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New RSS stats need to be reflected in Total Plays


I am a podcaster and I like the new RSS stats broken out, it gives great visibility. HOWEVER, the "plays" under tracks and under "plays in last 24 hours" should reflect "Total Plays". Then when you drill down you should have it broken down by "on Soundcloud" and "RSS". This would be a great way for podcasters to have their real numbers easily reflected to the Soundcloud community. For example, I get about 8,000 downloads a week from RSS, but only about 300 from Soundcloud. So my "plays" went from 8,300 to 300. And the track's popularity is not reflected to the Soundcloud community.
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Best answer by Mathis 16 June 2015, 14:11

Hello everyone,

When we took Podcasting out of beta a few weeks ago it came with a change in how podcasting stats are counted. This lead to some confusion among our users, and consequently, many of you provided feedback. Thank you!

After looking at a number of possible solutions, our podcasting product team will start rolling out an update: RSS downloads will count as plays again (they will now count towards the full play count). However, you will be able to differentiate the now combined figure on the stats page with a new tab next to your top websites / apps section. (See this screenshot).

The RSS downloads tab will remain there to show previous downloads from the duration when the tab was active, eventually this will be removed and these stats will be incorporated into the new tab and overall plays.

This change is being rolled out gradually, with 10% of all users already seeing this put into place.

Happy podcast tracking,
Gina & Mathis

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i was thinking about this the other day... it would be nice if it were broken down into streams and downloads.

'plays' would then be the aggregate total of both streams and downloads.

or show downloads and rss downloads stats publicly along with the current selection.
+1 to this ... Love that RSS info is now available without using Podtrac (Bravo!), but there still needs to be a "Total" and then under that you can break it into SoundCloud, RSS, download, et cetera.
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Hi there,

Thanks for your feedback. I've forwarded your feedback to our podcasting team.

Cheers
Mathis
This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled RSS stats have been moved to the stats page. Is there a way to re-include them in....

I moved to SoundCloud from LibSyn for several reasons, the main one being that I enjoyed the way it displayed the number of listens the tracks received through its RSS feed (iTunes). I see that this week the RSS listens were moved to the stats page and are not rolled into the stats displayed underneath the embedded player as they used to be. Is there a way to roll them back into that displayed count?

This is important because my advertisers use the Midroll service which uses SoundCloud URLs to track plays for advertisers.

Thanks!
Massive issue. Plays = social proof. By pulling them out into the RSS feed is actually a penalty to our marketing efforts
I agree what everything that's been said. I like to have RSS downloads and Plays broken down into 2 different stats BUT we still need an overall stats and this overall number is the one that should show up in the podcasts player. We moved to Soundlcloud recently and are working hard to increase the number of our listeners here, to have a much lower number of plays on our latest podcasts can only scare potential new followers
This stats issue still hasn't been changed...what a shame. It's annoying when companies don't understand their customer base. I've been so happy with Soundcloud and it's kind of a slap in the face. What is the purpose of hiding the RSS plays? It makes no sense other than to show the podcasting community you don't really care about them. I know music is a big deal on Soundcloud and most musicians get their plays directly on site instead of through RSS. But for podcasters its totally different. I released an episode on Friday that had 2,000 downloads that day. Only 90 show on Soundcloud. Why? So far you're lucky Soundcloud is the best thing around, but apps like you get replaced overnight with small improved features by other products waiting to gain market share. If someone else comes around with an app that responds better to its consumers, believe me, your podcasters will jump ship in a heartbeat.
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1. soundcloud doesnt have to offer an rss feed at all. we are all lucky and privileged it even exists considering the scale of soundclouds users.

2. they obviously care about podcasters. they have already changed its original implementation of just counting as a 'play' in the stats to having its own metric. i know for sure i had sent in a feature request about this, and made valid points as to why it should not count as a play, but instead as a download. not long after, boom, changes were made. (thank you!)

3. as per the 3rd comment in this thread, the podcasting team has been made aware of this concern only 6 days ago. the soundcloud developers work hard, and maybe they have higher priority things they are working on right now. give them some time to consider this 'request' and implement a solid and fair solution that works for everyone.

4. soundcloud has not announced or even agreed they will change the stats in the first place. so im not sure why you were expecting any changes at all yet.

5. if this request gains enough traction and popularity here on the forums, and enough feature requests are made in the official manor, and the solution/suggestions make sense and are valid, relevant points, i have full confidence in soundcloud and i would expect to see the changes made. (even if it takes weeks... or months)
Yeah I get that. Of course Soundcloud is amazing, I've said that and already showed appreciation for all that they do - that's not in question - I've been with them for almost two years and have always been a huge supporter. That's why it feels extra frustrating. In due time I'm sure they will change this, but it will take a number of people like me expressing frustration to do so....hence the post. And "I've forwarded this to the podcasting team" is fine, but come on, we've all been "forwarded" a million times by customer service people and the issue never gets addressed...I'm hoping this is different.

I'm also not sure why a bunch of other things would be so much higher priority, honestly. The entire economy of the internet relies on visibility into stats and data. How stats are reported shapes the landscape of how and what content we see, what gets promoted or demoted, drive trends, who listens, dollars, etc. It's an evolutionary model the internet has always been driven by and podcasting is no exception. And as was said in the thread, podcasting advertisers base their money on these kinds of things, it's not minor at all.

Anyway, I get it, I'm being a little dramatic to make my point. But we've already seen this with Garageband. The new update completely sidelines the podcasters in favor of the musicians, it's sad to see Apple making it harder for us, when they were the ones who invented the whole idea! I believe so strongly in radio and it's such an exciting frontier of creative content, I want to make sure it gets the priority it deserves.
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you dont know what they have in the pipeline, they could be rolling out something brand new that takes a while. my point is.... patience my friend =]

i dont use garage band so im unsure as to what you are referring to by being sidelined...

podcasts on SC didnt exist only a short time ago. if anyone actually knows what that means from an infrastructure standpoint, its insane to offer such a service with no cost increase to the user.

im totally for this being implemented. i know things just take time...

and when you get right down to it, all you are really asking soundcloud to do, is add some numbers together. the data you need to get the number you are looking for is already available. besides when everything is said and done, the stats can be easily manipulated using basic scripting...
you dont know what they have in the pipeline, they could be rolling out something brand new that takes a while. my point is.... patience my friend =]

i dont use garage band so im unsure as to what you are referring to by being sidelined...

podcasts on SC didnt exist only a short time ago. if anyone actually knows what that means from an infrastructure standpoint, its insane to offer such a service with no cost increase to the user.

im totally for this being implemented. i know things just take time...

and when you get right down to it, all you are really asking soundcloud to do, is add some numbers together. the data you need to get the number you are looking for is already available. besides when everything is said and done, the stats can be easily manipulated using basic scripting...

I'm hoping the reason soundcloud moved RSS to its own metric isn't because people were exploiting it to increase plays.. If that's the real reason then I can see this change as a permanent thing and RSS plays then would never be shown on their public facing stats.. maybe then API plays could also see the same fate?
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you dont know what they have in the pipeline, they could be rolling out something brand new that takes a while. my point is.... patience my friend =]

i dont use garage band so im unsure as to what you are referring to by being sidelined...

podcasts on SC didnt exist only a short time ago. if anyone actually knows what that means from an infrastructure standpoint, its insane to offer such a service with no cost increase to the user.

im totally for this being implemented. i know things just take time...

and when you get right down to it, all you are really asking soundcloud to do, is add some numbers together. the data you need to get the number you are looking for is already available. besides when everything is said and done, the stats can be easily manipulated using basic scripting...

the soundcloud provided rss item enclosures link to http://feeds.soundcloud.com/stream/trackid-permalink.

when the rss feeds went public, any requests counted as a 'play' aka stream. as im sure most people are aware that the default action for podcast applications is to download the file. so it should be counted as a download. i have plenty of podcasts that im subscribed to that i have the episodes downloaded, but i have not 'played' them yet. so the question then becomes, is an rss download 'really' a play? since there really isnt any way of knowing this, only that it has been downloaded (or at least a request has been made to feeds.soundcloud.com). so realistically the thing to do would be to make download, and rss download stats a public facing metric. leaving the 'play' value as is. (maybe provide a private facing total.. (and a way to export the stats, or a suite of api calls for stats, would be ace).. everyone else can use their eyeballs and maths to figure it out by looking at the public facing plays, download, and rss downloads)

they could have just rolled it into the download stats that were there already. but instead its a separate metric.

all other plays/downloads, including soundcloud.com (i think) calls to https://api.soundcloud.com/endpoint/id. for /tracks endpoint its /download or /stream, with stats counting respectively.

api calls are listed in the stats under the websites/apps section on the bottom right.

i think what people dislike is that the 'download' metrics (regular and rss) are not public facing metrics, and people want popularity validation by displaying these metrics publicly.
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my idea for public view on profile tracks... would show rss requests along with all the others, including downloads. activity buttons and buy now / video link can go under the image. edit and trash buttons get moved to the far right, only showing on mouseover. likes and reposts are clickable items currently. it would be great to have each metric link to its respective stats page for that individual track, for overall timescale.

you dont know what they have in the pipeline, they could be rolling out something brand new that takes a while. my point is.... patience my friend =]

i dont use garage band so im unsure as to what you are referring to by being sidelined...

podcasts on SC didnt exist only a short time ago. if anyone actually knows what that means from an infrastructure standpoint, its insane to offer such a service with no cost increase to the user.

im totally for this being implemented. i know things just take time...

and when you get right down to it, all you are really asking soundcloud to do, is add some numbers together. the data you need to get the number you are looking for is already available. besides when everything is said and done, the stats can be easily manipulated using basic scripting...

they need to circle back to take care of users, like us, who use Soundcloud as a hosting service.

people are fearing this change is going to be a permanent thing... myself included.. we all need "social proof'

I feel Soundcloud knew this would be a problem but rolled it out anyway because of the other goals they have in mind right now (consumer-streaming, monetization, and content-discovery).
My only concern is that the main play count show a high number..

I am probably a corner case, but, we don't use soundcloud's RSS but instead I link directly to soundcloud files on our self-published RSS feed, and we don't use the soundcloud player on our site because we have our own native player which gives site users a better seamless user experience that we fully control.

If we use soundcloud in this way they will have trouble verifying if it's a real listener. So, I'm just wondering if they are "demoting" traffic from outside sources like RSS or API.. and what if it becomes permanent?

If its permanent then this RSS separation "feature" is more like a walled-garden cutting unverified plays out of the picture.
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from what i can tell, everything uses the api in one way or another except the rss, which links to feeds.soundcloud. im assuming your native player is using the api to provide stream and download urls... in which case its tracked just the same as soundcloud.com any requests to /stream?client_id= or /download?client_id= will show up as play and download stats under apps. the "soundcloud player" is just an iframe, and still sources api.soundcloud.com.

im not sure if soundcloud is tracking player states to know how much of a track you have listened to. youtube pretty much has this sorted out, and should basically be a requirement if you plan to have any kind of monetization and/or advertising to keep things fair and accurate.
from what i can tell, everything uses the api in one way or another except the rss, which links to feeds.soundcloud. im assuming your native player is using the api to provide stream and download urls... in which case its tracked just the same as soundcloud.com any requests to /stream?client_id= or /download?client_id= will show up as play and download stats under apps. the "soundcloud player" is just an iframe, and still sources api.soundcloud.com.

im not sure if soundcloud is tracking player states to know how much of a track you have listened to. youtube pretty much has this sorted out, and should basically be a requirement if you plan to have any kind of monetization and/or advertising to keep things fair and accurate.

yeah, the soundcloud player still sources from api.soundcloud, but it's also using a trusted client_id soundcloud has generated... so in that sense.. plays coming from soundcloud's own client_id's would be the ones they trust the most.

and you are right.. I use the API now on our custom player, but for the last few months I have been linking directly to feeds.soundcloud... and I have since switched back to using the API.. which is why I'm hoping this kind of non-native usage of the API doesn't see the same fate as the podcast plays and get broken out into it's own metric.
Hi there,

Thanks for your feedback. I've forwarded your feedback to our podcasting team.

Cheers
Mathis

Hi Mathis,

any news about this?

Thanks
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Hello everyone,

When we took Podcasting out of beta a few weeks ago it came with a change in how podcasting stats are counted. This lead to some confusion among our users, and consequently, many of you provided feedback. Thank you!

After looking at a number of possible solutions, our podcasting product team will start rolling out an update: RSS downloads will count as plays again (they will now count towards the full play count). However, you will be able to differentiate the now combined figure on the stats page with a new tab next to your top websites / apps section. (See this screenshot).

The RSS downloads tab will remain there to show previous downloads from the duration when the tab was active, eventually this will be removed and these stats will be incorporated into the new tab and overall plays.

This change is being rolled out gradually, with 10% of all users already seeing this put into place.

Happy podcast tracking,
Gina & Mathis
This is wonderful!! Thanks so much for responding to the community, Mathis, and ensuring that our concerns were heard and addressed. It's great to know you guys pay attention to users and our needs. Kudos to Soundcloud!
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This is wonderful!! Thanks so much for responding to the community, Mathis, and ensuring that our concerns were heard and addressed. It's great to know you guys pay attention to users and our needs. Kudos to Soundcloud!
Hey hey,
Thanks for your nice words! Glad we were able to help with this 🙂
Hello everyone,

When we took Podcasting out of beta a few weeks ago it came with a change in how podcasting stats are counted. This lead to some confusion among our users, and consequently, many of you provided feedback. Thank you!

After looking at a number of possible solutions, our podcasting product team will start rolling out an update: RSS downloads will count as plays again (they will now count towards the full play count). However, you will be able to differentiate the now combined figure on the stats page with a new tab next to your top websites / apps section. (See this screenshot).

The RSS downloads tab will remain there to show previous downloads from the duration when the tab was active, eventually this will be removed and these stats will be incorporated into the new tab and overall plays.

This change is being rolled out gradually, with 10% of all users already seeing this put into place.

Happy podcast tracking,
Gina & Mathis

nice .. happy to see the quick update!
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This is wonderful!! Thanks so much for responding to the community, Mathis, and ensuring that our concerns were heard and addressed. It's great to know you guys pay attention to users and our needs. Kudos to Soundcloud!
i still dont believe that rss downloads should be counted as plays. my podcast app checks for new episodes on my subscriptions once every 4 hours. i might be at work, or out of town, or sleeping when it finds a new episode and starts to download it. sometimes said episodes sit for weeks before i get a chance to actually listen to it.

counting them all as plays is close but still inaccurate.

imo, the best solution would be to count them as downloads and change the download stats metric so that its publicly viewable. it seems the main concern here was that when they were counted as downloads (as they should be), they were not being reflected publicly.

currently for the past 7 days i have roughly 31k plays... but have 80k downloads.... thats over 100k requests combined over the past week. thats substantially higher than just the plays, and i believe its important that this figure also be reflected publicly.
This is wonderful!! Thanks so much for responding to the community, Mathis, and ensuring that our concerns were heard and addressed. It's great to know you guys pay attention to users and our needs. Kudos to Soundcloud!
Mahalo–thank you to everyone in this thread. Great info. As my podcast is like a month old I don_t have big number to get crazy over yet but it still seems that RSS feed numbers are not being incorporated into total count ... are there still issues? Or is the slow roll out of the fix still happening? It would just be good to know if I am misunderstanding, need to be patient or need to follow up at some point if my numbers still look skewed. ~Nai_a
Hi,

I'm wondering if this has been updated?

The thing I'm confused on is in regard to what compromises total plays. I'm having a difficult time tracking.

When I add up my total listens from the "apps" column, it normally seems close to the "total plays" number yet that would mean none of my listens from the "RSS" tab are included in that.

Can anyone clear this up for me?

Thanks,
Trevor

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