Lyrics, Variety, Gifts, and other Tweaks

UPDATE:

Lyrics are currently unavailable on Pandora and we are exploring if and how they will be reintroduced to the service in the future. As always, we remain relentlessly focused on creating the best personalized radio experience for Pandora listeners and are open to hearing all your comments and questions. We appreciate your invaluable feedback.

We’ve been quietly rolling out a number of enhancements to Pandora.com the last few weeks and I thought I’d tell you a bit about them.
The biggest of the bunch is the launch of lyrics! This has been one of the most requested features for Pandora for as long as I can remember and the trick for us has always been to find a great provider of legal, fully licensed lyrics to share with you. Happy to say that we’ve found a great partner in Gracenote and last week we launched the first iteration of our lyric integration. To see the lyrics for the song you’re currently listening to just pull up the “about this music” panel underneath the player and select the lyrics tab. We’ll show you the first four lines of the song on the home page and you can click through to a second window that will show you the complete lyrics for the songs. Find a song that moves you? Click the share button to send them to a friend.
We’ve also been fiddling with the interface for adding more variety to your stations. Variety is a tricky subject when it comes to radio. We never want you to get bored with your stations, but a certain amount of repetition is welcome and expected. We’re constantly tweaking the core algorithm to impact station variety and we’re not done in that dimension. On the other hand, we’ve always had tools that allow you to expand the musical scope of a station by adding more song or artist “seeds” — but that interface has been largely hidden and only used by a small minority of our listeners. In a change that rolled out a few weeks ago we’ve added a “Add variety…” button to the player itself so that it’s easier to find and access. We’ve also updated the Add Variety panel to prompt you with a few ideas about artists you might want to add when you run out of your own ideas.
We also recently launched a “station gift” feature — this is your chance to make a kind of Pandora “mix tape” for a friend. Just visit www.pandora.com/station_gift, pick some favorite artists or songs, choose a design, and we’ll take care of the rest. Think of it as a musical e-card from Pandora.
One last tidbit you may have noticed is that we now support “bulk” purchase through both iTunes and Amazon MP3. Instead of buying songs one at a time, you can now use your Pandora bookmark list as a starting point for buying a whole bunch of music with just a single click. Click the “Buy All” button on your profile page to get started (and don’t worry, you’ll have plenty of chances to review your song selections before the purchase actually goes through).
We’ve had a lot of fun building these new features and we hope you enjoy using them. As always, we look forward to hearing your feedback and ideas in the comments.

Pandora

The Pandora Team http://www.pandora.com/

134 thoughts on “Lyrics, Variety, Gifts, and other Tweaks

  1. Ya I’m going with Playlist as my go to for listening. My account with Pandora is cancelled. Hope your business model of taking perks away and charging more works out for you. As for me, no more being duped.

    • As for why they were removed, it probably has a lot to do with the fact that they paid a lyric licensing service (LyricFind) for them. I guess someone decided that the costs of paying for them outweighed the benefits (which can only be examined in their absence).

      I find it ridiculous that there are (apparently) no open-source lyric databases.

      I really miss them, though. I might have to try out certain other services like one that starts with “Spot” if they don’t return soon!

      • Lyric Wikia is an open-source lyrics database that perhaps Pandora can consider inking out a deal. This databbase shows official lyrics (that cannot be modified) and user-submitted lyrics (that can be modified).

        Check out Lyric Wikia: http://lyricwikia.com/

  2. Joining the masses – Please bring back the lyrics. Please at least let us know what is going on. Why are they gone? I can listen to the radio on other sites. The lyrics and bios are what set you apart from the rest. I read the lyrics a lot more than the bios.

    • Unbeknownst to the masses, the publishing of lyrics is often seen as copyright infringement (to the artists and/or their record labels). Although Pandora is paying for licensed lyrics, my guess is that there layers of complexities in how lyrics are licensed – similar to the complexities of licensing streaming music.

      Check out this academic paper about lyrics and copyright infringement (by Sam Guthrie):
      LYRICAL RESTRAINT: LYRICS SITES AND COPYRIGHT
      INFRINGEMENT
      by Sam Guthrie, University of Virginia School of Law

      http://www.grammy.org/files/pages/sam_guthrie.pdf

  3. The lyrics ARE one of the most important things Pandora did.
    Read them constantly. Considered them part of the paid package.
    Now we are paying more and getting less !!!
    Pandora is getting bigger and starting to jerk us around like the other giants who think they can’t be replaced. They can and will !!!
    DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE LISTENING AUDIANCE !!!
    We will drop you for the next best thing in a millisecond.
    Hmmm…what was the name of that social network site before Facebook?
    And the one before that ?

  4. Im with you guys. Lyrics was one of my favorite parts about Pandora. That is what made it different. If Pandora doesn’t introduce the lyrics back, i’m going to Spotify. What sucks is that I have been with Pandora for awhile so it is going to be hard to leave it.

  5. Not only did I love the lyrics, but more importantly I loved looking at who actually WROTE the songs, and looking up the songwriters online to figure out what other songs they wrote. Please bring back lyrics if possible.

  6. I really miss the lyrics MOST of all because I liked seeing who the actual SONG WRITER was and looking up that song writer to see what else they may have written.

  7. Please bring babk the lyrics ! I often find myself going to look at then and they are not there! It was such a fantastic feature!!!!

  8. Seriously. THE LYRICS ARE GONE?!?!?! Why would you have them, and then just take them away like that?!?!? BRING BACK THE LYRICS. How many more comments are going to be needed in order to understand that they are very much needed :(

  9. Where did the lyrics go? I’m taking Spanish 3 right now and the lyrics on Spanish songs help me with my fluency! In addition to that, lyrics are the whole reason why I don’t subscribe to Slacker or Rhapsody or any other service! I’ve been a long time Pandora listener (5+ years). Please bring back lyrics!!

  10. I love you Pandora!!! However, I like everyone else here truly miss the lyrics and researching the songwriters. For example…Weak by SWV…a song my girl and I have claimed as “ours.” Never really understood what was being sung until Pandora “I can’t figure out what to do when the cause and cure is you.” How appropriate when it comes to Pandora! I understand the copyright problems and wish I had a solution. Until then, I listen.

    The different levels of variety that can be added is impressive. Although only allowed 100 stations, (Yep,all filled up) I have endlessly added other artists;exclusively with the suggestions from Pandora. Artists so obscure that I immediatley google the who,what, where, when, why and now of them.

    To fans of Pandora:list your favorites, let Pandora know the variety of who you like. Mine go from Funkadelic to Chicago to Edith Piaf to Beres Hammond to Neo to Richard Pryor. My days go much smoother. Thank You Pandora…We listen.

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