It has been a couple of weeks since I deactivated my FaceBook account.
Various people are wondering why I quit FB.
It wasn’t meant to be some kind of statement.
The great majority of my FaceBook “friends” are people I’ve never met. More specifically, the great majority of contacts I had there are other independent musicians “promoting” their songs and gigs etc. I don’t mind being pitched but it is depressing for me to constantly see so many people putting forth such effort towards something that is, by design, an exercise in futility.
The people that actually do know me have my email address if they need to get in touch. In fact, even people who don’t know me have access to my email address through the “Contact” button above.
One thing I did a lot on FaceBook was post links to this website. I figured that it was an easy way to let some people know when I posted. And perhaps, some of those indie musicians might take interest because I do often write about music and the business and stuff.
My website traffic has declined steadily since I started my FB profile. This could be due to a number of factors.
One is that I reduced the frequency of posts partly because if I wanted to let people know what I was listening to, reading or thinking in a brief way, I would just share a link or blurb on FB instead of a blog post.
I’ve also learned that the new Google search metrics have stuff built in where FaceBook can negatively affect traffic. The way I understand it is, that when you post a link on FB, if a bunch of people see it in their feed and don’t click it lowers your search ranking. So, all of those people who don’t really know me and ignore my self promotion work against me.
All of that plus the fact that the whole thing felt less and less “social” as it went along. A bunch of memes and political left vs. right stuff that isn’t useful or productive and does not encourage actual discussion or solutions.
Listening To This As I Write:
A.K.A. Grafitti Man by John Trudell
I remember hearing a lot about this when it originally appeared in 1986. I only actually heard the thing a few times but, it had a good impact on me.
I’m not sure how much of this 1992 release is from the first one (that was only released as a cassette) and how much of it is a redo.
I was originally interested because Jesse Ed Davis was involved and I am a big fan of his (I assume some of these tracks feature Mark Shark, who was working with Trudell in ’92 instead of Jesse…which is cool too ’cause Shark gets it).
The premise of combining a poet reciting with musical accompaniment is intriguing and not enough have taken a good stab at it.
Trudell’s poetry is interesting…Native American life and culture, geopolitical issues, love and loss, Americana.
The production is dated (superfluous reverbs and chorus, that kind of thing) but, not enough to taint a pleasant experience.
All in all a real nifty record. A true fusion of the tribal, the deep blues, the boogie and the poetic soul.
A Pew Research Center poll points to more chinks in the FaceBook facade…
But the poll also found that many users seem to be getting bored with the website started in 2004. Besides the 61 percent who report taking long breaks from it, 42 percent of those aged 18-29, 34 percent of those 30-49, and 23 percent of users 50 and over have decreased their time on Facebook over the last year.
When asked why users were abandoning Facebook, 21 percent said they have run out of time to check in with the site. Some 10 percent “pointed toward a general lack of interest in the site,” an equal 10 percent said it lacked “compelling content,” another 9 percent said it was too full of “drama” and “excessive gossip” from friends, and 8 percent worried that they were becoming addicts.
Social networking seems less and less social as we go along.
Reading between the numbers, I would say that a big part of the problem with FaceBook is, despite all of the hype for years about the necessity of a FB presence for “branding” purposes, it is a poor marketing platform. Yet, it is thick with not only established brands buying ad space but every want-to-be, under-capitalized entrepreneur “inviting” and announcing every movement no matter how minute.
DMN has this from the Dead Kennedy’s, East Bay Ray, on how YouTube is sending musicians to Wal-Mart…
“YouTube’s deal is they split it 55/45, 55 to the artist, 45 to them. But, it’s after expenses, and so after looking at the financial reports, Google’s basic expenses are 36 percent.
So, taking 36 percent off the top, it kind of works out that they are paying 35 percent, and taking 65 percent. So YouTube’s profit last year was about $1.2 billion, profit, and they paid out about $600 million.
So, if they had done the same percentage as say iTunes, 30/70 instead of 65/35, that’s a difference of about $600 million. Now if you take a middle class musician, say, $50,000 year, year in and year out, divide it into $600 million, that’s 12,000 people that Google has siphoned the money off.
And that’s 12,000 people that are now working in the salt mines of Walmart.”
Ray’s math may be fuzzy and designed to provoke at the same time (hmm…fuzzy and provocative). I think the crux is this; YouTube has not helped the climate for the working musician but, it’s a little like Western Europe trying to reset the economy and production to 1914 standards after WWI.
Listening To This As I Write:
Start Running by Ride The Blinds
This album is from 2006 and MOG recommended it because I listened to Marc Benno & The Nightcrawlers…that is perhaps a pretty obscure reference point for most of you so…I will go with the more familiar post-Faces, post-Stones via Black Crowes and such take. Pretty popular turf, pretty crowded back road.
But, these guys do it well. A plethora of well saturated valves, drums sound big but have some air around them and the singer seems to have a knack for evoking the Brit Blooze shouters without directly copping them and, at times, he gets a bit of Daltrey in there which is a good thing.
This morning, Digital Music news says Facebook Just Flopped. So What Does That Mean for Spotify?…
If Facebook is flopping on Wall Street, what does that mean for the vast ecosystem of Facebook-dependent models? Like Spotify, which is about to get puffed into the stratosphere by Goldman Sachs? The reported $220 million Spotify round would feature a $100 million injection from Goldman…
…In fact, it’s a major ingredient in a Spotify shell game that features monstrous Wall Street expectations, and gargantuan profits for a small group of Spotify, major label, VC, and Goldman stakeholders. It bears similarity to other social-oriented startups, which would be reduced to scraps without a tightly-wound Facebook tie-in. But what if Facebook fails to perform – on Wall Street or elsewhere – and becomes a victim of its own insane hype?
I think it’s a classic follow the money situation.
Spotify is in bed with Goldman Sachs.
Let’s not forget that last year Goldman Sachs injected $450 Million in to FaceBook.
And, of course, we need to keep in mind that GS has virtually “occupied” not only the the Bush II administration but, the Obama one as well.
And, OF COURSE, we should never forget that Goldman Sachs was a big part of the $29 TRILLION Bailout that inspired the phrase “too big to fail”.
And, Goldman Sachs is part of the big boys…
…who are part of the even bigger boys.
So, Spotify will not be going away because they are tied to FaceBook. And, FaceBook may temporarily be looking silly with the stock nosedive but, FaceBook is, in the long run, part of the exclusive Too Big To Fail Club.