music morals

Study Using Spotify AI: Your Music Taste Reflects Your Moral Values

2 min read

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Music morals are the talk of the town thanks to a new study. Have you ever wondered what your music preferences say about you? Do you like listening to pop so poppy it makes others cringe? Do you listen to death metal so much that people consider you a walking tattoo?

Do you listen to love songs so much that people worry you’ll marry the first person who gives you flowers?  

According to a recent study, your music taste may reveal more than just your personality — it may also indicate your moral outlook.

The study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, used Spotify’s AI to analyse the music preferences and moral values of over 10,000 people from 18 countries.

Spotify’s AI accessed users’ listening history, playlists, and music features, such as tempo, energy, valence, and danceability. 

They also asked the users to complete a survey that measured their moral foundations, such as care, fairness, loyalty, authority, and purity. 

The results showed that there were significant associations between music preferences and these values across different cultures.


Music morals: Taste and values

Here are the main findings of the research.

  • People who liked pop music tended to value care and fairness more than other moral foundations.
  • People who liked rock music tended to value loyalty and authority more.
  • People who liked rap music tended to value care and fairness less than other moral foundations.
  • People who liked classical music tended to value purity more.
  • The researchers also found that some music features, such as tempo and valence, influenced the moral associations. For instance, people who liked faster and more positive music tended to value care and fairness more.
  • People who liked slower and more negative music tended to value loyalty, authority, and purity more.

So does this mean that your music preferences are not only influenced by what your friends are listening to, or what is suggested to you by an AI DJ, but also by your moral values?

Music is yet another way to express your moral identity, as well as a way of connecting with others who share similar values.

Music is not only a source of entertainment, but also, apparently, a window into your soul!