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Spotify Has A World Map Of People Listening To The Same Song At The Same Time

Have you ever wondered if someone, somewhere in the world, once went through their playlist and selected the exact same song at the exact same moment you did? If you and a complete stranger, for a few minutes, shared a musical communion without knowing it?

Spotify’s first “Artist in Residence” Kyle McDonald has. To answer these existential questions, the Brooklyn-based digital expert created “Serendipity,” a visualization of people around the world hitting “play” for the same song on Spotify within a tenth of a second. It turns out it happens all the time and that we’re even more in sync than we’d think.

To build Serendipity, McDonald got access to Spotify’s huge database, which constantly gathers information about the 25 to 50 million people listening to the music streaming website at the same time. Between 10,000 and 20,000 songs are started every second.

The map isn’t live, but the tracks shown on it were “recorded over one hour of one day”, the artist explains. In addition to revealing that some Australians are still listening to James Blunt’s “You’re Beautiful” in 2014, it also shows that two people living thousands of miles or just a few streets away from each other can have the same musical tastes, and uncanny synchronicity.

See Serendipity here.

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FOCUS: Israel-Palestine War

Turkey-Israel Relations? It's Complicated — But The Gaza War Is Different

Turkish President Erdogan has now called on the International Criminal Court to go after Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu for war crimes, as the clash between the two regional powers has reached a new low.

Photo of ​Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan walking

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Elias Kassem

Since the arrival two decades ago of now President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s relationship with Israel has been a mix of deep ideological conflict and cover-your-eyes realpolitik.

On the one hand, Erdogan has positioned himself as a kind of global spokesman for the Palestinian cause. His Justice and Development Party has long publicly and financially supported Hamas, which shares similar roots in the 20th-century Muslim Brotherhood movement.

And yet, since 2001 when Erdogan first came to power, trade between Turkey and Israel has multiplied from $1.41 to $8.9 billion in 2022. Moreover, both countries see major potential in transporting newly discovered Israeli natural gas to Europe, via Turkey.

The logic of shared interests clashes with the passions and posturing of high-stakes geopolitics. Diplomatic relations have been cut off, then restored, and since October 7, the countries’ respective ambassadors have been recalled, with accusations flying between Erdogan and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Still, over the past 48 hours, Turkish-Israeli relations may have hit an all-time low.

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