Options Techtonic with Mark Hurst: Playlist from November 23, 2020 Options

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Conversations with creators and thinkers who are charting the way forward in a tech-saturated society. Tech, community, video games, and whatever else is next.

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Options November 23, 2020: Gizmodo's Shoshana Wodinsky on Spotify

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Tonight: Gizmodo's Shoshana Wodinsky

Spotify is following the playbook of Facebook and Google to become the next Big Tech monopoly. What is Spotify doing with our data?

Links to Shoshana Wodinsky:

About Shoshana Wodinsky, staff reporter at Gizmodo covering consumer privacy and tech policy

• On Twitter: @swodinsky

Spotify's Latest Acquisition Is All About Your Data (by Wodinsky in Gizmodo, Nov 10, 2020): "The Megaphone acquisition clarifies how to think about Spotify overall: It's quickly becoming an advertising behemoth - less the Netflix of audio and much more akin to Facebook or Google for your ears."

Spotify's Weird LinkedIn Playlists Sound Like a Cash Register (by Wodinsky in Gizmodo, March 5, 2020): "Spotify has slowly morphed its playlists into data-mining machines. . . . I'm giving the company not only my emotional state but also my entire schedule."

Your Weather App Is Selling You Out (by Wodinsky in Gizmodo, Sep 14, 2020): "It's not just about tracking the weather, but tracking the way it's impacting our collective moods as a whole."

Please Keep Mark Zuckerberg Away From My Bones (by Wodinsky in Gizmodo, Aug 18, 2020), which prompted me to write Facebook and your bones (Aug 20).

More Gizmodo articles by Shoshana

Other pointers:

A Tale Of Two Ecosystems: On Bandcamp, Spotify And The Wide-Open Future (Damon Krukowski on NPR, Aug 19, 2020): "Spotify's royalty rates are so low that to earn a living wage of $15 an hour, a musician needs 657,895 streams per month . . . The differences are so extreme, Bandcamp may not just be the anti-Spotify; it may be operating in an entirely different world."

...and from the November 2 show with Bill Deresiewicz, author of "The Death of the Artist":

Spotify Celebrates 100th Dollar Given To Artists (The Onion, Sep 3, 2020): "Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, posing with a giant check for a $0.00000029 payout that propelled the world's musicians past a collective $100 in earnings. 'This is an absolute milestone for a musician-oriented platform like Spotify, and confirms what we believed when we started, which is that music-streaming platforms can be a reliable way to help bands and artists earn pennies or even nickels for their work. But this achievement is really about the artists on our platform. Spotify couldn't have done it without you.'"

Spotify to offer artists and labels the option to promote their music in your recommendations (The Fader, Nov 2, 2020): "In exchange for a lowered 'promotional recording royalty rate.'"

The Pocket Gods - 100mostXcellent30: an album of 100 30-second songs

- - -

PAST EPISODES: techtonic.fm lists recent Techtonic interviews and Little Slice of Tech Pie segments.

PODCAST: Subscribe to the Techtonic podcast

Artist Track Album Images Approx. start time
  Gizmodo's Shoshana Wodinsky discusses Spotify, and what it's doing with our data.
Tomaš Dvořák  Game Boy Tune   Options Machinarium Soundtrack 
0:00:27 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
  Mark's intro    
0:01:07 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
  Interview with Shoshana Wodinsky    
0:11:40 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
  Mark's comments after the interview    
0:43:41 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
The Pocket Gods  We're All No Hit Wonders Now   Options 100mostXcellent30    0:53:38 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
The Pocket Gods  YouTube Is Fleecing You   Options 100mostXcellent30    0:54:05 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
The Pocket Gods  Nobody Makes Money Any More   Options 100mostXcellent30    0:54:50 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
Negativland  More Data   Options The World Will Decide 
0:57:05 (MP3 | Pop‑up)

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Listener comments!

  6:00pm David in London:

Evening Technoids.
Hi Mark.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:01pm ultradamno:

Mark! Techtermatologists!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:03pm Webhamster Henry:

Hi Mark and friends!
  6:04pm David in London:

Ultradamno, high five.
Webhamster, yo.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm Fuzzy:

Hola technoamigos!
That Philip Michaels tweet is great!
Avatar 6:04pm Bas NL:

Hi Mark! Bigtechtonic lovers!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:04pm Webhamster Henry:

You have to mention this Spotify Onion article: www.theonion.com...
Avatar 6:05pm Ignatatus666:

I wish we could share this program much easier
I wish I could have it play on my FB homepage the way we were able to do on MySpace in the past.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:05pm ultradamno:

Hiya DiL!
Avatar 6:06pm Ignatatus666:

What’s up Tonic Teckies
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:06pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Looking forward to this show today. I'm on a anti-Spotify rampage!
Avatar 6:06pm spodiodi:

hi Mark Hurst and everyone
Avatar 6:07pm spodiodi:

i've never used it
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:07pm Handy Haversack:

Mark and the Techyons! Sorry we're late. Had to feed the neighbors' cat.

ultradamno, David, hello!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:07pm ultradamno:

Hey Handy!
  6:07pm Dan Cashin:

Everyone leave FB for the open-source option- I think it's out there but not off the ground ????
  6:07pm David in London:

Hey a Spod.
  6:08pm David in London:

The Wisdom of Solomon. And I should know...
Hey Handy.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:09pm melinda:

hi all!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:09pm ultradamno:

He'd be the ZZ Top member that makes them too creeped out to finish playing Legs.
Avatar 6:11pm Ignatatus666:

Many of my friends are weaning off FB and going to Parler and another site.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm listener james from westwood:

Evening, Mark and all!
Avatar 6:12pm spodiodi:

hi David, Handy, ultrad, Bas, Fuzzy, tim, Webhamster Henry, Melinda, Dan, 666, james!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:12pm ultradamno:

Hi Spodi!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:12pm Mark Hurst:

Hi, everyone! @Webham, good pick - that article is already on the playlist at left :)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:12pm ultradamno:

Is Tidal still a thing?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:15pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Yeah, that dude with the beard. If he showed up to a ZZ Top practice. They'd send him out to pick up barbecue in the next town which just happened to be 400 miles away.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:16pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Good evening, Mark, Good evening, spodifi.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm Mark Hurst:

Hi Ken! And Tim, Spodi, ultra, James,Igna,Melinda, DiL,Dan, Handy,Bas,Webham!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:17pm Webhamster Henry:

I'm a bandcamper - my son has about 24 albums on there too!
Avatar 6:20pm Ignatatus666:

That’s great Henry
I love how they have specials where all the money goes to the Artists.
Avatar 6:20pm spodiodi:

hi KenFHP!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:20pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Spotify has more than music?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:20pm ultradamno:

I like chunky jazz for the commute
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:23pm tim from champaign (now washington):

In last week's show, one of the people the authors of the Silcon Valley book interviewed a Storyteller. What is a Story Teller?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:23pm Webhamster Henry:

Last time I had a job that paid me a salary, it was for a company that used Spotify playlists combined with live voiceover to make a kind of radio station. I wasn't too happy with their API, and also, of course, you had to have a premium account to be able to play things you wanted to hear.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:25pm Mark Hurst:

@Tim I think it's a glorified title for what used to be called a PR manager, or perhaps a "marketing communications" person.
  6:25pm Dean:

@tim from champaign (now washington): iirc, the person did PR for a SV company, i.e., s/he framed the company in terms of stories, narratives that promote the company's profile.
  6:26pm Dean:

There you go^
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:27pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Thanks, Mark and Dean.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:29pm Webhamster Henry:

... The good thing was I'd use my own band's music as some of music to play for testing purposes.
  6:31pm Dean:

Way back in 2006, old fashioned English professor Richard Lanham published The Economics of Attention: Style and Substance in the Age of Information. He's been writing about this sort of thing for ages. Not super techie, but good background from the Humanities.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:32pm tim from champaign (now washington):

At the risk of sounding like a snob, it seems like spotify is a platform for people who don't really like music but want it on as a background.
  6:33pm David in London:

Not ‘false data as a prelude to channel shift’ shocker!
Vinyl is dead. Remember that everyone. Oh, hang on a minute...
  6:33pm Earthwalker:

Dump Goggle
Go DuckDuckGo !
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm Mark Hurst:

@ultra good name for us
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm Mark Hurst:

@Bas I also liked "Bigtechtonic lovers"
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:34pm Mark Hurst:

@Tim do a DuckDuckGo search for Kyle Chayka (recent Techtonic guest) writing last week about how *Netflix* seems to be creating intentionally mediocre shows that just serve, essentially, as video wallpaper
  6:35pm David in London:

“It’s creepy and I don’t like it.”
A catchphrase for the age. Can we have that on the Techtonic 2021 Marathon Premium t-shirt please Mark?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm Mark Hurst:

@DiL good idea. Just need a good graphic to go along with it.............!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm Handy Haversack:

Which, Mark, seems like an extension of the *decades*-long antilabor move of capital. If you can pay workers less, make a crappier product, but then also commodify the customers? You have won capitalism.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm melinda:

someone meowed
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm Handy Haversack:

Not the first meow of the interview!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Hmmm, I'd like to make of playlist on some of my favorites on Spotify: Flipper, The Germs, Drunks With Guns, Throbbing Gristle, etc to see who my profile gets sold to. Hopefully, a cash only sketchy liquor store.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm tim from champaign (now washington):

I'll check that out Mark.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm Mark Hurst:

@Handy I think that's fair... the question that keeps coming up on the show is "is it new"... which gets into semantics, whether this is actually a new form of capitalism or just a gradual evolution of what came before.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm Mark Hurst:

(past guests have argued both sides.)
  6:38pm Dean:

I recall a graphic-free t-shirt, c.1990, that read simply:

I saw! I know! You disgust me.
  6:38pm David in London:

Tim. Drunks With Guns will always be a radio friendly unit shifter...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:38pm ultradamno:

I think this is a more reasonable implant than Citrix's www.pinterest.com...
Avatar 6:38pm spodiodi:

lol Dean. nice
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:40pm ultradamno:

Don't forget The Mentors and GG!
  6:40pm Dean:

Happy Flowers
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:41pm ultradamno:

  6:41pm David in London:

A Flux of Pink Indians.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:42pm Handy Haversack:

I hear you, Mark. And I think that one issue also is, well, phones. I mean, I don't use one, as you know, and I never see an ad. Not that I'm not sold as much as anyone else, but my internet experience is completely ad-free. I assume that is not possible when one is using FB or IG or Twitter apps on a phone? If 100 percent of people just blocked all ads -- and refused to traffic sites (like many newspapers) that demand that you turn off ad blockers, would we ... win?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:42pm ultradamno:

Blight, Kilslug...I'm loving this playlist.
  6:42pm Earthwalker:

Capitalism money in the hands of the few
Drop Facebook
Boycott amazon
  6:43pm David in London:

Controlled Bleeding.

Hey Earth Walker.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:43pm Niall:

This is pretty intense; I think I didn't get to listen to it much back when I lived stateside, but it squares nicely with my politics and similar programs on Resonance FM in London.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:44pm Niall:

Thanks for this show, @Mark Hurst.
Avatar 6:44pm spodiodi:

thanks, Shoshana Wodinsky nice interview, Mark
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:46pm ultradamno:

I have found Dark Sky is unbeatable for telling you the weather just as it's happening, before...what are they, psychic?
  6:46pm Dean:

NON (early)
Unsustainable Social Condition
SPK (early)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:46pm Webhamster Henry:

I can't wait until 23AndMe is mined for selling drugs to people with genetic charateristics that haven't manifested yet.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:46pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Good interview. I liked hearing the agreement and disagreement between Shoshana and Mark.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:46pm ultradamno:

UNS! NO! Mars!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:47pm ultradamno:

Boy Dirt Car
  6:47pm Dean:

  6:47pm Earthwalker:

Yo David
What’s up Bro
12:44 French Time I’m being summoned by the wife
I’m history
Be well all !
Om Shanti
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:47pm Fuzzy:

Dark Sky was great until Apple bought it up and I couldn't use it on my Android phone anymore.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm ultradamno:

I saw SPK, not so early open for Chris & Cosey, their dancing girls tore it up.
  6:48pm Dean:

Saw SPK early at Al's Bar. Opening act was ... Nervous Gender? Monitor?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:49pm Niall:

What am I missing with the industrial/noise acts getting mentioned here, me too me too me too.

I used to live not far from Long Island and I'd occasionally meet people who said that Paul Lemos/Controlled Bleeding was their teacher in the past.
  6:49pm Dean:

Saw NON at Kelbo's. Whew.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:50pm Handy Haversack:

Yay, Bandcamp!

I have to serve dinner, but thanks, Mark -- and thanks, Shoshana! Very good stuff.
Avatar 6:51pm Ignatatus666:

The more I share DuckDucks posts on FB the more FB puts restrictions on my account.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:51pm ultradamno:

Manon Anne Gilles and her musical wheelchair vimeo.com...
  6:52pm Dmitry:

the moment bandcamp allows users to make playlists ill get off spotify. Any idea why they havent done so yet?
  6:52pm David in London:

Man, can’t believe how quickly this hour flashed by.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:52pm Webhamster Henry:

On one hand, Spotify is not the only place people can get digital music distributed, on the other hand, it is clearly the biggest fish. Outside of Youtube that is.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:53pm Niall:

Bandcamp's such a friggin' frustration from a user experience, blarg. Not that it stops me spending a lot of money there.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:53pm Webhamster Henry:

There are Spotify equivalents of click farms.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm ultradamno:

Industrial/noise? I thought we were building a scuzz/sludge playlist
Avatar 6:55pm Ignatatus666:

@Niall I totally agree!! It’s difficult to use

30 second songs covers many DRI songs
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Niall:

Ha, this sounds like stole that KLF book, got bored and just put down whatever.

Sorry, ultradamno, I came the party late, I guess.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm tim from champaign (now washington):

@Webhamster - I was wondering about that. I'd imagine musicians who want to to "make it big" would try to juke the plays somehow.
  6:55pm David in London:

Ultradamno, I assumed it was just generally anti social sounds that would irritate the eardrums.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm Webhamster Henry:

... with a 30 second track, you can pack more of them per hour!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm ultradamno:

Tomata, tomatuh
  6:56pm Dmitry:

I'm only on spotify to get off of youtube to begin with. There needs to be an ethical alternative before users will leave. Im sure theres a large enough constituency for this, especially after the demonstrable (if minor) success of bandcamp fridays. Does anyone have an idea if anything further is possible on bandcamp in this direction ?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm Niall:

@Mark Hurst, have you heard the... "Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities and Towns?" I think that's what he calls himself. Thousands of songs on Spotify, just some catchy chords, very dubious vocals and lyrics apparently gleaned from Wikipedia. He's great.
Avatar 6:56pm spodiodi:

thanks, Mark!
thanks, Scott!
  6:56pm David in London:

Thanks Mark. Later Technoids.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm Niall:

I mean he has songs about Newburgh.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:57pm tim from champaign (now washington):

Thanks, Mark. An interesting and informative show as always!
  6:57pm Dmitry:

Thanks all!
Avatar 6:57pm Bas NL:

Thanks Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm Webhamster Henry:

@Niale that the passionate and objective Jokerfan , often heard on Ken's show.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm Mark Hurst:

Thanks, everyone! Have a happy & safe Thanksgiving, for those of us in the US.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm ultradamno:

New Negativland, new Cabaret Voltaire...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm ultradamno:

Can we hope for a Maybe Mental or Psyclones comeback?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:59pm Webhamster Henry:

People Like Us is filling in for Trouble on Thursday, in station fill-in news.
Avatar 7:00pm spodiodi:

PLU ftw
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:00pm Mark Hurst:

There was a brief quote by Shoshana Zuboff there
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:01pm ultradamno:

Nate filling in for efd too
Avatar 12:13am ARB:

Do you have a suggestion for a weather app that doesn't track?
  2:49pm Db Dan:

In regards to Parler (to "peak" in French) I glanced at at their site. Their privacy policy was very long (not a good sign) and one sentence in it says "We process and store your information in the U.S. We do not sell your information to third parties or share your information with foreign governments except in the limited circumstances described in this Privacy Policy". Concerning bits are ..... They "store" the information ........ If you join, we may "verify your identity, such as a copy of your government-issued photo identification, and information that can be used to facilitate the redemption of virtual items or payments, such as your Social Security number (SSN) or your tax identification number." It's a tricky world, but I'll wait on social media via Parler. Thanks for the tip to check them out in any case. Go Technoids!
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