Spotify Backtracks on Targeting Hateful Content

Manila Bulletin, June 2, 2018 | Go to article overview

Spotify Backtracks on Targeting Hateful Content


NEW YORK (AFP) - Spotify on Friday backtracked on a policy that reduced exposure for artists accused of personal misconduct, after criticism that the leading streaming platform was hurting musicians over vague criteria.

Spotify said in May that it would remove from its playlists -- a popular way for listeners to discover artists and replay songs -- music from artists known for "harmful or hateful" behavior, although the tracks would still be available.

The move followed a campaign by the Time's Up movement for gender equality for the music industry to drop R. Kelly, the R&B star who has faced multiple accusations of sexual misconduct with young women and underage girls.

Kelly was among artists booted from playlists under the policy as well as XXXTentacion, a rapper involved in numerous violent incidents including allegedly beating his pregnant ex-girlfriend.

But following criticism, Spotify said its language was "vague and left too many elements open to interpretation," including whether unproven allegations or youthful transgressions would affect artists' ability to enter playlists.

"That's not what Spotify is about. We don't aim to play judge and jury," the Swedish company, which has 174 million users globally, said in a blog post. …

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Spotify Backtracks on Targeting Hateful Content
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