XSPF, which when spoken sounds like spiff, is the XML Shareable Playlist Format.
So what? Why do you care?
Because services like Rhapsody, Napster, and Y! Unlimited are the future of the music business.
One day, everyone who enoys music will be getting their music like they get a dialtone.
Music will be a subscription service. It is already but there are lot of technical, implementation, and business model hurdles that need to get worked out before everyone gets their music this way.
But I am absolutely convinced its going to happen. It has to frankly. Because the current way we get music is ridiculous in a digital world.
But back to spiff, why does it matter?
Because when everyone has access to all the music all the time, sharing music is going to explode. Everyone will be a DJ, everyone will send music to their friends and family, and it will all be legal.
Spiff is the way that will happen.
Go back to my post on Y! Unlimited. At the end I said:
Regardless of what Apple does, here is the thing I want Yahoo!, Real, and Napster to do. Make your shared playlist links compatible with each other. Create a standard for sharing music legally on the Internet. That's what this market needs most of all.
That generated a few comments and emails. All pointing to XSPF. When I looked at XSPF, I saw what I have always wanted. I can blog my Rhapsody playlist of the week but you can't listen to it unless you have Rhapsody. What if I could easily publish that as an XPSF file and you could listen to it on Rhapsody, Y! Unlimited, and Napster? What if Steve Jobs offered an unlimited subscription offer on iTunes and supported XSPF?
That's my vision. And it's going to happen. Unfortunately, it's going to take a while.