Saturday, May 30, 2009

Indaba

I had a chance to go to the Indaba offices yesterday and hang with Dan Zaccagnino and team for quite a while. (If you were to tell me, just ten years ago that I'd be having a meeting at a fancy dot com across the street from the Bowery Mission, I'd have offered you a free ride to Bellevue.)

Let me get this out of the way: I've had many conversations, over the years, with several musicians' sites, collaboration, remix and otherwise, and these were the first and only guys I talked with that didn't emphasize business model and monetization. In fact, it barely came up at all. At Indaba, I can safely report, the musicians and their needs really do come first and that was a surprising, pleasant relief.

Probably not coincidentally they are great CC citizens, working hard at maximizing the exposure and educating their members on the benefits of liberal licensing. We all quickly came to the conclusion that not only was there a lot of synergy between our sites, but that technically, it would be feasible to connect up in several interesting ways. (I don't want to get too explicit about what we talked about because it wouldn't be fair to them to set specific expectation levels. These guys are busy and where they set their priorities is their business. I will state the obvious however, that as a collaboration tool, these guys are generating a huge pool of stems that, if the Commons could tap into, would be an enormous benefit to everybody. )

The core functionality of Indaba's site is as a collaboration tool and I was, again, pleasantly surprised at how focused and non-distracted they are. The temptations to add all kinds of side-line features are great, but I got the impression that if a feature didn't directly result in a more productive and creative experience for their users, they were not interested in "polluting" the main site with it.

Color me impressed and psyched.

3 comments:

teru said...

Cool. I would have loved to hear you guys talking about stuff.

If there was a way to import and loop samples from ccmixter within their in-browser mixing console, I actually wouldn't need any software. Which I guess says a lot about how little I know about music software. lol.

fourstones said...

I don't think we'd have to do anything on our side to make that happen if they choose to do that and choose to use the existing Query API - but they would definitely need to do work on their side to make it happen.

gurdonark said...

It's good to hear that they are heading in such positive directions.