Critique Anonymity Unfair

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davewalton
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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by davewalton » Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:14 am

Here's a fun forum fact:Screeners are NEVER incompetent when they're forwarding music, only when they're rejecting music.

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by davewalton » Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:37 am

Quote:The other reason anonymity bothers me is that it's the opposite of what I'm used to. Huh... that's EXACTLY what I'm used to. Outside of Taxi, I never know who the person is that's screening my submissions. I submitted music a couple of weeks ago for a couple of national ad campaigns. It was done online and so I don't even know who the company is much less the name and bio of the person screening the music. In the last month, I've submitted demo music for at least a dozen Indie films and although I know generally something about the film or production company I'm submitting to, I sure don't know the name and bio of the actual person reviewing the music. Same with direct submissions to music libraries, publishers, etc, etc.Who has ever sent demo music to a record label and insisted that they divulge the name and bio of the A&R rep who will be reviewing their submission?This isn't a Taxi defense, it's a reality check and although I can only speak to my own experience (which may be completely different from others), I've discovered that 99% of my submissions outside of Taxi go into what I call a "black hole", they're certainly reviewed by somebody but I never know who that somebody is, certainly I don't have access to their "bio" and I most definitely never know why they passed on my material. From my growing experience in submitting music outside of Taxi I've found that gaining access to the name and bio information of the person reviewing my submissions never happens.FWIW,Dave

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by Casey H » Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:54 am

Quote:There is a faulty logic to the "taxi members give death threats to taxi screeners" logic. Many of these same screeners, like John Braheny, give critiques in their songwriting workshops using their real nameNomiNomi: There is difference. When John Braheny critiques your song in a workshop he is providing a review service he was paid for, but NOT deciding whether or not to forward your song for an industry opportunity. When someone stands in between an artist's song and an opportunity, that is different. People get a lot nastier at times. Just look at some of the posts here over the past few years.Now, I am NOT saying TAXI shouldn't think about improvements as far as how much information they give about screeners. Maybe there is a compromise whereby, as suggested, they give some bio "bullet points" on screeners who review material. I hope that Michael reads customer suggestions on the boards here and considers improvements where practical.When I was a member, I enjoyed dispatch much more than the standard leads. For one, song placements with major artists by unknown writers are one in a million. Second, I enjoyed the quick turn around with NO critique (Not that critiques have no value). I found a painless yes or no better for film/TV and completely consistent with the industry. Over the past few years, outside of TAXI, I have pitched (for myself and many others) hundreds of songs for quick turn-around film/TV situations. It's simple; if I don't hear within a few weeks it's "no." Two times out of a hundred, I got a "yes."I digress: Along the lines of posting suggestions to TAXI: My suggestion would be to make the cost of TAXI + Dispatch + Electronic Submissions less expensive. Right now, it is $300 + $150 + $40, I believe, totaling $490 a year. I do give TAXI a lot of credit for not raising their prices all these years. But I would hope that electronic submission tools (I hear new ones are in the works) would lower their costs. Also, maybe they could offer a "no critique" membership for a lower price. Those members could only get critiques on-demand for a fee.As members or perspective members, we have a simple choice: Pay for TAXI with a screener/gatekeeper system (imperfect at times) in exchange to many more leads than we could get on our own...OR... not. The general consensus on the boards here has been that it is worth it because of how many film, TV, and library deals were achieved through TAXI. Casey (A ramblin' man this morn')

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by Casey H » Fri Mar 16, 2007 12:59 am

Quote:Quote:The other reason anonymity bothers me is that it's the opposite of what I'm used to. Huh... that's EXACTLY what I'm used to. Outside of Taxi, I never know who the person is that's screening my submissions. I submitted music a couple of weeks ago for a couple of national ad campaigns. It was done online and so I don't even know who the company is much less the name and bio of the person screening the music. In the last month, I've submitted demo music for at least a dozen Indie films and although I know generally something about the film or production company I'm submitting to, I sure don't know the name and bio of the actual person reviewing the music. Same with direct submissions to music libraries, publishers, etc, etc.Who has ever sent demo music to a record label and insisted that they divulge the name and bio of the A&R rep who will be reviewing their submission?This isn't a Taxi defense, it's a reality check and although I can only speak to my own experience (which may be completely different from others), I've discovered that 99% of my submissions outside of Taxi go into what I call a "black hole", they're certainly reviewed by somebody but I never know who that somebody is, certainly I don't have access to their "bio" and I most definitely never know why they passed on my material. From my growing experience in submitting music outside of Taxi I've found that gaining access to the name and bio information of the person reviewing my submissions never happens.FWIW,Dave I have to agree very strongly with Dave here as I said on my above post. In the real world, "no news" means either they didn't even listen at all or you were rejected. I also mentioned earlier that THE VERY REASON most companies only reply when interested is the same as the reason TAXI hides the identity of their screeners... no one want to be hassled or harassed. Casey

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by allends » Fri Mar 16, 2007 3:42 am

I'm a new member, so my opinion is based on my first impressions with the submission process. Here are 2 items on my wish list:1)Direct on-line submissions to Taxi as a Dispatch member. I personally will not drive traffic to my music with my Broadjam membership and there are other free services that host better quality sound for promotion and corroboration. I think a lot more members would sign up for Dispatch if they could drop the price of Primo Mob at Broadjam.2)On the bottom of the critique form, I would like to see something like this:Status: Forward (always )Listener ID # XYZShort blurb about the screener's credentials.For what it's worth...-Allen

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by hitwriter » Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:08 am

Quote:Taxi's admitted steady turnover among screeners. A steady turnover of screeners in itself says not every screener can have true "heavywieght credintials".Refering back to my original post... many A&R executives are accountants with a love for music.

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by hitwriter » Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:15 am

Quote:Quote:The other reason anonymity bothers me is that it's the opposite of what I'm used to. Huh... that's EXACTLY what I'm used to. Outside of Taxi, I never know who the person is that's screening my submissions. I submitted music a couple of weeks ago for a couple of national ad campaigns. It was done online and so I don't even know who the company is much less the name and bio of the person screening the music. That may be true in certain film and TV pitches, but in Nashville songwriters are pitching to a specific individual for a specific artist.Anonymity will turn your CD into a frisbee.

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by hitwriter » Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:27 am

What great input from all sides.The spirit of my original post was simply that in knowing the screeners name/resume, it allows the songwriter to weigh the comments better.Forwards and Returns are not the issue. Great songs are rejected all of the time in the music business for any number of reasons.However, everything we know about the screening process at TAXI is taken by faith with anonymity in place.

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by hitwriter » Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:28 am

Quote:I've always disliked the anonymity. One reason, like you said, is to understand the POV of the screener to be able to use the critique effectively. I've had some that were pretty off the mark but others that were very helpful.The other reason anonymity bothers me is that it's the opposite of what I'm used to. The music biz is all about connections and you can't make a connection with a number.There is a faulty logic to the "taxi members give death threats to taxi screeners" logic. Many of these same screeners, like John Braheny, give critiques in their songwriting workshops using their real name.What is the story behind the legendary Taxi death threat? Did that happen once or is it a common occurance?I'd much prefer if they used names and not numbers. But I'll still read the critiques. It's like listening to what anyone might say about one of my songs, I might agree or not, it might be helpful or not. But it doesn't hurt to read it.NomiWell said

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Re: Critique Anonymity Unfair

Post by hummingbird » Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:52 am

Quote:Here's a fun forum fact:Screeners are NEVER incompetent when they're forwarding music, only when they're rejecting music. Dave, you are absolutely correct.
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