Spotify Wrapped's Missing Data Means Your Music Taste Might Be Even Worse Than You Think

Spotify Wrapped does not take into account every track that you have listened to over the course of a year, meaning that your results might be a little misleading.

The annual roundup is often highly anticipated (and feared) by music fans, as it provides a succinct overview of your listening habits. For better or worse, it tells you things like who your go-to artists of the year were, if there were any particular genres that you favored over the past 12 months, and which podcasts have taken up most of your time.

Not only does it give you insights into your own Spotify usage, but it also lets you examine global trends to see if your obsessions line up with the rest of the world's, or if you discovered your own little niche. For instance, in 2020 the feature revealed that the most-streamed artist was Bad Bunny and that the sounds of the '80s had inexplicably staged a comeback.

Spotify Wrapped 2021 is now almost upon us and users will surely be bracing themselves for the imminent wave of embarrassment as they discover just how bad their tastes really are. Speaking of which, if you were hoping to cheat the system and artificially skew your results at the last minute (by listening to cooler music), it's already too late for that.

When Is the Spotify Wrapped Cut-Off Date?

Spotify has previously confirmed that the cut-off date for eligible Wrapped statistics is October 31 and so anything you listen to now would just get overlooked.

Interestingly, that data won't factor into 2022's summary either, as the streaming platform does not start collating information for next year until January 1.

In other words, there is a two-month window that basically goes unrecorded by Spotify Wrapped and that could theoretically mess up all of your stats.

Why Does Spotify Wrapped Not Count November or December?

Given that each year's Wrapped is based on data from January 1 until October 31, there is a pretty big gap in the roundup.

Brendan Codey, associate director for Creator Growth and Programs at Spotify, confirmed this to Newsweek in an exclusive interview. Speaking about how this impacts the Spotify for Artists feature in particular, he said: "The reason we have this hard cut-off is just for the sake of campaign logistics.

"We need to QA the site and we need to finalize assets for Wrapped, all of which takes a while. You throw Thanksgiving into the mix as well and we have even less time."

Granted, those missing months can be used as an opportunity for indulging in pure cheese without having to worry about humiliating evidence of it surfacing at a later date. For instance, if you suddenly develop a passion for '90s guilty pleasures in December, then that won't be reflected anywhere in your summary (either for this year or next) and your secret shame will be kept hidden.

Alternatively, the gap could mean that you have been under the false impression that your music taste is far more respectable than it actually is, with certain lowlights being mercifully omitted.

Regardless of whether you think it is a good thing or a bad thing, it remains the case that your Wrapped is not an entirely accurate depiction of your Spotify usage. Speaking about this, Codey continues: "It would be super strange to include those two months in next year's Wrapped because they don't quite fit. So, we just don't count them at all."

Spotify Wrapped for Artists Is Also Missing Two Months

The same cut-off applies to the add-on feature "Spotify Wrapped for Artists" which, as its name suggests, gives creators analytics on who is listening to their tracks, how much their fanbase has grown over the year, and what their key demographics are.

While this is certainly an advantageous tool for musicians, it's not entirely comprehensive. After all, if they release a hit album in November (like Taylor Swift's Red (Taylor's Version), which actually resulted in Spotify crashing earlier this month), then all the data associated with this is missing from their annual Wrapped roundup.

Talking about this, Codey explained: "Sure, if an artist releases a huge record in November or December then that stuff will not be included in their specific creator Wrapped. But if it's a real superstar then they will probably be recognized in a bunch of different ways anyway. They'll still hit the top of our charts."

For more information on Spotify Wrapped, including when this year's iteration is expected to launch, click here.

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