The changes in the business structure above are hugely concerning, if I am honest. Why would I want to donate to a commercial organisation with paid employees? I feel extremely uncomfortable that my hundreds of previous scans are no longer there for the joy of musicians, but part of a business asset. My work is being sold without my permission and the money goes elsewhere! It is fundamentally against the principles that once were the basis of IMSLP.
I suggest you take the time to test the website without the current blocks in place. A couple of 15 second wait periods are no problem. The problem comes when browsing through multiple different files, which is so frustrating it becomes essentially impossible. Youtube and Spotify certainly do not include an advertisement before every single video or song, no matter the length. If they did, few people would use them. Try logging out of your account and browsing through a collection of pieces.
About financials, are our donations currently paying salaries? I was under the belief they were going towards server costs, as they should be. I am alarmed to think otherwise. A shared resource like this should make clear how much it costs to run (the cost of servers) and how much is still needed to meet this cost. I contributed my scans to IMSLP because I wanted to help other musicians, not for any kind of salary.
Complaints from unaware musicians are already coming in from Twitter:
"World collapse: IMSLP - $1.90 per month..."
"OMG imslp now makes you wait to access music unless you donate
"Is IMSLP seriously starting to try charging? These scores are PUBLIC DOMAIN"
"IMSLP plans to begin throttling downloads or enacting a waiting period à la former sites such as RapidShare to promote paid memberships"
"IMSLP not working and I really feel like practicing- tchaik 5 for reh week of NYC tour- no practice parts either
"Whoever thought this was a good idea needs to get their head examined for insanity. #imslp"
"this gave me a heart attack. I depend on this resource being free or close to it."
"It's not the amount of money that's the problem but the fact that IMSLP did not appear to try to raise funds in other ways before this"
"No public discussion or announcement, then boom - nuclear option. It raises serious concerns about the credibility of IMSLP's administration"
Can you realise how bad this makes the website look?
I forwarded this to Norman Lebrecht, the influential music critic and writer, who has published an account on his website:http://slippedisc.com/2015/12/musicians ... s-pay-for/
It is wonderful to see here, and more sparingly on Twitter, so many musicians pledging they would be prepared to donate to keep IMSLP running. Mr Guo, there is a market here to capture these donations whilst maintaining the previous reputation as the open-access, free library of public domain scores. Compare this to what you are attempting to reach, a commercial website that pays employees, not voluntary contributors, and actively hinders a large majority of users. I am apprehensive you have already made your decision, but I hope you might listen and reconsider. The future of IMSLP depends on it.