Sitting here, just laughing – headlines jumping all over the place about users howling that 1) new Spotify subscribers MUST use their Facebook profile to sign up, and 2) current users want to disable the automatic sharing — while Spotify usage has shot up over 60% in a single week.
Wait, users DON’T want to share their listening habits with their friends? You’re kidding, right? When I was growing up, we DEFINED ourselves by what we listened to. I can understand that seamless sharing can gnaw on the privacy concerns of some folks, and that’s fine – there are a half dozen other streaming solutions out there, and you can turn off autoshare. And for me personally, outside of music, I ain’t sharing nothing seamlessly unless I want to – not my viewing habits, not my reading habits, just music. Besides, 98% of the stuff that posts in the new Facebook ticker flies past without me ever noticing anyway.
I think the biggest challenge with sharing music moving forward is getting that info OFF the ticker and onto the wall – trust me, we’re about to enter a whole new era of mix tapes, where little girls can express their love by playing Justin Bieber nonstop, or guys can show off their deep knowledge of obscure death metal to their friends – especially since there ain’t a commercial radio station on the planet that’s going to turn you on to Carcass, Deicide, or Morbid Angel (or Grant Green, Charlie Parker, Dzihan & Kamien, LTJ Bukem, Japancakes, Edith Piaf, or Juliette Commagere).
Turntable.fm was just the start of the mainstreaming of citizen DJ’ing, what we’re going to need is a better way to highlight / like / promote those superstar curators, now that creating and sharing digital mixtapes just got a lot more seamless. I seriously believe that Fan Pages will soon be enabled to have accounts from Spotify (or some other service) – and when they do, using pages with 25 million followers to promote music will be a healthy boost to artist careers, in light of the challenges (and cost) it takes to get a mainstream hit these days.
And as for Timeline? I know I’m in the minority when I say this, but I don’t think Facebook went audacious enough with it! Go bigger, I say — rather than darting your eyes back & forth to follow events in chronological order, why not blow up pictures and stretch text posts across the entire field, so your own timeline starts to resemble some huge tumblr blog over time, especially as the world migrates towards tablet use. Regardless, congratulations Dather, you just got a proof of concept!