A lot of people have asked to pay for a commercial free shoutcast station, and I've also heard the same for commercial free browsing.
So... what I'm currently working on is a subscription service for Magnatune that will be tiered something like this (please give feedback, the details are still up on the air)
a) $10 / month - commercial free everything - album streams, genre mix playlists, all 1 hour long podcasts and shoutcast radio. Includes 1 album download a month of our choice.
b) $20 / month - all of (a) plus 2 free album downloads a month of your choice, one free album download a month of our choice. Access to the 3h and 10h long podcasts, good for a working day.
c) $30 / month all of (b) but at 4 free album downloads a month of your choice
d) $50 / month all of (c) plus the right to play our music in your commercial environment to the public (ie, restaurant, cafe, retail shop). Includes an ASCAP/BMI fee waiver, which most retail environments normally have to pay, which typically starts at $150 per quarter.
This is all an outgrowth of another in-progress project, the "fill your ipod" idea, which is:
1) Fill-your-ipod. For $150 we'll give you our entire catalog as VBR-MP3 (or OGG-VORBIS, your choice) which amounts to about 30gb of music. You don't get access to the WAV/FLAC files at this price, but the VBR/OGG files sound awfully good. This works out to a cost of 35 cents per album.
2) To download this much music is not that simple, so we'll give you a choice of a) a bittorrent URL which downloads all the files individually, organized into directories (not zip files) b) or a windows and mac self-executable bittorrent program that automatically runs and downloads the magnatune catalog. This is very handy for people who don't have bittorrent and really looks more like "the magnatune catalog downloading program". Nice aspects of this include: a) mp3 files are downloaded individually, so you can start listening before everything is downloaded b) you can stop and restart the program, and downloading will pick back up where you were
3) I will probably offer entire genre downloads for lower prices, but I haven't figured out what those prices might be
4) The $150 is a one-time purchase and you don't get the right to new albums we add.
5) For a $50 per year subscription fee, you get access to all new albums for a year, as we'll publish new torrent files you can download which will then only download the new albums you don't already have on your drive.
6) since these are mp3s (or OGGs) they'll work with any music player, not just ipods.
7) $150 to fill your ipod is a lot more reasonable than the $15,000 it would cost from the iTunes music store (or CD purchases) to fill a 30GB ipod.
This is the next major step for Magnatune, and I still have a few month's effort to make this all work.