Music Business

Kim Dotcom’s Music Service “Baboom” Set To Soft Launch In January

Kim-dotcom-avatarKim Dotcom, known primarily for the long-gone Megaupload, the doing quite well Mega and public theatrics that would make PT Barnum proud, says he's set to soft-launch his new music streaming service Baboom in January. However, he will be the only musician featured as a demo with the full service launching a few months later. Fair enough. However, the service will be supported in part by ad-replacement plugins which are quite controversial and have been blocked by browser companies in the past.

Back in September Kim Dotcom confirmed that he was developing a music service, that it was called Baboom plus:

"When it’s released Baboom will give the public access to free music, while compensating artists through advertising revenue. With this 'free music' business model Dotcom believes he can decrease music piracy while giving artists proper compensation for their work."

In addition, Baboom is expected to have a paid version where music fans can pay for music and not be bothered by ads.

New Baboom Details

This week, in a 2-part interview with Wired, Kim Dotcom revealed a few more details including an ad replacement scheme that he's discussed in the past and that has basically been killed when other companies tried it:

"Baboom users can install a little plugin that replaces the ads you'd normally see on the internet with ones that we control through our ad network. Just as advertisers go to AdWords to buy ads from Google for certain search terms, they'll be able to come to us and buy these ads at half the price and still have ads shown against the same keywords. And 100 percent of the money is credited to the user, who can spend it on music."

"It's basically rewarding the user for the ad impressions that they are exposed to every day. We estimate that users will be able to buy around ten additional albums each year [at an artist-specified price point] without [additional] charge."

Unfortunately they didn't clarify if the money credited to the ad viewer/Baboom user stays in the system or what else it can be used for. If it stays in the system, that may well go to album sales or provide credits for those who want to upgrade. This is an important detail because, if they can use it on other things, then they'll probably not be buying albums.

Here's more on the progress of Baboom and money issues:

"I've been working on it for 3.5 years (with some interruptions after the raid) and we have a team of 22 people in Portugal developing the site. We are making an iTunes-Spotify hybrid competitor which allows artists to sell direct to their fanbase and keep 90 percent of sales. On top of that we'll be the first site that offers a solution for artists to make money even when we offer music for free."

Given that many services are ad-supported and that's where the revenue to pay artists is coming from, Kim Dotcom seems to be misrepresenting that aspect though it is a bit different than most ad-supported approaches.

Don't Forget He's Now A Musician!

Of course, Kim Dotcom is up to a lot of other things, including trying to be a musician. He describes that process which mostly involves other artists taking his ideas and putting them into practice.

He says:

"I'm launching my own album — of electronic dance music — in January because I wanted to understand what an artist goes through to make a record. We'll do a soft launch of Baboom in January where you will only see my artist page so you can see how the service works and use different options to purchase music or download it for free. The full site will launch a few months later."

That's right, Kim Dotcom Superstar will lead the way into a new world of streaming music.

In Part 2 Kim Dotcom gets more into politics and so forth.

[Kim Dotcom thumbnail image jacked from his way rad SoundCloud page.]


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/Facebook) is building a writing hub at Flux Research. To suggest topics about music tech, DIY music biz or music marketing for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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  1. I’m sure Google won’t have anything to say about him running over their ads with his own. Dude’s got balls. I’ll give him that.
    While he’s blowing himself out of proportion, I think it’s a fairly sound idea. The problem is, as soon as one company makes ad overlays work, they’ll start popping up everywhere. That will wreak havoc with the big ad vendors and they’ll find a way to shut it down.

  2. If he can get people to actually seek out adware based on his reputation as a fighter for individual and hacker rights at the same time…dude the only thing rarer then this is whatever toolbar somebody has actually found a use for. Do not underestimate the potential here for bargain basement affiliate add placement. If he goes the pirate bay route and just packages the whole thing as a separate browser…lol anyways w/e Long live the Kim!

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