Interactive Spotify map tracks what’s playing around the world
One of the most powerful byproducts of the near-total digitalization of the world around us is the massive banks of data collected from online activity.
Spotify has shared some of this data generated by its millions of users across the globe in an interactive map of the world. Over one thousand cities are represented on this “audiographic” guide. Users can zoom in and click on each of the cities to be redirected to a playlist of the distinctive favorite tracks that are currently on heavy rotation there. In this case, “distinctive” playlists means omitting the songs that are popular everywhere — Top 40 and global hits, for example — and only includes the songs that over-index in each city and aren’t as popular elsewhere. Because of this, each playlist is a unique snapshot of the audial tastes around the world.
This week, New York City is loving Jamie xx, Las Vegas can’t get enough of Phora, and London has Duke Dumont on repeat. There’s a few technical glitches already apparent. The link for Hollywood, CA, for instance, actually goes to the Hollywood, FL playlist, and some cities are in the wrong countries altogether. Despite these bugs, the Spotify map has the potential to be a fascinating tool, and bring some new local favorites to Spotify listeners who are curious what others are listening to. The map will be updated every two weeks, and each update analyzes about 20 billion listener-to-song relationships.