Spotting the problem with Spotify

Spotify has been in the news recently surrounding the Joe Rogan podcast, which Spotify has spent a large some of money to have on their platform. Due to Rogan’s past comments and misinformation about COVID-19, people have called on Spotify to pull his podcast from streaming. In response to the lack of inaction to address the issues, Neil Young pulled his music from Spotify, which contributed to a major decline in Spotify’s user base. This surge of people canceling their subscription to Spotify has caused Spotify’s net value to go down by two million dollars and is hurting stockholders in the process. The reason Spotify has not pulled Rogan from the platform is because of a 100 million dollar deal Spotify has to exclusively stream the podcast on Spotify. More recently, clips of Rogan using a slur during a story about a neighborhood in Philadelphia surfaced and have caused greater outrage. Since then, Rogan has apologized for his language during that segment. However,  some still call for Rogan to be pulled from Spotify. Others believe that censoring Rogan would be a violation of free speech online and want to keep the content of the podcast the way it is currently. 

The ramification of keeping Rogan on the platform would cause a continuous decline on the Spotify platform which is creating an “Audioboom.” Due to the decrease in usership on Spotify, many music streaming services have been trying to pull in new users into using their services in place of Spotify’s. This goes to show that the action or in this case lack of action from businesses against potentially problematic individuals do have an effect on the entirety of a platform. Because of this, a vacuum has been created within the music streaming industry which will remain until action is taken with Spotify or another service scoops up the new customers.