SoundUnwound builds something…

Amazon/IMDB just launched SoundUnwound and are opening up a deep set of music information to the public, and it is editable by the public.

It sounds good, and they are “mushing” together their own music info with MusicBrainz.  Some users at MusicBrainz are asking some pertinent questions about how contributions to the SU community will be reflected in the MB data.  MB data is maintained by the public and all factual data is dedicated to the Public Domain.  There’s no requirement on SU to push the data back, but will they?

Also boingboing and paidcontent reports the public can edit wiki-style, but this isn’t quite true.  Every edit a user makes goes through an approval process before being published.  This indicates to me an immediate untrust for community contribution.  In addition, if you make changes, and they are approved, the content copyright is owned by SU, not by the community.  Along with SU’s call to action on the home page and FAQs,

“See something wrong or missing? You can fix it! SoundUnwound pages are open for anyone to edit.”

“Go try some editing. It’s strangely addictive.”

this doesn’t seem like a very appealing social contract to me.  i.e.,

“Please, make changes, and if you do, we have the rights to profit from them”.

It is great that they have opened up a huge amount of information, but building a community around music this is not.  It simply feels like a front for sales on Amazon.

NB. I also had a look at their T&C’s which include a hyper linking guide that you must comply with, including the correct way of referencing the SU service.  Sorry, the correct way to reference the site just then should have been “Find out more about the Terms and Conditions of the service at SoundUnwound“.

Very strange, they seem a little over controlling with regards to their perception/branding.


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