Grammys Use Geotagging, Nostalgia To Drive Ratings, Sales

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The Oscars isn’t the only awards show giving itself a social media makeover this year; this weekend’s Grammys is also taking to the internet in an attempt to make itself more relevant. Ahead of this weekend’s ceremony, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences have launched a campaign called “Music Is Life Is Music” that allows users to place music-related memories on a digital map. As the site explains:

By using the MusicMapper app to tag songs and stories to physical locations, we’re able to express how music transports us back to special times and places in a way never before possible. And by displaying these tags through the microsite, we can experience each other’s musical journey in a uniquely intimate way.

The purpose, of course, is to try and raise television ratings for Sunday night’s ceremony – broadcast on CBS – and, the Academy hopes, raise music sales as a result. That seems to me to be a shortsighted approach to something that could have a longer life outside of being an award show tie-in – and, presumably, continue to raise awareness (and sales) of music long past Sunday evening. For every step towards a New Media world that institutions like the NARAS takes, it always seems to find a way to be tied back to Old Media, somehow.

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