SXSW 2016, Part 2: Programmatic roundup, drama at the Spotify House

SXSW logo canvasHere’s another collection of interesting items coming out of SXSW for the music, audio, and digital realms.

First, MediaPost did its own roundup of developments surrounding programmatic advertising from SXSW Interactive. News from the programmatic front included a new platform for influencer buying, rumblings from AdBlock Plus, and a brand new ad format from BuzzFeed.

Then, two Spotify items. The streaming service introduced a visual recognition jukebox¬†that plays songs based on the fan T-shirt worn by whoever stands in front of it. If an individual wearing a band’s merchandise stands in front of the device, it will register the performer’s name and play their songs. Probably not something that will go anywhere besides Austin, but fun to see visual ID used in a creative way.

Finally, in an odd case of biting the hand that feeds you, performer Vince Staples made cutting remarks about the streaming platform’s royalty payouts. Many artists have vocalized their displeasure about how the shift to streaming has impacted their income, but Staples’ SXSW comments came during his set at the Spotify House.¬†“Shoutout to Spotify,” he said. “Thank you for giving me this check to make up for what you’ve done to me and all my musical friends.” Later, he advised the audience to “listen to your favorite album 1,000, 2,000 times so everybody can get an album sale.”

Anna Washenko


  1. “Finally, in an odd case of biting the hand that feeds you…”
    And good on him. If Spotify can’t take the heat, it needs to get out of the kitchen.

  2. Further, this news item is only “odd” if you’ve been ignoring industry news wholesale for the last three years. It’s a bit disingenuous for a music industry news website to express surprise at an artist protesting Spotify, even if the website’s perspective is decidedly non-creator-oriented.

Comments are closed.