Billboard Discontinues Indie Artist Pro Service
( UPDATED) Less than one year after its launch, Billboard this week announced that: "Billboard Pro has been discontinued, effective March 1, 2012. We will be moving our DIY and indie artist-focused content to a new section on Billboard.biz in the coming weeks, and the Uncharted Chart will continue to operate on Billboard.com."
The site had promised analytics, indie focused editorial and charts, discounts and the chance to "even have their music selected to play for a weekly playlist on Billboard". But from the start, many in the indie community were distrustful of Pro's connections to the old school music industry. "Why would any indie artist support this corporate brand," commented one Hypebot reader after the launch. "It represents the antithesis of indie music."
"100% of this content is available free, and better written, elsewhere online," according to indie rapper Hump Jones. "All they really have to offer is a logo."
With online publications, including Hypebot and MusicThinkTank, along with artist services startups offering free resources, collecting $99 from a generation of musicians less impressed by the Billboard brand evidently proved impossible.