Napster for Jobs
Looking for a job feels like Napster used to. Unstructured text boxes, variable results in surprise formats, nights and weekends spent staring at screens, not listening to music. The musicians want to sing and the people want to listen. You end up listening to the same old stuff as everyone else or staring at a download bar.
A typical conversation
- “Have you heard this song?
- You should listen to this.
- We should set aside some time to listen to this.
- How is a week from now?
- Yeah, I’ll start the download.
- Open to every file at once.
- 1-1, unstructured conversations lead to variable reward to extract our time
- Potentially malicious results to dig through or nothing at all
- Still mostly gets the job done. You have to be exposed to a better alternative to get the pain. People thought Napster was the ceiling at the time.
- Lots of room for improvement for specific flows: asking for an interview
- In Napster, you wanted to listen to music, not jockey downloads. In Facebook, you want to be aware of stuff and connect with people, not get dinged and hover. Downloading is a proxy for notifications.
- You can’t really pause a recruiting process without closing a door. Like a download crashing mid-weekend.
From Napster to Spotify, what changed?
- Review and approval of content
- Removal of complexity: We nixed downloads, files, file formats. We reduced the number of clicks it takes from zero to playing a song.
- Curation: Algorithms & peers choose songs. Unlimited quality AND variable reward.
- New financial model: the right people get paid.
- Sean Parker followed his fascination to the problem and kept looking for the answer until he found another perspective. He learned the players involved by getting sued.
- Lots of B, C, D players like iHeartRadio, Pandora, etc. Those solved the "continuous, variable reward” piece of the problem, but did not solve the how everyone involved makes money.
- We introduced mixed media, colors and stories and annotations to really accentuate the track.