napster as a recommendation tool

clay shirky wrote about the music business and how it hasn't caught up to the publish-then-filter model growing in other industries in his essay, “the music business and the big flip”. good stuff, of course, but i'll have to quibble with this quote:

Prior to its demise, Napster began publicizing itself as a way to find new music, but this was a fig leaf, since users had to know the name of a song or artist in advance. Napster did little to place new music in an existing context, and the current file-sharing networks don't do much better.
napster actually did do one quite novel thing in putting new music in context—letting you browse the music being shared by a specific other person. that meant you could search for supreme beings of leisure and poke around the collections of people who had sbl to see what else they liked. sure, it wasn't a fancy-schmancy recommendation engine a la amazon, but i certainly found it useful. (i wasn't much of a napster user, but i remember this being touted as a neat thing about napster at the time.)

unless i'm misunderstanding, this is the sort of thing that friendster is trying to apply to meeting people. (although i find great irony in having been asked to join friendster by someone i don't really know. now to work up the motivation to enter all sorts of info into a system that won't then reward me by letting me get the data out again in a more useful format.)


how come they won't let me in friendster!?!?!?!? i want to make new friends dammit!!!

» arvind » january 28, 2003 10:13pm

it's most probably because you don't know the beta code. :) not that i know, either.

» tfr (link) » january 29, 2003 12:40am

the beta code is quite easily googlable.

» geoff » january 29, 2003 7:55pm

or if you make the right noises, i'll send an invite. (arvind has no excuses.)

» jim (link) » january 30, 2003 3:11pm


I am writing asking your help, perhaps I should say begging for your help. Can you please tell me how to get off the list of Power Diet Plus? We get 8 or 10 & more e-mails a day promoting Power Diet Plus. There is absolutely no link to be removed. I just do not know what else to do. I've tried completing an order form many times asking to be removed. Nothing shows any results. I would really appreciate your help.

» Dave Cummings » february 11, 2003 9:05am

add a comment

sorry, comments on this post are closed.