SoundCloud, a music publishing site which holds millions of original works not held elsewhere (and over a hundred million works total), may be in trouble. And if it is in trouble, we’ll lose much of that music, forever.
The situation is, of course, ridiculous.
I know I sound like a broken, um, MP3 file on this, but theres a simple solution to this problem: connected copies.
In such a scheme, I might share the file to SoundCloud (perhaps from my server, perhaps not). As other people share it, copies are made to their servers. These copies are connected by an ID and protocol that allows fail-over: if the copy cannot be found on the SoundCloud server, it tracks it down to the other locations (the “connected” in “connected copies” means that each copy points to the existence of other known copies).
Again, this is the underlying principle of lots of cool things not yet on people’s radar, like the Interplanetary File System, Named Data Networking, federated wiki, and Amber. It’s the future of the web, the next major evolution of it.
It’s worth thinking about.
P. S. While SoundCloud is still around you should check out my awesome playlist of new darkwave and neo-psychedelia tunes from little known artists.