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Ikna

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I am surprised there is no thread like this here, since a lot of people from Mh have an account there. Those who have been scrobbling music for a while now might have noticed it: ever since Lastfm was bought by CBS the site has started to go down in quality, features and support. Now it‘s understandable that with an old age as lastfm and more and more better music streaming alternatives popping up (such as spotify) it would loose it's position on the market. But lastfm has finally reached an all time low.

 

As a lot of news have reported, lastfm has made huge losses over the last years. And then there is the totally useless support team, who rarely fix technical issues both on the website and/or the client. At the moment hundreds of people are pissed, because they can‘t scrobble any music from the recent itunes 12.1. update. This issue was known since january, yet lastfm replied to work on this 10 days ago. So far they haven‘t updated their client and people still hang in the air. Now you could say “then just downgrade or find another player”, but temporary fixes are no real fixes. And lastfm does a terrible job, they have updated their scrobbler the last time in 2013! Such a thing shouldn‘t happen, not only because it‘s unprofessional, but it will also drive even more people away from the service. It almost looks as if they are deliberately letting this site die.

 

I really like lastfm for what it is. It's really an excellent way to discover new music. There are a lot of music databanks, but none of them are as extensive as lastfm. So it makes me worried to see the site standing in the grave with one foot. What will happen with our scrobbles and libraries?

 

Maybe I am just very pessimistic and the site may in some way survive for a few years, but it doesn‘t look so bright. CBS have managed to slowly ruin the website. Even if thousand people would be subscribing now it would possibly not rescue it. There isn‘t even a point or reason why one should even subscribe. Maybe I haven‘t checked it out so well, but I think that a subscription doesn‘t really give you much of an advantage (which it actually should). All the features you got when you payed have been elimenated (the radio mainly). No wonder people stopped paying. Instead of lazily resting on the issue with the comment “we can‘t do a thing about it” they should have tried to become more active and aquire music licenses with another tactic. Or they could have implemented other features, which will attract people.

 

Even spotify seems to do better, despite the majority of their listeners not paying for premium. Lastfm are just really doing something terribly wrong.

 

So yeah, that‘s my stance on the issue. What do you thing? Will lastfm be abandoned, become as empty as Myspace (it actually already is) or will be sent to the webgrave? And what do you think are the reasons for it's current status?

 

edit: hups, forget the s in the title >_< can someone fix that? ^^'

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I haven't visited the website for over a year, but from what I've heard it's only gotten worse and worse. The scrobbler stopped working for me around that time. Nothing would fix it, it always just kept crashing. Tried to contact last.fm staff multiple times, never even got a reply. I uninstalled the scrobbler for the last time and instantly deleted my account. Haven't returned since. The support is laughable, their servers constantly have errors and they're very slow with fixing things. It shouldn't take over 10 days to fix scrobbling issues with the new iTunes. I agree on the subscription issues too, subscriptions honestly give nothing really cool, if they want more people to subscribe they definitely need to offer more features.

 

If last.fm doesn't innovate and make its services more attractive I don't think they're going to last long. They need to innovate more and actually hire people who know what they're doing lol.

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  • I didn't know who are the owner of LastFm and I didn't care, seriously ^^
  • I know LastFm since 2007 and I never pay for an account.... because I use just for scrobbling xD and see how poeple like what I listen and make stat (like number of listening tracks, artist...)
  • I didn't use Itunes for listen music so I don't have any problem for scrobbling or ect...
  • I like the scrobbler program and can't see the essential data for each track (title, album, cover art)
  • And I don't know an another website like LastFm for Scrobbling, you talk about spotify but it's just for listen music on web right? I hate so much this sort of website ^^!

 

(edit: hups, forget the s in the title >_< can someone fix that? ^^'

Edit => use full editor => corrige your title...  nothing complicated!

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If I was into the radio feature I probably would have switched a long time ago. But I have very little interest in streaming from Spotify. So I stick with last.fm. Maybe my dread of updating itunes had become useful in this instance. Last.fm has slowly become archaic for much outside archiving your own listening habits, that's true. But I still like it for that if they could get their tech issues handled. I guess I'm just lucky I haven't suffered being unable to scrobble yet.

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hmm, to be fair, the last time something went wrong with my foobar scrobbler (it was giving me some "API key suspended" message), i contacted the last.fm staff and they got back to me within a few days. i was kinda surprised since almost everyone i know says terrible things about them. that said, there was once started a thread to give some suggestions on how to manage scrobbling multiple artists with the same name, but none of the staff responded and my thread died *shrug* so it's a matter of luck i guess?

i'll be quite sad if last.fm dies cuz i made quite a lot of friends there, some of whom i still chat to frequently. and like Ikna said it's an efficient way to find new artists, manage track statistics (though i suppose you can do that locally), etc. well, if/when that day comes, i think everyone will realize what a waste of time it was to squabble over stuff like whether Raphael or Raphael is the "correct tag" XD

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I'm waiting for a competitor to arise that does exactly what Last.fm does, but with a few key differences:

  • A scrobbling tool that actually works! It's amazing how the official client can't scrobble from my Android but a thirty line script included with my portable media player can. Last.fm developers make web services seem like rocket science.
  • A more sane way of categorizing artists. Categorizing artists by name was a terrible idea, although anything else has it's own warts to deal with too. If you must categorize by name, do what Wikipedia has and default to a disambiguation entry and have listener's pick the artists (or even better detect the album name and try to auto-match first!)
  • A more sane way of handing tag corrections. It's way too cumbersome to ask for a change the way it is now.
  • A similar/better radio streaming service. It probably works great if you're into more mainstream music and you're looking for more indie artists. Going the other way, not so useful.

I don't use Last.fm too heavily. It's basically my online list of what I listened to when and I look at it because I like statistics and I'm a nerd. Other than that, the site is borderline useless to me. If it died tomorrow I wouldn't care too much.

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I've been using last.fm since 2003 and honestly never encountered problems with scrobbling - whether from computer, phone or tablet. I do know their mobile apps are horrible and outdated with no updates in years. I also know that their customer support and forums are full of unanswered questions and misinformation. I do see the website going downhill. I quit paying for a subscription (despite it being cheap as hell - but that's probably for a reason) about four or so years ago.

 

If the site does end up dying, I need to look for an alternative. I love scrobbling. It's really interesting to see how drastic my musical taste has changed over the years. If there will be an alternative I HOPE TO GOD that I can backup my last.fm scrobbling stats and import them to a new service. I do NOT want to lose all my scrobbles over the years. That would suck so bad.

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I've been using last.fm since 2003 and honestly never encountered problems with scrobbling - whether from computer, phone or tablet. I do know their mobile apps are horrible and outdated with no updates in years. I also know that their customer support and forums are full of unanswered questions and misinformation. I do see the website going downhill. I quit paying for a subscription (despite it being cheap as hell - but that's probably for a reason) about four or so years ago.

 

If the site does end up dying, I need to look for an alternative. I love scrobbling. It's really interesting to see how drastic my musical taste has changed over the years. If there will be an alternative I HOPE TO GOD that I can backup my last.fm scrobbling stats and import them to a new service. I do NOT want to lose all my scrobbles over the years. That would suck so bad.

You can back up your lists although I've forgotten how. I'll need to see if it can still be done before I say anything more.

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I'm waiting for the day when a serious concurrent will emerge; and then last.fm will die, and I'll not cry about it. They don't even try ffs. No app updates or designed according to the OS, no layout udpates (like, seriously, the website is so outdated!), you cannot change your pseudonym, etc etc (the official forum is very informative about the users' issues). Do they only give a shit about their website or what? They know that they are alone in this segment sadly...we need a renewal ffs!

I don't have any scrobbling issues with iTunes and my alternative scrobbles app (thank god for the alternatives! I'm done with their shitty obsolete app) and I'm not a paid user, so I can't talk about it. I have the same use than Zess, I love stats (but it annoys me sometimes to see wrong titles that you can't change, even if you try to).

 

edit: now that I'm thinking about it, I said I don't have any scrobbling issues, I lied. Not with iTunes tho, but the duplicate/messy scrobbles on my last.fm profile without any reasons are a problem. And last.fm scrobble my iPod Classic whenever the fuck he wants (so reliable!).

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This site seems lost cause tbh, there just is nothing there but music scrobbling related things that are interesting and those don't really make money, hard to see people suddenly subscribing. End for the site will come sooner or later unless they pull some amazing trick I am totally unable to foresee to be within realm of possibility. 

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I have been with last.fm since it was still called Audioscrobbler. I think it was a pointless endavour to try becoming a streaming/radio site when there are others who do it much better. Sure, the recommended tracks radio was nice, but not the reason I signed up. I want to scrobble my music, get charts, get recommendations and maybe find other people with similar music taste. And for me, that purpose is still being fulfilled, so I have no reason to complain.

 

 

I think they should just scale down a bit, go back to their core functions, stop trying to be a radio/streaming/news site.

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I want to scrobble my music, get charts, get recommendations and maybe find other people with similar music taste. And for me, that purpose is still being fulfilled, so I have no reason to complain.

 

 

I think they should just scale down a bit, go back to their core functions, stop trying to be a radio/streaming/news site.

 

Basically this.

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I have yet to have major issues with Last.fm. Occasionally, some songs wouldn't scrobble on the app (at least on my end), until I stop listening to music like half an hour or so later.

 

Other than that, its pretty legit and I've been using it since 2009.

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I just signed up for last.fm a few weeks ago, as many of you may know, so if the site died or ended, I would just regret putting all the time into the site that I have. I've spent a lot of time trying to make sure I have a way to get everything scrobbled, which means I had to hunt for iPhone apps, and I've spent money on them too (only to stop using them all because of my stubborn iPhone not registering metadata changes coupled with last.fm not making a very simple artist title correction), I've spent some time uploading album artwork (it's a graphic design related obsession), I've been going through my entire iTunes library, re-tagging some of my music to make sure everything in there matches something that's already in the last.fm database... I could have spent all of that time doing other, more productive things, honestly.

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I just signed up for last.fm a few weeks ago, as many of you may know, so if the site died or ended, I would just regret putting all the time into the site that I have. I've spent a lot of time trying to make sure I have a way to get everything scrobbled, which means I had to hunt for iPhone apps, and I've spent money on them too (only to stop using them all because of my stubborn iPhone not registering metadata changes coupled with last.fm not making a very simple artist title correction), I've spent some time uploading album artwork (it's a graphic design related obsession), I've been going through my entire iTunes library, re-tagging some of my music to make sure everything in there matches something that's already in the last.fm database... I could have spent all of that time doing other, more productive things, honestly.

 

Since 2008 im doing this too,editing all in lastfm, I like so much a profile a artist all updated and all information about. I think that lastfm need people to did this like mod in site to try make the site better, about problem scrobbiling... Looks that lastfm is lost all great job that been years ago. I love Last.fm but need change this fast!!!! 

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I just signed up for last.fm a few weeks ago, as many of you may know, so if the site died or ended, I would just regret putting all the time into the site that I have. I've spent a lot of time trying to make sure I have a way to get everything scrobbled, which means I had to hunt for iPhone apps, and I've spent money on them too (only to stop using them all because of my stubborn iPhone not registering metadata changes coupled with last.fm not making a very simple artist title correction), I've spent some time uploading album artwork (it's a graphic design related obsession), I've been going through my entire iTunes library, re-tagging some of my music to make sure everything in there matches something that's already in the last.fm database... I could have spent all of that time doing other, more productive things, honestly.

 

don't worry, for the tagging you'll take quickly this habit to check each time on the OHP for each downloaded releases (to have the right tag). xD

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Hahaaaa I started using Last.fm for the first time like last month.

Sad to see them go down like this. I really like the scrobbler, stats, and meeting others with similar tastes.

In addition to iTunes, windows media player doesn't work for me either. Gotta use that foo.

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(edit: hups, forget the s in the title >_< can someone fix that? ^^'

Edit => use full editor => corrige your title...  nothing complicated!

 

 

Lol, thanks. I have forgotten I have to hit the full editor button ^^;

 

hmm, to be fair, the last time something went wrong with my foobar scrobbler (it was giving me some "API key suspended" message), i contacted the last.fm staff and they got back to me within a few days. i was kinda surprised since almost everyone i know says terrible things about them. that said, there was once started a thread to give some suggestions on how to manage scrobbling multiple artists with the same name, but none of the staff responded and my thread died *shrug* so it's a matter of luck i guess?

i'll be quite sad if last.fm dies cuz i made quite a lot of friends there, some of whom i still chat to frequently. and like Ikna said it's an efficient way to find new artists, manage track statistics (though i suppose you can do that locally), etc. well, if/when that day comes, i think everyone will realize what a waste of time it was to squabble over stuff like whether Raphael or Raphael is the "correct tag" XD

 

It seems they are quick helping you, especially over twitter, when the problem is minor. Fixing a small issue? No problem. Fixing an issue, that may take 3 days maximum, because you have to program the plug-in differently? Takes ages. What bothers me the most is how they almost never answer in the client or website problem forums. People have been rightly complaining that they often have to wonder if there is still a staff.

 

The thing with the correct tags is a big issue. I really hate it when I have to migrate to unicode and loose all my old scrobbels. Even shiitier that recently a lot of unicode pages have been relinked wrongly. See: Ghost was and should be GHOST

 

I'm waiting for a competitor to arise that does exactly what Last.fm does, but with a few key differences:

  • A scrobbling tool that actually works! It's amazing how the official client can't scrobble from my Android but a thirty line script included with my portable media player can. Last.fm developers make web services seem like rocket science.
  • A more sane way of categorizing artists. Categorizing artists by name was a terrible idea, although anything else has it's own warts to deal with too. If you must categorize by name, do what Wikipedia has and default to a disambiguation entry and have listener's pick the artists (or even better detect the album name and try to auto-match first!)

 

I agree with all points. Especially the artist disambiguation feature, which people have been requesting basically since forever. Not sure if the staff actually promised to work on it, but it shouldn‘t be impossible to program and it would make things a lot easier, especially end all those silly wars between fans of different bands sharing the same name.

 

Well, some people want different things from the site and are happy what they get. A lot of people here write that they don‘t need a radio streaming service, cool features or have never had any problems with scrobbling. I too could care less about the radio, I have used it maybe three times. I am using spotify now mainly for streaming (and there is even an implemention of spotify in lastfm. I am sure they could extend this feature somehow). Spotify isn‘t everyone's cup of tea either, I know, but for those who want to stream music or listen to radio stations it‘s a great alternative. However: a lot of people really liked the lastfm radio and were upset when it was gone. We, who mostly use it only for scrobbling, stats and finding new artist may be rather a minority. Te people who brought the money into the service were mostly those, who wanted to stream music. Lastf still needs money to run, hence the focus should always be on how your services can appeal to a mass of people and make them pay or donate. Sure, you can use the site for free. And maybe the streaming option isn‘t so important. I still think that lastfm need to make their service better or they won‘t last long.

 

And yeah, I am using itunes alternatives at the moment. I am glad have some, because I won‘t downgrade or use other temporary fixes. Now itunes itself is quite the horror somtimes, but that still means that the scrobbling client should be updated regularily to work with the players it‘s intended to be compatible with. It‘s not apples fault that the lastfm staff are lazy. I too had scrobbling issues since ca. 2012. Since then the scrobbler played roulette when I wanted to scrobble my ipod and did only a few times (most often not and they were lost). Multiple scrobbles or tracks vanishing (or not scrobbling at all) are common. For a website that is all about statistics and charts it‘s actually impossible to get your listening habits accurate (except you are lucky and your client never does this shit with you).

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Even shiitier that recently a lot of unicode pages have been relinked wrongly. See: Ghost was and should be GHOST

 

This will probably be one of the most insightful posts no one will ever read.

The crux of your problem has to do with competing standards for encoding Japanese characters on a computer, all of which utilize Unicode. However, much to almost everyone's surprise, there is more than one type of Unicode. There are actually a lot of different types of Unicode.

Wait what?

Traditional Unicode is nothing more than a mapping from 8/16/32 bit hexadecimal values to symbols. Given the hexadecimal value of a certain character, say N, you could input the hexadecimal equivalent of N (which would be 004E) and out comes N. Not N. The regular character N. Where does this weird N value come from?

The answer is the EUC-JP standard. EUC stands for Extended Unix Code, which is a multibyte character encoding system used primarily for Japanese, Korean, and simplified Chinese. It uses a 7-bit representation to distinguish characters from one another. This should definitely trigger a pause for you, because this means that it represents an inconsistency between traditional Unicode and EUC. Hence, in order to represent the Latin alphabet, a completely different set of hexadecimal values needs to be used. So instead of 004E, N is represented as A3CE. The semantics behind the representation are far beyond anything that will explain the problem, so if you really want to know why it's so different you can research/ask. I'll just jump into the next part.

You can count on your OS/browser to automatically detect/support all the different Unicode standards (they have to if they want to compete with MS/IE in the Asian market), which doesn't help at all in uncovering this inconsistency. Your system properly processes the characters and the scrobbler sends it off to the last.fm servers, which then completely shits the bed. The algorithm used to match various spellings of the same artist to the same page works on the traditional UTF-8/16/32 standard of representing characters, which is what you're reading right now. My guess is it either translates EUC-JP into two separate strings which do not equate and thus creates separate pages for (seemingly) identical spellings, or it just doesn't try and creates a new page automatically. I couldn't really tell you which one it is without looking at the algorithm myself, but what I can tell you is that EUC-JP was not intended for use for anyone outside of Japan. Hell, EUC-JP isn't even the standard in Japan because there is no standard. It all comes back to the Japanese kanji/romaji representation of their language lending itself very poorly into the modern age.

In a hypothetical world where everything works properly you could have two options:

 

  1. last.fm would have an algorithm that could correctly detect and process EUC-JP characters, somehow use some magic to pair it to a UTF-8 character and do the comparison
  2. last.fm would have a better separation of artists by referring to each artist by a unique SID instead of the characters that consist of their name

In the first case, using EUC would yield you no benefit at all, because then your EUC would just redirect to UTF-8 and you'd never know. In the second case, you would still get a bunch of different pages for the same artist using EUC because the strings do not equate unless you compare EUC to EUC, which is stupid because as I said before nobody outside of Japan should use it.

If it were some combination of the two the resultant algorithm would be such a mess I doubt it would work properly. I also failed to mention that the "somehow" from part one itself results in an extremely nasty algorithm because  the disparity between 7-bit representations of characters and 8-bit representations of characters is a fundamental division so deep most programmers don't have the necessary low-level knowledge to parse bits properly and match them up right. The ones that do won't want to waste their time writing an algorithm for such an edge case.

tl;dr - Your best bet is to redirect both pages to a page that uses UTF-8 (read: normal) encoding and ditch the Unicode altogether. Either that or just live with it really.

 

Really short tl;dr -I'm a nerd.

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^ I'm into it.

 

I do hope that they add the following, but I doubt it would happen:

 

 

1.) Different charts to represent data.

2.) A better API that returns more than 10 tracks of info per call

3.) A way to organize artists by releases or some other key factor

4.) A way for users to add official releases, not record labels. It's so fucking annoying when entire discographies are not listed OR they're wrong and there's no way to fix them

5.) When suggesting a correction, don't have it take months to take place (if it even happens!)

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i do love last.fm because it's already a decent database (with its flaws ofc but still!) of artists and releases and stuff like free mp3s, bandpics, etc. stats are <3 too ofc. so i've been also aware about last.fm near death and couldn't find better solution than to make my own small website(or just a tool) for scrobbling my shit. but that will take shittons of time and efforts to put the idea into life so idk if i ever do that (unless the website will die for real). 

also i wonder of whether last.fm staff ever tried to hire enthusiasts who actually care about website itself because it doesn't seems they do. 

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It must be because I've been quite new to it but the only problems I've had with it is scrobbles not going through and, on one occasion, duplicating the number of plays recent tracks got. I'm not fussy (and not calling anyone who would be annoyed by this fussy), but I don't mind the said flaws about it apart from the fact that I no longer use mainly Apple products which do scrobble. I just use simple mp3's a lot more, so listening to music away from the computer and not using my mobile instead, is a no goer. I didn't actually know the staff running it aren't motivated about the site themselves. Hire me up! I mean, I think it's a brilliant way of finding new music, meeting possible friends with the same music tastes and keeping track of what you like to listen to over such long periods of time. It's too bad there's a lazy crew in the background I guess, if so many aren't happy with it. But, reading that it might end really got to me, aha. The site, as I said before, is mega helpful to me, and has been my main source of new music ever since I stopped with iTunes and went on to using foobar instead (yeah, okay.. that was very recent xD). Guess there's more out there though, soundcloud and Spotify seem fitting. Seeing the dead shoutboxes/posts also gets to me. Like, it'd be awesome if Last.fm could be a happy community but by the sounds of it, most aren't happy at all. After typing this much, I can remember now one thing I get annoyed with and that's redirecting to incorrect artists. I don't mind shared artist pages but when it clearly goes to the wrong name, it's like, '...REALLY?' xD #benihaslittleknowledge

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I have been using Last.fm since 2008. I must admit that I don't use the site that much, so I haven't noticed any kind of problems with scrobbling. And if there was a bit of lagging, I restarted the Last.fm-program and started a new song - that always fixed it.

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I haven't read every post in this thread but for everybody who has problems with the Scrobbler not launching with iTunes 12.1, install this version and everything should be back to normal - it worked for me (Win7 Professional x64, Scrobbler 2.1.36).

When using a Mac you actually have a couple of nice alternatives, one of them being Melo. I use this on my Macbook, it's a slim, trimmed Scrobbler that does what it's meant to do: scrobble. You can check it out here:
 
227100.png

That's all the app shows btw.

Having said that, I really enjoy last.fm for what most of the previous users already mentioned: personal charts and discovering new music. For these two purposes, last.fm is and has always been great, so I hope it won't die or get messed up even more any time soon.

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Last I checked in on Last.fm, they had integrated into Spotify...so it was essentially just their artist database you were using.  Then, when you clicked a track to listen, it would launch Spotify.

 

Pretty weak in my opinion.

 

I think if they continue on this direction, they need to make a better website or something.  The easier to use the better.  Whenever I have used it, which is admittedly not very much, but I've been confused on certain things, though that was primarily me trying to administer my own artist account.

 

But even so, I've never really liked the lets-integrate-with-another-service approach, because then it launches a separate program, and it doesnt feel like a seamless experience.

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