As discussed in my previous post, a social network is any platform which allows one individual to connect with another individual, either on a short or long-term basis.
We know the most popular, and most successful social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter; and we also know some of the arguably failed social networks such as MySpace and Diaspora*. However, it hasn’t occurred to me a social network myself and a few others use on a day to day basis(around 70 million paying subscribers), that I haven’t even considered a social network: Spotify.
Spotify is a music, podcast, and video streaming service that was launched in 2008. The service is available in most of Europe, the Americas, Australia, New Zealand, and parts of Asia allowing people from all over the world to connect through music. In addition, it is available for most devices, including Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android smartphones and tablets.
Music can be searched by artist, album, genre, playlist or even record label. Users are enabled to creating, editing, and sharing playlists. While this sounds like a basic music platform, what makes spotify a social network is the sharing and social media aspect of the platform.
Not only does this platform allow its users, paying or not, to connect to new music from a variety of different genres and countries, it allows them to connect with their friends. Spotify encourages its user to merge their account with their Twitter and Facebook accounts. With this feature, users can access there friends music and playlists, and see what they’re listening to, and when.
The merging of the two social networks also allows users to share music with their Facebook friends with the inbox service of Spotify. Here they can send tracks, albums, or full playlists all through Spotify. Now individuals don’t have to send their friends texts or tweets about new music, it can all be done through Spotify.
Spotify now made it even more convenient to connect not only with new and old music from all over the world, but with people all over the world too. Even if you aren’t Facebook friends with another Spotify user, you can still follow other users’ playlists. Now even music can be a social network, without even trying. Facebook friends can discover new music by seeing what you listen to, and vice versa. The more users who join Spotify, the more music that can be discovered, and the more people who can connect through music.
In addition to allowing their users to merge their accounts with Facebook and Twitter, Spotify has a strong presence on these social networks as well.
They have 2.5 million followers on Twitter, and 20 million likes on Facebook. The service even has 1.8 million followers on Instagram.
This type of widespread following allows this new type of social network to do exactly what all social networks intend to do: connect people who wouldn’t be able to connect before the invention of this service.