Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Drowned In Sound no longer drowning in music news

Drowned In Sound have withdrawn from the rush to be first with the news (in the spirit of which, it's taken me the best part of a month to get round to mentioning this):

We are becoming increasingly aware at DiS towers that what people want from us isn't more reviews, more information (or "news" as some sites call it), more more, MORE! People want a hand to hold, and someone to whisper in their ear ideas as to what to focus their time on.

We hear your screams for a refined sense of recommendation, but we want to try to deliver it without seeming like the boy who cried wolf awesome... We're working at ways to do this better (with our limited resources) in an attempt to save you time ploughing through the overwhelming slew of releases which hit the shelves each month. Basically, we're trying to turn down the volume and put quality first.

This is why we've stopped running news that you probably already got from direct from the artist (or festivals) mouth or saw retweeted seconds after it was announced. This is also why we've given up on trying to fight with the PR industry for "exclusives" which for about five minutes generate traffic, before the same info or video gets republished on 3000 other music sites (some even remember to link back to the source). The traffic this sort of thing generates isn't worth the time and compromises that getting into bed with labels is worth.
It must be an intractable problem for a commercial music website - there's an awful lot of places pushing music news out, and once it's out, it's everywhere.

I'm not sure the correct response to this is what DIS are doing - you now get a monthly news mixtape. Because if news gets stale in seconds, there's nothing like waiting a month to hear it again, presumably.

The funny thing is that Drowned In Sound know that their role, if they're to have one, is meant to be that of curator - shouldn't they be bringing that approach to the news as well as music itself? Nobody has to just chunter out every press release they get, or link to every other site's album streams; in a sea of noise, isn't it the role of a news site to wisely select the items that their audience will find useful?

Drowned In Sound appear to have thrown the Marilyn Manson Eats A Live Baby out with the Tour Dates From Band As Dull As Bathwater..


Anonymous said...

I'm guessing the reference to releases "hitting the shelves" is not some super clever joke but just the sort of lazy cliché that DiS is renowned for?

Anonymous II said...

Haha - Anonymous, can you point to any of these sources that are piling renown upon DiS for an abundance of clichés? Or was that actually the sort of lazy generalisation for which internet trolls are renowned?

Anonymous said...

Seriously? You just have to have read DiS with any regularity over the past 12 years. So much amateur content, it's not surprising really

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