Personal internet radio service 8tracks relaunches website with new DJ tools

Playlist-centric personal radio service 8tracks relaunched its website Thursday with new ways for listeners to find DJs they like, and new analytics and real-time monitoring tools that aim to make the service more engaging for DJs.

[company]8tracks[/company] is a bit like [company]Pandora[/company], inviting users to lean back and listen for free, but with a key twist: Instead of just automatically compiling personalized streams, 8tracks emphasizes DJs that upload tracks to the service and compile them to playlists. 8tracks CEO David Porter told me during a recent interview that this emphasis on human curation makes for a more focused experience. “You end up with playlists that are really deep,” he said.

Porter said that about one percent of 8tracks 8 million monthly active users make their own playlists. Another third of the audience makes collections of playlists and shares them with others, and the rest just comes to listen.

8tracks - Explore Page

8tracks now wants to offer this casual audience a better way to find the DJs and playlists they like by suggesting relevant tags based on a user’s listening history. And DJs are offered detailed analytics on their audience that gives them a better idea on how many people are listening, and how they are interacting with a specific playlist.

Of course, 8tracks isn’t alone with letting humans help you find the right music for you. [company]Beats Music[/company] put a big emphasis on human curation when it launched earlier this year, and [company]Google[/company] recently acquired [company]Songza[/company] to add human curation to its own Play Music subscription service. Porter told me that he sees premium subscription services and a free service like 8tracks as complementary, and that he could see himself partner with one of those bigger players at some point in the future.