Home > Post-Meetup > OpenMusicMedia Toronto #2 Roundup

OpenMusicMedia Toronto #2 Roundup

In spite of the first major winter storm which turned Toronto into one messy slushy, we had a pretty good turn-out for the second OpenMusicMedia Toronto meetup.

The hot topic of discussion centered around access versus ownership. With Apple’s recent purchase of Lala, MOG’s launch at the beginning of the month and Spotify’s long-awaited launch in the US, the music streaming theme was very timely. There was no shortage of thoughts and opinions, and although not everyone agreed on the best approach or solutions, the ideas and opinions generated vigorous debates which helped to broaden and sharpen our thinking.

Greg Nisbet, CEO and founder of Mediazoic, a real-time streaming service, prepared this talk that challenged us to look beyond the technology and dig deeper into human behaviour and our interaction with music and technology. For those who couldn’t make the event, please read Greg’s “OMM_TO #2 Talk: Access vs. Ownership: Paying Attention To Consumer Behavior” and share your thoughts and reactions.

2010 will continue being another year of excitement and disruption with mobile and music streaming becoming emerging mainstream trends. Consuming media will be more streamlined and seamless. Gone will be the days where we have to physically dock our mobile devices, carefully selecting the music/videos we want to take with us on our space limited device and then sync all this media. Cloud access will become central to our lives which helps alleviate the worries of safe guarding our locally stored music collections, provides in-air syncing and gives us access to nearly every piece of recorded music we can imagine.

But of course, disruptive technology goes hand-in-hand with changes in thinking and behaviour. People are looking at streaming music with a cautious but optimistic eye. Each person has to consider and weigh in their minds issues of privacy, control, confidence and trust. A few people at the meetup enthusiastically stated they are ready to embrace the “cloud” and have no worries or concerns putting their trust and faith in these services. Others were quick to point out reasons where ownership allows more freedom and flexibility. You are not beholden to any service and you will always have access to your music, regardless of circumstance. (lost internet access, off the grid, location etc)

There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to the question of access versus ownership. Lala is a service that blurs the line between the two by allowing you to upload your own music and combine with music streams you purchase. By purchasing Lala, Apple is signaling that marrying a digital download model with a music subscription streaming service is probably not too far off. As the world’s largest music retailer, Apple has the clout and consumer base to lead the next shift in digital media distribution and consumption. We also need to consider the roles that Amazon and Google will play in all this. Both huge companies with the infrastructure, talent and money to make media streaming work should they ever make their move.

This discussion is going to play out well into 2010. It’s going to be very exciting to see who the key players will be and how consumers will respond.

We hope that anyone who is interested in music, digital media and culture can make it to a future OpenMusicMedia Toronto meetup and be part of the conversations. The discussions are deep, passionate and intelligent and the atmosphere is fun and relaxed. We are working hard to bring the music and tech community in Toronto together and we are glad to see new connections and friendships being made. To everyone who has supported us this year, thank-you very much.

Photos from the evening have been posted to a set on Flickr , and added to the group pool.

We will be posting details of OpenMusicMedia Toronto #3 in the New Year, so pleased keep your eyes posted here on our blog or catch us on Twitter

If you have any comments, feedback of suggestions, we would love to hear from you. Send us an email

Happy Holidays and may 2010 be an amazing year for you and your families!

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Categories: Post-Meetup
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