Reply To: SP subscription?

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On Arthur wrote:

THE SMASHING PUMPKINS ARCHIVE NEWSLETTER #5

Hello SP World!

I hope everybody is doing well. I’ve been keeping busy combing through the archives, and setting up figures for the subscription service idea. Now it’s time to take all of our ideas and try to make them work in the real world. I have received a lot of responses about which formats people prefer. I’m looking at both lossless files and regular MP3 files. Lossless files (like FLAC) are audio files that retain all of the original fidelity of the recording. MP3 is where the audio file is compressed, and you lose some of the fidelity in the recording. If you have an iPod or MP3 player, it is probably filled with either MP3 or M4A (Apple’s MP3 standard) files.

There are many audiophiles within the niche community that this project is geared to, and I know they prefer lossless files for this material. There is a concern about piracy. We live in a world where people rip and upload material without any regard to what they’re doing. It is so common these days that it has turned the whole music business upside down. If we set up a subscription service, people share it with all of their friends, and it ends up on torrent sites, it would be hard to get additional people to sign up for it. We would need a certain number of subscribers to make this into a long-term project. When we start, it might be the case of the more subscribers we get, the more material we put out. I’m also looking at including an extremely limited tangible item that would make it worthwhile to subscribe if you were a collector.

I mentioned in my latest blog about finding a show from ’89 with \"I Am One, Part II\" opening the show. There are many shows that are in the archive that are unknown to the fan community. I know sites like SPFC.org do a great job at researching and gathering the tour history of the band. They’re not always correct though. Many of the early dates are missing set lists or venue names. Most of this information comes from bootlegs or show listings in old newspapers. I found another early show from ’89 that we posted the set list for in the Tour section of SP.com. The archives don’t just have a wealth of recordings; it contains a wealth of information too. I bet most of you didn’t know that the band played \"Stars Fall In\" live in the early days. As we get more into pulling recordings for release, we might find songs that the band worked on for tours that were never played. If you’re interested in this kind of stuff, then the subscription-model would be right up your alley.

If you have any ideas on what would make this worthwhile to you, I would definitely be interested in what you think. If we include a tangible item, what would you want it to be? I’m hoping that we can create a nice tight community for the archives, where there would be communication on both sides. It might be something where I’ll use your feedback on what to put out next in the subscription service. That’s the road I hope we’re heading to, but we need your help along the way.

Frank

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."