This week, Musicnotes, Inc. relaunched MXTabs.net — a free and legal tablature network for musicians to come together and share their user-generated tabs. The site is based upon a revenue sharing model where advertisements allow for access to the tabs for free, with half of the ad money being paid back to the publishers, songwriters, and copyright holders.
MXTabs.net licenses over 50,000 songs from thousands of publishers, allowing for users to create, upload, and share tabs of their favorite songs. With a strong focus on community, the site also allows for participating in forums, adding friends, blogging and more.
In 2006 the site had to shut down due to allegations of infringement, but has reopened with the necessary agreements so that both users and songwriters win. In a dynamic and fast changing online world, it is important to realize the significance of this type of arrangement, one where users can gain the knowledge of how to play their favorite songs while ensuring that musicians and songwriters maintain a living wage through appropriate royalty payments.
While FMC is not suggesting that the ad-support content model will naturally work for all online content delivery services, we believe that it is nonetheless encouraging that new models are being developed that may potentially solve some of the issues musicians face in the digital universe. Plus you can totally learn how to play that Slayer song.