Thursday's Absurdity: Spotify Accepts Neil Young's Terms in Full
Management at the streaming/podcast platform Spotify fully accepted the terms offered by relic singer/songwriter Neil Young on Wednesday, after Young had demanded that they either cancel Joe Rogan’s highly successful podcast or quit streaming his music portfolio.
Very predictably, Spotify obliged Young by purging his music from its platform. This was not the hard decision Young apparently imagined it would be, given that Rogan’s podcast averages 11 million views every day, while Young’s music has an average audience of a few hundred thousand downloads per week. No doubt, Young got a call from someone at Spotify telling him “nothing personal, Neil, it’s just business,” which, after all, it is.
Here’s how Spotify put it in the Wall Street Journal story linked above:
Spotify Technology SA has removed Neil Young’s music, the company confirmed Wednesday, as the folk-rock star isn’t wavering in his objections to Joe Rogan’s podcast.
The “Heart of Gold” and “Harvest Moon” singer earlier this week penned an open letter to his manager and label asking them to remove his music from the service, saying it is spreading fake information about Covid-19 vaccines through Mr. Rogan’s show. “They can have Rogan or Young. Not both,” he wrote.
“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,” a Spotify spokesman said Wednesday. The company has detailed content policies in place and has removed over 20,000 Covid-19-related podcast episodes since the start of the pandemic, he added.
“We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon,” he said.
Here’s the good news for ‘60s and ‘70s music fans: This move only applied to Young’s mediocre solo career. This means that the really good stuff that he did in collaboration with Stephen Stills, David Crosby and Graham Nash will remain available for streaming.
Every dark cloud has a silver lining. Adios, Neil.
That is all.