The utilitarian and hedonic outcomes of music information-seeking in everyday life

Audrey Laplante, J. Stephen Downie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This qualitative study focuses on what contributes to making a music information-seeking experience satisfying in the context of everyday life. Data were collected through in-depth interviews conducted with 15 younger adults (18 to 29. years old). The analysis revealed that satisfaction could depend on both hedonic (i.e., experiencing pleasure) and utilitarian outcomes. It was found that two types of utilitarian outcomes contributed to satisfaction: (1) the acquisition of music, and (2) the acquisition of information about music. Information about music was gathered to (1) enrich the listening experience, (2) increase one's music knowledge, and/or (3) optimize future acquisition. This study contributes to a better understanding of music information-seeking behavior in recreational contexts. It also has implications for music information retrieval systems design: results suggest that these systems should be engaging, include a wealth of extra-musical information, allow users to navigate among music items, and encourage serendipitous encountering of music.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)202-210
Number of pages9
JournalLibrary and Information Science Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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