This new tool scours the web for MP3s and then let’s you build a playlist based on what you find. The Flash player they provide to embed on social networks like MySpace and more generally websites simply loads the MP3s from the physical location of where the file exists on the web. Before adding a new song to the playlist, you can test it out to make sure it actually plays correctly (and that it is the song you want).
There are a couple of hurdles it is going to have to tackle going forward. The first is that much of the music you can find through their system is not part of the commons – the songs are copyrighted. But look no further than their Copyright Notices section to see how they are addressing this issue:
Project Playlist was built for users to find and sample such hard-to-find Creative Commons, Open Source and promotional mp3 files that can be found on music blogs, artist websites, music label websites and other such websites. Our intention is only to provide links to mp3 files that are licensed for broadcast throughout the internet.
We are primarily a search engine and maintain no editorial oversight. We can’t be responsible for what people post on the Internet, and we can’t be responsible for what you do with it when you find it.
The second problem is that site owners are paying for the bandwidth of those that utilize their MP3s. Any good webmaster keeps an eye on their bandwidth utilization. If they see significant usage, they are likely to remove the file(s). And that frustrates Project Playlist members because their playlists suddenly do not work correctly.
Overall, Project Playlist is a winning idea and one that is catching on quickly. See my write-up on Sonific’s Songspots for a slightly different approach to provide music on websites.