In a letter from Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, a group of concerned musicians expressed concern over one of the streaming technology giant’s patents.
The said patent allows for “recognition of taste characteristics from an audio signal.” That is, the patent allows Spotify to create a language recognition function that will shape how the platform recommends music to its users. Spotify filed the patent in 2018, which was later approved by the United States Patent And Trademark Office in January this year.
News about this patent is once again changing concerns around digital privacy because, in order to be used, the speech recognition component will monitor background noise constantly looking for contextual cues that can identify male gender, age, location, medical condition, and more.
More than 180 musicians, including Talib Kweli, STS9, and Tom Morello, raised privacy -related concerns over Daniel Ek by signing an open writing. In the letter, the musicians pointed out several key technology issues: the potential for emotional manipulation and discrimination, the potential for a breach of data security and disclosure of sensitive information, and the exacerbation of inequality. in the music industry driven by artificial technology. and benefit -seeking algorithms.
The letter requested that Spotify issue a public statement that they will not use, license, or sell this technology in any capacity. The authors requested a response from the streaming giant on May 18th.