Q: Amazon, Airbnb, Spotify—how do you take the recommendation paradigm from web services and make it applicable to and beneficial for artists?
A: We’re trying to make it fun. You could get what you want, you might not. You go on Spotify—“we heard you listened to these ten tracks, so we think you’re going to like these ten tracks.” We’re trying to play around with the notion that we’re not trying to overly curate. Just because you want a certain experience, we might give it to you, or you might end up talking with someone else.
When SWINTAK and I kept talking, we’re like, randomness is very important for art, those random walks and all that. And that’s the one thing that, the more you go online, the less random it is. If you’re on YouTube, it will recommend a song it thinks you’ll like. Sometimes it’s good. I really am a big fan of that explore page, where it’s just a random assortment of things they think you’ll like. But I’ve also fought it. It happened recently, where someone was like, “Yo, I don’t really want to play this song on my account because now YouTube is going to recommend me different stuff.” So I also wanted to play with that experience where, just because you signed up for something, you might not get it. And Is that really a bad thing?