FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FAQ
What is Sparkmesh?
Sparkmesh is a one-stop shop for everything an artist has online. Our goal is to provide comprehensive coverage of new releases and live events, regardless of which site they are on, as well as archiving and organizing links to everything artists have created in their career. The site is initially focusing on musicians, but will support other categories of creators as well, from writers and comedians to visual artists and streamers.
Why Sparkmesh?
These days, artists usually release their works in many different places online. There's no easy way for the average fan to tell exactly what is being released, or what is already out there. The current solutions are less than ideal for both fans and artists.
- Artists can maintain official sites, but this process is labor-intensive, and requires fans to check each site regularly for updates. This is time-consuming for fans, and easily leads to them losing track of artists.
- Artists can maintain a regular email list, but this is process is also labor-intensive. It's also difficult to provide full coverage without exhausting fans. For example, an album release surely deserves an email, but what to do about more minor releases such as a new cover released on YouTube, a live recording on the Internet Archive, or a Spotify session?
- Modern social media and weekly discovery tools have an important place, but no method for comprehensively displaying releases, making it difficult to tell exactly what's out. This is a particular problem for the new and local artists who are the future of the industry, as they lack the marketing budget increasingly needed to cut through the noise. This results in fans frequently missing out, and creates psychologically unhealthy incentives to endlessly search for updates.
Sparkmesh creates a chronological feed that ensures fans never miss out on a new release or event announcement of any kind, without having to spend lots of time searching various sites to figure out what's going on. It also creates a fully sortable and filterable archive for each artist, title, and tag on the site, so it's easy for fans to catch up any time or explore new artists.
Core Values
- Sparkmesh will never charge for placement in its feeds or provide preferential placement for artists. Although other options may become available, Sparkmesh will always maintain a fully chronological feed as its primary, default mode of display.
- Sparkmesh will never charge artists or fans for basic use of the site, including posting new links, editing to help maintain a page, or commenting on a link or event.
- Sparkmesh understands the importance of maintaining a separate email list for artists, and will always make available to artists the emails of fans that are willing to share them. Sparkmesh will never charge for this service.
- Sparkmesh will always provide a full email update option in addition to web and native applications. A core goal of the site is to maximize the fan-artist connection, rather than attempting to force users to use the site a specific way.
For Fans
Following Artists
Follow your artists ( Small teal plus icon, click to follow artists on links on other pages of this site
Small red heart icon, indicating you have followed the primary artist of a link on this site ) to effortlessly keep up to date with what they're doing. You can also quickly import all of the artists you are following from Spotify or YouTube to get started.
- Sparkmesh will automatically scan the major music streaming sites every day for new releases from any artist with at least one follower.
- Sparkmesh will also scan the major ticketing sites every day for new events for all artists.
- Sparkmesh will also notify you of any local events and links to recordings and performances that are manually submitted by fans, artists, and managers.
- You can get updates either by checking your My Artists feed or via daily, weekly, or monthly email updates.
Artist Pages
Collaborate with fans to build a comprehensive career page for your favorite artists.
- Fans and artists can manually submit links to new releases, recordings, and performances and they'll be added to the artist's page and broadcast to all of their followers.
- All of Sparkmesh's automatically scanned results are displayed on an artist's page. Approved users can edit any errors from the automatic scanning by clicking the dropdown next to artist names.
- Artist pages can be sorted by date, what's new on the site, what's hot, and title. They can also be filtered by site, content type, date, and newness, to help you find the content you're interested in quickly.
Scanning
Sparkmesh automatically scans Archive.org, iTunes, Napster, Soundcloud, Spotify, and YouTube for new releases from any artist with at least one registered follower. However, fans must add YouTube and Soundcloud accounts to an artist's page for automated scanning. Sparkmesh also automatically scans Ticketmaster, AXS, Ticketfly, and Ticketmaster partner sites for new events. We hope to add additional services in the future.
Compared to Facebook/Twitter
Social media sites play several extremely important roles on the web, but they're not that convenient as a way to keep up with artists. Announcements tend to get lost in the flood on Twitter and algorithmically hidden from you on Facebook. It's particularly tough to catch up if you miss a few days. Sparkmesh ensures you see all of the new releases coming out from your favorite creators.
Compared to YouTube/Google
Searching works well if you just want to find a couple of releases from an artist to check them out. (Although you can do that just as fast on Sparkmesh!) But many new releases tend to be hidden from searches on these sites, particularly things like live performances, interviews, and behind the scenes videos. It takes a lot of effort to dig up all of an artist's new releases and archival material by searching. Sparkmesh presents you with a comprehensive, real-time archive of everything released by your favorite creators.
Compared to Fan Forums
Fan forums are a great place to discuss your favorite artists, but plenty of artists don't have a dedicated forum, or one active enough to catch all of their new releases. The design of forums also requires a lot of digging to track down an artist's older works - if the forum threads are still there! Sparkmesh lets you quickly scroll through all of the works created over an artist's career, with a streamlined, single-page interface. It's also much faster for artists you want to keep tabs on, but don't have the time to discuss every day.
Compared to Streaming Services
Streaming services are a great place to listen to new releases from your favorite artists, but they generally don't carry many content types other than albums and single audio tracks. Sparkmesh covers all of the content types posted on all legitimate host sites around the web.
For Artists
A Better Home Online
Sparkmesh is a better home for artists on the web. You can easily keep your fans up to date, as every new link you post is shared with your followers both via feed and email. You can also compile everything you've done in your career with the help of your fans. Sparkmesh will give you greater freedom to choose where, when and how your works are presented and compensated.
In the music industry's recent discussions with the US Copyright Board, they indicated a strong need for a fast, usable public database of every artist's legal works across the web. Sparkmesh can help you address that gap.
Getting Started
Artist moderation is now live! To get verified, register as a normal user, then click the verify tab under Settings (or return here for a link) and write a quick explanation telling us how we can verify it's actually you. Get in touch with the site administration before submitting the form (admin@sparkmesh.com) for the fastest possible process. Multiple accounts may be granted moderator privileges if - for example - you have a manager, or social media manager, you would like to have included as well.
This is a brand new beta feature, so let us know if you run into any snags! Right now artists can edit anything on their page and use our automated refresh at will. They can also make announcements that will appear on their page and on all following users' home feeds, and be sent out via email. Think of it as a quick replacement for an email list, especially for announcements that might not quite be big enough to run a full campaign. Many more features are coming soon, so stay tuned!
Media sites
Sparkmesh helps to put all legal media sites on an equal footing and send them traffic. Whether you're a TV channel hosting an official performance, a magazine hosting an exclusive premiere, or an artist's official site, Sparkmesh lets you directly reach an artist's fans without having to simply hope search and social media algorithms push your content to the forefront.
Questions, comments?
We'd love to hear from you as the site enters beta! To get in touch, just email suggestions@sparkmesh.com.
Working for Sparkmesh
Sparkmesh is currently pre-launch and is not focused on hiring at the moment, but if you're really excited about what you see, get in touch! We are particularly interested in any front-end or full-stack Rails engineers. No particular experience or geographic restrictions - but have some way to show you are passionate about music, organizing things, and/or web development (ideally all three!) To get in touch about hiring, email jobs@sparkmesh.com.