Spotify has confirmed that it will honor the demands of singer-songwriter Neil Young and will remove him from the platform after the audio platform refused to censor its most popular podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience.
Young demanded that Spotify remove Joe Rogan from the platform or remove his music instead. Young said that he refuses to share a platform with Rogan, after accusing the world’s number one podcaster of spreading “misinformation,” seemingly for daring to interview doctors and scientists who have skepticism about various aspects of the COVID vaccines, as well as accusing the government of suppressing valid treatments.
The decision arrived just days after Young demanded, in an open letter that he later deleted, that Spotify either remove his music or ban Joe Rogan.
“They can have Rogan or Young. Not both,” Young wrote.
Spotify quickly chose Rogan, whose popularity on the platform dwarfs Young’s.
“We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing both safety for listeners and freedom for creators. We have detailed content policies in place and we’ve removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to COVID since the start of the pandemic. We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon,” a Spotify spokesperson said in a statement.
According to the WSJ, Young; “has been in discussions with his label, Warner Music Group Corp.’s Warner Records, and Spotify since then, and continued to hold his ground, according to the people. The formal request to remove the music was made Wednesday and could take several hours to take effect across Spotify’s service across the world.”
In a post on his blog, Young said that Spotify had “become the home of life threatening COVID misinformation.”
Young says that he is losing 60% of his streaming income as a result of Spotify’s decision.