As many of you know by now, yesterday Spotify removed XXXTentacion and R Kelly from their playlists.
“We don’t censor content because of an artist’s or creator’s behavior, but we want our editorial decisions — what we choose to program — to reflect our values. When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful, it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator.” -Spotify
If you want to learn more, you can refer to Spotify’s Hate Content & Hateful Conduct policy.
First off, in my opinion, Spotify deserves to be commended for removing artists they don’t believe are aligned with their values from their playlists. Multiple times artists on my roster would question: How is it possible I didn’t make New Music Friday, but a known woman beater did?
Spotify alluded to their values in the statement above as the reason for their decision. Since the beginning, one of Spotify’s core values has been transparency.
Now that Spotify has taken action of this nature, it is important in accordance with the value of transparency to clarify how they will decide whether to take similar action against other artists.
Art is a God given freedom of expression. However, Spotify is not banning artists from their platform, they’re simply choosing not to propel these artists on their platform.
UPDATE: As of earlier today, it became apparent Apple and Pandora have also removed R Kelly from promoted playlists.