Give me the music

Not totally unrelated to content management, but I have an idea. I’m sometimes full of them, to the dismay of my colleagues.

As many usual working dudes out here, I spend about 2 hours in my car each day. And I happen to like music (doh!) and there is stuck me: “I like this song, I’d like to buy it”.

So here it is, my invention (a quick google on the topic revealed nothing similar):

Let’s build something which will allow regular persons to purchase songs they hear on the radio. Without knowing the  artist or song title. Even without being capable to reproduce it in the shower. And, staying true to my ideas, this must be “one button easy”.

Let’s double the complexity. I’ll probably need 2 buttons: “Buy this!” and “I like this”.

How can it be done?

First of all, who are the involved players?

At this moment, I can think of: radio stations, radio producers. Coming in second: music rights regulators, car manufacturers (remember, I was in my car, and you can find me there 2 hours each day… listening to music).

So, it would be good to put these buttons on the radio.

Sure, one crazy (?) idea would be to creat an app for my mobile device to record provide the button and then do some magic to find out what the song is.

How can it find out: build a signature of a brief recording of the music and then compare it to an online exhaustive database.  Nah…. For those of you who want this… try shazam, it’s really cool and it works.

Record the exact time and lookup in the playlist of “that” radio. This means i have to also select the radio I’m listening to. Not an easy task, I’ll probably not do it if it needs so much actions on my side.

So, the best way would be to have the button in the radio. The radio also knows the station I’m tuned in, the time (usually) and also has access to the RDS stream of the station, if any… to pick up any useful information (some deliver the song name by RDS).

So, let’s build inside the radio a GSM module to send the timestamp/radio station/any other thing to a cloud server (see…. see… I used the magic word). That server will know my account, will communicate with the radio station to find out the exact song details and will purchase or mark it as favorite, or put it in a shopping basket.

On my convenience I will login in the cloud and download my tune on the iPod/mp3player/computer/tivo/whatever. Simple, easy, micropurchase.

I can even think of bundles between mobile operators and radio/car manufacturers to charge that tune to my phone bill linked to the GSM card… so that would be even easier.

In the cloud, I can anonymize the data from many users an build a reccomandation system for other songs/items… the sky is the limit.

This is cool, let’s do it.

Where’s the money? The radio station can be paid a part of the song fee, helping it support the fees it pays for music to the regulators/guilds/autors. The car/radio manufacturer adds another feature to it’s product and thus differentiates from the competition, thus it has more sales and exclusive cusomers.

Speaking of this idea, we can implement it in Android and apply it on mobile phones with an FM radio. That solves quite a lot of challenges but limits the user base. But this user base is formed by youg people who love micropayments and are also more in touch with modern technology (like logging in the cloud). We just need to cooperation of radio stations.

Why am I coming open with this idea and not patent it myself? Because I’m sick and tired ot software patents. And I hope that by making this public I help discourage anyone to patent it.  And since I’m going to build it myself, that will also help.

Do you wish to work together? If I can help and provide valuable work items, I’m all in. There are multiple possible variations on the above, like connection your phone to the radio by Bluetooh, instead of building the GSM inside the radio…

How is this related to content management? Well, is somehow an answer to “if all the obstacles to ECM adoption were to go away, what would you do with ECM?” and a followup to my idea of “One button for all I want“.

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