Publishing music is no longer a job reserved only for record labels. Now, anyone can post their original music with the Swedish based website known as SoundCloud. Users of the site have access to this database for free and are allowed to upload as much three hours worth of audio with a free account.
While SoundCloud has existed since 2008, there have been many upgrades and affiliation changes that have enhanced the site’s name and popularity around the world. In 2012, the company became mobile-friendly to smart phones and tablets by providing apps for easier access to the site’s features. That same year, SoundCloud reached their 10 million user mark. One of the site’s partners includes Warner Music, which is a part of the Warner Brothers label. SoundCloud users cannot only search for tracks by their favorite artists, but they can also add their own spin on music by producing remixes and brand new originals. One of the best new ways to get discovered is through social media exposure and SoundCloud also enables users to seamlessly share their music through Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr.
Through this recent social media outlet for musicians, songs that are uploaded to each person’s profile can either be labeled as private for only select users to enjoy, or public. Public creations are available for anyone to listen and provide feedback for the artists through the comments feature. Statistics are measured on SoundCloud by tracking each person’s progress and popularity per upload.
SoundCloud provides an etiquette section where they explain what is not permitted to be added to the database for the protection of its users and the website. There is a description of the copyright infringement law that clearly explains to the users that uploading segments that are not original works or without permission of the creator(s) is a punishable offense. While promoting a person’s profile is encouraged, spamming other users or faking popularity is actively discouraged.
In 2013, the producers of the Grammy’s, also known as the Recording Academy, joined SoundCloud’s Pro Partner program that allows brands to have an enhanced membership with the company. The Recording Academy uses submissions received by artist hopefuls and platforms the most talented musicians as part of a “professional mentoring,” program (SoundCloud Press Release). SoundCloud provides another alternative for the aspiring musicians and music producers of today to have their original tracks distributed worldwide.