With the news of SoundCloud’s apparent demise, I’m starting to think of alternatives.
I love Bandcamp, but it seems to be more ideally suited as a place to sell finished releases, whereas I use SoundCloud more as an audio blog containing works in progress, mixes, and other random music stuff.
MixCloud seems like a good candidate, particularly for my Drift and radio show mixes, but it doesn’t seem intended for individual songs and recordings.
Clyp.it is another interesting service. It wants to be imgur for audio files — you can upload an audio file to the service and embed it anywhere without an account, but it has slightly more severe file size limits on uploads. This is an issue for me since my hour long mixes often end up around a few hundred MB. It does have a pretty good API, though.
Another option is to embrace YouTube. I’d prefer not to be in bed with Google as much as possible, but it’s hard to deny YouTube as a huge force in this space.
This article compares a bunch more of these audio services. Unfortunately there’s not much discussion around the business models of the various platforms, but mostly it seems they all rely on some combination of premium accounts, display/audio ads, and native advertising/brand collaborations.
Which brings me to another possible solution. I could roll my own #indieweb system, storing my files on a server I control, and making my own audio streaming player with the web audio API. In fact, I’d imagine there are a lot of WordPress plugins that might help automate that process already.
I could then POSSE out to any other audio services to take advantage of their audience and unique features while retaining canonical control of my own stuff. Might be the best approach.