Featured Post

Sunday, September 7, 2014

SoundCloud -- You Have A Problem

I decided to upload the music I've written for Wrack so far -- to SoundCloud. I went ahead and paid for an account since I'm going to upload other music too. I have 21 tracks for Wrack so far. Using the SoundCloud Upload link, I selected the files and watched as they uploaded.

Then I received an error saying that the tracks had a problem. There was an error message on each one of them. What?

After loading and reloading pages for a few minutes, I realized that all of the tracks were there -- except one.

The site kept reporting 21 tracks in the playlist I uploaded to, but clearly there were just 20.

After double checking the track names, I saw a warning that one track had an error uploading (a song I named "Wreckoning")..

I re-uploaded it. Still there was a cryptic message to the effect of an uploading error.

All the while I was logged in, there was a notification that I had messages. I had checked them and had clicked "Mark as Read" MANY times because the same messages were still popping up.

About to give up, I happened to click to open the messages once more, and there it

By the time I saw this, I had been working for two hours to check and double check the uploaded songs. I had also re-uploaded the song with the cryptic "there's been a problem" message. "Case 12175768!" If they started at case "1," then they' have issued over twelve million copyright notifications!!

I clicked on the link to dispute the "violation." This came up:
"We've received a report ..." -- yeah, from your "automatic content protection system."

I searched on SoundCloud for the artist and song listed -- a song of that name was listed, but under a different artist name.

Next stop YouTube. Found the song. It was obvious that the "automatic content protection system" has some bugs. When I listened to the song I 'infringed," it was not even vaguely similar to Wreckoning."

Here's the "reportedly infringed" material: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htxZZKv4pMw

Here's Wreckoning on SoundCloud*: https://soundcloud.com/bobbyprincemusic/wreckoning?in=bobbyprincemusic/sets/music-from-wrack

*[3 hours and 33 minutes after I submitted the "Contest copyright claim" form seen below, I received an email from SoundCloud advising that Wreckoning "has been released to my account." No apology for the intrusion on my time was included in the email,]

After clicking, "I want to dispute the copyright claim, I landed on this page:
Sorry for the oversized graphic. Blogger has no size between "Original" and "XLarge" that's readable.
After going through this procedure, I have a problem with the following:

  • SoundCloud makes customers jump through hoops because some "automated system" reported a copyright infringement. A human should double check the "automated system" before a notice is sent out.
  • SoundCloud's cryptic "problem uploading file" message should say their automated system has flagged this file as possibly being subject to the copyright of someone else, and a human will check this matter and notify of any further action taken.
  • Why would SoundCloud "share my contact information with the party making the allegations of infringement" when that party is an "automated content protection system?"
SoundCloud is still in the early alpha stage as far as I can tell. It's not really ready for prime time. Maybe I made a mistake paying for it?


  1. Dear Robert, this track seems to be published at Sound Cloud. So,
    problem seems to be fortunately resolved? And will be there other your music? :)

  2. What I was trying to point out is that their software that flagged the song was way off in matching the two songs. That and they wasted some of my time having to deal with the fact that its lazy for them to depend solely upon software to make an assumption and accusation that someone has used someone else's work.

  3. Youtube has lead me down the same path. I made a chronically depressing sounding song consisting of low strings, synths and somehow it was "ID"'d as a gangster rap song. What's more disgusting is that the first time I appealed this, my claim was rejected. The second time I appealed, it was accepted (again with no apology). Relying on computers for content recognition is only going to be as reliable as computers themselves are (which, at this point in history, is still not 100%.). They may be smart enough to calculate complex maths in a split second, but it still takes a human to read a CAPTCHA code.