This new feature on Spotify let me think about the increasing amount of control the internet has on our lives. According to the A.V. Club and Pitchfork, Austin-based psych rockers White Denim (a band I have seen a couple of times) have a new song, but there are very few chances I will be able to listen to it in Los Angeles…. I explain, ‘No Nee Ta Slode Aln’ can only be heard if it’s raining outside! Although I had my chances lately because the weather was much wetter than usual in LA.
It is simple, Spotify is using ‘geotargeting technology to push out the song only into markets where there’s measurable rainfall at any given moment’. It let me pensive, if Spotify knows if it is raining at any moment where I live, what else does the streaming system know about me? What about everything? They know where I live, they know about the weather, they obviously know about my musical tastes, my Facebook friends, their tastes and political opinions? I bet they know about the concerts I attend, and it goes on and on. Soon we will get the weather report according to the music Spotify will play for us in the morning…
A few months ago, I was listening to a podcast examining the tremendous amount of spying companies do thanks to smartphones and a few new apps; they know how much time customers spend in a store, how much time they stay in a specific alley, they even track each of their moves outside the store, and if they go to a competitor, the store may send them tempting offers to make them come back. The author was even talking about wearing implants in arms in the future, implants that could send a message to the store/retailer, informing them how people feel about a specific product or its price, based upon their physiological reactions!
Would you want an app like this in music? An app connected to a chip in your arm that sent your physiological reaction to Spotify? Spotify would then propose you new music in accordance with these data, and where does it end? Soon Spotify will have a playlist that will exactly fit each one of your moods of your day. The future is definitively scary.