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The Promise of Digital Music: Still a Few Dots Unconnected November 7, 2007

Posted by David Card in Media.

The scene: fairly hip – yet still neighborhood – bar in the Lower East Side
The cast: several 30-somethings (yeah, and me, too) 75% of whom have media industry ties
The gadgets: multiple cell phones & Blackberries, one iPhone, one Zune
The set-up: alt-80’s music playing on the bar’s sound system

Catchy song that no one recognizes. Oops, no song ID system on any of our devices. Solution: ask bartender, get band’s name.

Search for WiFi to download song from iTunes store. Oops, no WiFi. Edge network won’t let you download or stream songs. We give up because we’re supposed to be in a bar engaging with our friends, not music shopping.

Some time later, half the group re-locates to pizza place. What the heck, let’s try for WiFi again, because we’re media analysts, dammit. Success!

Search iTunes on band’s name. Problem: band name is also popular song title. Entails more searching. Possible solution: search on band’s name on other sites. Problem: iPhone malfunction — inability to enter text in Yahoo Music search form. Back to iTunes. Play clips of, like, seven or eight songs, because we’re not just media analysts, dammit, we’re digital music analysts.

Finally, success! Song identified and purchased from iTunes store.

Verdict: Way too much effort for normal human beings.

Jupiter report on impulse purchase opportunities for over-the-air downloads.

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