Research finds music choices change when published

Mar 23, 2011
Credit: William Brawley

Revealing information on your music consumption publicly can change it.

A new study by a School of researcher finds that people are willing to put a lot of effort into maintaining a desirable public image of their music consumption. When information about is published automatically, youth and young adults subtly manipulate the way they present themselves: rather than “cheating” digitally, they instead change the music they listen to.

Airi Lampinen, a visiting researcher at the I School, and her colleagues Suvi Silfverberg and Lassi A. Liikkanen from the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology studied the experience of maintaining a profile in the online music service Last.fm. Twelve Finnish youth and young adults where interviewed on their use of this music‐focused social network service and its extension, called “the scrobbler”, that publishes information of music listened to by service users.

The researchers found that people make active efforts to control the image their online profile gives of them, especially when their music listening is published automatically. While automated sharing of behavior information provides new opportunities for online music services, it also affects the people listening to .

“When an online service publishes behavioral information automatically, it is important to give users a chance to express and explain the meanings of their actions. Listening to a song doesn’t necessarily mean that one likes it — or wants to be known as the kind of person who does”, says Liikkanen.

Explore further: Christian Bale to play Apple's Steve Jobs

More information: The study will be presented at the ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work this week in Hangzhou, China. An advance copy of the article is available online: i.org.helsinki.fi/lassial/file… _will_press_play.pdf

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Feeling chills in response to music

Dec 07, 2010

Most people feel chills and shivers in response to music that thrills them, but some people feel these chills often and others feel them hardly at all. People who are particularly open to new experiences are most likely to ...

Listening to music is biological

Feb 25, 2011

Our willingness to listen to music is biological trait and related to the neurobiological pathways affecting social affiliation and communication, suggests a recent Finnish study published in the Journal of Human Genetics.

Background music can impair performance, cites new study

Jul 27, 2010

For decades research has shown that listening to music alleviates anxiety and depression, enhances mood, and can increase cognitive functioning, such as spatial awareness. However, until now, research has not addressed how ...

Recommended for you

US official: Auto safety agency under review

11 hours ago

Transportation officials are reviewing the "safety culture" of the U.S. agency that oversees auto recalls, a senior Obama administration official said Friday. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has been criticized ...

Christian Bale to play Apple's Steve Jobs

Oct 23, 2014

Oscar-winner Christian Bale—best known for his star turn as Batman in the blockbuster "Dark Knight" films—will play Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in an upcoming biopic.

How to find a submarine

Oct 23, 2014

Das Boot, The Hunt for Red October, The Bedford Incident, We Dive At Dawn: films based on submariners' experience reflect the tense and unusual nature of undersea warfare – where it is often not how well ...

Government ups air bag warning to 7.8M vehicles (Update)

Oct 22, 2014

The U.S. government is now urging owners of nearly 8 million cars and trucks to have the air bags repaired because of potential danger to drivers and passengers. But the effort is being complicated by confusing ...

User comments : 0