

    what about italy ? :)

    faber – 23 January, 22:58
  137. franky
    23 January, 23:02

    Will the basic subscription still keep the site ad free?

    Personally that’s the only thing I subscribe for. 95% of my own +70k scrobbled tracks are my music.

    Also, check fe. Die Ärzte – Planet Punk (http://www.last.fm/music/Die+Ärzte/Planet+Punk). Seems to me as if it are only 30 seconds previews.

    I’m in the UK and use no proxy or whatsoever.

    franky – 23 January, 23:02
  138. Dan
    23 January, 23:05

    Simply incredible.

    Dan – 23 January, 23:05
  139. Marie
    23 January, 23:05

    Very interesting news, guys. Sounds like a truly revolutionary model! I had always been considering uploading my own music to Last.fm, and these new developments will definitely push me to do so.

    Keep up the good work! (Although I have to say, the black play buttons are an eyesore.)

    Marie – 23 January, 23:05
  140. Ebony
    23 January, 23:08

    That’s pretty awesome.

    Ebony – 23 January, 23:08
  141. jpennycook
    23 January, 23:11

    Thanks last.fm. I’m glad to see that the service has improved dramatically since the purchase by CBS, and I wish people would stop being so negative.

    I suspect that the answer to the people who want the service to be available in other countries is to lobby their local artists and record companies. For people in the listed countries, not all music is available – it would depend a lot on the record companies/artists/copyright holders concerned I suppose.

    jpennycook – 23 January, 23:11
  142. Collin1000
    23 January, 23:17

    Guys, quit whining about it. I hate having to pay 99 cents for every song I ever want. A monthly fee for unlimited songs is WAY better.

    Collin1000 – 23 January, 23:17
  143. Paul
    23 January, 23:28

    I knew there was something special about this site.

    I’m starting to feel more and more like this site can replace what will be lost from the closure of our local music stores…and a whole lot more.

    Great work guys.

    @(-<

    Paul – 23 January, 23:28
  144. Tom 7
    23 January, 23:29

    Wowzas! It’s come a long way since those barely working audioscrobbler plugin days… =)

    Tom 7 – 23 January, 23:29
  145. pdh1978
    23 January, 23:32

    At last! Congrats guys, this is fantastic news!

    pdh1978 – 23 January, 23:32
  146. ux04
    23 January, 23:33

    Yo, that’s great news. Good for you. Too bad that desktop client seriously blows. Real hard.

    ux04 – 23 January, 23:33
  147. Andrew
    23 January, 23:36

    This is why I continue to subscribe/donate money. I love this website. Innovation is key.

    Andrew – 23 January, 23:36
  148. Larvi
    23 January, 23:37

    Do you have to pay for both, subscribing to normal last.fm and unlimited play-stuff?

    Larvi – 23 January, 23:37
  149. Lenwood
    23 January, 23:39

    This is phenomenal. I’ve been a last.fm fan since I found out about you, and here you are raising the bar. Keep up the work.

    Lenwood – 23 January, 23:39
  150. pdh1978
    23 January, 23:44

    I take it back. it’s not fantastic news. It’s absolutely f*in brilliant!

    All these bands who I was too afraid to buy their albums in case they sucked, I can now listen to!

    Unbelievably brilliant – thank you guys!

    pdh1978 – 23 January, 23:44
  151. Andrea
    23 January, 23:54

    This is lovely. Proof that everyone can win.

    Andrea – 23 January, 23:54
  152. Borgendorf
    24 January, 00:02

    For those who can’t get it to work. The tracks that can be played full-length have a black play icon (instead of a grey one) and have the words “full track” in red next to the title.

    Borgendorf – 24 January, 00:02
  153. Hyo Byun
    24 January, 00:04

    Holy shit..
    You guys are amazing.
    Truly a first…

    Hyo Byun – 24 January, 00:04
  154. Tomer
    24 January, 00:12

    Please make the icons more colourful. This is annoying, seriously annoying.

    Otherwise, good job. Just gotta wait until it comes to the Netherlands too. Ah well, I can always proxy my way out of it.

    Tomer – 24 January, 00:12
  155. rhthesinner
    24 January, 00:19

    Neat!!!

    rhthesinner – 24 January, 00:19
  156. jethro
    24 January, 00:28

    do not forget to answer to those individual artists and labels, who want to keep their own free tracks from the old model, TOTALLY free under the new model, and not require users to pay a subscription for them. a difference has to be shown between the two kinds, OR you can just spell it out clearly to us that the old feature is no longer available for free.

    jethro – 24 January, 00:28
  157. Babs
    24 January, 00:49

    In the absence of previews, how many seconds of a song has to play before it a) scrobbles, b) pays the artist? I was thinking of how I’d use the new service and I was wondering what would happen when I listen to just enough to get an idea. I think it’s short-sighted to do away with previews. I use them a lot.

    It’s been asked before, but what about our tag radios and the 3 play rule? Does this mean 3 plays and that’s it, no more tune?

    Of the 3 play rule, over what period of time does it apply?

    The new service is not exactly ‘free’. Can you give us an idea of what we might be expected to pay for the higher-tier subscription?

    jethro (above) makes a good point about tracks that were free already. I’d like to know the answer to that too.

    On the subject of subscriptions – did you sort out the 31 day month thing, or are you still operating on a strict 30 days (therefore shorter than a calendar year)?

    As I said in the forums, the black/grey play triangles don’t work. Will you reconsider and bring back the blue/gold ones?

    That’s it (for now). I feel very fortunate to be able to test the new beta, though I’m worried for my purse! Sorry to all those in other countries who have to wait a little longer.

    Babs – 24 January, 00:49
  158. Rodriguez
    24 January, 01:02

    Waiting for more answers, so far this doesn’t sound like much of an improvement.

    a) if I wanted to preview an album before buying it I could already do that for free with ‘my playlist’.

    b) previously plays in the radio were unlimited, are they going to be limited now? becuase that is not “freeing music”.

    c)I like last.fm radio, the point is that it chooses music for me. The capacity to listen to a specific track or album is not a big improvement.

    d) You’ve offered nothing for your most dedicated listeners: people who already subscribe.

    e) The new icons suck dick, I see no reason you had to change them.

    I have a horrible feeling this is only going to constitute a limitation of the free service, forcing us to send more money to record companies.

    Rodriguez – 24 January, 01:02
  159. Rhys
    24 January, 01:04

    Well done guys. This is just the next step in making Last.FM a prominent internet service in the music industry.

    I know if I can listen to whole tracks and albums more often here, it will stop me going to places like myspace and purevolume to listen to new bands (that I found on here)

    Awesome

    Rhys – 24 January, 01:04
  160. Daniel Raffel
    24 January, 01:25

    nice to see the fine folks at last.fm (and cbs) sorting out problems so many others couldn’t figure out, nice work guys!

    Daniel Raffel – 24 January, 01:25
  161. Graham Anderson
    24 January, 01:25

    Dear Haggis – hint – RIAA stands for the Recording Industry Association of AMERICA.

    CBS Radio may well be a member of RIAA, but Pandora has a deal with the US collection societies – it is the non-US collection societies that Pandora failed to make a deal with to continue streaming in Europe and around the rest of the world. Collection societies like MCPS/PRS in the UK – who Last.fm have had a deal with for some time now.

    Pandora stopped in Europe because they couldn’t get the same rate with the royalty collecting societies here as they do in the US, so they withdrew. Don’t blame Last.fm for the failings of their business model.

    I quote from the Pandora blog:

    “Both the PPL (which represents the major record labels and some independent record labels) and the MCPS/PRS Alliance (which represents music publishers) have demanded per track performance minima rates which are far too high to allow ad supported radio to operate and so, hugely disappointing and depressing to us as it is, we have to block the last territory outside of the US.”

    Graham Anderson – 24 January, 01:25
  162. nicolas
    24 January, 02:42

    Greatest f**king news ever.

    nicolas – 24 January, 02:42
  163. Sheik
    24 January, 02:59

    You guys offically pwn noobs. Keep the ball rolling. I can see this becoming the center of the music industry.

    Sheik – 24 January, 02:59
  164. JT
    24 January, 03:02

    Dear team, congrats on the pioneering appraoch. I’ve placed a few of my tunes up and more to come…

    By way of background, I’m an Australian-based singer/songwriter who was
    recently invited to record my debut EP with multi-platinum, legendary US
    producer, Scott Mathews (Bowie, Cash, Stones, Orbison, Beach Boys,
    Streisand, Morrisson, Costello, Santana et al) in San Fran. Scott recently
    described my music as “the most important sound to come out of Australia
    since Midnight Oil”.

    Since that time, I’ve secured airplay (including internet radio), worldwide
    digital distribution and placed my songs on TV and compilation CDs released
    in Hollywood/LA. Following significant interest from the Asia region on my
    myspace site (including cracking the myspace TOP 10!), I recently travelled
    to Southern China – the first Australian Artist to do so – to bring my brand
    of acoutic pop to thousands, at over 50 consecutive shows.

    I invite you to listen to the five tunes from my debut EP on my sites below,
    including my website jttunes.com.
    Best wishes,

    JT (John Tomaino)

    www.myspace.com/jttunes
    www.jttunes.com

    Ph: +61 400 263 119
    (Melbourne, Australia)

    JT – 24 January, 03:02
  165. Russ Garrett
    24 January, 03:03

    This does not restrict the capability of the Last.fm Radio, or any other part of the site. This just adds features.

    Russ Garrett – 24 January, 03:03
  166. 0mgz0rz
    24 January, 03:17

    Srsly. Love you guys longtimez.

    0mgz0rz – 24 January, 03:17
  167. megatoad
    24 January, 03:24

    This sounds nice. That said, I’m still looking forward to the day of real-time weekly stats.

    megatoad – 24 January, 03:24
  168. Russ Garrett
    24 January, 03:30

    @megatoad: that day may not be too far away.

    Russ Garrett – 24 January, 03:30
  169. lautaro
    24 January, 03:44

    rock on dudes!

    lautaro – 24 January, 03:44
  170. Mike
    24 January, 04:12

    I don’t think it’s a good idea, myself, but I wish you the best of luck.

    Mike – 24 January, 04:12
  171. Tina
    24 January, 04:19

    um. Hallelujah!! I’ll certainly subscribe! You guys ROCK!

    Tina – 24 January, 04:19
  172. you-young kim
    24 January, 04:20

    wow that is amazing! way to go and a million congratulations for making this happen. this is seriously a much needed and monumental move for the way we discover, listen to, and share music :)

    you-young kim – 24 January, 04:20
  173. Chris
    24 January, 04:43

    I fail to see how this is much different from various incarnations of other music services allowing you stream music for a flat monthly fee. Playing a song or album a limited number of times for free is nice but ultimately you’re just pontificating when you say you’re “redesigning the music economy.”

    Chris – 24 January, 04:43
  174. fowgre
    24 January, 04:43

    Not that I begrudge any good fortune to the UK and Germany, but how’s about your closest, bestest neighbour to the north? eh?

    fowgre – 24 January, 04:43
  175. Jeremy
    24 January, 05:01

    Don’t know if this will be read by anyone…

    I would really like the ability to pause the tracks to let them buffer more. My connection is not fast enough to stream the tracks without constant interruptions, even with last.fm’s auto-buffering, and it basically makes full-play functionality worthless for me.

    Still a great idea, and I’m glad other people can enjoy it.

    -J

    Jeremy – 24 January, 05:01
  176. 2Serenity
    24 January, 05:02

    You have no idea how ELATED I was to see this. As a SERIOUS consumer of music and last.fm, now I have the perfect fit.

    As a USA resident, I have been trying to get many artists from myspace to understand last.fm. Some now SEE and enjoy as much as I do. This is why I subscribe to show my support.

    Now to have full length albums is perfect for me to see whether not I want to indulge and buy! =)

    I <3 last.fm!

    2Serenity – 24 January, 05:02
  177. Andrew
    24 January, 05:05

    something for you guys to consider:
    http://www.scottmccloud.com/comics/icst/icst-6/icst-6-full.html
    that is, of course, if you have any control over it, which, unfortunately you probably don’t. :\

    Andrew – 24 January, 05:05
  178. Ollie
    24 January, 05:24

    I am confused..
    What was the service before this update?
    Do I have to have paid account to listen to full albums?
    If it is free why is it legal?
    Thanks if anyone can answer the questions.
    And ill start doing some research now too.

    Ollie – 24 January, 05:24
  179. Mark
    24 January, 05:26

    If what you mean to provide is a Windows Vista- and Windows XP-only subscription service, don’t bother.

    Yes, don’t bother.

    Yahoo! already provides such a service, lamely crippled to work only on crappy operating systems. It used to work just fine on Windows 2000 before they gratuitously disabled the perfectly good client.

    If, on the other hand, you are going to start with a service for Linux and OS X users, then please, we need you, the sooner the better!

    Mark – 24 January, 05:26
  180. Lovell
    24 January, 05:37

    @Mark:

    Since at the moment this is browser based, and eventually it will just run through the regular client, I can’t see why it wouldn’t support whatever OSes they have official clients for.

    Lovell – 24 January, 05:37
  181. C26000
    24 January, 06:03

    wow amazing news! I still can’t use the new features them but sometime I will.

    ‘You can play full-length tracks and entire albums for free on the Last.fm website.’

    and

    ‘We will be paying artists directly’

    are awesome!!!

    C26000 – 24 January, 06:03
  182. Someone with a brain
    24 January, 06:16

    A flat monthly fee is not freeing the music. Rhapsody and Napster already do this exact model… with the exception of allowing indie artists the opt-in, as far as I know of.

    This is the biggest f’n joke I can think of. Heh, freeing the music. You can bet your corporate salary that I’m not opting in.

    Someone with a brain – 24 January, 06:16
  183. BoomChikiBoom
    24 January, 06:30

    nice,

    but i like the randomness of the current full players. i don’t need to listen to individual tracks in full. i like just typing tag “frank sinatra” and the radio plays artist like frank sinatra.

    but what i really want is my scrobble to work with my ipod. that bugs me. it used to work now it does. all the songs i play on my ipod don’t scrobble.

    doesn’t this bother any others. there is a forum for this but no resolution for months. with the new direction, does this mean the current features will disappear, like ipod scrobbling.

    BoomChikiBoom – 24 January, 06:30
  184. Ryan
    24 January, 06:40

    Thanks for working hard on that solution! Good move to break the 30-Seconds preview paradigm.

    I guess the subscription service is only for streaming, or are there plan for a download service?

    Ryan – 24 January, 06:40
  185. Bernd Switzerland
    24 January, 07:06

    Great news, although how come that the Strokes and some more artists seem to have completely disappeared from your inventory?

    Great work, you people, respect and thank you!

    Bernd Switzerland – 24 January, 07:06
  186. Stephen
    24 January, 07:08

    Nice . . . MCR will be billionaires.

    You rock many socks.

    Stephen – 24 January, 07:08
  187. t-rocc
    24 January, 07:30

    i would definitely like to know the details on this question posed above: “I wonder though, when you say “3 times” do you mean you can only listen to it 3 times for free… EVER? Or is it per day/week/month, or what? Also, I assume that listening to a track 3 times using the in-page preview doesn’t prevent it from playing on your radio?”

    i mean, if i’m listening to a radio station or playlist, rather than on-demand streaming, do the tracks that play steadily dwindle in availability as they get played 3 times?

    also, whether there has been any movement on the ability to scrobble from your iPod on the last.fm client – almost all my firends that i’d gotten using last.fm have dropped away as this function has been down…

    t-rocc – 24 January, 07:30
  188. Nectar_Card
    24 January, 07:37

    paying more to subscribe means we will be entitled to more. I would like to see more progress with:

    - the goal of adding “every tack ever recorded” to the streamable tracks database. There are still some large gaps in the back catalogue that need to be filled

    - sorting out the whole live version vs studio version problem.

    Nectar_Card – 24 January, 07:37
  189. Dave Appelbaum
    24 January, 08:29

    Definitely a remarkable debate. I can’t wait to see where this goes.

    Dave Appelbaum – 24 January, 08:29
  190. craig
    24 January, 08:43

    great angle, last fm want music to be free so they benefit, the major labels will obviously be benefitting hence the backing from Sony BMG, EMI, Warner etc. The only people losing out once again will be the indie artists, who don’t make enough money from their music through merchandising, publishing, tours etc. to make free music viable. By restricting unsubscribed listeners to a maximum of 3 plays before they get a notice saying they must subscribe doesn’t help out indie artists in the slightest. I presume they won’t be entitled to a slice of the subscription fee, instead they’ll be paid the pittance of a performance royalty which i believe is somewhere in the region of 0.0003c per play for online music. So they’ve listerally no chance of ever accumulating anything substantial. And their chances of selling their albums are also greatly reduced thanks to all the free music. all this will do, is further homogenize the mainstream music industry and make things even more difficult for indie artists and labels to survive.

    craig – 24 January, 08:43
  191. ponto
    24 January, 08:47

    awesome lastfm is awesome.

    ponto – 24 January, 08:47
  192. Lost FM
    24 January, 09:07

    You should clarify that only SOME music is available as full-length tracks. I did a search on Artists, and many are still in 30 sec. preview. Changing the settings don’t make difference. See the comment by: Borgendorf:
    “For those who can’t get it to work. The tracks that can be played full-length have a black play icon (instead of a grey one) and have the words “full track” in red next to the title.”

    Lost FM – 24 January, 09:07
  193. dave
    24 January, 09:20

    By adding tracks to our own playlists we were already getting unlimited plays of tracks for free! Now we’ll only be allowed to play them 3 times each, before being charged. But well done on the positive spin.

    dave – 24 January, 09:20
  194. mcdaddio
    24 January, 09:34

    Hi,

    What I was trying to say earlier was how do you know I’ve played a track 3 times? (I’d check myself but I’m still not 100% sure what I’m looking for in the new feature tbh)

    > Would it detect my username?

    > Or would it register my IP?

    If it’s the former then you could theoretically get around this system by continually creating accounts (or logging out?). I assume it’s this because then you just won’t be able to scrobble.

    If the latter, then it’s not fair to people who have several users to one IP.

    That’s why I was wondering if you had to have an account to listen to these tracks at all (i.e. Albums on Demand only available to registered users), because then all you would have to do is log out to get around it.

    Just curious :)

    [personally I am keen to pay the artists, I’d just like to know a bit more about it and ensure smaller acts were getting a fair shake (since I imagine they don’t pay to be promoted on here in the first place)]

    aaaand a final thing.. just to clarify what Russ said.. the status of the radio remains the same? The 3 Track Rule only applies to (certain?) albums on artist pages?

    Thanks :)

    mcdaddio – 24 January, 09:34
  195. to01
    24 January, 09:45

    YES, you’re right°!

    to01 – 24 January, 09:45
  196. DMR
    24 January, 09:51

    HELL YES! :D I hope to become a Swedish subscriber as soon as possible. Ive been waiting for this since Audioscrobbler became Last.fm! ^^

    DMR – 24 January, 09:51
  197. Felix
    24 January, 10:08

    Crazy surprising news!
    Thanks guys

    Felix – 24 January, 10:08
  198. Joel
    24 January, 10:10

    Like most people I think this is great news, but I’m really waiting for more details on everything

    Joel – 24 January, 10:10
  199. raaafa
    24 January, 10:42

    might be good news if we get back all the yet streamable music p.e. of the strokes. what happened to it?

    raaafa – 24 January, 10:42
  200. domlolz
    24 January, 11:05

    This is pretty awesome,just need to get more lesser known labels in on this

    domlolz – 24 January, 11:05
  201. Nick
    24 January, 11:11

    What percentage of comments on this page are whines?
    You do something great, and all people can think of is “I don’t like the colour of the play button”. The colour of the button! One guy even moaned about the font of the text on this blog.
    Lets get behind this major improvement for a little while.
    Last.fm, let this be a lesson to you. If you do something great, get the small details right as well, or your magnificent achievement will be lost in a blizzard of petty complaints.

    Nick – 24 January, 11:11
  202. David
    24 January, 11:17

    Matt,

    Firstly, congratulations on the project – it’s a brilliant idea and I can’t wait to use it.

    Secondly, artists and labels are getting paid…but are publishers/songwriters being paid too? Does your MCPS licence cover this?

    David – 24 January, 11:17
  203. Rob
    24 January, 11:44

    This is great news. The 30 second clips are not enough to get a taste of new music. Full-length tracks will lead to more sales I feel.

    Rob – 24 January, 11:44
  204. Loup Solitaire
    24 January, 11:44

    …but what is unique to Last.fm? There’s no other services that offer a subscription-based music service? I don’t really get it. Ah, maybe because you can count every track played is unique? (I don’t know a lot about music services on the Internet apart from iTunes Music store).

    Loup Solitaire – 24 January, 11:44
  205. yohann
    24 January, 12:36

    awesome.
    thanks guys

    yohann – 24 January, 12:36
  206. Srđan Prodanović
    24 January, 12:36

    I’m subscribing as soon as it’s available in Slovenia :-) ..
    Will it ever happen?

    Srđan Prodanović – 24 January, 12:36
  207. Stefan
    24 January, 12:56

    A step in the right direction for the industry. Kudos

    Stefan – 24 January, 12:56
  208. Lost FM
    24 January, 13:26

    What I see is this:

    1) People praising Last.FM

    2) “During this initial public beta period, each track can be played up to 3 times for free before a notice appears telling you about our upcoming subscription service.” = not true. Many tracks on Last.FM = 30 sec. preview

    3) What is the “public beta period” mean?

    4) What are the details of the “subscription service”?

    Don’t get me wrong, I love Last.FM. I think its the best. I’m just confused. What’s the big deal?

    Lost FM – 24 January, 13:26
  209. Jack
    24 January, 13:26

    Please support Australia :) I’ll sign up as soon as you do :D

    Jack – 24 January, 13:26
  210. Quicksand
    24 January, 14:15

    wow, just wow.
    thank you so much!

    Quicksand – 24 January, 14:15
  211. Logineo
    24 January, 14:56

    Nice move, I’m waiting for it to come to France. But in France we already have Deezer (www.deezer.com) which offers unlimited free music (with no restriction on the number of times you can listen to a particular song). So I’m wondering what may be the added value of Last.fm in comparison ?

    Logineo – 24 January, 14:56
  212. bobbo1010
    24 January, 14:56

    Yet to find other than 30 second previews. And I got excited for nothing. Uninstalling now.

    bobbo1010 – 24 January, 14:56
  213. markus
    24 January, 14:58

    Awesome! Great news!

    markus – 24 January, 14:58
  214. heavyandmelodic
    24 January, 15:00

    me too, most songs are still 30 sec. that’s the bad thing about this site. it has good music but too many bugs.

    heavyandmelodic – 24 January, 15:00
  215. Laurie Denness
    24 January, 15:05

    bobbo1010: By definition if you are uninstalling something, you’re not playing it on the site? FOD only works on the site, not in the client.

    Laurie Denness – 24 January, 15:05
  216. Andreas
    24 January, 15:06

    Sounds Dope, curious how this gonna work with the Indie Labels….and all the collection societys in different countrys….seems to be the first time that the collection of royalties gonna be shared excatly how they should: on the airplay every artist has!!!
    and not on some charts and selling statistics from big stores…
    big up!

    Andreas – 24 January, 15:06
  217. Matthew Ogle
    24 January, 15:07

    @bobbo1010:

    Our new full-length tracks only work on the website at the moment, so you may need to adjust your settings in order to listen to them there instead of in the desktop client. Sorry, we didn’t message that as well as we should have, though RJ touches on it in his post.

    @Logineo:

    Here’s Paul Lamere’s take on what differentiates us from other services that seem similar on paper. :)

    Matthew Ogle – 24 January, 15:07
  218. Logineo
    24 January, 16:04

    @Matthew Ogle

    Thanks for the link. Indeed, the “communautary aspect” and the music discovery features of Last.fm are really great.

    Deezer has just implemented them in a V2 recently launched, but they are not (for the moment…) a match with the Last.fm features. So let’s see how both services are gonna evolve, and wait for the Last.fm launch in France ;)

    Logineo – 24 January, 16:04
  219. buffyrat
    24 January, 16:27

    Well this is interesting isn’t it. Just when you think music couldn’t be devalued any further ;)

    Seriously, I am very very pleased with this announcement for many reasons… I think last.fm have got the balance just right.

    1 – The Listener
    You can now listen to whole albums before deciding to buy (30 secs was never enough)… just like you would in a records shop decades ago. How many times have you bought an album to find it’s a dud apart from the one track you already knew? Not anymore. And if I like what I hear, of course I’ll still buy it, I’ll want it on my MP3 player, car etc etc. I can’t see this effecting album sales. Sure some people will rip the tracks, people have always done this, just check out my Mums loft for C90s, but on the whole piracy isn’t the music indutry killer we’re led to believe, most people are happy to pay for their tunes, me included.

    I have long considered subscribing to a streaming music service such as Napster as I spend a lot of time at my PC. But to my knowledge Naspter is the only one available in the UK and they insist you use Windows Media Player… which I haven’t got as it crashed beyond repair (MS themselves told me to download a third party player!!). And as a last.fm subscriber I’ll be very interested to see what package is offered to compete against Naspter and the like… presumably less advertising and the removal of the “3 times only” cap? So yes, it then follows the Napster model but the free “3 times only” service, this is a HUGE leap forward, don’t underestimate how big this announcement is. It’s a revolution people!

    2 – The Signed Artist and the Majors
    The only negatives here are another nail in the value of music. The artists and labels will be getting royalties of course from the advertsing revenue (or so I believe)but that won’t be as much in the pocket as a tradiational album sale and I’m sure there will be some rumblings about it supposedly affecting album sales. But of course if someone plays the album 3 times (3xroyalties) and THEN buys it… well who’d be complaing about revenue then? BUT this is an ongoing trend what with supermarket pricing, downloads etc etc… this has been coming for years and the only reason the music industry is in trouble is because they stuck their heads in the sand for so long.
    If they embrace the new business models, they will survive, but lets be honest, the music industry of the last few decades has been a bit of gravy train for those on board. I’ve been there, I know of what I speak ;)

    3 – The Unsigned Artist
    Paying unsigned artists a share of the advertising revenue to stream their tracks is a master stroke. Last.fm didn’t have to do this so a round of applause for thinking about the needs of the struggling unsigned artist.

    So in summary, everyone’s a winner and I congratulate last.fm and wish them the best of luck with this new model… I personally believe it can’t fail.

    These opinions are my own of course so don’t shout at me if you disagree, just airing my views :D

    buffyrat – 24 January, 16:27
  220. 'ku 'lu
    24 January, 16:30

    that’s so great you’re paying the artists! after—let me check— 3002 plays on Rhapsody and 2840 on MusicNet (both of which pay the artist per play) i’ve netted a whopping $80.32!

    'ku 'lu – 24 January, 16:30
  221. Cooloer
    24 January, 16:49

    yesssszzzz!!!!

    Cooloer – 24 January, 16:49
  222. 'ku 'lu
    24 January, 17:05

    and with indie/unsigned bands actively driving listeners to the lastfm site to see the ads & subscribe & hear the music & see the ads, the ad revenue for lastfm will significantly increase, which can only mean more $ for the artist, right?

    'ku 'lu – 24 January, 17:05
  223. megadethnatic
    24 January, 17:20

    BTW:
    Do you guys know that you got an article on heise.de:
    http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/102337

    megadethnatic – 24 January, 17:20
  224. igorblackbelt
    24 January, 17:20

    I love you. Seriously. Like, seriously.

    igorblackbelt – 24 January, 17:20
  225. buffyrat
    24 January, 17:22

    Further to my previous comments I would like to add my support to some of the comments above that champion last.fm prior to the announcement and hope that as well as offering this full track service, which I fully endorse, the traditional last.fm features that have gained such an unparrelled reputation would not be lost?

    buffyrat – 24 January, 17:22
  226. jannon
    24 January, 17:22

    Russ said: “This does not restrict the capability of the Last.fm Radio, or any other part of the site. This just adds features.”

    I say, if that’s true — hooray!!!

    jannon – 24 January, 17:22
  227. melesana
    24 January, 17:34

    Here’s how it looks to me:

    There used to be lots of free on demand streamable tracks and albums. Now they’re free only for the first three plays.

    Do artists get paid, either directly or through agencies, for the three free plays?

    There used to be lots of advertising. Now there’ll be lots and LOTS of advertising.

    To resolve the new frustrations they’ve just created for users, CBS offers us the opportunity to pay for service. They spin this as an improvement.

    Rhapsody and Imeem (so far: there’ll be many more) do something like this in the US. Deezer and radio.blog.club in France do free on demand streaming with minimal advertising.

    I’m disappointed. The best I can hope for is minimal disruption. Rodriguez’ comments were right on.

    melesana – 24 January, 17:34
  228. Matthew Ogle
    24 January, 17:53

    @melesana:

    Nope, the three-play limit only applies to tracks that used to be 30-second previews. We didn’t add any limitations to previously free tracks. Also, artists are paid for every play.

    Matthew Ogle – 24 January, 17:53
  229. Dinis Correia
    24 January, 18:06

    @Matthew Ogle,

    Uff, what a relief, knowing it only applies to those tracks.

    Anyways, that’s the kind of info you guys need to update this blog entry with :)

    Great work!

    Dinis Correia – 24 January, 18:06
  230. John Ruan
    24 January, 18:15

    Redefining FREE.

    Free the music == Move your money to my pockets! thank you very much.

    Like others have said. This announcement is full of lies.

    It’s not the first.
    It’s not the biggest.
    It’s not unique.
    It’s not free (as in gratis).

    Deezer.com allows me listening as much as I want, as many times as I want, for FREE, and is available in my country.

    As for the added bonus music discoverability/recommendation service… What is the point of that if it is not free. Beside the fact that there are a lot of other similar services.

    I’ve used your service for at least a year and the recommendation service is pitiful. Hardly recommends anything worthy.

    Your desktop service is even worse. I made the mistake of installing your plugins for winamp, windows media player. So everytime I opened a file that dammed scrobbler whould open up at the same time slowing down the other and my computer. And happened no matter the file (30 secs previews; video files, etc.). Annoying and stupid. And the program doesn’t make it easy to disable individual plugins.

    You’ve build a strong brand. And people follow brand like sheep, independent of the quality of service. The more clear example of this is Apple.

    The purpose of this post is not to get a “free lunch”. I’m not protesting against you charging for the service. What I’m against is false advertising.

    John Ruan – 24 January, 18:15
  231. Spencer
    24 January, 18:41

    so… john, your saying apple is a poor example of service?

    well, at least you didnt completely discredit yourself until your eighth paragraph….

    Spencer – 24 January, 18:41
  232. Steven
    24 January, 18:45

    Will there be any changes in the “basic subscription” when this goes live?
    Currently subscribers don’t see any ads, but since the new royalty program will be based on advertising revenue will basic subscribers continue to enjoy this benefit or will they start seeing ads on track (or other) pages?

    Steven – 24 January, 18:45
  233. PsiClops
    24 January, 18:46

    Is it only on-demand listens that have the 3-song limit? Does the song then revert to a 30-second preview after that? I’m concerned that while listening to the radio, I will never again hear a song after it has been played 3 times.

    PsiClops – 24 January, 18:46
  234. Andy
    24 January, 18:51

    I’m a little confused. Are all tracks supposed to be full-length streamable now? I thought I’d check out some old Curve album’s I’ve not heard but most of the tracks are still only 30 secs. If this is how it should be, then I can’t see how having streamable tracks is a new thing (although well done on paying the artists, I think this will turn out to be a big step in the future of the music industry).

    Andy – 24 January, 18:51
  235. Bo
    24 January, 18:52

    sounds exciting, but:
    it’s supposed to work now? i don’t see what i need to change in my playback-settings and i can listen to 30 seconds preview as before. only change is the colour of the play-button…
    any suggestions what i’m doing worng, anyone?
    greets!

    Bo – 24 January, 18:52
  236. Bo
    24 January, 18:57

    i could have seen this before, sorry:
    “Our new full-length tracks only work on the website at the moment, so you may need to adjust your settings in order to listen to them there instead of in the desktop client. Sorry, we didn’t message that as well as we should have, though RJ touches on it in his post.”

    Bo – 24 January, 18:57
  237. joshkouri
    24 January, 19:54

    awesome! this is what i assumed last.fm (audioscrobbler) did when i first signed up 2.5 years ago. it’s great that we can finally have it! last.fm keeps getting better and better. i’ll have to subscribe.

    joshkouri – 24 January, 19:54
  238. Carla
    24 January, 20:02

    thats seriously brilliant news! Excellent. xx

    Carla – 24 January, 20:02
  239. cK
    24 January, 20:07

    YAY!

    cK – 24 January, 20:07
  240. kayvaan
    24 January, 20:15

    this is awesome and a smart move. i can guarantee that i will now be on last.fm WAAAY more! and i’ll be recommending to friends and putting widgets up, etc.

    this is a milestone for you guys!

    kayvaan – 24 January, 20:15
  241. Jordan
    24 January, 20:20

    I wish it were available in Canada.

    Jordan – 24 January, 20:20
  242. Peeved
    24 January, 20:20

    Wow this is nice… if you had asked the artists first. I’m an independent artist & was able to listen to my entire album yet I have never granted my permission. Where can i choose NOT to be part of this service?

    Peeved – 24 January, 20:20
  243. Litis
    24 January, 20:36

    Wow.
    I can’t wait until it arrives here.

    Litis – 24 January, 20:36
  244. Mati
    24 January, 20:46

    100k of users are from Poland. So I think that it’d be a good idea to make it available in Poland, wouldn’t it?

    Mati – 24 January, 20:46
  245. nexist
    24 January, 21:18

    I have two questions:

    1) Does this mean the Radio’s and Similar Artists features will no longer be available?

    2) How does this effect people who don’t listen to pop music such as what is put out by EMI, etc?

    nexist – 24 January, 21:18
  246. Annasay
    24 January, 22:11

    I’m from the band Annasay and as an independent band this idea rocks.

    Annasay – 24 January, 22:11
  247. Laurie Denness
    24 January, 22:20

    @nexist

    1) Of course not! Everything is the same as it was before, only now you can listen to what you want, when you want.

    2) It affects them massively, because ANY artist can sign up and make their music available for YOU to listen to for free… AND they get paid for it :)

    Laurie Denness – 24 January, 22:20
  248. ben_indy
    24 January, 22:41

    First off, I love last.fm and have used it with pleasure consistently for quite awhile now. I truly respect your services and will continue to use it to find new musicians that fit my tastes.

    That said, is the number of musicians included with this feature going to increase pretty quickly? I’d say 8 or 9 out of 10 musicians I look at only allow 30 second previews or no previews. Yes, I’m listening to these musicians from the website flash player, not using the software.

    “Something we’ve wanted for years—for people who visit Last.fm to be able to play any track for free—is now possible.” <== Any track? That seems far from true. It’s not that I don’t respect your services, I truly do and may even sign up for the additional services. I just wish you had provided a more honest and thorough explanation of these new features.

    ben_indy – 24 January, 22:41
  249. Christopher Fahey
    24 January, 22:58

    I still see plenty, if not most, of the songs don’t offer full-length options. Is this supposed to be the case?

    Christopher Fahey – 24 January, 22:58
  250. jackie o brien
    24 January, 23:12

    i do not understand why my music is not on lastfm radio station and i can not find my music on amazon.com here is my email jackieobrien1962@charter.net

    jackie o brien – 24 January, 23:12
  251. David
    24 January, 23:33

    Sounds like great news, keep up the good work. Last.fm has become my most popular source for listening to music from the first day on I knew about this.

    David – 24 January, 23:33
  252. Doom
    25 January, 00:14

    Now that’s more like it!

    Doom – 25 January, 00:14
  253. SoulSurvivoress
    25 January, 00:34

    Great news, especially for unsigned artists!!! but tell me, what does this actually means? “artists and labels, who get paid every time someone streams a song(…) get paid based on how popular a song is with their fans, instead of a fixed amount” Does that means small unsigned artists and labels get little money and big artists and big labels who already makes loads of money will make even more money?! because that would be less great…

    SoulSurvivoress – 25 January, 00:34
  254. New Loo K
    25 January, 00:37

    yeah baby.. that’ what i’m wishing for.

    you are awesome guys .. hell yeah

    New Loo K – 25 January, 00:37
  255. paulfree1
    25 January, 00:45

    of all the music sites i visit – U R #1

    paulfree1 – 25 January, 00:45
  256. Dave Eightball
    25 January, 00:48

    I picked the first track that came to my head – Bow Wow Wow’s “I Want Candy”.

    The track does not play the correct version. It’s playing a live version, which is nice enough, but not what I wanted to hear.

    http://www.last.fm/music/Bow+Wow+Wow/_/I+Want+Candy

    Dave Eightball – 25 January, 00:48
  257. pubertrx
    25 January, 01:45

    where’s CANADA?

    pubertrx – 25 January, 01:45
  258. Joachim Fritz
    25 January, 03:11

    Are you guys also subject to the stupid licensing rules of the labels??
    Sample: From the German iTunes side I can buy music if I have a German issued credit card that I cannot buy from the American iTunes side with an American issued credit card. This is sofa King STUPID!!!!!

    Joachim Fritz – 25 January, 03:11
  259. William A. Lebreton
    25 January, 04:12

    This is amazing. Just amazing.
    I’m gonna try this out right now.

    William A. Lebreton – 25 January, 04:12
  260. Richard Stallman
    25 January, 04:36

    What’s so great about full length tracks if you’re only renting them? It sounds like this new functionality hasn’t been rolled out to the last.fm client because they haven’t got the DRM working yet. Will the client cease to be Free software? I’ll never hear these full length tracks since it requires the proprietary Flash plugin. Resist DRM and non-free software because FREEDOM IS IMPORTANT.

    Richard Stallman – 25 January, 04:36
  261. JON
    25 January, 05:28

    ALL I CAN SAY IS QTRAX, THIS PLACE WILL BE GONE IN LESS THAN 30 DAYS. JOIN THE REAL REVOLUTION

    BLLN TO 5.00

    JON – 25 January, 05:28
  262. JON
    25 January, 05:30

    QTRAX.COM WITH 25 MILLION SONGS FOR FREE FOR DOWNLOADING ETC

    NAPSTER 5 MILLION SONGS
    ITUNES 10 MILLION SONGS
    QTRAX.COM 25 MILLION AT LAUNCH, 50 MILL WITH IN 1 YEAR, SORRY LAST.FM

    YOUR NOW LAST, QTRAX.COM WILL RULE THE MUSIC INDUSTRY, EO STORY

    JON – 25 January, 05:30
  263. Reidmix
    25 January, 06:29

    I’m so proud of you!

    Reidmix – 25 January, 06:29
  264. iamartiste
    25 January, 07:09

    this website IS the music revolution. amazing.

    iamartiste – 25 January, 07:09
  265. Marybeth D'Amico
    25 January, 08:59

    Yikes, someone is going to pay me for my music? ALRIGHT! :-) Good move, gang.

    Marybeth D'Amico – 25 January, 08:59
  266. Dgold
    25 January, 09:12

    Congrats Last FM. I have reposted about this on a few music forums I like to visit for certain underground bands in the States ;)

    Dgold – 25 January, 09:12
  267. Vanessa
    25 January, 09:13

    - As someone who manages an artist who has the tracks up for full length streaming do I have to change anything?

    - And why is this toted as all new, when it really is just an improvement of what has already been in place for a longer while?
    (Artist pages, streaming of many albums, radios)?

    Vanessa – 25 January, 09:13
  268. ksch
    25 January, 10:23

    Bravo Last.fm!! I for one have been dreaming about this for years. :)

    ksch – 25 January, 10:23
  269. Beatles Lover
    25 January, 10:29

    <b>This ROCKS!! </b>

    been using YouTube – but this is much better quality mp3 and with a wide selection

    Beatles Lover – 25 January, 10:29
  270. Coco Love Alcorn
    25 January, 11:52

    cool ideas.

    : )

    Coco Love Alcorn – 25 January, 11:52
  271. Lisa Devaney
    25 January, 11:56

    This is exciting — love that Last.FM is not only continuing to shake up the traditional music industry models, but so good at being buddies with the big guys, while not overlooking the artists. This sounds like one of those ‘win-win’ scenarios they like to talk about in business.

    Do the artist’s tracks have to be signed to one of the labels you are partnering with?

    What about indie labels or unsigned artists getting into the mix with their new releases?

    Lisa Devaney
    www.haimediagroup.com

    Lisa Devaney – 25 January, 11:56
  272. Lisa Devaney
    25 January, 12:03

    Just plunging into the public beta now, so I think I’ve answered my own question that I asked in my recent comment — looks like Last.FM is making it very easy for unsigned artists to upload & get into the action for this new tool. Last.FM you ROCK THE FREE WORLD!

    Lisa Devaney
    www.haimediagroup.com

    Lisa Devaney – 25 January, 12:03
  273. Sporsmaal2
    25 January, 12:48

    hmmm…
    sounds good!
    although i cant see it making anyone rich (unless they are allready)

    well done mr last.fm

    Sporsmaal2 – 25 January, 12:48
  274. chiselled
    25 January, 13:32

    hey Last.FM – there are many good innovations – however – this improvement was really great. thanks … and thanks once again^^

    chiselled – 25 January, 13:32
  275. Hixaga Ximatik
    25 January, 13:46

    FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!! FREE!!

    Hixaga Ximatik – 25 January, 13:46
  276. Deekstar
    25 January, 14:18

    get in there ya genius blagards, how much incentive will this give the little guy, trying to get his songs heard? and now get a royalty, great work guys

    Deekstar – 25 January, 14:18
  277. Oio
    25 January, 14:46

    Ok, so can someone from UK tell us whats the price of the New Subscribtion?

    Oio – 25 January, 14:46
  278. Marcus Scheller
    25 January, 16:08

    good stuff. let’s wait for the toc ;)

    Marcus Scheller – 25 January, 16:08
  279. Jakk
    25 January, 17:51

    Supscription?!

    does that mean we have to pay? :O

    Jakk – 25 January, 17:51
  280. Laurie Denness
    25 January, 18:01

    @Jakk:

    A subscription, yes, means you have to pay. The free-on-demand service you are using now will always be the same and free. You will, in the future, be able to purchase a subscription which allows unlimited plays, rather than just 3 plays.

    Laurie Denness – 25 January, 18:01
  281. jaensn
    25 January, 19:03

    Hi there! Interesting news indeed! I just have a little question… until now I could add the scrobbled tracks to my playlist (if they are available in full length) and as far as I know anyone can listen to these playlist tracks as often as he pleases.

    Will this behavior change due to the new abonnement? Will it still be possible to listen to the playlist tracks as usual?

    Great service by the way… last.fm enhanced my listening and artist knowledge a lot! Keep on!

    jaensn – 25 January, 19:03
  282. kayvaan
    25 January, 19:28

    The site is SOOOOO slow! What’s up?

    (And it’s not my connection, nothing else is slow).

    kayvaan – 25 January, 19:28
  283. maz35
    25 January, 19:29

    Its a great feature but I’m not sure it makes up for the current loss of Beggars Group content.

    maz35 – 25 January, 19:29
  284. stitcherer
    25 January, 21:06

    yes! and then some, for shedding light on an inevitable sound-sorting challenge ((great thanks to you for))… starting THE perpetual goal…so far sounds/looks potentionaly outstanding…gotta have an ongoing look @ ?s keyed to those written on this/these page(s)- http://blog.last.fm/2008/01/23/free-the-music…how important is it for contributors to know, assist, conjoin and encourage the melding of invisible boundaries- into an aural/vison global family context- in return for their receiving universal sunshine…lotsa words, details.. royalty collection society?…once again let’s go on, for whatever gets shook out

    stitcherer – 25 January, 21:06
  285. McKillaboy
    25 January, 21:10

    Free? Only the sun shines for free.

    McKillaboy – 25 January, 21:10
  286. SEoD
    25 January, 21:56

    Uhm, you always could play some tracks in full, some as previews (30sec clip) and some not at all.

    From looking at the artists in my chart, it seems you can now play some tracks in full, some as previews (30sec clip) and some not at all.

    “Something we’ve wanted for years—for people who visit Last.fm to be able to play any track for free—is now possible.”

    Possible? yes. Possible by pointing your browser at http://last.fm? no.

    SEoD – 25 January, 21:56
  287. ben
    26 January, 00:34

    arrrgh this i so annoying, people are so ungrateful. no, they are not going to change the existing service, it just means we get to listen to full length tracks for a period, before they return to previews. they are not going to change the radio, the recommendation service or anything, that is like the bedrock which they have built this site upon.

    idiots.

    ben – 26 January, 00:34
  288. djpinklady
    26 January, 00:50

    lovin the new music business…

    djpinklady – 26 January, 00:50
  289. liklibo
    26 January, 01:26

    Awesome!

    liklibo – 26 January, 01:26
  290. cdog
    26 January, 03:12

    How do I save a stream to MP3?

    cdog – 26 January, 03:12
  291. Tony Dodd
    26 January, 04:51

    @cdog: … You click the buy this track link on the track page. ;-)

    @jaensn: Nothing about the way you’ve been able to listen to music previously has changed. The only thing we’ve done is added a new feature – the ability to listen to a lot of tracks that were previously just 30 second previews as full length, for free.

    @ben: I love you.

    @McKillaboy: Richard M. Stallman would disagree with you on that point.

    @maz35: Indeed. =(

    @SEoD: You’re kinda missing the point. The number of tracks you can now play for free has increased by quite a fair bit. We’re working on teething troubles where some tracks that should be FOD are only giving previews, but hey, this is a beta, it should work perfectly, without any glitches or snags straight away… right? .

    Tony Dodd – 26 January, 04:51
  292. Courtney
    26 January, 06:00

    Awesome, thanks!!

    Courtney – 26 January, 06:00
  293. steve
    26 January, 07:47

    Whats so great about america, uk, and germany that they are the only ones who get this?

    does the rest of the world not matter to you?

    steve – 26 January, 07:47
  294. lactophobia
    26 January, 09:42

    errhh,
    the only thing is, this are the launch countries ;-)
    “Ooops, forgot to mention that info on the new subscription stuff is only visible/available in our launch countries today (US, UK, and Germany). Apologies!”

    By the way:
    “Last.fm, I like it!”

    lactophobia – 26 January, 09:42
  295. SEoD
    26 January, 10:19

    @Tony: I don’t have a problem with the service at all – it’s awesome and I’ve been using it in its various forms for ages. This is the first time where I feel that last.fm has made overblown claims about what it offers though.

    “The number of tracks you can now play for free has increased by quite a fair bit”

    would have been nearer the truth than

    “Something we’ve wanted for years—for people who visit Last.fm to be able to play any track for free—is now possible”

    unless the 30s previews are all being upgraded. From what I can gather that isn’t the case.

    I think the last.fm service is amazing and clearly improving all the time, but the service sells itself better than overblown hype can. .

    SEoD – 26 January, 10:19
  296. krischall
    26 January, 10:51

    Looking forward to tell the bands I work with about this new concept.

    I am really excited about these news.

    krischall – 26 January, 10:51
  297. Oliver Lewisohn
    26 January, 12:57

    How much of a song do you have to listen to before it counts towards your three-play maximum?

    Just now, I clicked an “Autostart” link for a particular track by Nine Black Alps, listened to the track, then navigated away from that page. When I hit “back” it started playing again – I stopped it after a few seconds, does that count? I’m not particularly bothered about this particular track which I own anyway, but it may well be something that does concern me with other tracks in future. It’d be good to know.

    Oliver Lewisohn – 26 January, 12:57
  298. Jonty
    26 January, 13:06

    @Oliver Lewisohn:
    After you listen to more than 30 seconds of a track, it counts toward the three-play limit. We figured that a lot of people will just want a quick preview, and it shouldn’t be counted!

    Jonty – 26 January, 13:06
  299. Marcos
    26 January, 13:32

    That’s so good. Well done!

    Marcos – 26 January, 13:32
  300. PeteB
    26 January, 13:46

    Superb work, didn’t think I could love last.fm any more than I already do, but you’ve proved me wrong.

    Please don’t make the new subscription too expensive though (and will us existing subscribers get a loyalty discount? ;) )

    You all rock!

    PeteB – 26 January, 13:46
  301. tornado
    26 January, 14:27

    tornado higgins

    tornado – 26 January, 14:27
  302. ryadeum
    26 January, 15:04

    balanced article on that on profy.com

    ryadeum – 26 January, 15:04
  303. tonausstrom
    26 January, 15:45

    Hmm, I have checked a couple of my favorite artists, but most stuff is still preview-only, in fact I’ve found very few full-length tracks… I guess you haven’t contracted the respective labels? E.g. Rephlex, Bpitch Control, Shitkatapult, Earache, just to name a few prominent ones. sigh

    tonausstrom – 26 January, 15:45
  304. Anonymous
    26 January, 16:11

    you can already listen to free on-demand music at www.deezer.com

    Anonymous – 26 January, 16:11
  305. urbanned
    26 January, 16:12

    Genius idea. I can’t wait for Canada to be added to the list of countries.

    urbanned – 26 January, 16:12
  306. mboles
    26 January, 16:59

    well done team!!!…you make me want to tear up…(sniff, sniff)

    mboles – 26 January, 16:59
  307. Roy
    26 January, 17:26

    Will unsigned artists also get payed for on-demand plays of those tracks which they have set to full track which don’t have the 3 plays limit?

    Roy – 26 January, 17:26
  308. Jonty
    26 January, 21:23

    @Roy: Yes!

    Jonty – 26 January, 21:23
  309. ryadeum
    26 January, 23:26

    another cool article on readwriteweb

    very promising … thank you guys ;)

    ryadeum – 26 January, 23:26
  310. epat
    27 January, 00:33

    Sounds cool! I’ve always wanted a way to preview full tracks and albums before I buy them! I hardly ever buy an album without first finding out whether I like the music! Before, I’d either have to have heard it played somewhere or cough illegally obtained a copy beforehand, now I can just play straight off of here! Plus, you’re the only music site that works well on (or even properly supports!) linux! I’m gonna have fun!… Thanks guys!

    ~epat. :)

    epat – 27 January, 00:33
  311. kakalto
    27 January, 05:30

    You may not realise how much this makes last.fm the win. Keep expanding it to other countries. Love you guys!

    Love the direct artist pay, too.

    =D

    kakalto – 27 January, 05:30
  312. hermindseye
    27 January, 06:30

    I knew it! The whole idea behind this website was to eventually MAKE MONEY…just like all the other music websites. I hope that doesn’t mean all of us with a free account who don’t care for listening to full tracks/albums will have to pay too.

    hermindseye – 27 January, 06:30
  313. Paul Stephensen
    27 January, 08:31

    Great stuff people I love your site and can’t keep away. I would love to have a mobile version of your client software so I can listen to my last.fm music from wherever I am though. Keep up the great work.

    Paul Stephensen – 27 January, 08:31
  314. Leisenberg
    27 January, 10:21

    Great job,
    this will redefine business modells of the music industry. It works pretty good here in Germany. Hope it remaims stable,
    Manfred Leisenberg

    Leisenberg – 27 January, 10:21
  315. Ginfress
    27 January, 12:29

    Just one comment:

    How can you write down “free on demand” while people have to buy a subscription to be able to use the feature?

    Besides that i do like this coming change, hopefully the Netherlands will be added to the list of available contries.

    Ginfress – 27 January, 12:29
  316. Laurie Denness
    27 January, 12:32

    @Ginfress,
    It is, FREE and on demand ;) Unfortunately because you’re not in a place where this has been launched it may sound complicated. It’s quite simple though really.. You can listen to anything you like (that the labels have agreed to) on demand, for free, but only up to 3 times, after that if you wish to hear that song again on demand, you will need to subscribe.

    Laurie Denness – 27 January, 12:32
  317. LeighBCD
    27 January, 12:49

    I think this is a great move forward – I love the idea of being able to listen to whole albums. I was just about to move over to Rhapsody.com so I could have this flexibility and then you announce this – hooray!!

    HOWEVER, it would be great once the beta is over if you give subscribers the ability to click one button to play a whole album rather than to have to click on each individual song. At least, individual clicks is what you have to do at the moment… would love to be able to select a whole album and listen to it all the way through.

    Anyway – brilliant move forward :-)

    Leigh

    LeighBCD – 27 January, 12:49
  318. igneoustempest
    27 January, 14:07

    Only a few labels joined to this FOD thing. So I think it is a little bit exaggerated to say that there are already “millions of songs” available.

    However, it is a good beginning.

    It would be good to know what are the real possibilities of this FOD feature to expand to most of the countries..

    igneoustempest – 27 January, 14:07
  319. gozombie records on last.fm
    27 January, 14:40

    This is amazing. As members of the poor in the US, we thank you…

    Now let us hope that the rest of the world can be as fortunate as America’s unemployed and starving.

    gozombie records on last.fm – 27 January, 14:40
  320. Andy
    27 January, 15:43

    Okay, I was a little confused about this the other day but it turns out things weren’t working quite right. Now it’s all up and running properly, I have to say, it’s absolutely brilliant. This may be my favourite thing ever.

    Andy – 27 January, 15:43
  321. Dan
    27 January, 15:55

    Here’s hoping the service is Mac-friendly. Remember: Mac Users are more likely to pay for music :)

    Dan – 27 January, 15:55
  322. aru
    27 January, 16:00

    Great job.

    Do this for POLAND

    KTHXBAI

    aru – 27 January, 16:00
  323. Kallie Marie
    27 January, 18:19

    Last.fm warms my little musical heart. Starving musicians thank you for our trickle of royalties. :)

    Kallie Marie – 27 January, 18:19
  324. -Sinji
    27 January, 19:10

    Call me stupid but does that mean previously freely streamable tracks wll have to be paid for too?

    -Sinji – 27 January, 19:10
  325. Tony Dodd
    27 January, 19:15

    @-Sinji: No. Anything that was a full length track before is a full length track now. The Free On Demand service only envelopes 30 second previews to make those available too.

    @Dan: Half our the people here use Mac’s – including Matt (head of our web team). No chance of leaving you guys out of the fun.

    Tony Dodd – 27 January, 19:15
  326. hippy dave
    27 January, 21:56

    i’m not saying anything against the subscription service itself, but announcing it as “we believe music should be free to listen to, so please pay us a subscription” doesn’t make me want to use it.

    hippy dave – 27 January, 21:56
  327. Yank in Ulster
    27 January, 23:25

    I am very impressed with the business deal you guys have pulled off with the major labels, and for the opportunity for all the independents. I’ve just fired off an urgent email to my cousin who’s in such a band!

    As with others, I’m curious about your subscription plans. Will users be able to take their music with them? Or only listen online?

    Yank in Ulster – 27 January, 23:25
  328. Tony Dodd
    28 January, 02:33

    @hippy dave: The subscription only effects you if you try to listen to a track more than 3 times. I imagine this won’t effect 99.9% of users, who’ll mainly use the service to check out new songs – in full – and whole albums, with a view to buying them. This, is completely free to do, you don’t need a subscription to listen to the music, and you never will. The subscription just lifts the limit that is applied after you’ve listened to x track more than 3 times.

    Tony Dodd – 28 January, 02:33
  329. Laura Neidhardt
    28 January, 05:11

    WOW!!!! This is a great idea and will benefit everyone involved so much! GOD BLESS LAST.FM!!!!!

    Laura Neidhardt – 28 January, 05:11
  330. Dennis Binkhorst
    28 January, 07:36

    Great idea, hope to be able to check this new feature out soon :) Nothing is more annoying than being expected to buy an album after being able to listen to one or two free streaming artist tracks only. And then find out the few songs you did hear do not represent the album as a whole at all, of course after purchasing it. As i see it, this new feature should be a win-win situation for both listeners and (independent) record companies.

    Dennis Binkhorst – 28 January, 07:36
  331. Felipe Ramos
    28 January, 08:43

    Nice idea… but how much it going to cost? and how this is going to affect the tag radio?

    Felipe Ramos – 28 January, 08:43
  332. Andy
    28 January, 09:53

    I can see why listening to an album continuously is blocked but will there be a way around this? It would be really nice to be able to play an album on and listen to it while doing something else, without having to return to my PC after every track.

    Maybe you could have a link that says “play this album continuously in the Last.fm software” and leave the in-page plays to play one track at a time.

    Or is continuous playback going to be a subscriber-only option?

    Andy – 28 January, 09:53
  333. sarah
    28 January, 11:09

    That’s great news, I can’t wait to have a go!

    sarah – 28 January, 11:09
  334. RJ
    28 January, 11:14

    Okay – I’m going to post a FUD-busting follow up to answer the questions that came up. I will close this article for comments now, as everyone is asking the same questions :)

    Please check the blog later today for the update.

    RJ – 28 January, 11:14

Comments are closed for this entry.