The mobile app, Spotify, recently said it would be suspending political ads early next year, becoming the latest technology leader to respond to concerns over misinformation ahead of the US elections. This initiative by the online music giant, which is based in Sweden, but has a large user base and operations in the United States, following the ban of Twitter on the majority of the political ads, and the decision of Google to restrict how such advertisements are targeted.
Spotify, which, as indicated in an article posted on Economic Times, "has some 130 million users, many of whom" are subscribed to the app's ad-supported model. More so, Spotify said it made such a decision because it lacked the ability to identify and filtering false information. In relation to the issue, Facebook may soon be the last social media giant to have political advertisements on its platform since Spotify already announced it is joining Twitter in putting the said ads on pause early next year.
Spotify, No Resources to Review and Validate Content
The leading online music platform revealed late last week that it would halt political ads because it does not have the resources to validate and review the type of content. More so, the change is taking effect on the ad-supported tier of Spotify, and original and exclusive podcasts. However, it is excluding external podcast that already has advertisements embedded in them.
As earlier mentioned, Spotify is following suit Twitter's initiative to ban political ads in early 2020, which ended the political campaign and issue ads last month, calling it a vital step to reduce the election-related misinformation flow. In relation to social media's involvement in political promotions, since the campaign to the 2016 US Presidential Election, political ads have turned a major penetrating point on social media sites that to crack down on disinformation.
Facebook and Twitter First to Deal with the Issue
It has been reported that Facebook has dealt with the issue but to no one's satisfaction. Twitter, on the other hand, has shut all the issues down altogether. As earlier mentioned, AdAge noted just last week, that Spotify is following Twitter's footsteps, at least, for the time being. The premier music streaming platform in the world is pumping pauses on political ads amidst the presidential race in 2020.
In an article posted on TechCrunch, indeed, from early next year, Spotify is pausing selling of political ads. This will include the content of the said format in its ad-supported tier, as well as that in its exclusive and original podcasts. The same article indicated that at this point.
Spotify does not have the "necessary level of robustness yet in its processes, tools, and systems" to responsibly review and validate the said content.
Moreover, reports on the issue have it that, according to Spotify, there is definitely something to be said for identifying one's restrictions. More so, since so much of the revenues of the company originates from ads are running on its free offering, there is a need for Spotify to commended for choosing to pull on the plug on a solid stream of revenue as the campaign enters the primary season.