Friday, 20 February 2015

Sometimes I DJ too...

Hi! It's been a while so I figured I should say something. I can't really say much about the new release I'm working on yet, so I thought I might share some of my brain with you. Some of you know that I DJ in Second Life. If you didn't, and you'd like to catch a set, check out my in-world profile for wheres and whens, I'd love to see you. In any event, it's not just as simple a thing as some folks think, so in the interests of public awareness:

Some thoughts on virtual DJing...

It seems that in many, many places on the grid there's always some charlatan banging on about "tip the DJ!", "show some Linden Love to the DJ!" and so on, right? Stupid, stupid people, it's only some geek sat at a keyboard throwing some tunes around, right?

WRONG. Oh so very wrong.

Actually, I totally get how being hectored to tip every five minutes, as happens in some places, can get to be seriously irritating and ruin the mood of a party. So let's assume we're talking about nice parties where you might be reminded a couple or three times in a two hour slot to tip the DJ, deal?

Most of the DJs I know honestly do it for the love of music and entertainment. We really want you folks to have fun when you come to our sets, it makes our souls happy! Again, the majority of DJs I know put significant work into crafting a set of tunes for you to listen to - we balance the theme of the party with what's generally popular with the crowd, and also with our own particular "style". It's really not just a random bunch of noise tossed online, I promise.

Yes, there are DJs who just show up and toss a random selection of songs onto the stream, but even those ones are fully deserving of your linden love. Why? Well, that's kind of the point of this post.

You see, virtual DJs almost never finish a set in "profit". Virtual DJs certainly do not do it for the money. That said, every single tip from you is hugely appreciated. None of us is ever going to get rich DJing, but your tip really helps us start to offset the costs.

Costs? Yes, it costs actual, real world money to DJ in the virtual world.

Let's look at some specifics:

DJ Software... without this, the tunes never make it to the stream. Average cost around 200 US Dollars.
A Stream... without this, the tunes are not broadcast and no-one can listen. Average cost around 100 US Dollars per annum.
The music... not a lot of point in DJing without tunes, now is there? Let's assume an average of 70 cents per track, and a modest library of 10,000 tracks. that's 7,000 US Dollars right there.

Now, in an average set in, say, Second Life, a DJ can expect that a party goer will tip 100L$ per set.
Not every person at the party will tip.
A party in Second Life is considered a roaring success if 30 people show up.
Let's assume half of the folks at the party will tip... so, 15 times 100 is 1500L$, or 6.20 US Dollars.

Wow, this is not stacking up at all well, is it?

We also forgot something... it takes TIME to prepare a set.

Let's assume a set is going to be 2 hours long. It will take roughly that long to choose, and check, enough tracks to fill a 2 hour slot. So, we're looking at a minimum of 4 hours work to create the entertainment that wins the DJ a stunning 6.20 US Dollars.  That's 1.55 US Dollars per hour. Liveable wage? Hardly!

Even if we amortise costs over time, you need to have DJed for a frightening 2,580 hours to get back costs. Or a solid, non-stop 107 days. Or if we're talking about 2 hour slots, 1290 of them. At a moderate 2 slots per week, that's 645 weeks of DJing. Long time, huh?

So, you think DJing is about the money still? Believe me, it really is not. So, next time someone at a party says "show some linden love to the DJ", dip your hand into your pocket and shell out 100L$, would you? It's only 41 cents, and will help the DJ leave a little less broke than necessary. Let's be honest, you spent more than that on a snack the last time you went outside, didn't you?

We really, honestly, do this DJing thing out of a love of music and entertaining people, help us to spend a little less on it?

Thanks, Eve :)

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