Conventions & Awards

My Top Takeaways From #SXSW 2011

image from The din of musicians and companies vying for attention at SXSW 2011 reminded me standing in NYC's Time Square enveloped in a mashup of humanity, honking taxis and blinking Jumbotrons.  But several important and sometimes surprising messages did rise above the noise:

  • The Disruption Has Just Started – The music industry is starting to move beyond the disruption of the digital age, but other industries from mobile to banking are still in the middle of it.  What happens next with things like micropayments, smartphones, bandwidth will impact how music is discovered and consumed in ways that we can barely imagine.
  • Collaborate Or Die – Whether you a music tech startup or a musician, you can't do it alone. Look to your left and right.  These should probably be your new partners. Companies that don't embrace partnerships and collaboration won't be at SXSW next year
  • Stars Still Matter – I'm not talking about the lines outside Duran Duran, but rather that sadly most people still care that Kayne uses your app, Timbaland produced your track and Esperanza Spalding is on the same record label.
  • You Still Need To Update Your MySpace Page – Some very smart and informed people believe that MySpace will make comeback. One pointed to the fact the the major label – who own part of MySpace – have a vested interest in a resurgence.
  • You're Fucked If You Can't Describe What You Do In 10 Words Or Less. (Shit, it took me 14 words to say that.)

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  1. Just because the major label (which I’m sure was a typo but maybe a Freudian slip) have a vested interested in myspace doesn’t mean it will come back–even if some very smart people think it will.
    The major labels had a vested interested in Zune ($1 a unit), Comes With Music,, and CDs. It’s doubtful any are coming back.
    Myspace comes back if it delivers a service or content people want. Having the major labels involved may even be a hindrance.

  2. MySpace is still important though because it is a recognized site for fans to obtain information about their favorite bands… especially those bands who cannot afford to maintain a solid website

  3. MySpace is still important and has great brand recognition, but people are all figuring things out and starting to turn away from MySpace.
    There are many more options today to create website on the cheap/for free. As long as your band name comes up on a google search, you are looking good, no matter which host you use (assuming it’s fast and easy, which myspace is not)

  4. “Now all I need is ya’ll to pronounce my name/It’s ‘Kanye’, but some of my plaques they still say ‘Kayne'” – KANYE West.

  5. Majors own Spotify. Checkmate?
    Not really. Spotify is overrated and starting its own download store.

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