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This article was published on September 29, 2011

Spotify rolls out ‘Private Listening’ mode to counter Facebook sharing complaints

Spotify rolls out ‘Private Listening’ mode to counter Facebook sharing complaints

Wish that Spotify’s Facebook sharing feature, introduced last week, was a little more selective? Your wish has been granted

The company’s CEO Daniel Ek announced in a tweet today, “We’re rolling out a new client as we speak where you can temporarily hide your guilty pleasures. It works like a browsers private mode.” A tweet from the official Spotify account then backed that up, noting that it’s available from the app’s File menu.

The update hasn’t hit here yet, but it looks like you’ll be able to selectively switch off the automatic sharing of Lady Gaga when you tell everyone you listen to something far more hipster. UPDATE: It just hit, and it’s under the ‘Spotify’ menu on OS X (image below). When selected, music isn’t shared to Facebook.

While noise from friends automatically sharing every song they listen to on Spotify and other music streaming services has annoyed some since it rolled out last week – and today’s tweak will undoubtedly be welcomed – arguably Spotify users’ bigger gripe has been forcing new users to sign up with a Facebook account. There’s no sign of a U-turn on that one yet.

UPDATE: For those wondering whether ‘Private Listening’ blocks sending any data at all to Facebook or simply just hides listened tracks from your Facebook profile, Spotify tells us in an email that it’s a complete block. “All data sharing to Facebook stops when using Private Listening mode, or when you uncheck the option in the Preferences menu.” So, it appears that your guilty pleasures won’t be secretly held by Facebook.

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