imeem was number 5 last year but this shouldn’t be viewed as a downgrade of how much I like imeem. I think it’s great and I think it’s getting better all the time. The only reason it is not higher on the list is that I also spend a fair amount of time using other music services, including Pandora, Seeqpod, Songza, and a few others. These different services are explained in a post from June titled “Embedding Music Playlists in your VLE.”
Because WordPress will not allow a flash-based player to be embedded, you’ll have to click on the screenshot below to open the playlist at the imeem site. You can embed the imeem player in normal webpages including Blogger blogs and inside things like Desire2Learn, Angel, Moodle, etc. See the links above.
If you click through to the playlist, you will probably see that some of the songs in that playlist are not full-length. When I am logged in to my imeem account and using the playlist at their site, they are all full-length. If you don’t have an imeem account, or you are listening to an embedded playlist, some songs are shortened to 30 seconds depending upon licensing agreements between imeem and the music company in question. Songs on imeem will be only a 30-second preview if the artist or record label has not signed an agreement with imeem giving approval for full-length streaming. Their interpretation of copyright fair use principles indicates that a 30-second preview is acceptable. When you search for a song on imeem you’ll see right away whether it is a preview or full-length.
For songs that you already have on your computer, you can upload them to your imeem account and listen to them full-length, regardless of whether imeem otherwise has permission for that song.
You can use your imeem account to store and play audio and videos, and also to store and display photos. It can easily be used for podcasting, as explained in their FAQ section. Although I haven’t done it, it would be easy to embed the player inside your VLE, then each time a new podcast is uploaded it will appear in the player for students or other subscribers to listen to. For video files, imeem supports many different file types, but recommends .MPEG, .MOV, .FLV, and .AVI for optimum results. The suggested video size is 400×300, but other sizes will work as well. For music files, imeem supports mp3s only, with a recommended sampling rate of 44.1 kHz. At this time there are no maximum file size limitations for uploading video or other file types.
imeem certainly has it’s critics since some people don’t like anything that is ad-supported. But come on, they’re doing all the heavy lifting by dealing directly with the a-hole record companies, they’re helping make it legal to access your music from any Internet connection, and they’re enabling you to legally share the music of other account holders. In my book, that’s a pretty good deal. Did I mention that it’s free? (some of this text is repeated from the June post linked above)