Tagged with: “Spotify”
Written by Liz Pelly on The Baffler.
“[M]usic streaming platforms are in a unique position within the greater platform economy: they have troves of data related to our emotional states, moods, and feelings. It’s a matter of unprecedented access to our interior lives, which is buffered by the flimsy illusion of privacy.
Spotify’s enormous access to mood-based data is a pillar of its value to brands and advertisers, allowing them to target ads on Spotify by moods and emotions. Further, since 2016, Spotify has shared this mood data directly with the world’s biggest marketing and advertising firms.
“At Spotify we have a personal relationship with over 191 million people who show us their true colors with zero filter,” reads a current advertising deck. “That’s a lot of authentic engagement with our audience: billions of data points every day across devices! This data fuels Spotify’s streaming intelligence—our secret weapon that gives brands the edge to be relevant in real-time moments.”
In Spotify’s world, listening data has become the oil that fuels a monetizable metrics machine, pumping the numbers that lure advertisers to the platform. In a data-driven listening environment, the commodity is no longer music. The commodity is listening. The commodity is users and their moods. The commodity is listening habits as behavioral data. Indeed, what Spotify calls “streaming intelligence” should be understood as surveillance of its users to fuel its own growth and ability to sell mood-and-moment data to brands.
What’s in question here isn’t just how Spotify monitors and mines data on our listening in order to use their “audience segments” as a form of currency—but also how it then creates environments more suitable for advertisers through what it recommends, manipulating future listening on the platform.”
Written by LibrarianShipwreck on LibrarianShipwreck.
“And thus, in the guise of a seemingly innocuous tradeoff (in which the user thinks they’re really getting the benefit), the user accepts being subjected to high-tech corporate surveillance.
Importantly, this is one of the primary ways in which such surveillance gets normalized.
High-tech surveillance succeeds by slowly chipping away at the obstacles to its acceptance. It does not start with the total takeover, rather it begins on a smaller scale, presenting itself as harmless and enjoyable. As people steadily grow accustomed to this sort of surveillance, as they come to see themselves as its beneficiaries instead of as its victims, they become open to a little bit more surveillance, and a little bit more surveillance, and a little bit more. This is the steady wearing down of defenses, the slow transformation of corporate creepiness into cultural complacency, that allows rampant high-tech surveillance to progress.”
Written by Gabriel J.X. Dance, Michael LaForgia and Nicholas Confessore on New York Times.
“Facebook allowed Microsoft’s Bing search engine to see the names of virtually all Facebook users’ friends without consent, the records show, and gave Netflix and Spotify the ability to read Facebook users’ private messages.
The social network permitted Amazon to obtain users’ names and contact information through their friends, and it let Yahoo view streams of friends’ posts as recently as this summer, despite public statements that it had stopped that type of sharing years earlier.”