I have a friend in town and I’d like to show off. I need you to tell me what is happening in Joburg tonight, and so I’m feeding you the exact date and keywords like ‘gig guide’, ‘what’s happening’, ‘ live music’ and ‘events’. I’m expecting you to return with a ton of results because this isn’t difficult and I know there are like a bajillion listings out there anyway.
I’m speaking to you now in the manner of Jodie Foster in the movie Nell. Thanks for your query. You’d think I’d be quite useful here, what with the whole top-ranked search engine in the world shebang. However, I see you’re South African and so between space and time I have been rendered useless. I can provide you with events which fall on every day besides the one you need. Probably, because I’m manifesting before your very eyes into a sloth of the ether, from halfway down page 1 until page oh I don’t know, 5688 of your search results, I’m only giving you events which occurred at least 3 years ago. Maybe this will make you choose your location better the next time you birth yourself, you insufferable git.
If this were 2009, I’d wish you a great night out.
PS none of the sites on page 1 are active anyway lol lol lol x
Either I’m ignorant or there is a canyon in the market when it comes to options for a diverse,active, local (MOBILE-FRIENDLY) online gig guide. I spoke to Iain Mackenzie, one of the owners of Fanbible, about his site which he believes is the answer to this lack.
Tell me about Fanbible? If you look around today there are a LOT of bands and as many venues, either trying to do their bit for live music, or simply hosting once-off events. Where do you go on the web (or elsewhere) to see what’s happening? There is Facebook of course, and a handful of rather complicated sites, a few blogs, the local newspapers, and most common, word of mouth. On Facebook you will only find out about an event if you are following that venue or band, or if a friend invites you. There is nothing central, nothing that gives you options. That’s where Fanbible steps in. It aims to become a central community/ wiki-driven tool for live music. As you will see it is incredibly simple to add an event to the site. There is a single stream of gigs, and each artist and venue also has their own stream, but everything on Fanbible shares the same data. This means I can create a gig as a venue owner, but that same gig will be displayed on the artist’s pages too. The site is location-specific so its relevant to the user and actually gives you options each night, that have been added by the music community themselves. Basically it aims to bring together events, artists, places and you – the music fan. It aims to get you off that evil couch.
We launched about 7 months ago, but Fanbible will never really be finished. We will always strive to improve theexperience for the user, and increase the number of features to allow for even greater exposure of events. We are currently working on a new wave of tools that will be focused on integrating Fanbible with other websites and platforms like Facebook. These tools will be demonstrated by our ‘Ambassadors’: artists we love, who love us back.
For lack of a more exciting term, what’s your mandate? To rid the world of evil couches! (Those being the things that keep you at home and not going out to see live music.) We are all about showing relevant events in a simple format, and keeping information only one click away from the user. At the same time, we want to provide artists, bands and venues with a consolidated space for their information. Simplicity and community are our main drivers. We don’t want clutter, or a ton of advertising. We just want the user to become aware about events going on around them without it being an hour-long Google session. Our ultimate goal for the site is for it to be a wiki-driven application that ensures that fans never miss another gig.
What is your current focus? Right now we are focusing on two areas. The first is our site and content, continually refining it to make it simpler and faster, and to provide as much value to artists as we can. As we get closer to a critical mass, the value of Fanbible grows. Then more events are listed, and that’s good news for each artist, venue and event.
We are actively interviewing artists around the country and digging a little deeper than most interviews to get their feelings on the South African music industry. As I mentioned, we have our Ambassadors. As you will notice, the amount of artist data for the “artist page” is very limited. The Ambassador page features more content about the artist, allowing them to expose their actual songs through a music player, as well as have an embedded YouTube music video or performance. They are in agreement with us to support Fanbible and demonstrate future developments on the site. It’s just one of our ways to start a more budding community.
The second major focus is developing a set of tools for artists and venues that allows them to keep Fanbible as the central source for listing their events, but also allows them to pull the data away into other platforms like Facebook, or even their official website.
I hope it works, Fanbible.