Spotify is one of the largest online audio streaming platforms which provides DRM-protected music, podcasts from record labels and media companies. The service provided by them are for free, and essential features are free with advertisements while to remove them, you can buy a subscription.
Recently, the platform announced that they are planning to suspend selling political ads on the platform from early 2020. Due to the mounting pressure on online platforms to ban advertisements that carry false claims ahead of the US Presidential elections. This ban will extend to Spotify’s originals and podcasts as well.
Other social media platforms following Spotify
Google, Facebook, and Twitter are planning to impose a similar ban and incorporate new rules to curb miro-targeted political ads. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has decided to ban the political ads except for the ones that spread awareness about voter registration. After this, Facebook CEO considered limiting the electoral candidates to instigate a narrow group of voters.
In October 2019, hundreds of Facebook employees wrote to Zuckerberg, and they demanded a ban on these advertisements the way they ban housing and education and credit verticals because of the history of discrimination. Spotify decided to ban the content that promotes for or against political entities from early 2020 across its ad-supported tier and on its original and exclusive podcasts like “The Joe Budden Podcast” and “Amy Schumer Presents.”
Spotify India and the role of social media in the elections
Spotify launched its operations in India in February, and since then, the company has seen more than 2 million users in India, and it has focused on the Indian market. Spotify does not run any political ads in other countries like India; however, other social media platforms have been involved in the promotion of political ads.
It was found that one-third of the first-time voters in India was influenced by the political posts on social media platforms in the general elections. These messages reached 50% of first-time voters through social media, and only 20% were aware of the developments and the projects that were taking place in the country. Social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Google, and YouTube have decided to cooperate with the Election Commission of India, and they stated that only pre-authorized Indian advertisers could run political ads on their platforms before and during the time of elections.