R. Kelly music removed from Spotify playlists due to new hateful conduct policy
Spotify has removed R. Kelly’s music from its playlists and recommendations citing a new hate content and hateful conduct public policy, the music streaming service announced on Thursday.
“We are removing R. Kelly’s music from all Spotify owned and operated playlists and algorithmic recommendations such as Discover Weekly,” Spotify said in a statement. “His music will still be available on the service, but Spotify will not actively promote it. 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. When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful, it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator.”
For more than two decades, Kelly has been embroiled in accusations and controversy, going all the way back to his illegal marriage to a then 15-year-old Aaliyah. In 2002, he was indicted on 21 counts of child pornography stemming from a video allegedly showing the singer having sex with an underage girl. He was eventually acquitted of all charges. The latest scandal stems from the allegations claiming he had kept women against their will for his “sex cult.” Kelly has “unequivocally” denied the reports.
In a statement obtained by EW, the singer’s management team called Spotify’s decision “unfortunate and shortsighted.” The full statement:
After the Spotify announcement, Time’s Up, which is pushing for major corporations and venues to cut ties with Kelly, thanked the company for its “leadership” on social media.