Spotify revokes its ‘hateful conduct’ policy

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Spotify has revoked its ‘hateful conduct’ policy, following CEO Daniel Ek’s admission that it had been poorly implemented.

Spotify has released a statement to announce that they are officially revoking their new 'hate content and conduct policy'.

The policy aimed to promote “openness, diversity, tolerance and respect”, however, the implementation of the policy did not go down well after rapper XXXTentacion’s music was pulled from Spotify’s playlists. Kendrick Lamar reportedly threatened to pull his music from the platform if the policy stood in its current state.

In conversation with Variety, Daniel Ek took personal responsibility for the rollout, saying “we rolled this out wrong and could have done a much better job.” He also said that it was never Spotify’s intention to target particular artists; “the whole goal with this was to make sure that we didn’t have hate speech.”

Daniel Ek was warned about a revolt over the policy

Anthony Tiggith, Head of Top Dawg Entertainment (Kendrick Lamar, SZA), told Billboard on Friday that he had warned Daniel Ek about an artist revolt over the policy.

In a statement, Spotify outlined that the aim was good, but the execution was not:

“While we believe our intentions were good, the language was too vague, we created confusion and concern, and didn't spend enough time getting input from our own team and key partners before sharing new guidelines.

We don’t aim to play judge and jury. We aim to connect artists and fans – and Spotify playlists are a big part of how we do that.

Across all genres, our role is not to regulate artists. Therefore, we are moving away from implementing a policy around artist conduct.”

Spotify statement

Whilst outlining that the policy will be revoked, the statement continued to explain that despite the U-turn, Spotify will not permit “content whose principal purpose is to incite hatred or violence”. As part of an existing policy, content that violates this will removed.

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