Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Spotify Says: Reed Hastings Loves Lady Gaga, and Mark Zuckerberg Hearts Green Day

Spotify, the jukebox service now rolling out via invite in the U.S., has a neat feature where users can publish and subscribe to each other’s playlists.

You have to love that tech leaders like Reed Hastings and Mark Zuckerberg are partaking in public playlists and revealing that some of their mutual favorite listens are Madonna, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift. (Did guilty pleasure pop music help break the ice when the Netflix CEO recently agreed to join the Facebook board?)

Hastings’s “LoveGame” playlist does have Gaga, but it’s also a mix of older and sentimental favorites like Cat Stevens’s “Wild World” and Savage Garden’s “Truly Madly Deeply.”

Meanwhile, Zuckerberg has some artist-specific playlists for favorites like Green Day and Jay-Z, as well as a curated mix of Top 40 stuff called “Like a G6.”

Facebook and Spotify have a close corporate relationship, and many other Facebookers appear to be active Spotify users. Facebook CTO Bret Taylor’s “Good Songs” includes selections from Death Cab for Cutie and The Shins, while VP of Product Chris Cox has curated an extensive collection of “Island Music.”

Quora’s Mark Bodnick has an impressive 75 public playlists, including lots of hip hop and a little bit of “Glee.”

Napster founders Sean Parker (an active investor in Spotify) and Shawn Fanning both have a bunch of playlists up, including Parker’s “effervescent groove” and Fanning’s “Prozac Plz.”

YouTube co-founder Steve Chen has a country playlist titled “Always On My Mind” and YouTube Director of Product Management Hunter Walk has a 218-track long “Hip Hopps” mix.

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek is of course an active user of his own service, with 198 public playlists, including some Swedish music and the slightly TMI “My girl.”

(Turntable.fm, another social music service, has also been enthusiastically used by tech folks, though you have to jump into a room in real-time to experience other users’ DJ choices.)

On the topic of social music, Ek said last week at the Fortune Brainstorm Tech conference that “in general people are comfortable sharing their music.” But he added: “It has two exceptions, though: Lady Gaga and Britney Spears.”

Not always!


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Nobody was excited about paying top dollar for a movie about WikiLeaks. A film about the origins of Pets.com would have done better.

— Gitesh Pandya of BoxOfficeGuru.com comments on the dreadful opening weekend box office numbers for “The Fifth Estate.”