9 February 2023

MUSICSTREAM team publishes major government-commissioned literature review

The MUSICSTREAM team at the University of Leeds have published a major literature review of The Impact of Algorithmically Driven Recommendation Systems on Music Consumption and Production.

The research was commissioned by the UK government’s Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CDEI) and published as part of the government’s response to the UK House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee’s critical report on The Economics of Music Streaming.

The review was published alongside the CDEI’s report on The Impact of Recommendation Algorithms on the UK Music Industry, which makes considerable use of the MUSICSTREAM team’s analysis.

At over 20,000 words, the review is one of the most comprehensive discussions of cultural recommendation systems yet published. Unusually, it brings together and compares perspectives on algorithmic recommendation from computer science work with research from critical social science and humanities.

17-18 January 2023

International symposium held in Leeds

The MUSICSTREAM team have hosted a major, invitation-only international symposium on Music Streaming Around the World in Leeds.

Attended online and in person by guests from 12 different countries, and by a number of staff and PhD students from the University of Leeds, the symposium took place over two days.

A primary aim of the symposium was to provide a basis for internationalising research on music streaming and its place in contemporary music cultures. It is hoped that this will also contribute to a greater geographical diversity in studies of digital platforms in the realm of culture.

Plans are under way to develop a substantial multi-chapter edited volume out of the symposium. 

19-20 October 2022

David Hesmondhalgh presented research on music recommender systems in a keynote talk at the 13th International Music Business Research Days conference in Vienna, on 19-20 October 2022. In a talk based on a literature review he conducted with the three MUSICSTREAM postdoctoral research fellows for the UK Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CDEI), Hesmondhalgh discussed the strengths and weaknesses of the two main paradigms of research into music recommendation: computer science, and critical social science and humanities.

23-25 September 2022

On 23 September 2022, Raquel Campos Valverde gave a keynote talk entitled ‘(Dé)centrer la musique: culture, taxonomie et contenu à l’ère de streaming’ at the joint conference of the Société Française d’Ethnomusicologie and the British Forum for Ethnomusicology in Paris, presenting research on music streaming taxonomies and cultural inequalities. In her talk, Campos Valverde discussed issues concerning the reliance of music recommender systems on Western-centric music classifications, and the role of ethnomusicology in maintaining values of justice and equality in the era of digital platforms. The talk drew on work conducted by the MUSICSTREAM team for the UK Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CDEI).

21 September 2022

The UK government have published MUSICSTREAM’s response to the UK Competition and Markets Authority’s Music Streaming Market Study. The response, authored by project leader David Hesmondhalgh and Hyojung Sun (University of York) welcomes the valuable information contained in the report, but criticises its treatment of the profitability and market power of the major record companies, especially with regard to playlists.

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