November 1, 2013

A playlist of 70 videos (with commentary).

It seems now every year I make a YouTube playlist. I made one in 2010, 2011 and in Japan.

I have written a short post On making YouTube playlists.

All year I have been working on one for 2014. And now, twice, I have hit the playlist limit of 200 videos. Previously I didn't realize there was a limit and now I've hit it twice. I'm trying to think a little bit of this idea of a limit. Who would possibly take the time to watch a playlist of 200 videos? I know the internet has almost completely changed the way I listen to music, an endless stream of songs so many of which I can barely remember even a few minutes after having listened to them. So many amazing songs and wanting to organize them into playlists each year is almost defeatist.

I can keep adding songs to the playlist but eventually hit a limit. Then I go through the playlist, delete some of the weaker songs in order to make room for more. At the end of the year I'll remove as many songs as I can bear in order to get the list down to some reasonable size. I will try for under a hundred. None of this seems to me like a particularly good use of time and yet, internet addiction aside, it does also possibly spring from some desire to share.

The number of songs on the internet feels infinite yet, as I compile them, I hit a limit. It is not a real limit: I could simply begin a new playlist, but the limit in itself is perhaps useful, curbing the compulsive activity ever-so-slightly, forcing me (eventually) to start making decisions. With so many of these songs I would like to hear more, know more about the artist, but so often I don't. The slot in the playlist is as far as it goes. The curiosity is there but not the followthrough. Of course there might also be information I will stumble upon randomly at some future moment.

Along with the 200 video playlist limit, I am also continuously hitting the 5000 Facebook 'friend' limit. I have been thinking about writing about this other limit for a while, a limit made somehow resonant due to the inclusion of the word friend, but songs always feel like the more telling metaphor. And anyway I'm embarrassed to write about Facebook, fearful that it's evidence, a verdict too clearly depicting just how little I live.


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