Spotify Doesn’t Want Its Users Listening to R. Kelly But Isn’t Bothered Enough to Ban Him
After two decades of allegations, it’s finally looking like R. Kelly’s time is up. Last month his lawyer, publicist and personal assistant all abandoned him, and now you can add Spotify to that list — kinda. While it hasn’t completely taken R. Kelly off Spotify, the platform will no longer be putting him in official playlists.
Spotify just released its new “Hate Content and Hateful Conduct” policy. The policy covers both white supremacist music — a swath of which Spotify removed last August — as well as artists’ own conduct.
Spotify’s policy says, ” 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.” Spotify released a statement to Billboard with much of the same verbiage, with the only difference being that R. Kelly was called out by name as falling afoul of the new policy.
R. Kelly has faced numerous sexual abuse allegations over the past two decades. The latest allegations against the singer claim he’s running a “sex cult” and has trained girls as young as 14 to be his “pets.” Kelly denies the charges.
And R. Kelly’s not alone. After taking him off Spotify official playlists, it also took rapper XXXTentacion off playlists due to his being charged with four felonies: aggravated battery of a pregnant woman, domestic battery by strangulation, false imprisonment and witness tampering.
When asked for a comment, a representative for XXXTentacion said, “I don’t have a comment, just a question. Will Spotify remove all [these] artists from playlists?” and included a list of musical artists and allegations of sexual and domestic assault. The list included: Gene Simmons from KISS, David Bowie, Seal, Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, Nick Carter of Backstreet Boys, Michael Jackson, Miles Davis, 6ix9ine, Nelly and Dr. Dre.