A Very Sad Day: Soundcloud Writes its Own Obituary

It is with great regret that I inform you all that the greatest thing to happen to the mixtape deejay since the cassette, may soon be no more.  Apparently, Soundcloud now has a music recognition system that does not allow deejays to upload mixes that contains music that has been flagged by the copyright holder.  You can go HERE to read all about it and read the angry comments by soundcloud users.  Though this new policy has been in effect since January 2011, this is all new news to me.  I discovered this the hard way because I was trying to upload my new Tarantino Breaks mix when I was informed that my mix would not be allowed to upload due to copyright infringement.  This not only saddens me for the obvious reasons, but it bums me out because I freaking love soundcloud.  Soundcloud is the Facebook for deejays.  Now, it appears that I will be forced to find another site.


Anonymous said...

Too bad!!!!

Binh said...

Dear Mr. Pipo,

a couple of weeks ago I also got a quite bumming mail from the soundcloud-folks that an uploaded file has been deactivated due to a copyright protected track. Although - I need to say that this was only a matter of time. Not wanting to kick off the ever-so-humming conversation about rights infringement and creative commons and so on - concerning soundcloud it is the same as with all other internet goodies. In most cases, when a certain growth and status has been achieved, the interest of profit and / or legal questions and transformations away from the former intent of those services will arise. Well, probably the intent of making profit is inherited from the beginning straight away... I assume.

Nevertheless, I just might throw in the question if any of you mixtape-afficionados can comment on sites such as mixcrate-com. Is it any better for our purposes to spread and listen to crafty mixed music?
Or do I have to switch back completely to my Technics TR373 and my other tapedecks (namely in kitchen & car) to be rolling on ferro chrome in a legit way (ha, what a wordplay)?

And on a further note, thank you Pipomixes for maintaining your blogspot, ever-so-often giving me J.Rocc-like audiophile goodness.

Excuse my broken english and have a nice day.

Anonymous said...

Hmm, is it time to switch over to mixcrate then?

pipomixes said...

I suppose I was a little naive about the whole thing. I assumed that this sort of thing wouldn't have to soundcloud because it is a pay for subscription service and I figured the copyright laws are more lenient in Germany than the U.S.

Mixcrate is the natural option. I want to support mixcrate, but it simply isn't as good of a platform as soundcloud. Either way, I think we may all be forced to mixcrate in the very near future

lightningclap said...

Yeah, I heard about that but I was skeptical that they would actually start enforcing it. That sucks, I was just getting ready to bite the bullet and go for a paid account.

I really spend a good 80-90% of my listening time on there...it's been great up till now.

Eric Nord said...

1. Torrents are the hardest to shut down, but they require seeding, which means you need to dedicate a powerful, high-bandwidth (and always-on) computer to seeding. And there is a slight chance your ISP might throttle or hassle you. You would definitely need to avoid putting any correctly-spelled major label artists in your filenames.

2. Anonymous 3rd party hosting (Megaupload, Mediafire, etc) is easy to use but definitely vulnerable.

3. "Self-hosting" is a bit harder, but can be much easier for users. Its vulnerability is almost completely a matter of your scale and what you post.

4. Mixcrate and Podomatic, like Soundcloud, are easy to use, but inherently vulnerable. I see no reason why Mixcrate might not suffer the same fate as Soundcloud. Personally, I would avoid these solutions, especially since they are so specific to music. You are much safer when you look for non-music-specific hosting.

As I see it, the best combination of ease/reliability is still 3rd party anonymous hosting. The only thing that might be more reliable, if you are tech-savvy, is to set-up a private web hosting account in a place like Hong Kong, Russia, etc. and keep a low profile. Most crackdowns revolve around well-known movie/games/music files that are getting massive downloads. The vast majority of music mixes do not fall into that category, and so theoretically we should be able to stay under the radar.

RLFM said...

so while this is sad I am a little more interested in finding out when you will be posting your tarantino breaks mix because I need to schedule myself to be around a computer the very minute you post that shit because if there are two things i love its pipo's mixes and tarantino films

pipomixes said...


Your absolutely right on all points. I am more dissappointed by the fact that I really enjoyed soundcloud. I enjoyed using it as a listener and as a deejay. Everything about it was perfect for our purposes and deejays and listeners.



Anonymous said...

I am under the impression that the software in question works in a very similar way to track ID applications on phones and the like. I.e it "listens" to the first 10 odd seconds of the track and matches them to the copyrighted file wavelength.

All that is neccessary is to heavily manipulate (scratch, cut, double up, mix, blend etc) the first bit of the track in question and it usually goes through?

I've been trying this and they've gone through mostly.

This restriction is more to catch the legions of reeditting "artists" who essentially just quantize a barry white track and bang it up on the internet for nowt.

That being said it obviously places an unneccessary restriction on mix tapes - it makes it hard to "drop" a copyrighted track for instance" but all is not lost.

Shame about the tarantino breaks thing though mate. Where are you going to post that?

pipomixes said...

I had a feeling it might work like that. So if I just start a mix with a 1 minute intro will that get by? Is it only scanning the first 10 seconds of the entire file? Or, is the software able to detect the first 10 sec. of each new song that is mixed in?

Eric Nord said...

The waveform recognition software could just as easily take a random sample from anywhere in the mix. The software is simply checking the waveform against a database of copyrighted recordings. Only obscure and/or non-U.S. recordings will have a good chance of being unrecognized.

That particular copyright cat-and-mouse game is definitely not worth playing.

Anonymous said...

back to the underground

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, I've heard if you pitch up or down from zero while the track plays out this software has trouble recognizing it.

pipomixes said...

"For what it's worth, I've heard if you pitch up or down from zero while the track plays out this software has trouble recognizing it."

Worked! (knock on wood)

Eric Nord said...

I've seen a lot of stuff passing through. So maybe the screening system is not fully effective (yet). Are the alternatives (to Soundcloud) really so bad that people are considering altering how they mix?