How to Upload your Sounds to the Club
First off, you need to have a Soundcloud account in order to participate in the Club, so if you don’t already have one please organize that first then follow this procedure:
- PLEASE READ THE LEGAL DECLARATION BEFORE YOU UPLOAD ANY SOUNDS. The link is up in the top right hand corner.
- Click on the Soundcloud dropbox in the sidebar on the right which says ‘Share your rain recordings’.
- You will be taken to a Soundcloud page. If this is the first time you have contributed to the Club, please log in to your Soundcloud account and then click on ‘Start following’ The Sound Collectors’ Club. This is important because this is my point of contact for sending you the secret link to the set once you have made a contribution. Obviously, you only have to do this the first time you upload a track to the Club.
- Once that is done, PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU ARE LOGGED OUT OF SOUNDCLOUD otherwise the uploading process won’t work properly (I’m afraid you will need to return to step 2 once you have logged out).
- Once you are back on The Sound Collectors’ Club dropbox page, click on ‘Choose a File’. Select the file you want to upload from your computer. Try to upload .wav files if at all possible.
- The track will begin to upload. While it does you can type in as much info as possible about the recording in the appropriate boxes, upload a picture to go with it, etc. The most important piece of information that you should give me is your Soundcloud name included in the track title as this will be the only indication that it’s your track once it’s uploaded to the club. I can then click on your name in the ‘Followers’ list and message you the secret link. I don’t want to be too specific about any other info that you should load (or how much) but it would be nice to let the club know what equipment was used and at what sampling / bit rate it was recorded at. Also, feel free to add any contact info like Twitter names or blog addresses in with the track description.
- THE IMPORTANT BIT!!! In Section 3 of the form; ‘Your contact info’, PLEASE PUT MY E-MAIL ADDRESS , i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org (if you put your own e-mail address it will just get added to your own account and I won’t be able to add it to the private set and people won’t be able to download it).
- Near the bottom of the form, Selected License should be set to ‘No Rights Reserved’, ‘Private’ should automatically be selected and ‘Downloads Enabled’ should be ticked. (Selecting ‘No Rights Reserved’ does not lose you ownership of your sound(s). The agreement you enter into is laid out on the club’s ‘Legal’ page that you are advised to read in step 1 of this process; not by any Soundcloud licensing agreement. As the club is private access, no-one will go directly to Soundcloud and see ‘No Rights Reserved’ without having first been through this upload process on this page and been advised of the club’s legal agreement. Consequently, uploading sounds signifies compliance with the club’s legal agreement).
- Click ‘Share Track’ and that’s it! An e-mail will then be automatically sent to me containing a confirmation link. When I click on that link your track will be uploaded the club account where I can share it with all those who have contributed.
- Once I’ve completed uploading your track to the private set then I will send you a message through Soundcloud with the set’s secret link in – so keep an eye out for incoming e-mails. It might be worth you bookmarking this link address to save you routing through old e-mails every time you want to visit the set.
- Once you have access to the set via this link you can audition and download tracks, comment on them, favourite them – whatever you would normally do on Soundcloud. The contributor whose track gets downloaded the most gets to choose the next topic (if it’s a tie then the number of favourites decides it – so please do use this facility).
One thing I would like to add to this is regarding your actual recordings. Please bear in mind that with a setup such as this there is obviously a danger of someone trying to upload a sound that isn’t theirs. To minimize my paranoia, there are a couple of steps we can all take:
AT BEST: It’d be great if we could start putting a vocal ident on the start of our recordings. We all normally do it in order to describe what we’re about to record anyway so it won’t hurt to quickly add your name into that info as well.
AT LEAST: If that isn’t possible please try and leave some sign of imperfection on the start or end of the recording to give us some reassurance that this is not a sound ripped off of an FX library: some shash, mic bumps, wind buffet – you know the sort of thing. I’m not saying upload messy tracks; just don’t manicure the top and tail of them to perfection.
I’m pretty sure that this is a watertight description of what to do but if you’re having any issues please feel free to contact me and I’ll guide you through it. As soon as I get a chance I’ll probably put together a visual guide of this process using Screenflow and post it here too.
I think you amy need to establish a clearer definition of the rights regarding the files that people upload. It could be something as simple as a disclaimer when you send out the link to the specific set. Leaving it as “No Rights Reserved” is a bad idea in my opinion. Someone could argue that that affords them rights the owner of the file doesn’t want them to have. It’s one thing to have a usage/synchronization license, but something entirely different to claim ownership. One of the very important lessons I’ve learned form other people’s “hard lessons”, is cover your ass. You don’t want to get sucked into some legal battle when you’re just trying to contribute to the community. I know it sounds a bit cynical, but better safe than sorry. 🙂
November 4, 2010 at 1:40 am
Thanks for the advice, Shaun – I really appreciate it.
I wasn’t sure from your comment whether you’d spotted the dedicated ‘Legal’ page (link in top right corner) – I totally agree the agreement needs to be made rock solid (I’m looking into getting some legal advice over the next few days) but my current statement on the ‘Legal’ page starts by saying the audio you upload to the club remains your property and then goes on to spell out the conditions further. The reason that ‘No Rights Reserved’ is selected on Soundcloud is so as not to contradict our agreement here. There’s no point me spelling out one agreement on this site and then everyone doing Creative Commons licenses on Soundcloud – you can’t double-license, as I’ve mentioned on the Legal page. If you have spotted the Legal page I’d be very interested to hear where you think the wording may fall short.
Your comments have immediately made me think I should put ‘Please read the Legal page’ in with the upload directions and also spell out that the ‘No Rights Reserved’ issue on Soundcloud is not the club terms; it’s purely selected in order to not be obstructive of the terms laid out on this site. Will also now include a disclaimer linking to my ‘Legal’ page within the secret link e-mails I send out. Will get on with this pronto.
Thanks again Shaun
November 4, 2010 at 8:10 am
I hadn’t noticed the legal page. Though that’s probably a product of AES going on right now (and getting ready for and to it) than it not being noticeable. The content seems clear to me, and I also like the disclaimer you put up on the SoundCloud page. Hopefully those two things should do it. I know it sucks having to be this anal about legal issues.
November 5, 2010 at 3:11 pm
I’m still going to sort out some proper legal advice on the matter but at least some of the measures I’ve introduced leave less room for misunderstanding in the meantime.
November 6, 2010 at 8:20 am