To any musicians on Bandcamp:

Can you ask the Bandcamp support, why they use Google Analytics with their shared players?
I myself do not want to have _my listeners on my_ sites tracked unasked by Google
_at all_.
This is also a legal issue for any site owner within the EU.

I've asked BC's support already, yet unanswered. If we were many asking this we can form a critical mass around this issue.

Thank you for all you do & please boost.

Things to clarify:

I am a musician myself.
I use Bandcamp to sell audible things. They provide _by far the most fair service to musicians_ in that regard.
You may see in this thread, that there's a number of people willing to work on this cause, which we'll do in the next days or so & then have a page ready for everyone interested to get details or take (a)part.
If you're interested to get notified, then just leave your mastodon handle below

Thanx much, and for the boosts.

@jayrope You do know that Google Analytics is a service that anyone can use if they're especially lazy about wanting to track how someone uses something, right?

Even some VST audio plugins use Google Analytics to track their plugin use, down to tracking which dialogs are used, and which options are clicked.

That data is likely only used directly by Bandcamp (or in the case of plugins, the plugin vendor), and is not likely to be resold by Google to anyone in particular, or they'd be violating the agreement they have with the customer using their tracking.

Have you determined if they're using any personally identifying information in the data scrape?

@kode54 I know all this, however, the point of my post is obviously not that. Please read again.

@jayrope I just wasn't aware that literally collecting even anonymized data is a GDPR violation. Oops, guess I'm not allowed in Europe then.

@kode54 Whatever one thinks about tracking or meaningful uses of such otherwise, here it's a problem of missing consent.
Visitors must get information and choice about tracking _before_ they continue on your site according to their choices.
Many external musician web sites don't track at all, but then start tracking unknowingly due to the BC players.
I fully support GDPR. It needs to be made easier to implement this, though.

To be fair, if Bandcamp were concerned enough about Google Analytics, they’d be using something like Matomo most likely, because that is self-hosted.

Not having any analytics at all is not happening soon where most companies are concerned, because they want to know how their UI is used.

Everyone probably knows Google Analytics is the easy way out at this point, and there are complicated ways to hack Google Analytics into meeting GDPR rules. Shouldn’t be needing them, but here we are.

No reason to run UI checking on a permanent base. Audio players didn't have/need many updates since 2010.

Matomo seems a good suggestion, thank you. Am wondering if Google Analytics on that scale of vistors is free or not.
However, using Matomo BC could continue to supply meaningful stats to creators without passing that data through an advertisement trust.

true !
especially bcause #bandcamp could be a nice, concrete tool for #music-lovers supporting artists NOT based on #bigtech #advertizement

@aiquez That's the whole point of BC, no DRM and supporting artists.

@alpacaglitch @jayrope @tracktor

i put now the text from the etherpad

to an office file in nextcloud:
please feel free to modify and make comments:
anybody who wants to contribute please send me DM for Link and PW or make annotations in the etherpad -> we will adopt them into main request to BC.

@aiquez @alpacaglitch @tracktor @kingannoy @aiquez @alpacaglitch @tracktor Fine! I am still overthinking the approach to both the whole issue here, which is why i didn't write further yet.
I am however, extremely fascinated and happy about the massiv eresponse & will just need time myself to ponder good approaches to this.
There's a number of considerations to make, importantly, that Bandcamp provides a really needed service to us musicians and i want to improve it, not kill it. Please continue!

@jayrope @aiquez @tracktor @kingannoy guys, thank you very much for the initiative, but I'll have to pass - have not much time for it. But thank you again!

@aiquez @jayrope it is. The analytics from G is just one thing that could be changed, others are already here, working great

@alpacaglitch @jayrope

sure, the g-issue is probably just a routine setup. question is how /where to adress it.
i use BC also yet with passion *-)

@aiquez @alpacaglitch Bandcamp does have an API. My coding skills are too unexperienced to fiddle with that quickly, though. If we get the large majority of internet users to use simple things such as Decentraleyes or Privacy Badger ... etc pp. -
open for other workarounds - what i would otherwise do is suggest to BC support to supply shared players giving u sthg. like a notrack="1" flag as part of the iframe code. Should be simple for them.

@aiquez @jayrope I contacted them once about some bug via contact form here
I suppose it's the best way to reach them. Maybe they could switch to Matomo or other alternative :)

Please let me suggest kicking bandcamp and use a (possibly self-hosted) #Funkwale instance.

@kirschwipfel I do have a Funkwhale for content i don't want to sell - se my self decryption on profile. Bandcamp supports my survival and i don't want to make my listeners being tracked. That is in my interest as an artist.

@kirschwipfel That could be something, though not really needed for me. I surely enjoy it the way it is already, beyond any money relations.

@jayrope I don't see your problem
1) host opus .ogg audio files on your own site
2) no such step, step 1 is enough

if what you're calling your site is your site then it's your problem if you embed third party content instead of hosting it yourself

if you're confused and you are referring to some page you have on Bandcamps servers are "your site" (like those idiots on Discord talking about "their discord server" when they mean Discord's server) then that's slightly different (don't use them)

@katie Katie, i am not embedding 3rd party content :)
i am embedding my own content using a 3rd party provider, that let's me sell things for very fair conditions. What i want to change is, that my listeners are subject to Google tracking. Better now?

@jayrope I see it differently

if it's a file on your server then it's a file on your server

if it's a file hosted by a third party that's embedded on a page on your server, and that's the case here, then it's third party content regardless of who made it (from a web hosting perspective, anyway)

I don't see a good solution for you other than embedding a bandcamp iframe, though, since you say "sell things". realistically, what else would you do, sell it for crypto currency only? not ideal..

@katie No thanx, no Crypto. Bandcamp players are iframes. If it concerns you more, please see the rest of discussion, which is very yupportive of this issue. Thanks!

What is it with people in this thread missing the point?

I think it's great and valuable to attempt to educated and improve Bandcamp. I'm "only" a user of bandcamp, but in that role I will definitely send them a email asking them to stop using Google Analytics.

When a big player like bandcamp changes their behavior because we ask them too, we solve this problem not only for us, but for all other visitors too!

Bandcamp is great, let's try and make it even better!

@kingannoy I 100% agree, Jesse & thank you for the feedback.
Bandcamp is a great service. Needed changes are simply adjustments to make everyone feel lighter using it and achieve GDPL compliance in the EU (& for anyone anywhere else).

Analytics for the sake of listener stats are possible without Google involvement using logging of external player requests - and using an open source service like Matomo, PostHog or Rakam insteasd - suggest in case you write via

Thanks, I will mention those too :) One other alternative I'm aware of is, they can also do the hosting for you, in case self-hosting is unwanted.

My (slightly controversial) take on this is that self hosted platforms like these are also better at tracking, because they are harder to block by tracker-blocking plugins. And thus give you a better picture of the analytics then Google can because so many people block Google Analytics.

@kingannoy I'll add to the list. Being a web dev (i was one before) you should suggest anything you have in-depth knowledge about.

Another idea is use Bandcamp API (uses OAuth) to try fetch streams for an external html5 audio player of sorts, which should block google syndication, but still allows for in-player purchases (if by redirecting to the Bandcamp album page, when needed.) - Supposedly ther is sthg like that for WP (not using Wordpress here) which could be adapated.

@kingannoy I took th fredom to boost this, hoep you don't mind. To be added to thi: The use of Google Analytics is probably compliant in genral, howevr it forcs xtrnal websites with Bandcamp players (musicians, music blogs, mags etc.) into a separate data policy declaration, especially when a site (like my own) is otherwise mostly free from third party involvements. The bigger issue here is, that a similar thing already happens, when uing Google fonts remotely instead of histing them locally.

That is a good point! That would be complicated if not impossible to arrange for basically everyone that wants to embed their player 🤔

Boosting is ok 🙂

@kingannoy The point about Youtube being a Bandcamp competitor is a very clever argument. Bravo to this!

@aiquez @alpacaglitch Look at how Jesse did it, very clever argument mentioning YT as a Google-owned BC competitor, I invited him to the etherpad, too

@jayrope If you're concerned about interactions with EU laws, them using Google Analytics might be just a minor issue on top of everything else: "Bandcamp is currently in the process of certifying to the EU–U.S. and the Swiss–U.S. Privacy Shield frameworks to provide adequate safeguards for the transfer of Personal Data to the United States from the European Economic Area (“EEA”) and Switzerland" (from

No matter that the "Privacy Shield" process is on shaky grounds IIRC, according to their privacy statement they didn't even finish their homework on that.

@patrick That is very helpful to know about, thank you. My impression is, that Bancamp has vital interest in supporting musicians. In that regard i'd suppose, that it could help to approach them from our (musician-based) view point with this.
I haven't looked at the privacy protection myelf all too much in detail. I should. If you should have other information on this matter, please forward.
Thank you again, very good to learn about all this.

@patrick Ach, das wäre ja auch auf Deutsch gegangen :) Gruß aus Berlin.

@jayrope Hah, jo. Für manche CMSe gibts Plugins, die sich um die ganze DSGVO-Einwilligungssache (inklusive Einstellungsdialog und so) kümmern und auf Basis der Nutzereinstellung auch aktiv externe Skripte unterbinden (Für Wordpress zum Beispiel, wobei das keine Vorlage für Bandcamp zu haben scheint). Mit etwas dieser Art müsste man Google Analytics in Bandcamp "entschärfen" können, wenn der Nutzer nicht eh Google erlaubt hat.

Wäre natürlich schöner, wenn solches Eingreifen nicht nötig wäre, aber laissez-faire ist halt die Grundeinstellung im kommerziellen Web...
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