Rants // Enshittify the Spotify: A Complete Guide to Screwing Over Everyone but Your Shareholders
Rants // Enshittify the Spotify: A Complete Guide to Screwing Over Everyone but Your Shareholders

Rants // Enshittify the Spotify: A Complete Guide to Screwing Over Everyone but Your Shareholders

Been awhile since yours truly talked about Spotify and Daniel Ek. The reason to go back to discussion on both is this recent tweet from Ek, one that didn’t win him any fans

Today, with the cost of creating content being close to zero, people can share an incredible amount of content. This has sparked my curiosity about the concept of long shelf life versus short shelf life. While much of what we see and hear quickly becomes obsolete, there are timeless ideas or even pieces of music that can remain relevant for decades or even centuries.

For example, we’re witnessing a resurgence of Stoicism, with many of Marcus Aurelius’s insights still resonating thousands of years later. This makes me wonder: what are the most unintuitive, yet enduring ideas that aren’t frequently discussed today but might have a long shelf life? Also, what are we creating now that will still be valued and discussed hundreds or thousands of years from today?

Lets break it down, shall we? Paragraph 1, in my view, is a sequel to “musicians should just work harder“, but this time with a far nastier conclusion – “work as hard as you want, but few of you will be remembered in 100 years“. Charming.

Paragraph 2 suggests a fresher development for both Spotify and Ek. Who is it that you’re most likely to hear mentioning Marcus Aurelius these days? Why, that must be Elon Musk and his simps fans, so this feels like a not-so-subtle attempt to kiss up to that crowd. Not that I picture Musk ever reading books on Greek/Roman history…but I digress.

But all of this is just a tip of the iceberg. Guess what’s ahead for Daniel Ek and co? That’s right – its time to screw over the customer, at long last!!!

And when I think about Spotify customers/fans I had conversations with in the past, much of what they said boiled down to “I support musicians, but I also support a great product and that’s Spotify”. There was some backlash against Rogan during COVID peak, but that died eventually and even Neil Young is now back onto the platform.

Looking over the comment section on ArsTechnica this morning I feel that the tide is changing and changing rapidly. Few Spotify users seem to embrace the idea of funding Joe Rogan, but I assume many were willing to hold their noses in the past. When you throw in deteriorating UI, clueless algorithms and, most importantly, the idea of paying more for an increasingly shittier product is when people start talking about switching altogether and not coming back.

Shame it took so long for Spotify users to understand that they’re next to be screwed over by the company. Better late than never, though – enshittification is coming for every product and Spotify is no exception. It was a matter of when, not if it will happen to a platform once touted as a savior of indie music. So much for that and other countless promises that were broken in the name of endless profits.

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