The German company SoundCloud has existed for about nine years. All this time the project team was actively engaged in expanding the functionality of its service and attracting new users. Actually, the representatives of SoundCloud succeeded almost all conceived. The service was used not only by ordinary people, but also by major organizations like NASA. But, unfortunately, despite its popularity, SoundCloud could not achieve financial success. Now the service is generally close to closing because of the chronic shortage of a ringing coin.
In order to avoid the threat of termination, the company's management decided to reduce 40% of the personnel, as well as to close offices in London and San Francisco. But this may not help, because SoundCloud runs out of money. This issue was discussed repeatedly by a variety of media, including The Financial Times and TechCrunch. And although the representatives of the service claim that everything is not as scary as it seems from the outside, everything does not look very good. But SoundCloud is not just some kind of service, the company's servers store 135 million audio records, including valuable materials.
The SoundCloud database has tens of millions of people. The resource is visited by 175 million people a month. Hearing about the problems of the service, some users decided to form a "team of rescuers" who will take care of saving files. All records from SoundCloud servers volunteers call the "digital heritage" of mankind. Of course, not all files correspond to this beautiful term, but it would be ridiculous to lose such a huge base.
Unfortunately, all 135 million sound recordings of volunteers can not be maintained. And not because they are lazy or they think some audio files are less valuable. And because the storage of such a volume of data will be very expensive. Dozens are needed, if not hundreds of servers, and their operation requires money, and considerable. The volunteers do not have this money, so they are going to save only the files that got to the service earlier than others (and which, most likely, there is no other place), as well as files that enjoy maximum popularity.
Initiators of the project to save the database of service sound records say that SoundCloud servers store more than 1 petabyte of data. At the same time, according to AWS, the volume of all records related to SoundCloud is much higher.
However, if a petabyte of data is taken as a starting point, $ 1.5 to $ 2 million will be required to store it. Well, if the data volume reaches 2.5 petabytes, then the content of all this data will cost the company $ 3 , 75 million. In any case, money will have to be spent, but still the total amount will be much less if we accept the plan of "rescuers" as a basis.
Now the project team is studying the database of service sound records. The representatives of the project say that in most cases they have to deal with gigabytes of data (volunteers back up data from other sites), but in this case they got a real "whale", which it will not be easy to cope with.
For In order to find money for storing files that will be decided to be saved, the project team launched a crowdaming campaign. The collected money will be launched not only for the preservation of records, but also for anyone to listen to them. On the service you can now listen to any file, and volunteers-archivers plan to achieve the same.
The service management has already managed to state that the company will not close, but plans to continue working: "Last week we had to make some complicated decisions, but we did this in order to leave SoundCloud an independent, strong company ". The fact that the service will work both now and in the near future, its representatives have been told repeatedly on various resources. The only thing they forgot to mention is how exactly the company plans to survive.
In principle, to continue the work the management can go even to sell the service. But its price has dropped significantly over the past few years. For example, in 2014, the cost of SoundCloud was estimated at $ 700 million. Now the order of the numbers is completely different. Earlier, the desire to buy out SoundCloud was shown by Twitter, Spotify and several other companies, but none of these possible deals was closed. In the latter case, Spotify refused to buy because its management considered it not a very good idea to spend a lot of money before going on an IPO.
Well, we can only wait and hope that the optimism of the SoundCloud management is justified, and the service will really continue to work.