Spotify Hate Bands
Spotify has removed several bands classified as “hate bands” by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), according to a report from Billboard. The streaming service made the decision to remove the content after Digital Music News shared a list of 37 white supremacist musicians available on the app.
In 2014, the Southern Poverty Law Center published a report on racism and digital music titled ‘Music, Money, and Hate’. It concluded that there were at least 54 white supremacist bands selling music on iTunes that Apple was profiting from. Apple responded to the report by removing the bands. However, SPLC noted at the time that Spotify and Amazon were slow to do the same.
Now, a Spotify spokesperson has confirmed to Billboard that several of the artists have pulled from streaming. Others are under review.
“Spotify takes immediate action to remove any such material as soon as it has been brought to our attention,” a Spotify spokesperson told Billboard.
“We are glad to have been alerted to this content – and have already removed many of the bands identified today, whilst urgently reviewing the remainder.”
This follows the violent rally in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend. Hundreds of white supremacists and neo-nazis marched and chanted fascist slogans before clashing with counter-demonstrators. One person was killed and many others were left injured after a car drove through a crowd of protestors.
Digital Music News reporter Paul Resnikoff notes that it was simple to find white supremacist bands. This is because of Spotify because of the streaming service’s recommendation algorithm. Once you find one band, the streaming service basically sends the rest your way. Spotify is considering ways to block these recommendations in the future, according to Billboard.
As of now, many of the hate bands discovered by Digital Music News are still available to stream on Spotify. However, several have empty artist pages with no music.