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Spotify now requires a Facebook account to sign up. (getsatisfaction.com)
423 points by tommypalm on Sept 26, 2011 | hide | past | web | favorite | 224 comments

This is a bizarrely short-sighted move.

I have to wonder if Spotify has fallen victim to the siren's lure of "social". Perhaps they believe their future lies in integration with the social graph and news feed. If so (IMHO), they are sorely mistaken.

I believe some services already have you tweet or post that you've listened to a particular song. Zuckerberg seems to believe in "sharing and more sharing" [1] and automatic sharing. What would be the end result of this? On a particularly music-filled day I might send 100+ posts about songs I've listen to? Really? People will ever look at that?

If it's part of the main news feed, it's spam. If it's not, nobody cares... except Facebook, who can mine such data.

And maybe Spotify except... they already have access to this data (for their subscribers). It just makes no sense.

Spotify is also late to the party (in the US at least). Any kind of restriction like this is incredibly risky. Other established players don't have this restriction. While you can argue that "normal people" don't care, who recommends such services to family and friends? It's us.

And any player in the music space would be remiss to ignore the 800 pound gorilla in the room, being Apple's iTunes. iCloud launches soon. Honestly I think it'll kill a few of these "upstarts".

Also, I am less than convinced of the utility of mobile streaming. Bandwidth and connectivity are still issues. Increasing storage and all-you-can-eat subscription models seem like a far better solution (IMHO).

[1]: http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/23/zuckerbergs-unspoke...

This isn't really about the main thrust of your argument, but I wanted to address this:

What would be the end result of this? On a particularly music-filled day I might send 100+ posts about songs I've listen to? Really? People will ever look at that? If it's part of the main news feed, it's spam. If it's not, nobody cares... except Facebook, who can mine such data

Perhaps the key mechanism for new Open Graph developers to present their content in the news feed (and thus take advantage of the distribution possibilities there) is through aggregations. The workflow for signing up to be an Open Graph Developer actually makes you create one. What this means is that while there will be hundreds of posts from your friends about listening to songs in the Ticker, the news feed will have something like "10 of your friends listened to Foster the People today!", which actually happened to me yesterday and was actually the first time I had heard about that band. One click allowed me to listen to them on Spotify. I ended up finding a new band I liked through my friends, and I used Spotify a little bit more. So there are use cases here that can work really well, with aggregation making the volume of content that comes from autosharing more manageable.

I generally don't want to link any of my accounts - especially when I'm paying for the service - to another system. I don't trust Facebook, Google, Twitter, or any other company to act as a centralized place for managing my identity. And given Zuckerberg's statements on the idea of having multiple identities online, I trust Facebook even less than the others.

I signed up without connecting my facebook account to spotify (or at least, giving it permissions), and there have been multiple nag screens when I start spotify now to connect to Facebook, some without a close button, where I would just deny the facebook connection request. I wonder how long they will let me skip the publishing connection to facebook.

I've had the same problem. On the rare occasion that I can launch Spotify without it crashing it forces me through a bunch of modal dialogs begging me to connect my Facebook. Needless to say they won't be getting any more of my money.

If they're anything like Yahoo and their "new mail interface" initiative, you still have a couple years.

In the businesses that I've worked for we always took rational decisions based on the numbers, feedback from customers, our capacities, deals, etc. If you know those things, the vast majority of business decisions that companies take are really quite understandable.

There are several reasons they might have taken this decision, one might be that it was part of a deal they made with Facebook. Spotify is probably aware that like most websites, they are a fad, and they need a way to survive. They've chosen to become a cleaner fish for a much larger animal that will provide them with food and protection, in return for a valuable service. It's neither a good, nor a bad business decision. It's a rational one.

I disagree on your analysis of reasonability.

Much of life does not progress linearly or even continuously. Business planning requires that business people make assumptions. Some of those assumptions are good, but most are probably not. The question is what one will do to cope when your assumptions go bad.

Some failed assumptions you can shift with, others are fatal.

Spotify has made the assumption that people won't flock away from facebrick. There are all sorts of events that can kill social networks, and they're betting against that happening.

Yep. They're betting on Facebook and that might cost them. Business is about taking risks and the job of the people at the top is to assess those risks, and they're usually in a better position to do so than anyone else.

Just because it's their job doesn't mean they are any good at it.

>> don't care, who recommends such services to family and friends? It's us.

I completely agree with you but with Facebook they don't need us to tell family and friends.

>> all-you-can-eat subscription models seem like a far better solution

Far better than Spotify? You do realize that Spotify is an all-you-can-eat subscription model?

I believe he was referring to an unlimited sync-to-mobile, since he references unlimited storage in that sentence, as well. He's probably referring to a model like Rdio's.

I'm not a premium user but this page http://www.spotify.com/us/get-spotify/premium/ implies that it's part of the package "Add Spotify to your mobile phone and you’ll have immediate access to all that music - wherever you are, on or offline."

Yes it is part of the premium model. Offline playlists and mobile sync of those as well as other playlists is too. Sad to see them using the Facebook in such a short sighted fashion. They had till now been my best music service, not sure anymore.

Spotify seems like they're gunning to become the Zynga (meaning: first among equals) of social music.

Totally agreed with: While you can argue that "normal people" don't care, who recommends such services to family and friends? It's us.

So, I am telling friends/family now that the folks at Spotify are a bunch of corporate tools. Whereas I used to tell them how incredibly awesome the Spotify service was.

I am not a lab rat to be analyzed. I do not want corporate data miners pawing through every move I make. My god.

You can easily disable sending songs from Spotify to your Facebook wall. It's an option in Spotify. However, it's very useful to see what your friends are listening to inside of Spotify.

I disagree. In combination with the new "send a notification every time a friend inhales or exhales" model that Facebook put into place, it's extremely annoying to me. I don't want to be notified every time a friend listens to a new song on Spotify. My friends who have Spotify appear to concur -- every one of them disabled this "feature" as soon as they figured out what was happening.

I also disabled it because it's somewhat too spammy. They didn't get the wall-posting feature right. I like seeing what music friends are listening to within Spotify (without being notified).

Sure, but this should remain in Spotify, and not posted to your activity stream on Facebook.

This is just the beginning. Facebook and Spotify set a nice precedent there to make it en-vogue to just provide a Facebook login for services in the future.

For whoever builds the service, it's (marginally) easier to just use FB as an authentication provider and they even get to spin it as "with us, you don't need to store the 1000st password - you can just use Facebook".

For Facebook, of course, it's great too as it is one more thing to force people to stay logged in, which in turn is much better data for them.

The end users probably wouldn't care either as they are mostly logged into Facebook anyways and if not, it's easy for them to just log in.

The only losers are us professionals who know about the implications of such a move and who care about the loss of privacy.

And of course the people who had their facebook account suspended for either legitimate reasons or just some oversensitive SPAM protection algorithm. These people are now locked out of their, possibly even paid, account, unable to access it (and remove credit card info). Of course these will be the minority and people won't care.

Until it's them that are affected.

I can understand that in this day and age you want to provide the users with an option to authenticate with something else than yet another username and password. Google, Twitter, Yahoo or even any OpenID provider (maybe your own). Sure.

But just Facebook? This is trouble waiting to happen.

I'm saying this as somebody who can't have Spotify anyways due to the complete brokenness of the licensing market, but this still concerns me as it's just another precedent and I'm just waiting for another service I love to force me to use Facebook.

I'm start to see a trend (very very early stages) of sites that simply don't require a login at all. I'm thrilled about this, as the need to login to every website has gone too too far in my opinion. If you absolutely must maintain state through sessions, simply send the user an email with a temporary token to create a new session (Staticloud is one that does this). Email is the universal identity controlled by no one entity.

Isn't this the basic idea behind BrowserID


(with the extension that the 'clicking on the session link' could one day be automated behind the scenes)

> The only losers are us professionals who know about the implications of such a move and who care about the loss of privacy.

You're right. But there is salvation on the music front: Use Streamripper to download music from a diversity of Internet Radios, and listen to it on your leisure, radically deleting everything that doesn't appeal to you. I guess you'll discover some new music, too! (I did). Somafm.com and Schizoid are good places to start. Streamripper also interprets metadata and will name the downloaded MP3 tracks in a recognizable way.

It's also not very hard to hack something up to download from pandora/grooveshark and keep the files, or even play them back into the browser. I've been hacking away on a pandora player which is certainly not ready for any 'real' use. http://github.com/dekz/pianode

Interesting, I see you've written it in Coffeescript. It's the first time I've looked at Coffeescript and what I see pleases me: Javascript with Python-style identation.

The immediate losers are those that shun facebook, but anyone that cares about their data is a potential loser, depending on what facebook does in the future.

There have been more and more services doing this lately, Spotify isn't really the first (although it may be the biggest to date.)

Yet another place where Browser ID looks pretty useful, as it's not tied to a single account while still being simple.

Google, Twitter, Yahoo ... Sure. But just Facebook? This is trouble waiting to happen.

Is Facebook any different than those others? Google, Twitter, and Yahoo also all want to slurp up all personal user data that they can collect, and represent a single-point-of-failure for a spam detection false positive or account compromisation.

I think you missed the point. If I can use any OpenID provider I can use my Google, Twitter, Yahoo (but NOT Facebook accounts, very intentionally [it used to be an identity provider but they removed it when they introduced Connect]). But more importantly, if it's generic OpenID/BrowserID, I can truly own my identity. As long as Facebook continues to get their proprietary tentacles in everything, they continue to own my identity and make me indebted to their stewardship.

If it's my http://firstname.lastname.com OpenID identity, I will always own and control it, even if Zuckerberg goes off the deep end and tracks me even when I'm not logged in and shares these details with non-Facebook sites, etc.

Interesting, in light of Google's real name policy.

FB 1 - G =0 for now?

Minus 3 for telling the truth? Shows why Google is in such pathetic shape, Google employees spend all day doing nothing.

A reply from Darren, a Spotify employee:

"Hey Guys thanks for your question, Unfortunately you will need a Facebook account to access Spotify from now on, unless you already have an account set up.

This does not stop you creating the Facebook account adding nothing to it and making it totally private as the Facebook account does not have to be actively used. "

This is asinine.

This does not stop you creating the Facebook account adding nothing to it and making it totally private as the Facebook account does not have to be actively used.

Actually it does, based on the FB Terms [1]:

4.1.: You will not provide any false personal information on Facebook [...]

4.2: You will not create more than one personal profile.

[1] https://www.facebook.com/terms.php

And what are they going to do? Shut down your fake account?

As far as I can tell, they are only doing checks against obvious spammers. It's not like they have a team of people doing detailed background checks on each and every signup that comes through. That would be impossible to do. As long as you create a reasonable persona, they are not going to hunt you down. There will be no serious repercussions.

I do hear, on occasion, of Facebook closing down someone's account. I wonder what Spotify does if you are a paying member and your Facebook account is closed.

Well, it's true that option's only permitted by the EULA for us non-Facebook users. But aren't those the only people it has to work for? If you currently use Facebook then presumably you've already decided to not be particularly worried about your privacy, and Spotify seems like an odd place to try to draw a line in the sand.

That's not necessarily true, you can abide the terms and create a real account with real information, but close your wall, etc, making it essentially a profile with your real name and profile picture.

That wasn't my point though. I get annoyed when I see these non-solutions being offered. Of course, barely anyone will mind the linking of their FB account. Those people who don't, have no obvious way out (sign up for a second email address to sign up for a second facebook account to sign up for spotify). To suggest otherwise is a bit insulting. The answer should have been: "We're sorry, this is just how it will be from now on."

Gotcha gotcha. I couldn't agree more.

No, whats asinine is how Spotify employees do not know that FB accounts must contain your real name and real information and that users are not allowed more than one account. Its against the TOS to just create a fake account solely for Spotify. Pardon me if I don't want guys like you to have all my FB information.

He says "will need a Facebook account to access Spotify…" That sounds even 10x worse than requiring it to sign up.

I just checked and I can still access my account without a Facebook account linked to it, but I wonder if they're going to pull that out as well.

When I was a paying member of Flickr, Yahoo forced me to open a Yahoo account. It was annoying but at least Yahoo actually owned Flickr.

Is there a bug-me-not for facebook? Like a pool of anonymous accounts that people can use?

Would be really a good thing. But I guess they ban accounts after a few log ins from different IP addresses so these don't mess up their profiling data.

Maybe a bug-me-not that uses a VPN for a consistent IP and sends a spoofed user-agent for added uniformity would be an improvement.

Additionally, each time the account is deactivated, the service time-bans the users who most recently were assigned the deactivated account (suspected to be Facebook's security team) for 6 hours, sends all other users the credentials to a new auto-created account, and looks for repeat presence of IPs in the time-banned group to be perma-banned.

SSH proxy might be better, but its still going to be your whole browser connections that are going through the tunnel. Maybe it would be an alternative to come up with a way of spliting an internet connection among different tunnels, e.g. a way of managing different proxies for different ip destinations. Could be actually be an interesting project to develop there more user friendly/mainstream compatible privacy tools. Wish I had the skills to do that :)

If you object to Facebook on other grounds, you're basically screwed. Some people refuse to eat shellfish or ham. Why is not using Facebook any different?

Mainly, because there is no technical reason for Spotify to do this. I suspect the real reason for situation is some kind of backroom deal that will only serve to fuck over users.

The technical reason is this way they can outsource all the difficult and annoying account management stuff. No resetting passwords, no CAPTCHAs, they can let Facebook handle that. If somebody steals their database, all they get are OAuth keys that can be revoked, either by the user they're scoped to or by Spotify en masse[1].

1: If there's a Facebook engineer on the App stuff reading this, will this dialog invalidate all OAuth keys?

Reset Secret Key? Are you sure you want to reset the secret key for Pico Oauth2 Test?

If you proceed, access to the API with your old secret will be denied. This operation cannot be undone.

Do you REALLY believe that? Spotify is not a little tiny startup starting from zero. They already have a pwd mgmt system, captchas and so on. Given that they are not that small either, alienating just 0.5% of their user base may be enough to offset any "outsourcing gains"

I can't speak for the guy above, but I certainly recognize some valid technical reasons. If Spotify wanted to offer a Pandora-like limitation whereby each free account only gets X hours of music, they have a strong reason to inhibit users from creating multiple accounts. Perhaps it's just too easy with local logins; yes, people can create multiple Facebook accounts, but maybe this adds enough friction to the process to reduce the violation rate to acceptable levels.

The "14-days abroad" limitation for free users might be the issue. Perhaps people were just creating 2nd and 3rd and 4th etc accounts.

Aside from this, there are still valid technical reasons to abandon local login. Just because you have a capcha, forgotpw, etc system written doesn't mean there aren't benefits from getting rid of it - including the portion of the support staff responsible for "I can't log in" problems. And if they used multiple OpenID providers? Expect to hire more.

I'm not saying that this is the reason Spotify is doing what they did - I don't work for them. But it's certainly plausible that going FB-only is being done for technical reasons, and I expect they have a pretty good idea of what they're gaining and losing by making this decision.

I'm not aware of any religion that disallows the use of Facebook. Correctly or not, preferences are given more credence by our society if they're based on religion.

It's not just religion. See this article for some explanation of why an atheistic utility maximizer might accept religious (and other non-religious) excuses:


> I'm not aware of any religion that disallows the use of Facebook.

I suppose the Amish probably aren't interested in Spotify...

I imagine you're right, that the Amish aren't particularly interested in online music services, but I remember reading an article that pointed out that the Amish aren't really anti-technology per se, they're anti-labour-saving devices.

The ethos is apparently to work hard and with your hands, and they have no qualms in letting people with physical issues use tech; the example given in the article was a farmer who had arthritis and whose sons had moved out, who was permitted to use a tractor in order to keep his farm going.

There are some that take a religious sort of attitude towards not handing out personal information and/or interacting with entities that will, of which Facebook is surely a terrible offender.

Some people won't even use Google for this reason.

I'm starting Anti-Facebookism. Any takers?

It could also be food allergies.

It is indeed. It makes one wonder whether the cookies that Facebook installs in your browser, will allow them to track you anyway, even when you completely 'shut' your FB account tight.

My PC's are facebook-cookie-free.

IP addresses are a somewhat-reliable way for them to do this depending on the user, the device they connect through, and the timing of connectivity to services which could be correlated using this IP address.

And It's actually impossible to 'add nothing' to a facebook account. It adds things for you. You would have to have a browser dedicated to nothing but logging into facebook and using spotify to really 'add nothing' to the facebook page. And even then youre adding spotify data to it.

I find it interesting that he prefixed the information with "unfortunately." Evidently, he doesn't think it's a good idea either.

Sounds just like Turntable.fm. I would love to signup and use there service but I don't use Facebook.

This strikes me as an unwise move on Spotify's part. Allowing integration with Facebook as they had before was fine. But forcing people to sign up with a Facebook account? Not only are they eliminating a large group of people who would like to sign up and don't have a Facebook account, but they're also tying their fate as a company to a third-party.

I have a feeling that this was a condition that Facebook insisted on in return for Spotify being used for Facebook Music. I hope the deal turns out to be worth it.

I seem to recall a post where they said that people who linked their Facebook accounts bought and share more music. And as a result of the deep integration with Facebook, they'll probably have a sharp increase in their growth.

I just hope that this is a temporary condition and that they eventually allow other methods of signing up. Otherwise, they might as well just be acquired by Facebook.

They might have been forced to do this, remember, Spotify is not an independent company, they are a puppet of the recording industry, they have a strong interest in connecting with the social graph.

"Spotify is not an independent company, they are a puppet of the recording industry"

Well put.

I was just about to sign up for Spotify (was on the things to do today list I have in front of me), and now this. Well they can forget about that.

Hear hear. Unfortunately I /just/ paid for Spotify premium yesterday evening. While I have a grandfathered non-Facebook account, I've had no end of problems with their mobile client, and I think I'll be switching back to Rdio (which has a vastly superior [existent] web and mobile cilent, IMO.)

I wonder if this move is related to the problem I'm having using my login on the desktop client (error code 410, stuck in offline mode. Mobile app on the same wifi networks works fine.)

UGH. I'm having the same problem (stuck in offline mode), only it is with my android app...

Took me an hour trying to figure out how to hide spotify feed from showing up on my fb's wall. I couldnt. After I uninstalled the app (on fb setting's page) Spotify logged out automatically. What a shame! I m using Pandora now.

There's an option in your Spotify preferences to disable it.

Where is it? i dont see it.

Same. Switching to Spotify from Pandora was on my list of things to try.

Now, I guess not. I would have paid them, too.

This is absolutely ridiculously stupid of them to do. They alienate potential customers, but more importantly, they do not own their customers.

If the Facebook relationship goes sour, Spotify is still permanently tied to them.

I like the Spotify UI much better, but Grooveshark is pretty good too.

Check out mog and rdio.

MOG has been great for me too, and it's more web based

MOG has a solid free option, mog.com/m

I agree. Luckily, I already have a Spotify account, because I refuse to use Facebook.

Forget signing up, I was about to send them my resume for an opening that sounded interesting. Needless to say I won't bother.

Soon enough you can forget about using every website with that attitude.

I'm sure they will go bankrupt now because you decided not to sign up.

Let this be a reminder. If you use a streaming music service, they can pull you any stupid trick. If you do not accept, well, you'd better hope there is an alternative the provides a comparable catalog.

Once you own non-DRMed music, they can't take it away.

Subscription music streaming is basically a commodity at this point though. One can drop Spotify and join Rdio at no real loss (I think you can even import playlists).

Until Rdio pulls your plug.

Streaming services are not reliable, neither is the cloud. Hard currency is the value, its not like storage is expensive any more, there is no reason to not own your own collection and be the boss of your domain.

> there is no reason to not own your own collection

There are reasons. The-all-you-can-eat model certainly makes much more music available, which is better for discovering new music. Also, if you regularly listen to a lot of new/different music, Spotify/Rdio/etc would be cheaper than iTunes/Amazon mp3.

Personally, I'm in a kind of "stuck" position where I'm trying to decide whether I should continue to buy music from Amazon, or should switch to an all-you-can-eat streaming service.

But the ability to own my own music isn't going away because I'm paying for Spotify. If I stop, then I'm in the same position that I was before. I've not got music any more, but I'm not paying any more. If I decide to start paying for Grooveshark instead, then I've not lost anything.

Storage isn't expensive, but managing files is a pain. Especially if you have to manage it across multiple devices. I just want to listen to some Nujabes, do I really have to care where it's saved, or whether I'm on my work PC, my laptop, or the media center downstairs? And that's before you get into the pain of syncing stuff onto your phone...

I pay for the convenience of not having to pirate.

(I picked this example because it is both what I am listening to now, and for the irony of it being unavailable on Spotify.)

> Storage isn't expensive, but managing files is a pain. Especially if you have to manage it across multiple devices. I just want to listen to some Nujabes, do I really have to care where it's saved, or whether I'm on my work PC, my laptop, or the media center downstairs? And that's before you get into the pain of syncing stuff onto your phone...

This sounds like a technological problem, and one that could be easily solved if someone put a little elbow grease into it.

> I pay for the convenience of not having to pirate.

Well, Spotify customers are clearly paying for the inconvenience of having Facebook have access to all their data as well. I'll take piracy over Facebook having access to my information any day.

And I don't know why people make piracy sound like such a difficult thing to do. It seems absolutely trivial to me.

I understand you.

Still I think my freedom and the artists economy and thus a free uncontrolled culture is far more important than my convenience.

I am however developing something that will make it far more easier for me to listen to all of my collections on all my devices any time, it will be even more convenient than streaming services since Ill be in control all the time.

Nujabes. What can I say, good choice lad, good choice. You know about DJ Okawari?

From the (very pissed) comment thread on getsatisfaction.com/spotify/topics/can_you_sign_up_for_spotify_without_facebook?

"In the 90's we had to deal with Windows-only software. Now we have Facebook-only software. Great."

Microsoft became dominant because Gates is the most ruthless businessman on the planet.

Facebook is becoming dominant because humanity in general can not grow up from its glory days in college-rules.com

This is a sign of desperation from Spotify. Their product is far from unique, and only really interesting because it has better PR, more apps, a better library, and a slightly more legit licensing setup than the competition.

None of those are big enough barriers to entry to keep even the small players away, meanwhile the big dogs are starting to show a lot of interest in streaming music (admittedly for music you "own" at the moment, but it would surprise noone if this were to change overnight).

Apple has the marketing weight and a history of solving music licensing issues, Google has a track record of throwing money at problems to solve them, and Amazon is just about to make a major hardware play.

Spotify's only real hope was to latch onto the latest big thing (conveniently an infrastructure provider, so unlikely to launch a direct competitor) and hope to ride to success on someone else's coat-tails.

I have no idea what the contracts between the two companies look like, but I would have to imagine that they are heavily in Facebook's favour. After all, it would be a lot easier for Facebook to replace Spotify with another provider than it would be for Spotify to replace Facebook.

Desperation? How do you figure? They have a sweet partnership with Facebook. That doesn't sound desperate to me.

Their product is far from unique, and only really interesting because it has better PR, more apps, a better library, and a slightly more legit licensing setup than the competition.

Slightly more legit? I think the phrase you are looking for is "completely legit, as opposed to some of the others who are lawsuit-bait-on-a-stick."

After all, it would be a lot easier for Facebook to replace Spotify with another provider than it would be for Spotify to replace Facebook.

Only if that other provider had the same kind of licenses with the record labels. At this point, Spotify is far ahead of the pack at that game.

Desperation? How do you figure? They have a sweet partnership with Facebook. That doesn't sound desperate to me.

We don't know it's a sweet deal. My gut feeling is that it isn't, but that's by-the-by. We don't know anything.

Slightly more legit? I think the phrase you are looking for is "completely legit, as opposed to some of the others who are lawsuit-bait-on-a-stick.

From the point of view of the users it really is only slightly more legit. From the point of view of the content providers, slightly less legit is not the same as illegal, and from the point of view of the service providers, legal and and a one-off court case is better than legal and ongoing licensing fees.

You also appear to be assuming that Spotify are the only licensed game in town, and will continue to be. This is, of course, trivially untrue (Rhapsody).

Only if that other provider had the same kind of licenses with the record labels. At this point, Spotify is far ahead of the pack at that game.

You appear to be assuming that getting those licenses is difficult. It really isn't. If Spotify managed it, any competent competitor can also do it -- after all, the labels have no particular loyalty to a small Swedish online radio network.

You appear to be assuming that getting those licenses is difficult. It really isn't. If Spotify managed it, any competent competitor can also do it -- after all, the labels have no particular loyalty to a small Swedish online radio network.

Spotify is far from a small Swedish online radio network; here in Europe they are far and away the market leader. They have over a million accounts in Norway alone, which is phenomenal penetration in a country of 5 million.

Second, getting those licenses was incredibly difficult for them; the negotiations to enter the US market took several years. There is absolutely no indication that the record labels are prepared to give similar terms, or even any terms at all, to other competitors. Again, here in Europe, I know of several firms attempting to compete with Spotify, and they are getting hung up on precisely this point.

Spotify really is tiny. They make "a profit of €5m or less" -- http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/aug/28/spotify-on-...

You are right, they are not big, but turnover (Eur 59mn) is the P&L metric that counts as a matter of size, not profit.

Or you can have fun with GM having become massively negatively sized when it reported a $4.3bn loss in 2009...

Sure. And if you compare Spotify's turnover with that of the big dogs I mentioned earlier (Apple, Google, Amazon) with whom they are bound to eventually compete directly, they are still tiny.

Spotify support staff quote from that discussion thread

-- Hey Guys thanks for your question, Unfortunately you will need a Facebook account to access Spotify from now on, unless you already have an account set up.

This does not stop you creating the Facebook account adding nothing to it and making it totally private as the Facebook account does not have to be actively used. --

Couple of things to note:

1. If you already have a Spotify account, you don't have to connect to Facebook.

2. They seem to be encouraging a bogus Facebook account as a way to use Spotify "privately"?

Hilarious that internal staff are recommending ways to "get around" the requirements. This shows, or possibly proves to me that this decision was a last minute condition set by FB and the Spotify staff are probably not uniformly thrilled about it.

Or that they realize that a tiny but vocal minority is going to gripe about the decision, and that for these folks a work-around might be the best solution.

This means that while one can claim privacy of their listening habits on Spotify from their social circle, absolutely no one can claim privacy of what they do on Spotify from Facebook.

Spotify just gave Facebook a terrific amount of analytics data that will help Fb market music and drive sales better than Spotify itself does.

Why is empty private Facebook account a "bogus" Facebook account?

Is it now required by law to actively use your social network accounts?

I am sick of everything being social. I listen to and read things I enjoy and often don't want to share it with the whole world. For example battle.net in SC2 tries it's damn hardest to make me post achievements and connect with my friends online, and I just want to play a game alone when I happen to have some free time. That kind of game wasn't social for me in the first place, and I don't want it to be. Same with my spotify usage, I want to listen to the radio, I don't want the whole world to know I am listening to jazz radio at the moment.

I agree, and I have a "nutty" conspiracy theory to explain why things are this way:

Social media is simply the middle class and the tax payers paying for investments in technology. The U.S. government inflates the money supply, through bailouts and zero interest loans, for banks, who refuse to lend to the general public. However, this money can not sit on the sidelines, since inflation the cash itself creates cause it to lose value so tons of it end up in wacky technology investments.

It does not matter which type the investor is — angel or some other sort of creature. A billionaire or a friendly neighbour. Everybody wants to invest as much money they get from banks as loans and as little of their own as possible.

The money the banks give ultimately comes from the middle class that consumes these services (can't really call them products can we?) in the first place.

Thus the middle class is paying a bunch of middle men and lucky dorks with it's own money to invent these services and they will be later paying lots more to "enjoy" them.

Nevermind the loss of privacy, which is simply an icing on the cake.

Question: if these are social technologies shouldn't the State be doing these types of investments in the first place?

Or if they are social in the other sense, in terms of authentic grass-roots and anti-state citizenry — shouldn't social media be about personal blogs, news feeds, videos etc..?

This may make good sense from spotify's point of view without knowing all the facts but it looks like it makes very little sense.

Spotify and facebook are two unrelated services that users get to apply the 'binary or' truth table on. None, one or both. To force users to use both communicates that spotify sees only one possible exit strategy at this point, facebook or bust, and facebook has just strengthened their hand in the negotiations for any buyout to the point where spotify is now basically just an extension of facebook.

If spotify does not want to play ball on fb's terms from now on facebook has the ability to pull the rug right out from under them.

I wonder what the missing bits are here, there has to be a lot more than meets the eye for spotify to do this.

Assuming Spotify is not run by stupid people, money would be the obvious reason (and the only one I can think of off hand).

The million-dollar question now seems to be if existing Spotify accounts will be silently converted to Facebook accounts behind-the-scenes. Such accounts might even be created as completely locked-down private Facebook accounts available to no one else, but it opens the door for the slow erosion of the privacy of those accounts into something Facebook can monetize.

I'd run, not walk, away from any Spotify subscription.

I hadn't considered this, guess I won't be using my spotify account anymore, at least until proven false. Ungh why is everyone tieing into facebook, they are ignoring what, 6.5 billion people (actually, I wonder what % of the world's population is internet connected, since that's the real # they are ignoring).

Roughly 2 billion people in the world have access to the Internet. 800 million of them are active Facebook users (30 day active). Last week 500 million users logged into FB in a single day.

Facebook is a very popular service that makes perfect sense to integrate with. Don't forget that they are also "ignoring" anybody that doesn't have broadband; streaming all your music over ppp or metered wireless isn't very desirable.

True but those people aren't a good fit for their service to begin with. Non-facebook users are not, by default, bad fits. Big difference. Hell I would bet at least some of FBs user base is also in that category of crap internet.

Cutting off arbitrary users who aren't bad fits for you is a good way to limit your user base. Sure it's 700-800 million people, but not all of the ones who use FB are going to want your service, and if it is any good some who don't use FB will. Why limit yourself that way? Especially when they already supported non-FB accounts for everything but the social features, so the work had already been put in.

In other words, to use this streaming service you have to submit your real name to a company you'd rather not want to, and stay logged in* so it can spy on your every move on the web.

* Not sure about this part. You probably lose your web spotify session if you log off facebook (?), but your desktop app session would probably not be affected.

I think it's the opposite. It was already a paid site, so of course they have your billing info. This is the first indication they're coveting my data (at least w/o facebook connect turned on there are no recommendations to speak of on spotify)

It's not a paid site, they use the freemium model. I have an account and they don't have my billing info. Millions of other people are in the same boat.

(I also will never use anything that requires a Facebook login other than Facebook itself.)

I'm not sure that paid site is guaranteed to know the payer's real name.

I was under impression that most of the time, it doesn't happens.

And of course giving my real name via billing to Spotify is a completely different than giving my real name to Facebook to display and use it as they see fit.

There are already doubts on number of real users in facebook's 750m user base. I guess things like this will increase the dummy accounts.

I once made a site that only allowed sign in via Twitter. That was a huge mistake. Do not segment potential users by login mechanism, more often than not you will raise the barrier of entry from potential to not.

or don't rely on a service with only 200 million total (not active) users

While they are at it, might as well announce the acquisition.

As a Facebook user, why exactly do I want to see a notification about each and every song that 100 different friends are listening to at any given point in the day? Add in the fact that Rdio does the exact same thing (spam my Facebook "ticker"), and it's even more ridiculous.

I disabled offline access and pushing content to my wall permissions for Spotify on Facebook (under Account Settings, Apps). Mainly because of complaints I was spamming walls... Still works with the most basic permissions, but sleazy it adds them by default.

I lied, started Spotify again this morning, and all my Facebook friends were gone. Apparently it really does need the "offline" permission.

In a way this could be a decision to simplify the login process for the end user. Then again, if that was the case they should have supported Google, Yahoo and all other OpenId providers. Also there seems to be no reason to completely remove the native sign up, especially since they have already made the effort to create full support for it. Guess just like the recent trend in FB, they also just want to do an experiment and see how the users will take it.

I use Spotify and had been recommending them to friends as well. I know several of my friends don't have Facebook, so this will probably stop them from signing up.

As far as automatic sharing goes, I've already told several of my friends that they can change their sharing to the "only me" setting so that they're not spamming what they're playing on Facebook.

I enjoy Spotify, but it is kind of a hassle to have to change settings to make it usable.

One of the principal investors in Spotify is... Facebook.

There is nothing like having free money thanks to the billions of Golman Sachs, we will see how much they recoup.

Can anyone figure out where to delete their Spotify account in the web UI? I don't even think it's possible. This move to require Facebook is ridiculous IMHO and I want no part in the company's services anymore.

Facebook is a dangerous social experiment. It's not a 'virtual passport'. Rather, it is a 'virtual bank', except they don't store financial information about the users, but everything else. And that is an unimaginable amount of power.

Given that their intentions are different from their user's (they want profits, users want... to share photos), it is not hard to assume that Facebook does and will use the user data in order to maximize profits or grip on power.

I think that nothing good will come out of this marriage of Spotify and Facebook.

Facebook gains a lot of meta information about the Spotify users (and music taste tells a huge amount about a person), whereas Spotify is reduced to being a convenient and easily replace-able bit pipe.

Now they'll be able to run their social algorithms based on music habits and offer us the best, most relevant and unique crap for sale on the market.

Or one day the government decides to isolate the listeners of The Doors and deny login to every site that uses facebook as a virtual passport.

Ugh. I signed up two weeks ago and have been recommending them to friends. Now this. Why on earth does this make sense for Spotify?

I would guess this was a requirement to get the partnership with Facebook done. "Either require a FB login or we'll go with someone else" would be a hard condition to say no to if you were Spotify considering how powerful FB is in the US market.

I think Spotify would have been in a great position to argue with this, since they're the closest to being a worldwide provider for music services.

Google Music and Rdio aren't available outside of the US/Canada.

Are there alternatives to Spotify's current business model of free on the PC?

The legality of Grooveshark's business model is Groovehark's problem. Just using it passively as a music consumer is likely fine.

I'm aware of Grooveshark but, as you said, it is questionably legal. It has long been removed from the iOS App Store.

I can't help but wonder if these were the onerous terms that Apple would not agree to with Ping.

Grooveshark? Although legally, it's in a grey area...

Check out MOG. They have some sort of free option.

That sounds like a 'Facebook Tax', like Microsoft does to the PC industry.

Not a spotify user but I feel gross and icky just reading about this. This is so transparent. I wanna take a shower

They should talk to the ton of services that built themselves around Facebook, only to see their app be killed without any given reason, killing their whole business.

I know I'm being a total pleeb, but given the remarkable access to the music I want to listen to, at a very cheap cost, I'd probably be willing to sign up for a mandatory mayonaise delivery service to get access to Spotify.

Well, if you'd like to graduate from plebehood, you can run your own mobile music server with something like Subsonic. I have no affiliation, I just discovered them last week:


I'll second subsonic. I've been using it to stream my music collection the last few weeks. Works well even despite a 40 KBps connection on the source computer.

Facebook give's them an on-stage keynote plus smooth Spotify integration (just check out that gorgeous install flow) and they give Facebook mandatory FB accounts in return. Seems like a deal rather than a "move".

I've yet to see a positive comment regarding this new feature, but I'm wondering, has that anything to do with the type of site that HN is?

There's been a lot of anti-Facebook chatter recently, most of which I agree with mind you, but given the backlash so far regarding this new restriction, do you think there's really enough weight behind these online discussions to make them change their minds? Particularly if there's a contract sitting in a drawer, saying they must take this course of action, regardless of user/customer sentiment.

It's a fair point. Here's my anecdote: I use Facebook solely via my "spouse firewall"; that is, I don't have an account or use it, my wife just lets me know anything I need to know about through it. She is probably a straight down the middle average Facebook user; daily-but-light use, has learned just enough to squelch people she needs to squelch, the standard mix of friends, family, and old high school co-attendees, etc. The only priming I've done is to remind her that you shouldn't allow Facebook to have the canonical copy of family valuables; upload whatever photo and video you like as long as we still have the originals somewhere.

She's definitely been getting increasingly frustrated by their grabbiness, and has been coming to me with stories about Facebook and privacy on the Internet. Granted, that's because she knows I'm interested, but we don't move in the same circles online, which means that these stories are indeed penetrating further than just the HN bubble. She's nowhere near ready to dump the service yet, but the idea is clearly thinkable.

(Anecdote? Certainly! Let me know when you figure out how to run a repeatable study on this topic.)

To be honest, if Facebook IPO'ed tomorrow, I think I'd pass. I'd probably miss out on an initial increase, but I bet in 2014 Facebook will not be as dominant as it is now, and their growth (not their survival, but their growth) depends on that not happening.

Funnily enough, I've noticed a good few of my own non-techy friends have been pinging about a few privacy related topics, and how Facebook have been 'grabby' as you so eloquently put it :)

I do have my own account, and certainly use it far too often to share far too much, but I've been almost anal with restricting 3rd party access to my personal feed of posts.

That said, I would absolutely stop using Spotify if I felt that my listening habits were being forcibly fed to Facebook, despite my auto-scrobbling to Last.fm

edit: typo

I was out with some (non-tech) friends this weekend and they were talking about how the new FB is "creepy." Yes, just another anecdote.

I don't understand the argument that the non-tech public doesn't care about their privacy, because they do. Why do people make their accounts private in the first place? Because they don't want future employers reading their posts, but they're fine with a faceless corporation doing it?

Honestly I think a well-written NY Times article could start to hurt them on this.

> I've yet to see a positive comment regarding this new feature

Spotify -> Facebook integration used to be optional. Now it's becoming mandatory. It's hard to find an upside of that for users.

The only upside that I can possibly think of is that some ... "non-technical" users won't get confused by choices. So now the choice has now been made for them to exchange their privacy for happy fun friend feeds. Simple!

As for this having to do with the type of site that HN is, I'd say that this a cautionary tale for those making the next hipster social site - how not to treat your customers.

Oh absolutely - forcing things like this on the type of people who frequent HN is a sure fire way to stoke the fires of flamebait

At the risk of sounding whiney, I'd appreciate a note explaining why on earth this deserved a downvote

Something else must be in play for such a great standalone service to give the keys to their front door to Facebook. I'm sure tons of time went into this decision and the result was either faster adoption or added sugar to a partnership deal. Either way, I'm interested to see how this plays out and to see what the backup plan is if it all goes to shit.

This is only going to mean 2 things. A) Less people will sign up to Spotify B) Facebook will gain more users

So, what's in it for Spotify?

In my opinion, this was a very bad move. Spotify is now relying on Facebook. God forbid Facebook ends up like Myspace and no one cares about them in 4 years, then I guess Spotify will just go down with the ship?

Maybe but they'll get promotion within facebook. Lots of users and they can always split if FB goes under.

Why would it mean that less people will sign up to Spotify? I'd think that being pushed in everyone's social feed and making a signup be one click away and no text fields to fill out, this will mean they'll gain a massive amount of new users.

The certainly did this not just for fun. Would be interesting to know the "incentives" involved...

I suppose that because Spotify lives on Facebook now (regularly in my scroll), this move won't be unappealing to most people. I have the impression that HN is much more anti-FB than the population in general. Most of the people Spotify appeals to, such as the college student demographic, all have Facebook and don't really care about their information or privacy, so they won't mind using it to get free music.

What I'm curious about is if this was their game plan from the beginning. I wouldn't say it's an act of desperation at all, I bet they celebrated when the FB deal was finalized. They're pushing it pretty hard. I signed up for Spotify weeks before this, but as soon as f8 hit my local Spotify app bothered me about checking what my friends are listening to on Facebook even after I authorized the connection.

College student here, no facebook and won't be getting one either. Granted, since I'm posting on HN there is a bit of selection bias, but my good friend who is a typical liberal arts major doesn't have one either because he heard about "some privacy issues" (not from me).

This is anecdotal, but I wanted to point out that facebook isn't as widespread as people think.

How does a two-person case study dispute that Facebook is widespread? Virtually everyone I know has one, but perhaps if I thought hard enough I could also come up with a person or two who don't.

> Most of the people Spotify appeals to, such as the college student demographic, all have Facebook and don't really care about their information or privacy, so they won't mind using it to get free music.

Is this really true? Or do they just not know what us "enlightened" do?

I think once people understand what is at stake they'll care. The problem is it's just difficult to visualize and understand. If FB really wants our trust, let us see what they have on us and then let people decide where they stand. But of course they'll never be that transparent.

By "enlightened" what do you mean exactly? I think everyone is at least passively aware that Facebook probably knows a lot about them and is growing more powerful. Perhaps they can't read the contents of a browser cookie to discern that logging out doesn't actually mean logging out, nor can they really understand the website as a huge mass of code and databases that someone is making billions on, but they know what they're putting in and getting out. For most people that's enough.

I really think people of my age (19, but I would venture to say teenagers and people in their 20's) are too young to care about this sort of thing, they're living the most open time of their lives anyway. We have grown up with the internet, and we're pretty much used to it. Not to take a guess at your age, but I have a feeling most HN posters/techbubble bloggers are older and have seen a lot more happen in terms of the internet evolving. I imagine if I had watched the internet materialize from the beginning this would be alarming, but I was practically born into it if you take into account the fact that I haven't been using the internet for more than about 9 years. And while I do understand what Facebook is doing probably a little better than most of my peers, I still can't really let myself care. I personally never felt I give them much of anything significant. My existence online isn't that important to me right now. And free music is pretty great.

I use "enlightened" tongue-in-cheek to me the people on HN that think and know about these things.

You're right, I'm older than you. I was on Friendster in college and then Myspace. Graduated as Facebook was coming up so I never got the college experience of it. (God I feel old now, thanks a lot, 19 year-old!) I think at your age perhaps I didn't care either, but now I do. I think trivial status updates can mean more than we think and they at least can place where you were at a certain time. It's a lot of information that could be dangerous in the wrong hands.

EDIT: I'm not trying to say that "you'll change when you grow older," rather that's just what happened to me.

Fair enough. I just don't see why any of this could be dangerous in the wrong hands. Sure they're very knowledgeable about certain aspects of our lives, but it's mostly trivial. What are they going to do with it, steal identities?

I signed up to Spotify before they had any Facebook integration, but when they originally got Facebook integration (see your friends' lists) I thought it was pretty cool to be able to browse through my friends' playlists and find new music.

What's not cool is being bombarded with broken modals trying to get me to re-oauth Facebook to start streaming everything I listen to into my feed. But at the same time they broke the old Facebook integration, so now it's all or nothing.

Interesting. Maybe Facebook is integrating a Mafia based business strategy: Either you become an exclusive Facebook service or we just rip off your idea and offer it as our own. Wasn't there some guy recently on HN who claimed that FB screwed him over with their music service?

I've had a spotify free account for some time. Today, the new automatic update presented me with the new default settings for my account. The default is to share publicly starred items and new lists, ie opt-out rather than opt-in.

It's worth mentioning that Sean Parker is involved with both Facebook and Spotify.

I noticed this a day or two ago when I tried to sign up at the recommendation of a coworker. I decided against it when I realized you had to use your Facebook account to login. I'm going to check out rdio instead.

What is the real reason these companies are doing this? It's obviously not the reasons they claim. There must be some sort of incentive program where Facebook is giving them kickbacks, as well as a gag order that prevents them from stating the agreement they have. It's very close to the old practice of companies that "sponsor" popular software by paying the developers to include their third party adware toolbar installers in the package, often embedding themselves deep within the user's system on a rootkit level, just as Facebook invisibly tracks everything you do.

It's the same with turntable.fm... Talk about an unfortunate trend. I think it's great that facebook can help facilitate the authentication process, but it should definitely be a choice made by the user.

Seems like Facebook might've asked for this as part of the integration deal. Otherwise I see no obvious reason for Spotify to limit their customer base. Unless the economics of delivering music to a non-facebook user is much less attractive and have much lower conversion to paying user? I find music discovery on Spotify to be poor compared to Pandora, and without my FB connections sharing playlists, I have no incentive to pay for Spotify.

Tangentially related, but is anybody else really sick of everybody's Spotifys updating their Facebook pages with every track they're currently listening to?

I contacted support@spotify.com and asked them to delete my account. They replied:

"If you wish to close your Spotify account, log into your Spotify account profile (https://www.spotify.com/account/profile/), and add ".del" to your email address. Your account will be closed within 48 hours."

I live in a country where most of the big music streaming services are not available, only last.fm. With this move, may Spotify open their service to other countries? Yeah, I know music labels are strong but side by side with Facebook they have some power. And I guess, it's hard to ignore 700+ million users.

I've just cancelled my premium subscription and mentioned 'too much forced facebook integration' as the reason

For every 1 person that doesn't sign up for Spotify because they need Facebook, there will be 2 people that sign up because they don't need to create yet another account.

This obviously stinks if you think Facebook is some super evil company, but if you're a regular person it probably doesn't matter.

That does not explains why they had to make Facebook mandatory.

Optional Facebook auth would save every one person and still gain those two people.


This is a very poor move, I have linked my two accounts but forcing people to do it is just shocking.

At the rate things are going, some day soon the government is going to ask the same.

Is there anything else to say apart from.


There is actually, and here on HN it's encouraged behavior to expand upon your opinions and debate the subject in detail.

Why is it "ewww" for you? What would be a better solution? What are the pros and cons of this decision for Spotify, for FB and for the user?

Expand.. OK.

Facebook have an increasingly bad reputation. Spotify, now it has made Facebook the only way to sign up, has tarred its own reputation by becoming so closely tied to Facebook.

Beyond this they have locked out users who do not have a Facebook or do not wish to tie an essentially private Facebook account to a public service.

Looking beyond the sign up page, they are also increasingly pushing Facebook and other social media on to Spotify users with no way to hide some of these features. This, for me at least, is just adding distracting fluff to the Spotify UI.

Considering how they got 2 million paid subscribers without this functionality it is baffling that they would essentially disable completely a sign up mechanism that was working perfectly well.

As a premium Spotify user I will be switching to Deezer next month if a u-turn is not made on this decision.

I'll take a guess at the pros and cons for spotify:

Pro: some users like the integration and the social features that it gives them. This doesn't explain why it's now mandatory, or why it's become mandatory right now.

Pro: Has Spotify done some kind of deal with Facebook, and Facebook insisted on this? I put "pro" since I assume that Spotify also got something out of the hypothetical deal.

Con: There are some users (like myself) who think that facebook knows enough about me already, and really do not want to integrate them into anything. I like the face that the web is not an extension of the facebook machine.

As an existing Spotify user this policy does not apply to me (yet?) but it's repellent. As a paying Spotify user I don't feel that I would be obliged to put up with that. I don't complain about FB too much since hey, I didn't pay anything for it and no-body actually forced me to use it. I know, "if you're not the customer, you're the product" - but with Spotify, I bloody well am the paying customer, they've got my money, they don't need to sell me to Facebook. They can take their Facebook integration and GTFO.

Edit: a friend has suggested that Spotify are angling to be bought by Facebook, and this will help them integrate for that.

It's worth noting that Spotify used to have optional facebook integration, i.e. "the standard Facebook - or - Default sign up page", and they have taken the effort to remove this for new signups. There must be some reason for actively removing this choice, and I don't think that "mass-market users are confused by having 2 different choices" is it.

Presumed pro: Spotify said at f8 that users who engaged socially with Spotify through their existing facebook functionality bother listened to more music and were much (I think they said 2x) more likely to pay for a premium membership.

If a Facebook account is mandatory (at the moment it isn't), they might expect a greater number of users to link their accounts. It doesn't seem unreasonable to expect that the number of people who additionally link their accounts will exceed the number of subscriptions lost from people who refuse to have a Facebook accounts. If a greater number of people linking accounts => increased Premium registrations, then this could very easily be a purely business decision.

A better business decision would be to use the standard Facebook - or - Default sign up page. This will undoubtedly increase social usage by the Facebook faithful without alienating other users.

Correlation is not causation, so forcing all new users into that workflow won't necessarily make them the kind of people who would do that voluntarily.

Also, this is a statistical relationship - there will be users who were likely to buy premium membership but don't like facebook, who are now less likely to buy. Or who are now reconsidering their existing spotify subscriptions.

Spotify's selection is awful and they lump tons of unrelated artists together. I've been using MOG for a month and have been 99% satisfied (their new beta doesn't work with my firewall at work for some reason).

I know it's not completely analogous, but AOL comes to mind. Facebook seems to be this subset of the internet like AOL was. You have to remind people that something bigger exists beyond the walls.

Spotify can do whatever it wants. It may seem a bit extreme to require a facebook account to use the service, but honestly - competing with a behemoth like Apple and iTunes, with it's inevitable rollout of a similar service at some point that - it's not an easy thing to do. For Spotify to succeed against its competitors, it's going to have to take drastic measures, and this is pretty drastic. I've actually wanted more of my friends on facebook to get on the service so we could share music, but many don't even know what Spotify is. In fact, on the flipside, there was an article on one of the Apple/Mac blogs suggesting that Apple desperately needs a social network. Music is meant to be shared.

My prediction is that Facebook will be acquiring Spotify within 6 months. Makes sense for both parties, and last I checked, Sean Parker is a shareholder in both.

meebo.com just nagged me to link my account for the first time. It showed me a new interface in hoping it would lurk me in. It has to be a coordinated effort.

Is Reed Hastings on their board? Bad business decision!

my bad, still forces facebook log in, even enable you to sign up for facebook on spotify's website, dumb move, another player on the Blue F wall

Is Spotify going to start giving a discount on subscriptions for all this marketing/advertising information they're pushing to Facebook?

It isn't the siren call of "social," it is the dinner bell of 500 million daily users that Spotify is answering.

While it is annoying, this will exponentially grow the spotify user base. I am a single island of music consumption right now on spotify. IF I were to link my facebook account(which I never use) to it, my feed would be seen by all of my friends encouraging new signups for spotify.

Music is extremely social. Facebook is social. Annoying, yes. Smart, definitely.

This makes me wonder if there was some backroom deal to give Facebook an edge over Google+.

Sean Parker must have slipped some Rohypnol in their drinks.

This is the way everything is going, like it or not. The benefit to the publisher is too great. This seems to be one of those things that developers can't stand but normal people either don't care or actually prefer.

The tradeoff between "Lost registrations" and "Extra engagement through everyone having a linked Facebook account" must be an interesting one.

Yeah, especially keeping in mind that extra engagement means more registrations as well.

Why doesn't Facebook just buy Spotify...

Nobody in their right mind wants to build a business that is 100% beholden to record labels. Facebook is focusing on building a platform first, and anything else would be a [time|money] distraction.

If their agreement is favourable enough for Facebook, perhaps they decided that the level of control that they had was good enough. With Spotify now building its business model around Facebook, Facebook's control is not far from outright ownership, it would seem. Facebook didn't need to spend x millions for any purchase.

i hope that existing users will not be forced to link their Facebook accounts to continue using Spotify

First iHeartRadio. Now this.

And so it begins...


Good thing I have no desire to use either one.

I got a question. Does Facebook connect give Spotify access to my email address that is linked to my Facebook account? Does it give them access to my first and last name as well? If so, I could understand their stance... it will give their service a higher viral coefficient.. at the expense of a few users..

Quote from a spotify employee on the liked page:

> Hey Guys thanks for your question, Unfortunately you will need a Facebook account to access Spotify from now on, unless you already have an account set up. This does not stop you creating the Facebook account adding nothing to it and making it totally private as the Facebook account does not have to be actively used.

I don't know if I find this hilarious, ironic or stupid. He turns towards [potential] costumers and says 'unfortunately' for something that was sole spotify decision. Then suggesting creating bogus/zombie facebook accounts it's just plain pathetic.

1) facebook OWNS spotify. their testimonial, "spotify rocks" - mark zuckerberg, is proof that they bow to mz and are catering to his audience (most of the world, thx Goldman Sachs).

2) it's very smart for facebook to own music and therefore, emotion (Twitter hedge fund? FORGET THAT, I'm going to start a SPOTIFY hedge fund.)

3) the number one reason i use spotify is social: i like being able to listen to a friend's playlist (i have chosen him as an arbiter of cool music...)

4) i still use youtube to search out esoteric sounds that aren't available on itunes/amazon/spotify

I just signed up days ago and they only required email. I guess I got lucky.

truth is: the majority of end user don't care if they can only sign up with facebook. it's even easier for them as they have less choice to make. This is only a problem for highly privacy and technology aware folks, like tech bloggers or developers. Apparently, they are not the target audience.

An OpenID solution finally succeeds and people are still upset.

OpenID would allow you to sign in via any open-id provider. This is not OpenID.

Good thing I have absolutely no idea what spotify is.

If you aren't paying for the product or service, you are the product or service.

Until yesterday, many of us were paying €10 each month for the privelege of being the customer instead of being the product or service. With this move they make it clear that they want us to be the product or service anyway.

Right.. sorry, I was referring to facebook. I guess I wasn't clear.


This link is on spotify's help page and enables the open sign up without facebook, the nag screens post there-of, I do not know, I don't use paid or will-attempt-to-make-me-pay services, and to boot, Grooveshark is still free without an account

No, it doesn't.

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