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How iMet My Neighbor on iTunes

One night, NPR reporter David Kestenbaum was listening to music on iTunes. And he was bored with his playlist. Then he noticed something strange — a mysterious folder called "Anna's Music" had popped up his screen. He'd never seen it before.

And the weird thing is, when he went to listen to the music, it was just like his. Everything he had, she had: Beck, the White Stripes, Beth Orton... It was as if he'd found his musical soulmate.

Who is Anna and how did her songs end up on Kestenbaum's computer?

When he clicked on one of the songs, her e-mail address appeared. He sent her a note (making sure to emphasize that he was not a stalker). He issued an invitation to dinner. He made sure to mention that he was married. And then, with the aid of his wife, he set out to find Anna.

There was an awkward encounter — and a lesson about how the Internet can bring us closer to strangers but can also keep us apart.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

David Kestenbaum is a correspondent for NPR, covering science, energy issues and, most recently, the global economy for NPR's multimedia project Planet Money. David has been a science correspondent for NPR since 1999. He came to journalism the usual way — by getting a Ph.D. in physics first.