A coalition of musicians and human rights groups has called on music streaming service Spotify to exclude the use of a recently developed speech recognition tool it developed to suggest songs, describing the product as "invasive."
The tool analyzes users' speech and background noise to suggest tracks based on mood, gender, age, accent, or surroundings.
In its original patent application, Spotify said the tool was designed to streamline the tedious process of personalizing music suggestions to users' tastes; the coalition warned such devices could absorb private information and make deductions about other people in the room who might be unaware they were being surveilled.
An open letter by the coalition called the technology "dangerous, a violation of privacy and other human rights," and urged Spotify to discard it altogether, and publicly vow never to "use, license, sell, or monetize it."
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