The biggest platform for sharing music, especially fire internet rap bangers, has reportedly been pushed to the edge. A new report suggests that the streaming platform Soundcloud only has enough cash to survive for 50 more days.
Soundcloud employees quoted by TechCrunch, said that SoundCloud cofounders, Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss, told staff that despite laying off 40 percent of its workforce, the company only had enough money to survive until Q4—which is just 50 days from now.
Despite the leaks from the video conference, a company spokesperson told Techcrunch that the company was “fully funded into Q4” and currently in talks with investors.
Whether the company is financially stable or not, the employees who spoke to Techcrunch are clearly pissed off. “The people saved from this are jumping ship,” one employee said. “Morale is really low.” Another employee said that staff laughed during the video conference when Erich Wahlforss described the SoundCloud staff as family. “You just fired 173 people of the family! How the fuck are you going to talk about family?”
Another grimy detail revealed from the meeting was that SoundCloud knew it had to layoff a lot of staff months ago but did not properly inform its employees. It was also reported that the company even hired staffers who were laid off shortly after quitting their old jobs and moving to Berlin. One staff member, Vojta Stavik, told Techcrunch that he is taking legal action against the company. Stavik was set to start on July 17 and fired ten days before his start date. He said his contract stipulated that he was supposed to receive four weeks’ notice of dismissal. Stavik further told TechCrunch that SoundCloud had refused to pay his salary for the four-week period.
So whatever happens to SoundCloud, one can only hope that it can save itself from this ticking doomsday clock. However, it might be a good idea now to save your SoundCloud gems while you still can because who knows what will happen to all that music if the site shuts down.
A little TOO LATE, maybe?
In a recent interview, SoundCloud founder Eric Wahlforss said that DJ mixes will no longer get taken down from the streaming service for copyright infringement.
The interview, done with German outlet Groove and translated and cleared up by FACT, stated that SoundCloud made deals with the proper licensing publishers — like Germany’s licensing giant GEMA — to make sure mixes will be able to stay on the site and not get taken down by their automated tool that scans the site for licensed songs.
DJs could previously only make mixes with material that wasn’t asked to be taken down by SoundCloud or with songs they had permission to use. You were allowed a couple strikes on your account (on some occasions) before your account was terminated, but some accounts were terminated all at once for having too many mixes up.
This is a nice move for SoundCloud, but it may be too little, too late for the streaming service as its lost tons of trust amongst the music community.
SoundCloud recently introduced SoundCloud Go — a paid part of the service that doesn’t feature ads. There were talks of Spotify buying SoundCloud, but Spotify recently backed out because of licensing issues.
I’ve had my issues with Soundcloud so this news doesn’t surprise me at all…
Recently-inked deals with Universal Music Group and Sony has forced all DJs to take notice of the movements going on at SoundCloud.
The company is now preparing to impose serious restrictions upon DJs who upload their mixes on their site. According to a source fueling Digital Media News, it remains unclear exactly what the restrictions will actually be, but word from the curb is that it will be “significant and serious” and on the way.
We have already seen and heard DJs complain vociferously online for being taken offline without fair warning. And with restrictions possibly including a complete block on all DJ mixes that aren’t fully cleared, we could be losing a lot of our favorite sounds for the price of a dollar.
Keep in mind, this is still a developing story, so we shall update you when we’ve learned more about the circumstances.
SoundCloud has already tore down accounts based on copyright concerns. Problematic indeed, but with the DMCA not yet involved in the matter, the record labels seem to be intensifying the level of policing happening on the site. “I don’t think the DJs are going to be happy,” the source relayed to Digital Music News last week. “Probably piss off a lot of subscribers too.” Has SoundCloud shot themselves in the proverbial foot? By launching ‘Go,’ a paid-only platform that made its debut in March, SoundCloud will have a lot of eyes on them moving forward.
MixCloud has been benefitting from SoundCloud’s tightening stranglehold attempt of music. With the latter boasting 185 million active users, high profile DJs are uploading their work there and on iTunes Podcast as well. Again, until SoundCloud corroborates the information, continue to keep an eye on this development.
UPDATE: SoundCloud responded to Digital Media News’ claims that it will place restrictions on DJs by saying that there is no truth to the rumor.