Why free sound effects are important
I occasionally get asked ‘why do you offer sounds for free’, which is a legitimate response to the core ethos behind zapsplat.com. Some people don’t understand why we do what we do and why it is important. Are we trying to dominate the sound library industry? Are we bringing the industry down by offering a free alternative to what has always been a paid-for market place? No, we don’t believe so and here is why…
I was once a student (that seems like a long time ago now) and I studied everything from media through to music production. During this time I had no money (or very little) and worked to pay for my education. Back then, it was almost impossible to find free sound files that were good quality (or even pro quality) for my work and I quickly realized there was a need for it.
But it’s not just students who are on a budget. Many aspiring filmmakers, animators, artists, bloggers etc are also in need of resources to help bring their work to life and just can’t afford to pay for individual sounds, packs of sounds or subscriptions to services that offer sounds or music on this basis.
Originally that was the market zapsplat.com was set up to help and we did so very well. Our sounds and music have been used in millions of projects, helped many students pass their courses with flying colours and helped up-and-coming creatives launch their careers. But as we’ve grown, so has our user base and many of those who used us a students, now use us professionally too.
We’ve been told on numerous occasions that without our sounds and music, some of our users wouldn’t have been able to get a foot in the door and produce what they have, or learned how to edit and add sounds to picture, or how to make a project sparkle with audio. Without access to free soundfx and royalty free music, they’d have struggled to get started.
We now have grown to over 20,000 sounds and are still going strong with hundreds of thousands of members and thousands more visiting and using the site each day. This in itself has proved a successful promotional board for professional libraries and sound designers to get their music and audio in front of the next generation of creatives. That’s another strand of our website that’s proving useful. The members who use our services today are the next generation of professionals to start working in the industry and they remember the good and the bad and take that with them on their professional journey. By introducing them to other resources directly on our site, we enable them to make decisions as to what suits them and their work.
We also serve audio professionals
Zapsplat.com has managed to gain a reputation that we are extremely proud of in that we offer a huge range of sounds you won’t find anywhere else. Our Foley collection is very useful for filmmakers, radio producers and many other users who need to quickly source and add all manner of action sounds to their work. For these pros (and anyone else) the service is still free, but we provide the option to donate and upgrade, removing the attribution requirement on all our Standard License sounds, access to the higher quality uncompressed wave files and more. Without these donations zapsplat.com would cease to exist, so we reply on and welcome all levels of users and are proud to be able to offer everyone our unique services and audio.
Our ethos remains the same
So with all that in mind, it’s clear we are not trying to compete against the larger paid-for libraries, nor are we looking to dominate the market with free sounds…. We simply offer an alternative resource for finding and using great quality sfx. Our sounds are professional quality and extremely popular to all those who use us. We believe we offer a resource that not only helps students and aspiring creatives a place to get started, but also support them as they develop and grow on their professional journey.