Case #2: FUZZ



What is FUZZ??

It is a people-powered radio, where users can create personalized tracklists using their own music files and sharing them. It was founded by Jeff Yasuda in September 2012.


How does it work??

It is almost like a mix between Pandora, Facebook, and Instagram except it’s just for music.  Registration is quick and free; all users have to do is enter an email address, a username, and password.  You will then be directed to the home page, where you have the option of choosing the type of station you want to listen to whether it’s trending, popular, recently added, or “mad props”- usually mashups. If users have a specific artist or playlist in mind, they can directly search for them. Users have access to the entire website without actually creating their own stations, but they are recommended to in order to enhance their experience on the site.

How do users make their own station(s)??

Fuzz wants users to have a variety of songs to listen to and so they recommend that every user who decides to make a tracklist put at least 10 songs by 10 different artists.  If a user only puts up let’s say 6 songs by the same artist, the tracklist will not be considered “published” and so the public will not have access to their tracklist.  The site will prompt users of this on the tracklist section of their page.  Uploading music is easy and can be done in bulk to save time.  Once users have made a tracklist that is diverse enough, they become “DJs” instead of just regular users.

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How do users share their music??

Instead of just having a playlist, users create an actual page, including a description, a background picture, tracklist, comments section, and play history. Anyone who has registered can access the tracklist if it has been published. When listening to a station, users have the option to click either “repost”, “buy from Amazon” or “buy from iTunes”.

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What sets this apart from competitors??

FUZZ’s major competitors are Pandora and Spotify, but what sets them apart is the social aspect of the site.  Instead of robots creating random playlists, real people are interacting and creating playlists using their own music and so there’s much more diversity. Users can also provide feedback to the site and usually will be responded by FUZZ administrators.  Users are also able to share stations on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and via email.

How do they make money??

Although FUZZ provides free services, they are partnered with many third party sites, including Facebook. When users first register, they have the option of signing up through Facebook. They also rely on users’ network connection and music files that were previously downloaded or purchased, and so their only purpose is to make the space for connections.

What are the advantages of “Freemium” for FUZZ??

Users have a more personalized internet radio experience free of charge without having to deal with advertisements.  Allowing users to listen to a variety of music may encourage them to purchase more digital music, and since there are links directing them to Amazon and iTunes, it serves their convenience.