After an unsuccessful deployment to the US, unemployed Cold War Russian spies have finally been put to work by Spotify. A source close to the spies was reported to have said something a bit like; “They’re just trying to get on with their lives – they’re really peace loving people passionate about music.” Very plausible.

So here’s how it works. There’s an ad in Spotify that tells you to make a playlist powered by Windows 7. But it doesn’t use your Windows 7 powered mmmputer to generate the playlist at all. You’re handed over to the Russians in a sort of Web 2.0 diplomatic exchange. After you enter an artist’s name, it just spits out music from similar genres using super duper Russian spy skills.

Looks nice and green, almost like a CSR campaign but this is woeful IA. Adding and removing tracks from the playlist panel is painful. And as for, ‘Drag and drop the above icon…’ – erm, what icon?

Ben Aston

Ben Aston

Ben Aston is a digital project manager and online entrepreneur. He's the founder of Black + White Zebra, an indie media company on a mission to help people and organizations succeed. Ben brings over 15 years of experience in both strategic thinking and tactical implementation from a career at top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, and DDB.


  • Adam Hepton says:

    It’s not even a new idea. It’s a badly watered down rip-off of the excellent Spotibot (, which has been around for over a year.

    It’s not as though Spotibot have been asked by Microsoft to reskin their service for an ad campaign, either: the Spotibot developer is a good friend of mine, and he has only just found out about it.

  • benaston says:

    That’s is indeed a wonderfully wholesale ripoff – right down to the add and remove tracks buttons I was moaning about! The drag and drop icon is much nicer in the original though.

    They’ve done a good job of changing the colours though.


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