Take a look back at your internet and streaming habits for 2020
Your Spotify year-end playlist is just the beginning.
Check any social media outlet this morning and there’s a good chance Spotify is dominating it. The music streaming behemoth just unleashed its annual Wrapped recaps, which tell users about their most frequently played tracks and artists. Like last year, the company has baked those stats into pre-made stories ready to share on Instagram, Facebook, or wherever else people feel the need to post and defend their penchant for the new Run the Jewels album.
It’s fun to look back at your previous obsessions at the end of the year. In fact, in the coming weeks, you can expect other sites like YouTube and other streaming video sites to start bombarding you with data about the content you consumed since the ball dropped last year. But, in most cases you don’t have to wait until the end of the year to get that information.
But, Spotify isn’t the only service with tools designed to let you see your viewing or listening habits. In the coming weeks, tech companies will roll out their year-end recaps, but some are available right now.
If you use Apple Music, you can visit beta.music.apple.com/replay to get a curated collection of your most-played tunes like Spotify’s. It will also give you a mix of your most popular songs.
In 2018, YouTube rolled out a feature last year that allows users to keep track of how much they’re watching. It was deep in the heart of 2018’s “digital wellness” initiatives, in which companies vowed to help save you from the smartphones they sold you in the first place.
In the YouTube app, under the Account Menu, you’ll find a tab labeled “Time Watched.” That will give you a look back at the last seven days (hopefully that time frame expands down the road) to see how much you’re watching daily.
By default, YouTube keeps track of everything you watch on the service and you can see a running list of videos by going to Youtube.com/feed/history. From there, you can also delete your history and set a time limit after which the app will purge your data. It’s interesting to scroll through the list and watch the past version of yourself fall down video rabbit holes. Why did I watch seven videos of people getting chiropractic adjustments? Only April 2020 me truly knows.
YouTube also put together a year-end recap of its most popular content and creators. Dave Chapelle took the top spot, but second place is decidedly science-related. It was Mark Rober’s project building the perfect squirrel proof bird feeder.
If you want to see a similar list of stuff you’ve watched from Netflix, you can go to Netflix.com/viewingactivity. Again, it’s just a big, running list of the stuff you’ve watched, which means mine is 60 percent dominated by my habit of falling asleep to The Office. Netflix sometimes offers a year-end look at its most popular content, but it hasn’t rolled it out just yet.
Tik Tok has had a big impact this year as we spent a lot of time looking for alternatives to doom scrolling. You can check out the top Tik Tok trends over on its blog post. As you probably already expected, Tik Tok’s main character this year was skateboarding, drinking cranberry juice, and listening to Fleetwood Mac.
Hulu offers a similar look into your viewing history. Here are the directions from the Hulu site: “just scroll past Hulu Picks to find it. Browse through the collection to see which shows and movies you’ve recently watched. If you select All Watch History you’ll be able to see all of the shows and movies you’ve watched on Hulu.”
As more companies roll out fancy year-end usage recaps, we’ll add them to this post so you can bask in all the time you spent with content in 2020.