Answers to all of the questions that you’ve been dying to ask about this site! Yow!
Q: Is District Concerts a for-profit or not-for-profit site?
A: District Concerts is for-profit in the same sense that searching for forgotten coins in pay phones* is a for-profit venture.
Q: This site was, like, totally awesome. It used to be the best site I had seen since that one with the playful kittens. You know the one I’m talking about, right? The one with the kittens?
A: Thanks, we… Wait – is your question about the kitten website?! Yeah, I think we may have come across that.
Q: I really used to LOVE this site, and there’s nothing I want more in life than to help return it to its former glory. How do I support this site so that you’ll bring back the daily listings?
A: If you like(d) this site, PLEASE:
- Keep visiting. Yeah, the site ain’t what it once was, but if the site visit numbers increase sufficiently**, then we’ll bring back the daily listings.
- Tell other people about it and share links to the site. An easy way to do so is to click on one of the buttons (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) on that floating doo-dad that’s on each page.
- …and… that’s it. We’ve never gotten traffic high enough to justify adding ads to the site, we stopped using affiliate programs for ticket sales because the revenue wasn’t sufficient to justify the extra effort needed to create those affiliate links, and Amazon wound up being absolute butt-munches*** with their affiliate program.
Q: So what happened? Why did the quality of this site go down the toilet?
Thanks so much for noticing! Yes, we**** had been quite delighted with the number of events that we were able to list and the quality of the information that we provided. We were quite zealous in searching for events and then tracking down information about those events when the venue’s pages were found to be lacking. But the zealousness took a toll. We were regularly pulling information from almost 200 websites and posting information for over 1,200 events a month. For hundreds of those events, we were spending a lot of time tracking down additional information about the artist(s). As a result, for a while we were spending about 50 hours a week just to keep the site up to date. We found ways to become more efficient, chiefly by spending less time tracking down information to supplement what we found on some of the more woefully inadequate venue sites, but it was too little, too late. By this point we were so burned out with the endless site upkeep that we needed a break.
Q: Why don’tcha list any venues that are outside of DC? Why? WHY?!!!
- We gotta draw the line somewhere, and there ain’t no cleaner line than the DC border.
- Our resources are limited, and it’s challenging enough to keep up with the hundreds of concerts that take place in the District each week.
- We wanna support the District, and why leave it if ya don’t hafta?
- Someday we may add Metro-accessible, non-DC venues to the mix, since there are some fantastic venues outside of the city. But see #2 above.
- “District Concerts” is a catchier name than “The District and Metro-Accessible Locations Outside of the District Concerts.”
Q: Why is it so rare for you to list DJs on this site?
A: We don’t typically list DJs because this site is devoted to live music, and it can be hard to differentiate between somebody who is simply jockeying disks and somebody who is mixing music to create something truly unique. Eventually, we may list more and more DJs, simply ‘cuz it’s a pain to try to decide whether or not a DJ’s music can truly be labeled as “live,” and it’s easier to just toss ’em into the mix and let y’all decide for yourselves.
Q: I went to a concert because the description on your site sounded fantastic. But the group sounded like a bunch of drunken 4th graders simultaneously participating in a “Try Out an Instrument for the First Time!” event. What gives?
A: Our sincerest apologies. We typically use the descriptions that are provided by the artist or venue, editing only for brevity and/or egregious abuse of the English language. Occasionally a description will be far more flattering than a musician’s talents warrant. But hey, somebody liked the performance, right? Right? Hello?
Q: What’s the deal with the weird meter in the District Concerts logo? What the heck is a 51st note?
A: We wanted to add a meter that seemed meaningful for Washington, DC. Since DC would love to be the 51st state, we thought, “hey, that’s cute! What better number could there be?” Sure, the meter is nonsensical, but so is denying 600,000 people their citizenship.
Q: What is the meaning of life?
A: We don’t know, but we’re pretty darn sure that live music plays a big role in the answer.
Q: When you list an address, why don’t you put a comma between the street name and the quadrant? Shouldn’t it be “1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW”, not “1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW”?
A: That’s a good question; thanks for asking. When we first encountered the quadrant malarkey, our instinct was to put a comma between the “Street” or “Avenue” and the “NW” or “SE”, as we viewed the quadrant as being separate from the street address – defining a macro location within the city as a whole. But over the course of time, we came to realize that the quadrant is truly part of the street name, so a comma is inappropriate. You wouldn’t write an address as “123 Fake, Street”, would you? Well, then you also shouldn’t write a DC address as “123 Fake Street, NW”.
Q: In the above examples, shouldn’t a sentence’s punctuation be included inside of the quotation marks rather than outside? So, even though a question mark is not part of the President’s address, shouldn’t the question above be written, “…1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW?”
A: If we remember our elementary school punctuation learnin’ correctly, we do believe that you are correct. (We’re too lazy to look it up for clarification.) But we’ve always hated that rule, so we choose to ignore it.
Q: Did people really ask those last two questions?
A: Are you accusing us of making up some of these FA questions? We’d never… OK, OK, so nobody actually asked us those questions. But we know that somebody was asking those questions in their head.
*For young-un’s who don’t know what a pay phone is: Once upon a time, people did not actually have phones that they could carry with them. At home or at the office, they used phones that were connected to one another by wires. When away from home or the office, though, people relied on public phones. To use one of these public phones, you would put one month’s salary worth of coins (you know what coins are, right?) into the phone, call the desired number, and then talk until the money ran out and the phone cut you off mid-sente
**Yes, we know that it’s weird to expect an increase in site traffic at the same time that the value of the site has decreased, but that’s the Catch-22 in which we find ourselves. (Hmmm… decreasing quality of service while asking more of our customers… why does that sound so familiar? OMG! – we’ve become Metro!!!)
***When we first joined Amazon’s affiliate program, we included our Twitter handle as one of the URLs associated with the site. That application was approved. Four months later (FOUR MONTHS!!!), we received an e-mail from Amazon saying that our account had been closed because we were not allowed to include Twitter. We received no warning – the account was simply closed, and all records of past traffic via our affiliate links was deleted.
****By the way, in case you haven’t visited the “About Us” page, the “we” for this site is the “royal we” – it’s just one person. Using “we” simply sounds better than using “I”.