Quitting Spotify and moving to NewPipe + FreeTube

I decided to quit Spotify for several reasons, which I listed here. I am looking for a free, private, relatively simple solution.

I am writing this post since I can’t find an exhaustive, reliable and complete article which explains how to move away from Spotify and seamlessly start using FreeTube and NewPipe instead.
My final purpose is to export all of my subscriptions, liked songs and playlists from Spotify and importing them in FreeTube and NewPipe.
Finally, I need to find some way to synchronize liked songs, subscriptions and playlists among the two apps, since I use both of them.

After gathering enough data and insights (hopefully, with your help), I’m planning on writing an article myself, so that anyone in my situation in the future can have a thorough and complete guide to follow in order to switch without too many complications.



Critical questions:

  • Is there some script to convert Spofity exported data in a format readable by NewPipe and Freetube? Hence seamlessly moving from Spotify to FreeTube / NewPipe?
  • Is there some script to convert YouTube exported data (subscriptions and playlists) in a format readable by NewPipe and Freetube? Hence moving from YouTube to FreeTube / NewPipe?
  • How do I sync my subscriptions, playlists and liked songs between FreeTube and New Pipe?
    There’s an open issue about this on NewPipe’s GitHub repository, but in the meanwhile I’m keen to know how other people manage everything.
  • If I wanted to make some playlists public, could I create them from NewPipe / FreeTube and sync them with Invidious? (Specifically, the instance I use is yewtu.be) Alternatively, is there some effective way to share my playlists with friends, ideally even ones who don’t have my same apps installed?
    I am already using several great services as OpenWhyd and Radio4000, but nevertheless it’s very time consuming, itchy and stressful to move from one app to the other and doing everything manually.
  • Platforms like Funkwhale are based on ActivityPub, therefore they are integrated in the Fediverse and make music and playlist sharing waaay easier (and kinda cool, too). The problem is that the catalogue is much much limited, and it’s quite useless to be able to publicly share playlists poor in contents. Is it possible / is there a platform able to integrate ActivityPub with YouTube or Invidious playlists? It would be awesome, since it would be a universally accepted, federated and decentralized system to share any music, not just the one originally published to Funkwhale!


Thanks a lot in advance for your kind support! It goes without saying that everything you’ll be posting here will be of great help for me and for drafting my article on the matter. Please, if you have any further or more specific questions about the topic, don’t hesitate to let me know

Best,
Tommi

(Note: I have a server and I can self-host virtually anything I like, even if I probably lack the skills to set stuff up; this post was also published on PrivacyTools Community)

I don’t have many answers to any of the questions that you have raised, but I am curious about a couple of things…

What you are talking about is a move from Spotify, a streaming music service, to a couple of YouTube clients, which are video streaming.

Is this an intentional thing or is it just that you couldn’t find another music streaming option that fitted what you want/need?

Although the clients that you are proposing to use are both ‘private’ they are still using YouTube and therefore supporting that system and all of the ethical and privacy concerns that come with it, does that bother you?

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You are completely right, @John.

As I wrote in my notes about quitting Spotify, my purpose is to differentiate the most I can my use of many services, so that I can foster competitiveness and avoid monopolization, as it is unfortunately happening with Spotify.

The problem with differentiation is that most of the other services come at a price and of course I can’t afford all of them. Hence, I have to select an option which in most cases has the music I’m looking for, no matter what. This is why I go for YouTube. Again, YouTube actually is a monopoly, but I believe that using it with proxies and without trackers goes in a certain sense against the purpose of YouTube itself, pushing it in some way to change its policies and therefore its business model.

Regarding the first question, the only downside to this is the possible drop in audio quality. From all the other points of view, clients which I mentioned offer the possibility of filtering out the video from the audio and streaming exclusively the latter.

I hope I cleared your doubts. Please consider that I knowledge that my position regarding YouTube isn’t exactly ethical, but it’s overall the most convenient solution.

T

Thanks for the explanations :slight_smile:

I wasn’t trying to be critical, was just curious more than anything especially about the fact that this is not a like for like swap.

I’d actually say that YouTube is probably much more of a monopoly than Spotify is, there are other commercial alternatives to Spotify like Deezer or TIDAL which can compete with it. There is no video streaming service on the planet that comes close to YouTube.

I haven’t tried any of the YouTube proxy services (or alternative frontends or whatever we are calling them). I’d like to hear your opinions on how well they work when you’ve used them for a while.

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It sounds more like you’re looking for free alternatives, which isn’t really what finding ethical alternatives is about.

There are many alternatives to Spotify, like the Tidal and Apple Music.

There’s even Pandora, which is free, but with the ads and tracking, I wouldn’t consider ethical.

Point is, musicians produced the music you love, and the only ethical thing to do is to ensure they’re paid. We could argue forever about how the rates they’re paid are unethical (I totally agree they are not paid enough), but to pay them nothing (by seeking a fully free and likely pirated service) would be absolutely unethical.

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You’re right. I’ll go for something in the middle, which I pay but which stays convenient. Bandcamp is nice, but is has a limited catalogue…