Why we are not evil, new page at Magnatune
Following up on the feedback a few days ago in the Why do 63% of our visitors leave right away? thread, there were multiple calls for indicating why Magnatune is different/better than other music sites.
At the same time, people wanted album art on the front cover, and top-selling albums, and such, and so the new home page that was rolled out last week had album art on the front cover. The "mission statement" was removed from the home page and moved to a "our mission" link off the home page.
Many people chimed in with why they thought Magnatune was special, so I decided to make a "Why we are not evil" page at Magnatune that lists the reasons.
Below is a list of the reasons I came up with. I loosely sorted them by "most interesting and likely to help a newcomer"
If I missed something you feel is important, please let me know. Likewise, if something below generates a "yawn" reaction, say that too.
Why we are not evil:
- Perfect audio quality: you get CD quality audio WAV files, as well as super-high quality VBR MP3s, AAC, and open source friendly FLAC and OGG formats (sample download page)
- No DRM: No copy protection (DRM), you can do what you like with your music, unlike iTunes and Windows-media based web sites
- Listen to everything: all our albums can be listened to in their entirety before you buy
- Good music: all our music is hand-picked, we accept 3 out of every 100 submissions
- MP3s everywhere: Our MP3s play everywhere: iPods, Creative, SanDisk, iRiver and every portable device that supports MP3s
- Musicians get paid: 50% of your purchase price goes directly to the musician
- Album art: every album includes high quality album art (in both Adobe Acrobat and 300DPI JPG formats)
- Give to your fiends: We encourage you to give 3 copies of any music you buy to your friends
- Name your price: you choose how much you want to pay for the music, and 50% of your choice goes to the artist
- Downloads and CDs: all our music can be bought as a download or a delivere-by-postal-mail CD
- Creative Commons: All our 128k MP3s are some-rights-reserved Creative Commons licensed
- Remix friendly: Tons of our music, acapellas and samples are available for Remixing at CC Mixter
- 100% legal: you're not breaking any laws, Magnatune is completely legal all over the world
- Licensing: all our music can be licensed for commercial use instantly and online. We license more online than anyone else in the world, which is why we're #1 in Google for "music licensing"
- Podcast-legal: podcasters can obtain and use our music for free
- Free review copies: music reviewers (web, print and radio) can get free copies of all our music
- No major labels: we have absolutely nothing to do with major labels or the RIAA
I put a link to it off the home page, right under the "license our music" link, and also in the info section.
Posted by John Buckman on March 21, 2006 at 02:31 PM | Permalink
"Give to your fiends..."
I think you meant "friends" here. Some of my best friends are fiends. :)
Posted by: scottandrew at Mar 21, 2006 3:40:40 PM
Looks great. Two suggestions:
- 50% of your purchase price goes directly to the musician, "which is x% higher than the industry average" (cuz the average person might not know that 50% is good).
- Maybe instead of (or in addition to) the "WHY we are not evil" link, make the "WE ARE NOT EVIL" portion of the top logo link to this page ... perhaps with a glowy mouse-over so people know to click it.
Off to hang with my fiends,
Posted by: Ian at Mar 21, 2006 4:59:27 PM
1. "Ogg Vorbis", not "OGG".
2. Typo: delivere-by-postal-mail - missing 'd' in delivered.
3. The "WHY we are not evil" link is not enough. Ian's suggestion is good. One possibility is adding a "(learn why)" link whenever you mention "we are not evil".
Posted by: Nathan Jones at Mar 21, 2006 10:02:31 PM
I think you're missing the key point - most users don't care whether you're evil or not. They want good music. Focus on the lack of evilness; that's a great thing. But put more emphasis on the music you sell; that's why people come to your site.
You're different - you don't just sell everything. You choose what you sell. You're a hybrid - part on-line seller, part record label.
Find a one-click way that listeners can hear a random track from each genre. Give them free downloads, a couple of tracks a week. Focus on your product, not your philosophy - philosophy is great, but people aren't buy that; it's a plus.
Posted by: Kirk McElhearn at Mar 21, 2006 11:40:37 PM
I think you meant "friends" here. Some of my best friends are fiends.
You're right, we don't want to bad-mouth fiends. Fixed.
make the "WE ARE NOT EVIL" portion of the top logo link to this page
An excellent idea, did it.
missing 'd' in delivered.
One possibility is adding a "(learn why)" link whenever you mention "we are not evil".
A good idea, I'll look for places to do that.
I think you're missing the key point - most users don't care whether you're evil or not. They want good music.
And that's exactly what the text of the document focusses on. Look at the first 4 points: perfect audio quality, no DRM, try-before-you-buy, hand-picked music. Those all about what you will get out of this site, concretely, not ethics.
I could call the page "Why we are better" and I thought about it and shopped that around for feedback, but people always ask me "why are you not evil" so I thought I'd answer it.
Posted by: John Buckman at Mar 22, 2006 12:10:33 AM
OGG is container format for (currently) audio and video. "OGG format" is akin to "ZIP format", i.e. meaningless. The audio format that you are offering (it's great that you do, BTW!) is called "Vorbis" or "Ogg Vorbis". Getting this so badly wrong tends to annoy the very people who want to buy Vorbis tracks instead of MP3s.
Posted by: VX at Mar 22, 2006 5:08:33 AM
To Nathan Jones - I don't know about "most people" but Magnatune is the ONLY label that I ever recommend to anyone as a label, and the only label I buy anything from with the exception of occasional indie cd's made by musicians I know personally. I haven't bought a CD in a record store in over 5 years. Evil (or lack of it) is everything. If there really has to be a mortal battle between the RIAA and an uncensored Internet, I want to do everything I can to make sure that the RIAA is the one that dies. Labels like Magnatune will be the only ones left standing.
Posted by: Paul at Mar 27, 2006 3:07:08 AM
I'm really glad to see the top albums, etc at /info/stats. This was the biggest reason why I never bought anything when the site was first featured on slashdot. Still, maybe the other available stats could be made more easily accessible with a side-bar along the lines of www.audiri.com. Otherwise, I might not find out that I can get a list of top sellers in my fav genre, for instance, and leave without listening.
Posted by: Nobodysbusiness at Apr 2, 2006 6:52:22 PM