The Future of Last.fm Radio APIs

 
    • Russ sa...
    • Alumni
    • 24 mar 2009, 17:54

    The Future of Last.fm Radio APIs

    As you may have seen on our blog, we're making some changes to the way we structure our radio services.

    Last.fm has never had a public radio API, although we've tolerated third-party clients using the undocumented calls that our client uses. This is finally about to change - we're going to make a public, documented streaming API available to everyone who has an API account. There are a few limitations:

    1. Only subscribers will be allowed to stream using API applications unless you negotiate a separate deal with us - we need to get the money to cover royalties.
    2. You won't be allowed to use our API to stream to mobile phones. This is unfortunately a limitation of some of our licensing agreements. (We may make exceptions to this)

    These changes should be made by the end of next week. Alongside this, we'll be shutting down the remainder of the old, undocumented streaming APIs over the next couple of weeks.

    edit - clarified that the mobile device restriction isn't set in stone.

    Redigerad av Russ den 9 apr 2009, 13:14
    • markusk sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 10:25

    ride with the devil.

    oh yes. last.fm absorbed by the music industry, and here we go, the same short-sigthed decisions made as we know of it.

    what will be the result of all this? more illegal downloads.
    folks will come up with their own solutions, feeding their own servers (with illegally obtained content) to stream to their mobiles and/or just listen to it offline..

    • [Raderad användare] sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 11:06

    What an appalling mistake

    last.fm, this is the worst business decision you've ever made. I bought a subscription a month ago after I'd discovered Mobbler. I can plug my mobile into my stereo and stream recommended tunes over my wireless connection within seconds - no need for a laptop - that's what made the subscription compelling.

    Now I hear that you are going to break this method of listening to music.. I want my money back.

    • CMoi sa...
    • Abonnent
    • 25 mar 2009, 11:17

    That really sucks

    I renewed my subscription (I have been a subscriber for a few years) but now regret it as I will no longer be able to listen to the radios in my usual music player, so I paid for nothing.

    • achitnis sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 11:24

    Re: The Future of Last.fm Radio APIs

    Russ said:
    You won't be allowed to use our API to stream to mobile phones. This is unfortunately a limitation of some of our licensing agreements.

    What defines a "mobile phone" in this case? What about, say, a Nokia N810, which is an Internet tablet/MID, NOT A PHONE. Would this be barred from using the API in an application such as Vagalume to stream music? What about dedicated internet radios? These are all "portable" devices that are not phones, but are certainly mobile.

    And, as an aside - what is the rationale for the "no mobile phones" rule?

  • How sad and dissappointing

    You are throwing to the waste bin thousand of free development hours (including many of my own) that directly benefited Last.fm.

    I'm sorry that it has come to this. Don't forget that the main value of Last.fm has been created by its users scrobbling songs, writing the wiki, uploading music, writing software...

    • Russ sa...
    • Alumni
    • 25 mar 2009, 12:11

    Re: Re: The Future of Last.fm Radio APIs

    achitnis said:
    What defines a "mobile phone" in this case? What about, say, a Nokia N810, which is an Internet tablet/MID, NOT A PHONE. Would this be barred from using the API in an application such as Vagalume to stream music? What about dedicated internet radios? These are all "portable" devices that are not phones, but are certainly mobile.

    The N810 doesn't connect to a cellular data network, so it's not a phone.

    And, as an aside - what is the rationale for the "no mobile phones" rule?
    It's a restriction imposed by some of our music licensing partners, and not by us.

    Redigerad av Russ den 25 mar 2009, 12:15
  • :(

    What about programs that allow you to send the info regarding songs you play in your phone's native music program?

    • Russ sa...
    • Alumni
    • 25 mar 2009, 12:16

    Re: :(

    rhondalicious said:
    What about programs that allow you to send the info regarding songs you play in your phone's native music program?


    Scrobbling will always be free.

    • [Raderad användare] sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 12:21

    Let me tell you something

    The Future of Last.fm is... well, you just have no future. You should be ashamed of this move. You are what you are because of the community (artists, listeners, developers...) and these things are against the community. It's kind of suicidal. You're dead.
    R.I.P. Last FM

    P.S.
    Russ said: Scrobbling will always be free.
    Well, it would be surrealistic to charge us for giving you our data... that's what feeds last.fm

    Redigerat av en raderad användare den 25 mar 2009, 12:48
  • Money talks ey?

    Being as polite about it as possible... this totally sucks!

    Scrobbling on my mobile has always been a big plus point about Last.fm for me. It will be a sad day indeed when I can no longer use Mobbler. It's definately going to make me less inclined to use the site in general now.

    I see this as the start of a steady decline.

    • [Raderad användare] sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 12:32

    Adio Last.fm

    I erased my account some time ago with privacy concerns in mind. Then I regreted it and went back. Yes I could still listen on my n800 browser but killing Canola, Vegalume, and mobler is a deal breaker for me.

    R.I.P. Last.fm

    • dannyzen sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 12:41

    Great! Official Windows Mobile App?

    Because you're eliminating 3rd party developed functionality, shouldn't you fill the gap?

  • Not good

    Im really saddened to read this news, I really am. Unless you can replace the third party <Mobbler Mobile application, you will be making a grave mistake in this route of business.

    • mogren sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 13:19

    R.I.P

    Last.fm used to be great, sad to see this happening. I'm afraid the number of users will go down a lot quicker than who ever thought this was a good idea expected, and soon all of it will be shut down. :-(

    • moggles sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 13:19

    bleh

    and people say metallica sold out !~

    Have some courtesy, have some sympathy, and some taste
    Use all your well-learned politesse
    Or I'll lay your soul to waste
    • trondeg sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 13:40

    last.fm for iphone

    Does this also mean that last.fm for iphone will be dropped?

    I'm a paying subscriber (in Norway), and I'm looking to get an iphone when the new ones arrive

    • [Raderad användare] sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 13:44

    Get your money back

    I encourage everyone who recently paid for their subscription to open a "Not as described" dispute via your Paypal account. This is the content of my dispute claim:
    "26 days ago, on 20 Feb 2009, I purchased a one-year subscription to last.fm. Today I learn that the service I will receive will be materially different from what I expected to get; namely that streaming to mobile clients will be disabled in a week or two: http://www.last.fm/group/Last.fm+Web+Services/forum/21604/_/517212.

    The superb functionality offered by the ability to stream tunes to my mobile was what compelled me to buy the subscription, and is my main channel for listening to last.fm. By denying me this channel, you have changed the nature of the service I thought I was purchasing. If I had known about this plan a month ago, I would not have purchased the subscription.

    I will accept a pro-rated refund. I expect a prompt and satisfactory response from you."

    • rcadden sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 13:58

    Will you fill the gap?

    I'm also an avid Mobbler user, and a paying subscriber living in the U.S. - there is not currently an 'official' Last.FM application for my S60-powered smartphone, so I use Mobbler, where enthusiasts have filled the gap.

    As such, I have a few questions:

    1. Will the iPhone Last.FM application continue to stream (since it's official, and doesn't (presumably) use the API?

    2. If I'm a paying subscriber, will 'unofficial' apps such as Mobbler then continue to stream, since I'm paying?

    3. Since you're basically telling all of your enthusiasts who have filled the gaps you yourselves left in your service (mobile clients for various platforms, etc) to eat dirt, will you then be filling those gaps yourselves?

    Ricky Cadden
    Editor, Symbian-Guru.com

    • squeeze8 sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 14:02

    Squeezebox

    Does this include Squeeze Box's? and conola on N810's

  • Re: Re: Re: The Future of Last.fm Radio APIs

    Russ said:

    The N810 doesn't connect to a cellular data network, so it's not a phone.



    So what do laptops with 3G dongles count as?

    What about wifi enable phones (like my Nokia N95)? If I'm streaming over wifi with Mobbler, how is that different from streaming with an N810?

  • Can of worms

    This whole move is really opening a can of worms.!!!!!

    Sort it out Last.fm, you have many loyal members, don't shut us out!

    • Russ sa...
    • Alumni
    • 25 mar 2009, 14:09
    I'm working with third-party mobile client authors at the moment, and I'm fairly confident that we can allow them to use the new API in mobile mode for subscribers. No promises yet, though.

    • zombie90 sa...
    • Användare
    • 25 mar 2009, 14:16
    Way to kick your community in the teeth, Last.fm :(

    You won't be allowed to use our API to stream to mobile phones.

    Be careful about what you mean. I think you mean "you won't be allowed to use our API to stream over a cellular data connection". My Nokia E71 has a WiFi NIC. I assume you won't be preventing Mobbler et al from streaming via WiFi (because, you know, that would be very difficult to do for a start).

    Perhaps you could clarify for us?

    http://www.richardskingdom.net/
    Twitter: @graphiclunarkid
  • I'm saddened, but not the least bit surprised. It was so obvious that at one point this would happen. Last.fm wants users -> users wants content -> last.fm wants content -> label gives content -> last.fm gets its pairs of handcuffs.

    Another point is the open source last.fm client. We'll still be able to look for bugs and solve them and compile the app (if/when the SVN will be fixed), but won't be able to use it, as we won't have an $API key. Hence, if we want to modify something, we can request it to be integrated by the last.fm staff and pray that it will be done. Not much use in an open source client then

    Want to listen to your playlists on last.fm? Have a look at TagBar
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