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Why Squarespace taking away albums & musicians+bands for 7.1 update was a disservice to all musicians that want to create a website.


Today I learned that Squarespace no longer supports bands and musicians websites with the 7.1 update. 

In my head I'm thinking, "what idiot approved that call". Surely they are not musicians and abstractly creative, they have to be one of those uncool analytical-technical thinkers who prefers squares to circles. Not what I was expecting from the "Mac of website builders", the decision was very PC like in its execution.

My thinking is not unwarranted. 

Indie musicians is a billion dollar market and over 30% have websites. It also was one of Squarespace larger stream of website revenue.  

So why remove the tags "musician and bands" making it harder for a musician to create what should be a seamless experience. 

Here's my story - I setup a website using the JasonWild template 2 days ago. Figured I'd purchase the business account and I'd be good to go, because Squarespace makes it seem so easy.

First thing I noticed was that I didn't see music-band-musicians-album on the type of features I'd like to add. Odd because now I'm trying to mix and match potential tags to see if it would populate music or any of the above tags related to music. 

Could media_podcast be it or would they somehow put it under entertainment.. ummm from what I know, that doesn't make sense but I ended up checking out both (so far not efficient by any analytical calculation).

Media was't it as it just listed a podcast template, which makes sense. Entertainment was next and it seemed to be the one I was looking for. "But why wasn't music listed to make the experience fluid" I thought, no worries, lets keep build this great site because Squarespace is great, its beautiful and everything they do makes perfect sense. 

The JasonWild template seems perfect with a few adjustments, I can totally make it mine. The next few hours were me figuring out how to add an album. I saw the latest single and album that allowed me to click on a link which opened a page with the album artwork and a soundcloud player but that wasn't what I wanted or expected. No worries, surely the album player is here, but maybe I just dont know how to get it yet.  I'll focus on other stuff and come back to it. 

A few more hours past and now I'm ready for the music player. I'm trying everything but not seeing album or music, so I retire for the evening and send customer service messages. 

The next day, I log on and noticed in the help section I can chat directly, cool. Speaking with rep he quickly sent me this link https://support.squarespace.com/hc/en-us/articles/206543077-Album-Pages#toc-set-up-your-album . I went straight to the video and text noticing that the directions in the video didn't match up to what I was seeing on my end, WTF. Now I'm wondering why they would suggest a video that in my mind is outdated, thats not professional and comforting as I'm relying on their expertise.  Of course I send another message to customer service. 

In between the wait, my brain is trying to understand what went wrong and I recheck the link they sent to see if I missed something. I did, it was the 7.0 to 7.1 change. That little sentence was there but I knew nothing about the versions to understand why it should be a concern. So I google "album music Squarespace 7.1", finding forums on reddit, Squarespace and others experiencing the issue of not being able to add an album. The issue has been going on since early 2020, gotta be kidding me. 

Then I check my email and was told that I need to switch to 7.0 and start all over if I want the album player, because 7.1 uses audio blocks... WTF. Now I'm pissed... 

At no point did Squarespace ask me to choose which version I'd like to use. So coming into it, I was oblivious to the versions and their importance as it was never mentioned or explained. I had to discover on my own that it was an issue that was an important factor. A big fu*k up by the coding team final approver. 

What could Squarespace do to remedy the situation -

  1. Add music + musician + band + album as an added feature
  2. Give new website builders the option of using 7.0 or 7.1 based on the features picked (ex. like them picking album and that they are a musician).
  3. Understanding that creating an album audio block is vastly different from a dedicated album block. If I have a latest album on the home page, the music page and the shopping page... I would have to change each page hoping that all content was exactly the same. If it was an album block, what I change on page 1 affects all pages which saves time and makes sense.
  4. Have the ability to demo templates with your sites information to see if its worth starting over, in the case of a 7.1 site not being useful and having to go back to a 7.0 site. 
  5. Dont ever disregard musicians and think a non creative mind can understand it. 

That's all... I had the time today!

Brooklyn, New York

Network Technician and Musician


P.S. Links to others with the same issue which Squarespace ignored. Some links are little different but relate to the same issue. 

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Um, yeah this is not good.  If Squarespace is going to attract and keep musician sites, they need to fix this.  I'm not hosting stuff from Spotify or Soundcloud if I am already paying a webhost.  The point of having one as a musician is to host my music directly instead of going through middlemen.  I have immensely enjoyed Squarespace, but Wix has band template with album players.

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