Spotify pulls Neil Young’s music after podcast protest

THE Spotify announced that it is working to remove from its musical catalog all works signed by the veteran musician Neil Young, responsible for hits like “Rockin’ in the Free World” and “Harvest Moon”. The decision was taken to comply with a demand from the musician himself, who said he would ask for the removal of his artistic property from the streaming platform if it did not exclude the anti-vaccination program led by the conservative from his list of podcasts. Joe Rogan.

Young’s request was made public through an open letter, later deleted, posted on one of his official profiles. According to the The Hollywood Reporter, the streaming platform accepted the musician’s request, and has already started the process of removing all songs from its service.

“We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing the safety of our listeners and the freedom of our creators. We have detailed content policies at position and we have removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic. We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from the platform, but we hope he returns soon.”, a spokesperson for the streaming platform told THR.

In the open letter he signed, published on January 24, Young stated: “I’m doing this because Spotify is spreading false information about vaccines — potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation is being spread by them. They could have Rogan or Young. Not both.”. In a later publication, this Wednesday (26), the musician stated that Spotify represents 60% of his streaming income in the world, which results in a “big loss for my label to absorb”. Even so, the veteran reinforces that “couldn’t continue to support Spotify’s fatal misinformation to music-loving audiences”.

“I really want to thank the many, many people who spoke to me and thanked me for taking this stand. People who work in healthcare, on the front lines, who have lost loved ones to Covid-19 or who are concerned about children and family members. I have never felt so much love from so many”, wrote Young. “I sincerely hope that other artists and other labels will move away from Spotify and stop supporting Spotifu’s fatal misinformation about Covid-19”.

Rogan, who hosts Spotify’s exclusive podcast The Joe Rogan Experience, has faced criticism for repeatedly sharing false or conflicting information about covid-19 vaccines on its program. In December, a group of 270 doctors and other healthcare professionals wrote a letter to Spotify seeking “mitigate the spread of misinformation on the platform”. This came shortly after Rogan hosted Dr. Robert Malone, an anti-vaccine skeptic who promotes unscientific theories against Covid-19 preventive vaccination, on his podcast.

About Abhishek Pratap

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