last.fm, considered to be one of the more successful ‘new-economy’ music services is changeing its business model.
Historically, it allowed free 30 second streaming of all tracks … so you could sample before you buy.
Now, it offers full streaming of each track …. a maximum of 3 times. And youd ont buy each track anymore…. the way it woks is you subscribe to last.fm …. can listen to as much as you like, and the artists get paid according to which tracks got listened to the most.
This is actually very similar to one of the first business models I was considering for Ambisonia. Right now I am tending more towards the ‘donation’ model, since I believe that many ‘appreciators’ of ambisonics would be happy to through around a few dollars to the authors of pieces.
If I had more development resources, I could actually implement all these models … instead of just talking about them.