back to article Facebook's music plans mean you'll never leave Facebook

A year ago, Facebook was denying that it was a media company. No way, not ever. Not us! Then it said it was "not a traditional media company". But quite soon, it could be the media company that you never leave. Yes, we've mocked the video dabblings before, but things have moved on apace since then, particularly in music. And …

  1. David Nash

    How come Spotify or a rival (not even itunes) isn't in that top-10 list?

    1. iron Silver badge

      As I understand it the kids "listen" to music on YouTube these days, which is on the list.

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        I'm more amazed that Amazon is on the list at the top. For mobile?

        Am I missing something here (probably, as I don't use apps generally) but is this implying buying tat from them is very important and most mobile users don't have/use a PC or similar for buying stuff?

        1. Captain Hogwash

          Re: don't have/use a PC or similar for buying stuff

          For teenagers, in my experience, buying tat is very important and whether or not a PC is available to use matters not one whit. They even do their school homework on their goddamn iPhones (which must be like wallpapering the hallway via the letterbox.)

          1. PhilipN

            Homework on phones

            I used to do maths homework on the bus. Took a while for the teacher to accept the untidy writing but teachers are easily trained.

            Plus ca change.

            1. nijam Silver badge

              Re: Homework on phones

              > I used to do maths homework on the bus

              Sounds even worse than doing it on an iPhone.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          is this implying buying tat from them is very important and most mobile users don't have/use a PC or similar for buying stuff?

          For the Yoof market, yes. And I've seen other data that seems to back this up, that young people do EVERYTHING on their mobiles. It's only us old farts that see the need for a smartphone, a laptop, and a desktop. This also explains why young adults like to have premium phones with large screens, because from a purely practical point of view, you're going to need a good multi core processor, decent storage and a big, high quality screen to manage your life. Phones of the calibre of an old Samsung S4, or a new-but-cheap Sammy J3 simply won't cut it, and this age group are seduced by the "only £40 a month" deals for an iPhone 7 or S8. To them, what's forty quid? Less than they spend on high street coffee shops each month, most likely.

        3. Ian Michael Gumby
          Boffin

          @Paul Crawford

          Amazon Prime.

          So they can stream videos for 'free' if they have Prime. Or to make purchases.

          Kids these days use their phones more than they use computers for 'web apps' to do things like make purchases.

  2. WibbleMe

    I am going to start a holiday agency offering Facebook free vacations

    1. Timmy B

      "I am going to start a holiday agency offering Facebook free vacations"

      I'm on one next month. Facebook free. Mobile free. Internet free. Totally off grid for a week. The most technological thing I'll have is a switched off phone for emergencies and a camera. Though I doubt many would want to follow me into the woods gathering their own food and water and sorting their own fire and shelter (I'm a bushcraft instructor at weekends and do this for a week or so every year).

      1. vir

        If you go on a hike and you don't put pictures on social media, did you ever actually leave your house at all?

    2. Elmer Phud

      Have you got a FaceBook page for it?

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge
        Trollface

        You forgot your icon =>

  3. Zippy's Sausage Factory
    Meh

    Facebook seems to be becoming everything AOL ever tried to be.

    Because that seems to be working really well for AOL.

    (Example of how well AOL does business: anyone remember xDrive? It was basically Dropbox, but about three or four years before Dropbox ever started. AOL killed it, as per everything they ever touch that has potential.)

  4. iron Silver badge

    "Remember how Spotify "sold its soul" (in Michael Robertson's words) to Facebook in 2011? It made having a Facebook account mandatory. It needed the traffic."

    I've never had a Facebook account yet I have a Spotify account. I even let my premium sub drop for a few months earlier this year and had no problem signing back up again without a Facebook account.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      no longer required

      Yeah, they eventually brought back the option to use it without a FB account, not sure exactly when.

  5. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    "It's odd how some readers, like those Japanese soldiers being hauled out of caves in the 1970s because they refused to concede that World War II was over, still think Hollywood and "the entertainment oligopoly" rule over the internet."

    I guess that's true. But it still feels as though that the "entertainment oligopoly" still owns the majority of the production of the actual media content, and controls the decisions as to whom can distribute it, and how?

    Facebook though huh? Not looked at it for about 3 years.

  6. Joe Harrison

    Copied the idea?

    Vkontakte (Russian copy of Facebook) had free unlimited music from day 1 more or less.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Copied the idea?

      Of course they did. The russian mafia doesn't pay royalties, now does it ?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yuck

    I actually quite enjoy spotify. It's one of the things I'm going to miss when the biodiversity of the internet is replaced by the ubiquitous 'rats and roaches' of Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yuck

      when the biodiversity of the internet is replaced by the ubiquitous 'rats and roaches' of Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple

      I wouldn't worry. These companies think they are the new order, untouchable and immortal. But all corporations have a life cycle, and even if the name endures, the business model doesn't. But long before they die of corporate sclerosis, I think we'll see increasing regulation of their activities, in response to their (apparently) growing dominance. In this respect, their hubris and total inability to tread softly will contribute to their undoing.

  8. Patrician

    ............."and people check Facebook every 210 seconds. ".............

    No they don't, I've not logged into my FB account for more than two months and only then because of grandchildren birthday pictures!

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Checking FaceBook

      Never done that. Someone did set up an account for me about 5 years ago but neglected to tell me the password.

      Couldn't be half-arsed to even try now.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Checking FaceBook

        Don't have a facebook account ... if people ask me why not I tell them its because I'm not a teenage girl (which usually annoys them)

        1. Adrian 4 Silver badge

          Re: Checking FaceBook

          Do teenage girls still use Facebook ? I thought they'd moved on long ago. It's more 30-somethings now. Next year, it'll be gone the way of AOL and mothball-flavoured stockings.

          1. JW 1
            Devil

            Re: Checking FaceBook

            >> Do teenage girls still use Facebook?

            That's what I was thinking. Both my kids a 20 yr old boy and 16 yr old girl, both of whom have uninstalled or sworn off FB. Significantly due to privacy issues and that my son's account was broken into.

            But, one of the beauties of Spotify is that it play music and does a fantastic job of it. It's very clever without being intrusive or scary.

            And for $15 a month the whole family gets profiles and no commercials. If you don't think FB will jamb in commercials any chance it gets you're crazy.

            FB, never done it never will.

    2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      So, for the mean to be 210 seconds, think how often some people must be checking it.

      Which reminds me, I haven't checked my Facebook account in the last 10 seconds.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facebook's Social Engineering moves up a gear

    They really are determined to get everyone on the planet hooked on their version of 'Life etc'.

    As for those top 10 things for x-34 year olds.

    I don't use any of them especially Facebork...

    We are all doomed I tell ye, doomed. (Norks excepting)

  10. fishman

    Checking Facebook.

    "and people check Facebook every 210 seconds."

    I check facebook every 600,000 seconds or so, to see if my kids have posted any new pictures on their accounts. Sometimes I'll go several million seconds between checking.

    My wife (and millions of others) has gone more than 400,000,000 seconds without checking.

  11. ForthIsNotDead

    I took the red pill...

    When my beloved Galaxy S5 died suddenly for no apparent reason, I went back to my old S4 which was sitting un-loved in a drawer. It doesn't have Facebook or Facebook messenger installed on it. I was about to install them, and I thought "No. Let's detox from this FB shit for a while. It's all just Trump hating communist memes anyway; hardly a loss."

    That was a month ago. Not one of my FB contacts has contacted me by email/phone (those that know me IRL, I mean) which tells me all I need to know.

    I'm glad to be away from it, to be honest. It was quite *literally* a waste of real literal time. Nothing useful on it at all.

    Now I have more hobby time for building valve amplifiers.

    I should post some piccies on Facebook...

  12. RareToy

    I would not be surprised if Facebook pairs with mobile carriers and puts the Facebook App and Messenger app in the "carrier bloatware" so most mobile users can't remove it.

    AKIRAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!

  13. FatGerman

    Fuck

    See title.

  14. Stevie

    Bah!

    I guess my enormous CD collection (not to mention the Vinyl stuff in the basement) doesn't look quite so stupid any more does it sonny?

    Enjoy your pwnage, spotty-faced yoofs everywhere.

  15. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    "Facebook's music plans mean you'll never leave Facebook"

    You might not even be there so why would you leave. https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/09/06/facebook_claims_more_users_than_exist/

  16. Magani
    Unhappy

    "Facebook's music plans mean you'll never leave Facebook"

    One of today's more depressing headlines.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If you regard Facebook as neither a social media company nor an advertising company but as a surveillance company then this kind of move makes more sense.

  18. Barry Rueger

    Or, Perhaps Not

    At the risk of being ridiculed by the Kewl Kidz, I'll openly admit to having and using a Facebook profile. At this point, aside from immediate family, I think there might be ten or twelve people attached to it as "Friends," and that number seems to decline every month as I pare back to whoever genuinely brings some joy or insight to my day. (Another dozen or so are still listed as "Friends" but have been quietly blocked so that I don't see the drivel they post.)

    I remember Vampires, and Farmville, and even pokes.

    Family members who were avid, rabid Facebook users a couple of years back have tapered off in their activity. I don't know what's replaced it, but they use it a lot less than in the past, and they're really part of the target Facebook demographic. I think that on some level they too have grown weary of the bad UI, the incessant ads and unsolicited crap, and are also finding that Facebook just doesn't deliver enough value to wade through the mess that it has become.

    What Facebook had in their favour, and which I'm sure they still think they have, is lock-in based on ubiquity: pretty much everyone you know is likely on Facebook, and it become the default place to reach them. The problem for Facebook is that if a significant part of that audience moves away it can snowball. Surely Zuckerberg is quaking at the possibility that someone, somewhere will invent the "new Facebook" that will manage to draw away their users.

    Not only can it happen, it's pretty likely, especially since Facebook has one significant weakness: there's literally nothing that they do well, and most things they do poorly.

    For me, it'll remain Twitter, which somehow is a lot more useful, a lot more entertaining, and seems to let me really carefully manage what gets presented to me in a way that Facebook either can't do, or can't do without digging through a bizarre and annoying menu system.

    1. handleoclast

      Re: Or, Perhaps Not

      @Barry Rueger

      I was poised to give you an upthumb. And then I read your final paragraph about you finding twitter useful. Not enough to earn you a downthumb, but you lost the upthumb.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I've moved on to WeChat

    As a consumer not living in Asia I had the choice of snoopy governments and sleazy ad profile tools to offer up my data to.

    On a side note, we chat has far more features than FB.

  20. Winkypop Silver badge
    Devil

    In my case, leaving just isn't possible

    I've never actually arrived (at Facebook)

  21. superden

    I think the 'Active Users' number put out by facebook has to be taken with more than a hint of skepticism.

    Facebook user numbers are not independently verified and it is well known that a lot of FB users have multiple profiles.

    FB's claimed user numbers are also inflated beyond actual census figures. This has been proven. Facebook is inflating it's user numbers to attract more users and also inflate the share price.

    Spotify are niche and their 150m users are music lovers.

    FB on the other hand are not niche. They are trying to be everything to everybody.

    Spotify customers have a choice. Pay for music in cash or pay for it on FB by trading the details of your private life.

  22. IGnatius T Foobar
    Stop

    It's time for Facebook to be broken up.

    It's time for Facebook to be broken up.

    Let's start by drawing and quartering Mark Zuckerberg.

    Then we'll do Amazon/Bezos next.

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