Spotify listeners are Wrapped up in their yearly music review

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Photo by Justin Greenzaid.

The iconic Spotify Wrapped personal recap that millions of people post on social media is depicted above. Representing some of the things people look forward to the most, their specific top artists and songs.

By Justin Greenzaid, Sports Editor

Many people look forward to December for various reasons, the most significant being the holiday season that entails presents and vacations. However, WCHS students along with millions of people world-wide look forward to one of Spotify’s greatest features which only comes around once a year during the month of December: Wrapped.

Spotify is a music streaming service that offers listeners the opportunity to play billions of different songs and artists, similar to Apple Music, Pandora, and Soundcloud. Since 2016, Spotify has released an innovative ad campaign that is also engaging for users, titled Spotify Wrapped.  Spotify Wrapped plays the role of unveiling the top artists, songs, albums, podcasts, and more for more than 381 million people around the world.

“I prefer Spotify over other music platforms for many reasons,” WCHS junior Emily Machlin said. “The first one being it’s almost like social media, because you can follow people and see what they are listening to. Another is that Spotify personalizes so many playlists for you, which makes it easy to find new music. Additionally, I like the way it looks over others, I feel it’s more organized.”

So, what exactly does Wrapped do? Wrapped reveals to Spotify users their most listened to songs, artists, genres, and always throws in extra fun facts that the user may not even know about their listening habits, like their total minutes of streaming over the year. The Wrapped presentation pops up on the app display for each individual that has streamed at least 30 tracks for over 30 seconds during the year, regardless of if they have premium (Spotify’s paid version) or not. 

The marketing idea behind Wrapped is that users will post their Wrapped ‘recaps’ to their social media which entices their friends and followers to also use Spotify so that they can too see these intriguing statistics about themselves. The idea is unarguably genius, with Spotify getting free advertising from their own users and the users themselves getting an even more interactive listening experience. Nonetheless, there are two sides to Spotify Wrapped, the people that post theirs and love to view others’, and the people that absolutely despise seeing their social media pages flooded with what their peers listen to.

“I look forward to Spotify wrapped during the year because it is exciting to see which song I listened to the most,” WCHS junior Vasisht Ishwar said. “I think my favorite part about it is when it tells me the top 5 genres I listen to the most.”

The presentation of a user’s statistics from the year aren’t simply displayed through a single graphic. The gallery that is Spotify Wrapped actually lasts a few minutes to entirely view and it is personalized for the user itself, down to the songs that are playing in the background of the presentation. 

In this year’s there was even a feature where users could play two truths and a lie with themselves and then send it to their friends to see how well they really know each other. The two truths and a lie game depicts three facts about the user’s listening preferences, however one of them will not actually be true. The user then must guess which one is false and eventually Spotify will show the user the third fact that does actually line up. An example of this may include statistics such as the artist a person binge listened to the most, the artist that appeared the most in their playlists, and one’s most streamed podcast. 

“I choose to use Spotify over other platforms because I like the user friendliness of the app. Also, I have a bunch of friends that use spotify so I like to see their playlists,” Ishwar said.  

Although Wrapped is extremely innovative and creative, some people do see flaws in it. First, it only tracks data for a portion of the year, not the entire 365 days. The tracking spans from January to October, so two months of the year are not included in one’s results. In addition, many people don’t like Wrapped because it makes them feel self-conscious about the things they choose to listen to. Some may feel embarrassed for having Olivia Rodrigo as their number one streamed artist, while others may be self conscious for having Glee versions of songs in their top ten. This unconscious worry may also linger in the back of their minds when actually listening to music during the year, so that when December comes they can show others that they listened to trendy artists over the year. On the other hand, many people still love to listen to the music that they actually like and don’t care about what others may think of them.

“Spotify wrapped does not make me self conscious about the music I listen to,” Machlin said. “I would say that I’m confident in my music taste even if others don’t like it, so Wrapped is very exciting to see and share for me. If I could change anything about Spotify Wrapped it would be when it stops collecting data. Right now, they only track your use from January 1 to October 31. I would change the end date to November 30 so we can get the most accurate results, being that it’s released on December 1.”