Ok, this isn’t as exciting as you might think. One “social network” I have used for a very long time, possibly longer than any other, and I have used Twitter since 2006 and Facebook since 2007, is Last.fm. I’ve been scrobbling, off and on, since 2005. Only Flickr may rival Last.fm for my length of use and I don’t use Flickr anymore.
One issue that any user of Last.fm regular will be familiar with is the inconsistency of ID tags on music. My current annoyance, which spawned actual action, has to do with CHVRCHES. I’ve listened to CHVRCHES quite a bit on MP3s, I recently bought their discography in HQ FLAC files. the FLACs have the artist as CHVRCHΞS. The stylized E is cool, but it means that they show up in my scrobbles as two different artists. Not great for tracking stats.
Fortunately, I found a neat and useful script that will bulk edit this, so I can quickly and easily change all of the “CHVRCHΞS” into “CHVRCHES”. I also edited my FLAC files so they show “CHVRCHES” as well.
This script requires subscribing to Last.fm pro, which I’ve considered doing anyway, for better stats, and to support a service I have used for a while. Especially since it’s ridiculously cheap to do for a month or two. Plus is means I can go through and clean up some of the other discrepancies in my scrobbles.
I almost wish that subscribing would let me bulk import Scrobbles, because I have a couple of other accounts. The thing is, both of those accounts were just unattended semi-random plays from when I was messing with running a private streaming radio. They sort of represent my library at the time, but they don’t represent my streaming habits. The only real benefit would be that it would bump my total scrobbles by around 30,000 tracks. Which is cool, but it also would destroy my top artist, album and track lists.
These top lists are already a little iffy because there were periods when I was unable to scrobble for various reasons, and there are times when I listen to CDs in my car instead of through my phone, or some other device capable of scrobbling. And while pushing Pink Floyd to the top of the list as my most played artist would be semi accurate for my life of music, it’s not that accurate for the last 15 years. Plus Shiro Sagisu, Death Cab for Cutie and Nobuo Uematsu definitely aren’t top ten on my listening, I couldn’t name any Death Cab for cutie tracks despite 500 “scrobbles” on one of those secondary accounts. (Side note, Nobuo Uematsu, might be up there, plus I saw him live once).
So there are some limits to what could and should be added. As much as I would love to somehow travel in time and collect up all the music I have listened to since the 80s into a perfect representation of my music history, that’s just not possible and the current representation is plenty sufficient for now and going forward.