Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

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jdhogg
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by jdhogg » Tue Jan 26, 2010 6:57 am

Wasn't me.

+1 for keeping the name and including on the certificate "rules of communication" for that company.

Yeah, the vp should not be getting timewasting emails but in the big picture to say to taxi "never again" seems over the top. Patience is a virtue for both sides surely.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by guscave » Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:27 am

I know this has been a "Catch 22" for Taxi since they first started. I agree that maybe Taxi should put a notice on the forward certificates to let the member know they should not contact the company.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by kevinmathie » Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:54 am

I've been a member of Taxi for a little while, and I seem to remember a couple general emails Michael sent in the past regarding similar situations. But, maybe it needs to be a more consistent mantra, at least for a while. Probably a lot of people have joined recently, and therefore don't know the ins-and-outs as well as they should.

I definitely think that a disclaimer on the Forward Certificate is a good idea. The company's name can be listed, then underneath the name, there can be a disclaimer saying something like, This company has requested that the artist NOT contact them regarding the status of their submission. Those contacting the company will be dealt with in an appropriate manner: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxxHp5DEkA4


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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by admin » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:29 am

Thanks for your opinions everybody. A big part of the problem is that members are emailing GENERAL addresses at the company, so all manner of people/staff are getting TAXI related emails. I guess the members figure, "What the hell. If I email several people, one of them is BOUND to be the guy or gal who got my music."

I had already been chewed out by the head of music (at this most recently offended company) because a newbie member hit every box a couple weeks before. The company guy thought we published his name in the listing. I told him we didn't, and that only members who were forwarded got the company's name. Then two MORE members emailed whatever boxes they could find, and that's when they pulled the plug on us. This about the 5 or 6th company in the last few months that have quit using us because of this.

Imagine if each company gets just a FEW people who reach out to 3-10 email addys at each company they get forwarded to. Now, imagine that it happens 4 times a year (because they run listings about that often). It doesn't take long until the word is out that TAXI members are becoming a pain in the butt and they quit running listings. I'd bet that each member who does it thinks he or she is the ONLY one and they are just an early bird trying to get the worm.

What breaks my heart is that I sometimes work for YEARS to develop these relationships and they get blown in a week. I understand that there are tons of smaller libraries out there now, and they are very loose in their business practices, thus creating an atmosphere of "it's cool."

But we are constantly trying to elevate the quality of our listings. We want to avoid those "come one, come all, we do it by the numbers" companies. I'm in discussions with a TOP company right now that has recently been accepting submissions from bands and singer/songwriters on the site. They've been overloaded, quickly stopped accepting submissions and are finding that 95% of what they get from the public is less than great. They were mightily impressed with the samples I played them. But I know they'd stop using us in a minute if they got several calls or blanket emails after they ran a listing.

I'm slowing down my pitch until I get this problem under control :-( I don't want to see three years of courtship go down the drain.

I also don't WANT to go "dark" at all, but I have the feeling that some members will always feel that they are the only one doing it, and it can't hurt that much. Whoever said that they aren't just blowing THEIR chances, but everybody else along with them was absolutely right.

I'm also worried that by putting, "Please don't attempt to contact the company" on the forward notices, that it looks like we're trying to hide something. It could also GIVE the idea to newbies who may not have thought of it yet.

Perplexed,
Michael

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by brindabella » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:44 am

I wouldnt want to be on your shoes Boss, people are people. That advice "dont eat the fruit from that tree" was never listened to. I dunno what a solution would be, maybe punish offenders by not allowing them to submit for a certain period of time? I sure like to know where my music is going, though!
"The crucial thing in life is not to repeat oneself." Antonio Stradivari.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by orest » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:51 am

Is this a new problem for Taxi or has it been around since you started in the 90's?

When a new member pays for his first year, it might be good to make it VERY clear in the agreement, and if the member doesn't follow the rules, throw him/her out.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by kevinmathie » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:56 am

That is a very tough problem, Michael.

I suppose the immediate solution is simply to withhold the company info, at least for the time-being. Inform the member that he/she has been forwarded, but don't tell them to whom it's been forwarded to. Like Dave said, that may make the conspiracy theories flair up, but in the end it's probably a trade-off. Which is worse: losing the listing companies, or dealing with conspiracy theories? I would imagine that if push comes to shove, and we had to make a choice between the two options, we'd all prefer anonymous high-quality listings over non-anonymous, but not-as-top-notch, listings.

It'll be too bad if we have to make a choice like that, but if we did have to make the choice, I probably go with the anonymous forwards.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by remmet » Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:00 pm

admin wrote:
I'm also worried that by putting, "Please don't attempt to contact the company" on the forward notices, that it looks like we're trying to hide something. It could also GIVE the idea to newbies who may not have thought of it yet.

Perplexed,
Michael
Just for arguments sake, couldn't a "Please don't contact" notice - if given in the overall context of problem avoidance - neutralize any appearance of hiding something? Especially if accompanied by member-wide emails alerting everyone to the situation?

As to giving newbies the idea in the first place, it sounds a little like worrying that teaching contraception will GIVE teens the idea to have sex. I think it's safe to say that, in both cases, the idea is likely to surface on its own without much external prodding. :)

Richard

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by kevinmathie » Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:08 pm

remmet wrote:Just for arguments sake, couldn't a "Please don't contact" notice - if given in the overall context of problem avoidance - neutralize any appearance of hiding something? Especially if accompanied by member-wide emails alerting everyone to the situation?
I agree with this, too. I think letting everyone know the context behind the notice is very important.
remmet wrote:As to giving newbies the idea in the first place, it sounds a little like worrying that teaching contraception will GIVE teens the idea to have sex. I think it's safe to say that, in both cases, the idea is likely to surface on its own without much external prodding. :)
Ha!!!! That's funny...and true! :lol: :lol:

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by jazzstan » Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:19 pm

You are indeed on the Horns of a Dilemma. (oh that sounds like a loop library of a brass section riffs for film & tv) You can’t control the behavior of members. One man’s rogue is another’s assertive entrepreneur. And you can’t control the behavior of the suits, whether it was just a bad day, generic venting or ego driven drivel.

I agree with Dave – the “going dark” will impact membership and participation. But there a pros and cons if you do or if you don’t. (Listing them all out in four columns helps me sort out options when I have tough choices.)

Obviously you can’t have a few misdirected folks spoil the business for you and everyone else. Taxi’s reputation with the listing companies is a huge, albeit intangible, asset. So what are the mitigating steps you can take? You do promote the successes, but could you do more? Include it at the beginning of the listings for those who don't read the other emails? Changing the member “rules” or contract wouldn’t really change behaviors of the few. Could you have it be on a “on request” basis? That way someone would have to identify / reveal themselves to TAXI, which would create a higher level of personal accountability for the member. Perhaps some criteria, such as a member should have x number of forwards and/or placements, might limit the quantity of requests. I’m just thinking out loud here.

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