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Startup: ArtistOne aims to unseat Nielsen for download data services
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A Nashville startup chief says Music Row executives and others can sell more songs and videos by targeting downloading hotspots that are identified by ArtistOne Analytics, which tracks file-sharing worldwide.

In a recent interview, ArtistOne Founder Nicholas Young (at left) told VNC he believes the mainstream recording industry and advocates like RIAA are feverishly engaged in litigation against downloaders, mainly because they "don't really know what's going on" and are overlooking the enormous hidden value of the very downloading that bedevils them.

Among younger audiences, Young said, radio and traditional media, generally, are taking a backseat to file-sharing driven by iPods, BitTorrent, Facebook pages and other channels. As a result, Young said he "absolutely" believes ArtistOne Analytics' gelocational file-sharing data will become more important to the entertainment and information industries than data from such giants as Nielsen.

Young said the analytics and distribution services he's been developing for more than five months allow labels, performing artists and others to see where their songs are being downloaded most intensely, and then to target marketing and distribution in those same regions, leveraging regional interest demonstrated by downloads.

Young said his service uses anonymized metadata associated with downloaded files to map file-sharing volume and trends by type of music, demographic tiers and other variables; and, data can be displayed in an array of reporting formats.

He said this morning he's comfortable he'll have ArtistOne services ready by Nov. 10 for the twenty or more users who have already committed to trial. Typically, Young said he'll target networks for monitoring or provide Internet-driven distribution of content, based on customers' priorities.

Asked for first-blush comment on Young's business concept and screenshots, echo founder and CEO Mark Montgomery (right) said cautiously, "If you are asking me if it's valuable, the answer is, depending on the context, and with other data (touring, radio, etc.) it would be a nice overlay."

Montgomery's echo, now a Ticketmaster company based in Nashville, creates online communities for brands and bands, and serves artists ranging from Keith Urban and Korn to Dolly Parton, as well as corporations.

Young contends that it is his focus on downloading metrics and his familiarity with navigating major and subordinate networks that makes ArtistOne Analytics so comprehensive and powerful. As part of his ceaseless effort to keep up with latest trends in the field, last weekend he attended the PhreakNIC conference of "white hat" hackers, here in Nashville.

Young relocated to Nashville from Alabama 14 months ago, hoping to become more involved at the crossroads of music and technology. Since arriving here, he has supported himself by selling web-development and social-media services, primarily to independent artists. He says he will soon focus solely on ArtistOne Analytics.

Young is collaborating with Ed Felton, a 45-year-old Metro Government IT employee and part-time IT instructor, who fills ArtistOne's sales role. The two men were among presenters during the recent BarCamp Nashville (site best viewed with Moz/Firefox).

Young, age 20, said he learned to write computer code, design networks and more by working alongside his father, who works in electronics and information systems. He set forth in his first business at age 15, converting customers' music from analog to digital, all quite legally.

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Tags: A.C. Nielsen, Arbitron, ArtistOne Analytics, digital, downloading, Ed Felton, geomapping, innovation, Mark Montgomery, marketing, music, Nicholas Young, ratings, SAAS, startup, video

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