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lala.com  Preview
7 November 06 from glenn mcdonald 7
Oddly, I can't find any sign of lala.com referrers in my logs. The forums aren't at a different domain, are they?  

As for why it's quiet here, I haven't been writing much, so there hasn't been much draw to the regular part of furia.com, and that's pretty much the only place in the universe from which there are links to vF. That's my theory, anyway!
6 November 06 from petrarch 6
There has been some discussion of furia on the Lala forum recently, including a link to the "sterkled blorf" entry. It will be interesting to see if there is any spike in visitors (glenn do you ever look at numbers of hits?). I brought up TWAS and vF, so perhaps we may even hear from some new people.  

It continues to be pretty quiet here. glenn, any comments as to why?
24 July 06 from glenn mcdonald 5
One of the demos at tonight's Web Innovators Group meeting in Cambridge was by Swaptree, who are building a site for trading (interchangably) CDs, DVDs, video games and books, including the brokering of three- and four-way trades. No pool, but also no charge.  

They're in private beta, so there's no way to guess how fast (or whether) they'll get to a critical mass of users.
24 July 06 from 2fs 4
I agree that Lala's development team has been quite responsive in trying to meet the expressed needs of its members. That's difficult, because there are strong differences of opinion (as any Lala member, reading the feedback about cover art, will confirm). I think the rank-order prioritizing would create more headaches than it would solve - and personally, I rather like the gift-like aspect of not knowing which CD you're going to get. Curiously, though, its algorithms seem to favor repeating artists: i.e., with three different artists, having received one CD, I in quick succession received multiple other CDs by the same artist (and not from the same person - so it's not as if the CDs just suddenly became available). I do with the "cover art" thing were both a *preference* rather than a requirement (if you sign up for it)...
23 July 06 from Michael 3
I have been avidly adding entries to lala.com and I really like the interface overall, but since my settings are "vacation" - I am moving and all my discs are in boxes - I haven't really traded anything yet. I must say that the interface improvements in the past few months have been significant. You can now set whether or not you intend to send/receive liner notes, and only should be paired with CDs that have all notes included. That's a big step.  

The obvious unmet need is a rank-order prioritization of CDs you really want, although that would likely be a huge headache as well as a dramatic diminuation of the total number of CDs traded - on which lala.com makes its money.
16 March 06 from petrarch 1
Yes, this is one of the things they seem to be working on with the beta. The problem has to do with the variable weight of the notes. I have access to a postal scale and I just add any necessary additional postage to cover the weight of the mailer with the notes. Many others seem to do the same.  

But you don't have the ability to know what will happen with the discs you receive. As I said, it is not perfect...
16 March 06 from Aaron 2
I'd heard about this but didn't realize one could join the beta so easily. Cool.  

Okay, so... the interface doesn't seem to work in Safari, but in Firefox it does, and it's very nice. You can usually find things with just the artist's name and the first word of the title, and clicking to move things into your 'want list' or 'have list' is easy. I just stuck 20 things on there, and two had already been requested, so I guess I'm giving this a try.  

BUT.  

The mailing guidelines say "do not include liner notes". The fuck? It saves them postage, but at the cost of deterring a whole lot of sales, I would think. You could tell people to include back covers, and/or tear front covers off liner booklets, while still knowing in advance how much the package will weigh.  

Still, worth a try.
16 March 06 from petrarch 1
Being astute music listeners, you out there in vF-land may have already heard of lala. But if not, you may find it interesting. It is a service through which you trade your old cd's for others' old cd's. You don't trade directly; you trade into and out of a pool. You pay $1.49 for each disc received, which covers prepaid mailers and protective cases. Plus the artists get $.20 for each disc traded.  

It is in beta, but is easy to get into. I have been a member for a week or so and have already passed along several discs I didn't listen to. This could be good for people with lots of discs, who probably also have a number of discs they don't listen to. You can get invites by going through PC World: blogs.pcworld.com/staffblog/archives/001571.html.  

This not perfect by any stretch. For starters, finding and passing on very obscure music is not very likely at this point. However, they have set it up in such a way that there is no harm in giving it a try.
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