Report: Spotify Sharing User Activity Data With Music Labels

Report: Spotify Sharing User Activity Data With Music Labels 1
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Despite being legal, it raises questions on
Spotify’s transparency and security.

HIGHLIGHTS

-Users who ‘pre-save’ an upcoming release are
asked to share data.
-Spotify has reportedly made it difficult to see the extent of permissions.
-Apple Music does not share any identifying information.

Swedish music streaming giant Spotify is
reportedly sharing personal information of
users who pre-save music on the app with
content labels.
According to a Billboard.com report, users
who “pre-save” an upcoming release on their
accounts may be sharing more personal data
with the act’s label than they know.
Music labels on the music streaming app
sometimes ask for permission to track user
information about their accounts and listening
habits, email addresses, recent play history,
abilities to manage add and remove library
items and create playlists.
This, despite being legal, raises questions on
Spotify’s transparency and security.
“Spotify users who, for example, tried to pre-
save the Little Mix single ‘Bounce Back’ from
links shared by the act or its label — Sony
Music , were prompted to agree that Spotify
could allow Sony to ‘view your Spotify account
data’, ‘view your activity on Spotify’ and ‘take
actions in Spotify on your behalf’,” claimed
the report on Thursday.
To let users pre-save upcoming albums,
labels do need a certain amount of access to
user accounts, but the music streaming giant
has made it difficult to see the extent of
permissions that labels ask for.
In addition, the company has not even taken
actions to restrict the kind of information third
parties can request from users — or what they
can potentially do with it.
The Swedish app that came to India earlier
this year was yet to comment on the matter.
It is pertinent to note that Spotify’s rival Apple
Music does not share any identifying
information on subscribers keeping in line
with its approach to user privacy.
Earlier in April, Spotify crossed the 100
million global premium users mark and
announced that the service reached the
milestone by growing paid subscribers by 32-
percent year-on-year. Including the free
subscribers, the app has a total of 217
million monthly active users worldwide.

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