Spotify has been the subject of many think pieces recently because of their new hateful conduct policy that gave them leeway to not promote artists who didn’t meet a certain standard of conduct outside of their musical output. The first two examples were XXXTentacian and R. Kelly. This caused praise from those who wanted to see people accused of sexual assault no longer be promoted by the music business and then anger from others who were firmly against a company like Spotify using its clout to punish artists based on allegations. It put themselves a position where they would have to judge artist behavior on a constant basis against the moving tent poles of what is acceptable in society and avoid massive public outrage at decision that distract from their work and lower stock price.
In a new statement released late Friday, the company said the “language was vague and left too many elements open to interpretation.” They also noted that some artists were fearful things they did in their youth would be used against them. “We don’t aim to play judge and jury,” explains the streaming service.
They do double down on the second part of their policy that removes hateful content from their service, but is walking back their policy of policing those who make it.