GrooveShark: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

I found Grooveshark via following Derek’s Twitter. I was a Pandora addict, but I had two big complaints about Pandora:

  1. Repeating/Duped content (Grooveshark is still guilty of this one)
  2. Not what I want to hear, right at that moment

Grooveshark comes in and blows Pandora away on point #2. I don’t want to be too harsh on them, but grooveshark on Twitter asked me for my thoughts.

The Good

  • Attractive UI. Very pretty UI. I have a lot of mixed feelings on the site’s usability. That doesn’t mean it isn’t pretty:
  • Really cool multiple selection and drag.

The Bad

  • Is it legal? First question almost all of my friends (5-7) that I shared the site with… I still don’t know.
  • How do I use it? There’s no real clear call to action for what a user is supposed to do. “Listen to any song in the world for free” isn’t really a clear call to action. It doesn’t let the user know to search, especially when it’s a nonstandard form element. A few of the users I saw with this just clicked the search button.

  • Style Difference between and the ‘beta’/other site. Listen.grooveshark is the only site I use regularly. Until the other site is as fluid as listen.grooveshark, I’ll stick with it.
  • Dupes. Painful amount of duplicates for popular music. Which one do I listen to?

The Ugly

  • Sharing playlists. Not easy enough. Not seamless enough. I still don’t really know how to do it. I had to give my girlfriend my login/password so she could make me some playlists. That’s not good enough.
  • Annoying download popup on every login. Enough already! I just want to listen to music.
  • Sometimes music just doesn’t play.

    Can we have a fault tolerance where if the song doesn’t load in X seconds, go to the next one in the queue?

Overall: I use Grooveshark daily. I recommend it to my friends.


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3 Responses to GrooveShark: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

  1. ben says:

    I really appreciate the write–and the very thoughtful response to my request for feedback. Awesome!

    One of the big projects we’re working on right now (the biggest) is a tight integration between Lite and the Beta. Everything in the Beta is a holdover from our initial launch last August (see: woefully out of date).

    This leads into the problems sharing playlists. When a user makes a playlist, you can log in to Beta, see their playlists, and subscribe–after which you can see them in “My Music” in Lite. Of course, this is pretty clunky and not ideal whatsoever. We’ll get on this!

    Fault detection/correction is also on its way!

    There are so many more things here that I’d like to address (but don’t want to write a novel). I’m always happy to help out with any questions, so shoot me an e-mail! Or you know my twitter 🙂

    Thanks again, bofe, and I really, really appreciate everything.

  2. Eduardo says:

    Neat review.. Grooveshark is indeed a legal thing. I noticed on the screen shots that you reviewing the lite version of the site.

  3. Alex says:

    Grooveshark is pretty good, it brought a lot to the digital music business! However, the one I prefer remains

    Same concept, started a long time ago, it is also free and legal, and I think its catalogue is bigger than Grooveshark’s one! Moreover, its design is AWESOME!

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