Thumbs-up to you!

Pandora-10BillionThumbs-DeruloWestergren5-16-11.jpgJason DeRulo stops by to get a plaque to commemorate our 10 Billionth Thumb.

Just over a week ago, on Sunday, April 24th at 4:46pm, “Ridin’ Solo” by Jason DeRulo received Pandora’s 10 billionth thumb. 10 BILLION…wow!

Of the many milestones we’ve hit over the past 6 years, this is perhaps the one that makes us most proud. We created Pandora to bring personalization to radio, to allow each individual to determine the sound of their stations, and to make it as simple and intuitive as possible. There is no greater evidence for us of meeting that objective than the ongoing engagement you have all shown in your use of the thumbs.

Not a day goes by that we don’t work to improve how the Music Genome Project works. And there is no greater impact on the project’s development than the contribution you are all making, one thumb at a time, to our understanding of how to build great playlists. Our team — musicians, mathematicians, statisticians, radio programmers, software engineers, music lovers and more — absorbs the feedback from you daily, looking for new insights and adjustments that your contributions reveal.

What started as an improbable effort by a group of musicians, around a dining room table, is now a massive project, involving tens of millions of avid music fans. Little by little we are all collectively creating a music discovery engine that might just deliver on the grand promise of the web — a completely personalized listening experience for every user, and an effective outlet for tens of thousands of deserving artists. We now have over 800,000 songs in our collection, and over 95% of them play in a given month.

All of us are humbled by the continued engagement you have shown with Pandora, not only with your thumbs, but also your general advice, suggestions, and critiques…by the thousands. We listen intently. And it is all adding up.

We will continue to work every day to get better, as this task has no end. And that’s what makes this so much fun.

Thanks again for being a part of this.

Tim (Founder)
P.S. That 10 billionth thumb was, indeed, a thumb-up. ☺

Tim Westergren


24 thoughts on “Thumbs-up to you!

  1. I stopped being a part of it when it came to light how you’re pimping our personal data. That’s when you lost me as a PAYING customer.

  2. What a cool concept; but the implementation needs work.
    I couldn’t find “Broken Hope” by Zero Cult, nor “Angels Landing” by Salt Tank. Even though the new, innovative musicians often make their music available for free (at least to internet radio stations like, you seem to have a somewhat restricted selection.
    I did find “Black Eyes” by Snowden; but none of the “similar” songs approached its quality. I wonder if your parameters for determining similarity are too preconceived? There should be a way that, like Amazon does with books, you could suggest similar songs based simply on other users’ input that they are similar.
    I did find many good 50s and 60s rock and roll songs based on initial input. Maybe that’s a characteristic of the genre; rock and roll is pretty easy to filter out from not-rock-and-roll.

  3. I love pandora.You rock!I listen to all my favorite radio stations.

  4. Tim & Pandora,
    Contratulations!!!! Thanks for all of the work you put into Pandora to get it to 10 billion thumbs up ratings.
    Also thank you for reaching out in the blog again. I miss the more frequent communications from the folks at Pandora and I think the lack of comments on this posting reflect the fact that most people don’t follow the blog anymore. I hope you keep it up.

  5. When are we going to be able to view the songs we ‘liked’? I want a list of them so I can purchase them. I think you guys are missing out on a money making opportunity.

  6. Hi Tim and All,
    Wonderful project.
    I signed up today. I’m curious if there is a way to find details on each recording through the Pandora music listing, like personnel, dates of recording, even liner notes?
    I love the concept of the Music Genome Project. I am a serious jazz hound, advocate and missionary. Keep it up. Listen to the Clayton Brothers sometime.

  7. THANK YOU, TIM! You saved our party! We recently moved to California from New York State. Our house was a foreclosure, needed a lot of work. When it was completed we hosted a party for all of our workers. We still hadn’t found out tuner amongst all of our boxes. To provide music we used our laptop and Pandora! It was a last minute idea but, grtefully, Pandora was wonderfully easy to set up. Pandora is a fabulous idea. ~Tam and Rich Dean

  8. I want to Thank you and everyone at Pandora for an outstanding concept and execution. I just discovered Pandora about two weeks ago and it has fulfilled a missing piece of my musical enjoyment. I will continue to listen, build my radio preferences, and will certainly tell people I meet about Pandora.
    Thank You, once again for such a phenomenal, wonderful service!
    Scott Westergren
    Orem, UT

    Well, I was… until this little message kept stopping the music and popping up.
    We, up until yesterday, used Pandora often. The ads are fine with me, I mean everybody’s gotta eat? Right?
    But whoever came up with this idea of stopping the music every 20 minutes or so and popping up a screen asking if you’re still listening… really needs to reconsider their audience. Seriously, do you believe your audience is tied to the terminal, willing to respond all the time, while listening? Think again.
    We had a party of a bout 40 people, enjoying Pandora providing the music and unobtrusive ads, but after 4 times of having to go back into the home office, click the “Are You Still Listening?” screen to restart the music… one of my guests shouted that we should just scrap Pandora and try something else. We did.
    Folks at Pandora… in a few short minutes you got a bad rap with 40 people in one sitting.
    Please reconsider this bad idea. Internet radio is still… radio. Your audience listens while doing other things. Most of us are not hawking around our terminals waiting to respond to screen indications.
    Are YOU still listening?

  10. I was going to upgrade, even used my trial, and now it is messing up on me. I am not willing to pay for something that won’t work. Please fix your bugs and I will purchase Pandora One.

  11. Hi Tim,
    Just wanted to let you know i am enjoying Pandora Radio very much. I travel back and forth to South Africa and hope this will bring some of home with me.
    One comment, when i tried to create account on my iPhone the request for a 4 digit birth year could not be completed as the field was only 3 characters long. I tried but ended up creating the account on my MAC and logging in from iPhone.
    Thanks for this app, it is very nice already.
    Kind Regards,

  12. Dear Tim,
    Will get to thumb in a moment– Saw you on Charlie Rose, think it was, long, long ago, and was impressed that you clearly believed in your work as a mission (but then, am Asperger’s, so you could have been lying out your *ss, and I wouldn’t have known it…sigh.) Anyhow, finally, at tooo-long-last, started my first Pandora station today. Like it. Thank you for providing marvelous gift to me, for free, when I have done nothing for you. Generous human being. Now, to that thumb. Very definitely a big, honking MAN’s thumb. And hand. As is the guy laughing at the new comedy Pandora. Okay, so you have only two genders from which to choose (usually), but, gosh, why is the choice always the male one? So off-putting to open-eyed women, so down-putting to closed-eyed ones, such as growing girls, and so un-enlightening to takin’-it-for-granted-all-the-time growing-boys-and-men. Take the point? Thx.

  13. I’m pretty much addicted to Pandora now! I love how it reminds me of music I still love but kinda forgot about. Awesome job!!! Best app I have by far :)

  14. Is there a way to turn of the ‘live’ music feature?
    If not, can you guys create one? I don’t like listening to the music, then hearing the screaming cheering fans blow out my eardrums. :-)
    Yes, I know I can turn down the volume, but would rather listen to the music at normal levels and not have to turn it down when the fans come on.

  15. I’m really enjoying listening most of the time and have discovered some wonderful music on here. I appreciate it. One way you can improve, though, is to quit playing opera on my stations. I haven’t added any opera or done anything indicating I might like it, but almost every song sometimes is opera.
    I hate opera!

  16. Love your site and I don’t mind the ads, but could you PLEASE turn down the volume on the them? I practically jump out of my chair when the ads start.

  17. Hey Tim, just a quick note to let you know that I love Pandora very, very much. It’s one of my close friends who introduced me to Pandora. Honestly speaking, it was not a ‘love in first sight (listen)’ experience, but never knew when I absolutely fall in love and today I am simply addicted to Pandora. Keep it up good work.

  18. Pandora is great. Can You Find A Way To Keep the songs From Breaking Up. Other than that it’s a really good source for the best music.

  19. Feature Request:
    Presently, each station consistes a list of Artist Seeds, Song Seeds, Thumbed-up Songs, and Thumbed-Down Songs. On the “Station Information” page for each, presently we have the option to “Remove Checked.”
    I’d like options to “Move Checked to [pick from drop-down] Station” and “Copy Checked to [pick from drop-down] Station.”
    That way, I could re-build my stations based on the hours of listening I’ve done, but get a more predictable, consistent mix on each one according to how I’ve tailored it.
    Please consider doing something like this for us!

  20. To all at Pandora, VERY COOL! My wife downloaded Pandora to her Blackberry and went on and on about how great it is. I was reluctant to put it on my Samsung Galaxy S due to it’s horrible battery life. Everything I do with this phone drains the battery in minutes. To my great surprise Pandora does not! I can listen for hours with very little drain. Thanks for a great app! I’m hooked!

  21. I know that Pandora pays for every song that plays even if it is just for one second and that is why only a few skips are allowed per hour. I had an idea that just came to me, to keep costs down and save money for the company, is there a way to come up with a short pause/announcement of whats coming up before a song is played to give the listener a chance to decide if they want to listen to it? I believe that this could potentially save millions of dollars in spending that doesn’t have to be spent. Again this is just a thought I do not know what kind of contracts or policies are in place. Either way thanks for taking the time to read this and I would really like a response back.
    Tim Miller

  22. Tim,
    I completely agree with Jeremy in the comments. It would be amazing to see a full list of every song that I have “Thumbed Up” ever. Two reasons: 1) I would like to create a station with them all and moving them to my personal station is too time consuming and 2) I dont always want to buy a song at the moment that I “Thumb it Up” but later on I might.
    Please hook us up. It is a hugely sticky feature that will really show the value to users that Thumb up/Down most songs.
    Would be great to get a reply… Thanks.