Audio Commons: Digital transformation in the sound industry

This week in the Business Insights Lab, we’ll be finding out more about CoDE’s ongoing EU funded project on the Audio Commons. Dr David Plans, Dr Milosz Miszczynski and Dr Carla Bonina are hosting a session to discuss the development of business models in this area, with partners from the project and a few MBA students as well.  We are banking on an insightful session about what digital disruption looks like in the music/sound industry, and what it means for ever-evolving digital business models.

The Audio Commons is an initiative that aims at bringing Creative Commons audio content to the creative industries.  Its goal is to integrate industry actors, public institutions, music creators and consumers to revolutionise the way in which ‘open music’ is used and created. At present, despite the vast amounts of user-generated audio content—including sound effects, field recordings, musical samples and music pieces—the professional creative industries (e.g. video games, film and music industries) are hardly reusing this content in their media productions.

The Audio Commons aims to change that by addressing two related issues: the lack of a shared culture within the creative industries of open content; and the technical and practical obstacles to search, find, reuse and facilitate the integration of open audio in the production workflows of the creative industries.

What’s at stake? According to Dr Bonina, ‘The amount of open and largely free audio files is immense and keep growing day by day; however, in its current form, it’s either very difficult or hardly possible to find them or reuse them in a purposeful way. The Audio Commons brings an amazing opportunity to change this – it has the potential to disrupt the industry as open source software has done in the past.’

The aim of the workshop is to discuss potential business model paths that the Audio Commons, once built, may follow to make the initiative sustainable and valuable in the future. It’s the early stages of something that could be transformative – and that’s right where CoDE likes to be.

What is going to transform your industry?

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About the Author : Kris Henley

Communications and Outreach for Surrey Business School's Centre for the Digital Economy, a newly-founded research centre to explore the implications of the Digital Economy for business, government and society.