Jargon is something that most people hate, but that seems to be totally inevitable regardless. If you are looking into the different music business programs, it is likely that you will instantly start to come across quite a bit of jargon. Hence, before you actually enroll, you may want to familiarize yourself with some of the most common terms, giving you a heads up above the rest.
Jargon and Terminology in the World of Music Business
- Bundling and unbundling – When tracks can be downloaded, but only if they are purchased as part of an album, they have been “bundled”. This means that you have to buy more than just one song. When a track is unbundled, it means you can buy it on its own, just like the old-fashioned “singles” of years gone by.
- Bundle – A bundle is basically a type of music service, tied up for third parties. For instance, a French bank entered into an agreement with Universal Music Group, offering young people a music service if they took out a credit card. This means financial services and music are tied together, and that is a “bundle”.
- Re-bundle – This describes when artists create a bundle of products as one large package. For instance, they can create a concert package, whereby fans receive the ticket, DVD, t-shirt, and CD, for one price. Re-bundling is very popular among artists with large fan bases. Fans, meanwhile, are happy about getting a good bundle deal, which is generally cheaper than purchasing each of the items individually.
- A la Carte – This is a term that puts control back in the hands of the customer. A good example of this is the iTunes music service. Those who put credit into their iTunes account can spend their credit on anything they want, regardless of genres, artists, songs, and so on.
- Streaming – This is one of the most important technical terms around nowadays, as it links music production with the online world. Streaming is very different from download, because with a download, you actually move the entire file to an external device before being able to hear it. With streaming, however, you can listen instantly, but the file will not be put on your device. In fact, downloading music is almost always illegal.
- Subscriptions – Most of us are aware of what a subscription is. Within the world of music, it generally means that people subscribe to a certain music services, such as Spotify or Amazon Prime Music.
- Ad-funded Models – This is a business type whereby revenue is shared among providers of content. For instance, Spotify make its subscribers view advertisements before they can play the music. Spotify gets paid for this, and this money is shared between the owners of the music on which the ad was shown.
- Music on Demand – This is a service that allows people to watch, play back, or listen to high quality music simply by pressing play, even though the music is not stored on their device. That has been made possible thanks to various technological developments.