Spotify is working on a feature a lot of people are already familiar with presumably in hopes to better get artists engaged with fans.
The music streaming service is apparently working on its own version of Stories, the sharing format first popularized by Snapchat then copied by Instagram and has since been integrated into other popular apps including Facebook, YouTube, and even WhatsApp.
Spotify is calling its version "Storyline," as first spotted by Android Police, and focuses on letting artists share their own insights, inspiration details about their creative process, or other information about their music.
As TechCrunch notes, Storyline is similar to the existing "Behind the Lyrics" on Spotify, which is overlaid on some songs to give it not just lyrics but also history or context. It also highlights the artist's or producer's commentary. Instead of popup cards, though, Storyline will be very much like Stories, where users can scroll through a "feed" at their own pace.
Behind The Lyrics
Behind the Lyrics isn't Spotify's own feature, rather it pulls from information already available on Genius, which doesn't always get things right. Hayley Williams from Paramore, in fact, took to Twitter recently to reveal that her band's management has been trying to fix "outdated facts" for its song "Hard Times" for a year.
When Williams' tweet went viral, Genius reached out to help, but fans took that chance to point out other false information featured in "Behind the Lyrics," including misstated facts on some songs.
Storyline appears to aim to keep such mishaps from happening. By letting artists share facts themselves, they are given control on what's displayed as the song plays. However, it's clear that this is still very early in development. At present, Storyline is overlaid on top of Behind the Lyrics, which is confusing.
Spotify is testing the feature both on Android and iOS, but not desktop. Storyline is available in the United States and some other markets, but the company isn't saying who may be seeing the test or where.
For now, there's no direct way for any artist or management team to curate their own Storyline unless they're working directly with Spotify. But it's perhaps safe to assume the feature will be built into the Spotify Artist Dashboard tool directly in the future.
Asked about Storyline, a spokesperson for Spotify provided just a boilerplate response.
"We are always testing new ways to create better experiences for more users." No information yet on when it might roll out more broadly.