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Well that may be the end of eMu for me.

edited October 2010 in General
Mark your calendars because in November 2010, eMusic is adding more than 250,000 tracks from Universal Music Group to its catalog, the single largest addition ever!

This addition comes as part of our mission to offer members a rich catalog that is both deep and broad, with every day low prices that make music discovery as affordable as it is rewarding.

In order to continue to grow our catalog and to insure a sustainable business in the long-term, we need more flexible pricing. So we are changing from a credit-per-track system to currency pricing. Starting in November, you'll see tracks and albums priced in dollars and cents instead of credits.

Your membership will continue just as it is today, and your monthly payments will not change. While some popular tracks will be more expensive, members will still enjoy savings of 20% - 50% compared to iTunes a la carte prices.

For more details about these changes, including the new catalog, new currency pricing, and how this affects your account, please read the full announcement.

learn more

By growing our catalog, our aim is to also grow our member base, which in turn will help fund improvements to the service. We're already working on a music locker, which should allow you to stream your music from any desktop or mobile device, and new social features to better connect you with other members.

We also want to assure you that the heart of eMusic is not changing. Our approach will remain proudly, stubbornly idiosyncratic - we'll continue to champion music that represents clear artistic vision and quite simply, records that we find inspiring, whether by legends or upstarts.

For questions about your account, please send email to comments@emusic.com. To provide general feedback about this change, please complete our Member Survey.

Sincerely,
Your Friends at eMusic

Craig
«13456776

Comments

  • Time to mobilize that BB card I've been hoarding, stat!

    So a "basic" member now gets 2 "albums" per month...Album dollar price would need to go down to $6 for that to remain the same. Of course, many mp3 albums are now priced $7.99 or less at Amazon.

    Of course, I tend to stretch my credits to more than 2 "albums," so I'd be taking a palpable hit in that scenario. Assuming the change comes Nov. 1, I have one more reload to come.
  • They have rolled out pretty detailed new info: http://www.emusic.com/notification/update.html
  • edited October 2010
    If they don't add some sort of streaming option to differentiate them from Amazon they are going to continue to have their clock cleaned. :-/

    EDIT
    And we’re hard at work on a host of new features and enhancements including a music locker, which should allow you to stream your music collection from any desktop or mobile device.
    Ok, good start but I'd like to see full length samples or some additional buffet style streaming like Napster because my dollars aren't going to stretch very far now.
  • Your Plan Today
    Current Plan eMusic Basic Annual
    Price $99.99
    Bonus N/A
    Total Credits 24

    Your annual membership will continue as shown below.

    Your Plan in November
    Preferred Plan eMusic Basic Annual
    Price $99.99
    Bonus $3.00
    Total Credit $11.33
    I'm getting screwed for buying an annual.
  • After digesting the news my thoughts:

    I'm on a 50 credit for $20.79 per month plan. That is basically 4 albums. At the new pricing scheme of $0.49 per track (best case scenerio), a 12 track album is nearly $6.00. Meanwhile I can get 4 albums a month at Amazon for $4-$8 per. The benefit for me staying with eMu? A $3.00 per month loyalty bonus. The negatives? I'm locked in to my subscription meaning I'm still waiting for a refresh (rather than purchasing whenever I want) and I'm locked in to the $20.79 per month. Having a poor month? Can't skip an album. Having a good month? Can't add one.

    Basically what I'm saying is, eMu just priced the subscription model out of relevance.

    Tomorrow I have my last credit refresh. It will also me my last eMu refresh.

    Craig
  • Haha. Subscription without credits and it still doesn't roll over every month? It was hard enough losing credits, but losing a dollar amount is going to look even worse.
    There is not much incentive to have a subscription, now. Ah, but they have admitted they can roll over a few pennies if you don't have enough money to buy a track.


    I realize it's still the same - lose credits, you lose the money - but losing 10 credits feels different than losing $5.
  • Well lets face it, the place which shall not be named, is no longer the scrappy little independent that used to steal kisses on the school playground. So expecting them to behave as such is just not rational.

    They are full blown street walker now and bidness is bidness.

    As long as you use a condom and don't fall in love or ask them to marry you it should be good for everybody.
  • I agree bidness is bidness, and do not begrudge them trying to make more money. It's their job.

    Problem is, this change is not economically in my best interest, and if it's not in the best interest of their current loyal customer, how is it going to be in a new customer's best interest? It's not.

    They either have to scrap the subscription model, or decrease the per track price. Third option? Die a slow death.

    Craig
  • I think this change will be the end at eMusic for me too. I may try it in November, but with album pricing and random bonus credits my monthly plan was good for three albums. Now it'll get me two, not worth the commitment. The claimed discount off of iTunes prices is irrelevant because there are always better deals to be had, and there seems to be no real benefit to the subscription model now. Amazon's $5 albums are clearly a better deal. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.
  • Yes I can see how this change might not be in many subscribers' best interest, depending on how each subscriber uses the service.

    If you buy full albums and such it might be cheaper elsewhere. But if you are like me and occasionally buy full albums but sometimes buy single tracks it might be a good trade off.

    Plus if Universal is coming I am thinking we might get some Badu in ya stereo

    Hi Def
  • My 35-cr prepaid annual goes to $17.67/month credit (incl. a $5/mo bonus). That's 3ish (non-popular) albums, which seems ok for now, but we'll see how the selections I'm interested in cost. (If anyone has insight on how that's worse than it seems, please yell.) I wonder how much ECMs will go for... I suspect with careful shopping emusic will still remain the best deal (I'm pretty sure that adding up, say, 6 months of my emusic downloads compared to same purchased elsewhere would be a sizable win for emusic).
  • @kargatron

    Isn't it funny that we are loyal enough to buy into a whole year, but the loyalty bonus only barely brings us back up to our normal level?
  • I wonder how much ECMs will go for... I suspect with careful shopping emusic will still remain the best deal

    Yeah, it all depends on how the stuff I want is priced. If old ECMs and Verves go for 0.49 per track, I am probly good! But I'll believe it when I see it. Part of the deal too, is when do I start weaning myself off the steady glut o' music habit?

    I cashed in my BB card, ka-ching! Check out this one for 12 credits.

    Kinda glad now I did not convert to annual. Also kinda surprised at the volume and vehemence of the response over there.
  • OMG - They have awoken the dreaded Sucklechimp!
  • All this hullabaloo reminded me that I wanted to rejoin temporarily, just for tomorrow's new releases. In order of importance: Sufjan Stevens, Antony & the Johnsons, the Moondoggies, and Belle & Sebastian. This reminds me that I better do it before the prices go up.

    So I checked my account and I've been offered a free month--24 downloads for free. And I can quit before the price changes happen. Can't complain about that. (I'm pretty surprised to be offered these free credits. I just got the 75 for rejoining at $12 for 24 credits two months ago and quit right after using them.)

    That said, I don't have high hopes for this price restructuring. I am having a hard time seeing why I would even need a subscription with that kind of pricing.

    Plus, Universal is no incentive. I am patient enough to get what I'd like for free from Guvera.
  • Tomorrow I have my last credit refresh. It will also me my last eMu refresh.

    i have some of the same concerns, but i'm sorry to read this.
  • I keep thinking about the now cliched story of the frog in a pot of water that is heated gradually, instead of all at once, so he never jumps out and eventually is boiled. I'll bet that anything that isn't utterly obscure crap, and anything longer than 4 or 5 minutes, will be $0.69 USD or more. And 'most anything on the majors will be $0.99. We'll see. This may be the end for me (again).
  • well, it will definitely be bad if anything on the majors is 0.99. i can't imagine they'll do that.

    i think what's much more likely to happen here is that, for most new-ish and very popular stuff, emusic will be moving to the old lala (and current 7digital) price-point, i.e., $7.50 a disc.
  • The frog in the pot analogy is apt. I have so much stuff in my SFL. I guess I will see how much everything costs in November. I have an annual plan until March I think. After that, who knows?
  • So here's my new strategy: Buy one month at a time at both eMusic and the Limewire Store whenever they have what I want.

    Limewire's store still has eMusic's old prices (27 to 40 cents a track) and gets a bunch of indie labels that I like.

    And when a few albums from major labels or indie labels that Limewire doesn't have then I'll sign up for a month at eMusic.

    I don't really see any reason to continuously subscribe every month.
  • My puny monthly subscription refreshes on October 15, and I do have some bonus tracks remaining, so I will use everything up before the end of the month. I doubt I will stay after that, but I suppose I will see how things look the first month. I have been getting more and more from Amazon, and I NEVER buy from iTunes.

    I have been there since 2001, and I did get some good deals along the way. Oh, well, it was good while it lasted.

    Wonder how Bissie's deal with another online store is going. And how this new pricing system will affect BIS.
  • edited October 2010
    I've read it all and still have no idea if it will be good, bad or indifferent for me. Natch, we don't get the Universal stuff so I don't have that carrot so best I can hope for I guess is neutral or bad.

    Except to say the prospect of this change has made me nervous for weeks (since someone mentioned the UMG deal in the offing) that they will block me from using the service altogether (as they have any new sign ups from outside US, EU, Uk, Canada) so my great wave of relief that that doesn't seem to be happening (yet) is probably preventing me seeing the rest of the picture.
  • edited October 2010
    I am having a hard time seeing why I would even need a subscription with that kind of pricing.
    Yeah, a commitment to a subscription only really makes sense when the return on the commitment significantly outweighs the cost. As eMu gets closer to regular prices, a monthly subscription becomes less like an opportunity to get music and more like an obligation to get music.

    Still, things haven't changed in Europe yet (although we are going to the monetary value rather than credit system), and I'm still grandfathered. So my subscription is actually becoming increasingly valuable to me. But when we finally do get the price change... wham!
  • edited October 2010
    - Nereffid. . .
    I just hate it when you say when, I'm still hoping for an If.

    I mean, would'nt we allready have got the majors like Sony if it was possible ?
    - A wild guess is that Itunes is sitting on some kind of exclusive rights to the European marked.

    - But yeah, it seems that I still get the same value for my money due to the bonus system.
    :-)
  • I was pleasantly surprised at the bonus system for my UK annual account.
    I expected to be told the old 90 a month grandfathering was gone for good, but instead they're giving me extra credit to the value of more than double what I actually pay to keep my number of track downloads the same!
    Maybe I'll stick around for another year after all :-)
  • @BT:
    Isn't it funny that we are loyal enough to buy into a whole year, but the loyalty bonus only barely brings us back up to our normal level?

    Well, look at it this way - there's no "normal" level - prices have gone up. So the "bonus" keeps us at the same lower price, but only for the cheapest tier of music. That undoubtedly is a smaller set than before, but we'll only know how much value is lost when we see examples. It's possible that there will be enough for me to not resent the changes, but as many have commented, I expect a significant drain of their subscriber base, since prices have neared competitors.

    So those complaints about limewire, how irksome were they?
  • edited October 2010
    It seems to me that we have passed through the Golden Age of Digital Downloading where the fruits were cheap and bountiful, a brief Silver Age is closing wherein massive mispriced boxsets were once to be had and some bargains and true gems were yet to be found, and now we stand at a crossroads where either a Bronze Age of lesser value or a new Dark Age of Paucity will reign.
    I'll stick around at least a few to test the waters, but truthfully I have so much music currently that retiring to a minor level of acquisition (and expenditure) is not a tragic prospect. There's a ceiling I will not cross for a mere digital download, and eMu may be heading towards it. We'll see what's what. If there's a deal I will seek it.
    Despite the roadsigns of change I am amazed at the vehemence of many over there who have surfaced so suddenly, like a mob of toddlers whose candy is being taken away. This change disturbs me a tiny amount as compared to the first deep cut wherein they halved my downloads. Might be some Universal holes to be filled, we'll see.
    Doofy, thanks for the Cobham rec - a nice value that.

    Oh, of course if they can't fix the bloody Browse feature it won't much matter what they have.
  • edited October 2010
    I suppose that waiting until November to make a decision isn't a problem. Who knows, maybe it will still be a good value for me, but I highly doubt it.

    Daniel - Don't mean to bum you out! I'll still be around here if you want to chat!

    ETA: It sounds from several posts like I don't want to read the boards over there. Good thing I'm in a conference all day and won't be by a computer.

    Craig
  • Well, I think it's time that I got out and started trying to catch up on my listening.
  • So those complaints about limewire, how irksome were they?

    Good deals to be had amid limited selection, rudimentary search, cumbersome DL process (unless you want to use the Limewire P2P downloader, which I suggest you wear a condom if you do).
    I'll stick around at least a few to test the waters, but truthfully I have so much music currently that retiring to a minor level of acquisition (and expenditure) is not a tragic prospect. There's a ceiling I will not cross for a mere digital download, and eMu may be heading towards it. We'll see what's what. If there's a deal I will seek it.

    What he said. I think we have all proven ourselves adept at finding the good mp3 deals, wherever they may be!

    I also come out OK with the bonus, assuming all/most of the music I want is at the lower price point. I am reminded of how album pricing was going to be "6, 9, or 12" credits, turned out to be almost all 12, occasionally 9, almost never 6.

    I get that the major labels are willing to let us have the back catalog at lower rates, but not the new releases. That's understandable, but it doesn't seem compatible with the subscription model. Assuming eMu does a promotional push, they are going to banging that "20% to 50% less than iTunes" drum, it is their only hope. I would think that people who are motivated enough to look outside iTunes will go to Amazon, rather than pay for an eMu sub.

    Well, I am getting my entertainment value out of this soap opera/train wreck, obviously. CathyHN has to be just really excited about going in to work this morning.
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