Pop Viz: The Effects of Spotify’s Discover Weekly Playlist
If you are a fan of my blog, I’m going to bet you are also a fan of Peter Gilks’ blog and saw this excellent viz looking at his Last.fm/Spotify data. He does a great job laying out how to keep/get this data for yourself. And I liked his viz so much that I decided to rip it off entirely, down to the little pic of me wearing headphones:
Peter had some other cool visualizations analyzing his taste. He had some nice ones about genre, which I would totally do if I didn’t have 3,520 distinct artists to categorize. I did have some success using import.io to scrape Allmusic.com to get that information for my Festival Finder viz last year, so maybe if I have time I’ll take a crack at doing that. One thing I did finally learn a little more about is LOD calculations, which I used to find when the first/last date that I played an artist was. With that I was able to make this cool gantt chart of my Top 20 artists. Check out how one day of mourning David Bowie was enough to put him in my Top 20 for Q1.
I’ve been using Last.fm since 2006, so I have nearly a decade’s worth of music listening data to look through. I could probably create a whole blog just on my personal music listening habits, but I doubt that anyone would be all that interested in that besides me. However, I did start to scratch the surface of an interesting. About a year ago, Spotify started making these weekly curated playlists for their users called “Discover Weekly.” Spotify uses all kinds of sophisticated recommendation engines to determine what to add to each user’s individualized playlists. After giving them a try for a while, I learned that Spotify’s robots KNOW THEIR SHIT. So, I made the Discover Weekly playlist a part of my music listening routine. As such, I’ve seen a bit of a jump in the number of new-to-me artists I listen to, especially on Mondays, when the playlist comes out. Check it out in the story below:
This is just scratching the surface of the kinds of analysis I want to do about Discover Weekly. Coming up, I’m going to see how often they get things right, if what I’m currently listening to has an effect on what Spotify recommends me, and how much of their playlists are actual new artists to me and not just tracks I don’t listen to as much from artists I already love.