Spotify Under Fire For User-Created Pro-Nazi and Anti-Semitic Playlists

Spotify hosting Nazi playlists
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Spotify hosting Nazi playlists
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Spotify hosting Nazi playlists? Several user-generated playlists available to the public drew criticism after a newspaper pointed out the rampant anti-Semitic content.

The Times of Israel pointed out several publicly available playlists on Spotify with anti-Semitic titles. Others praised Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler, photoshopping his head onto a fit (and nude) masculine model. Several titles included Holocaust denial remarks intended to disparage victims.

The user-created playlists include titles like “Songs to snore Anne Frank’s ashes” and “Straight Outta Auschwitz.”

Spotify says it is in the process of removing the content, but it was publicly available for months.

“The user-generated content in question violates our policy and is in the process of being removed. Spotify prohibits any user content that is offensive, abusive, defamatory, pornographic, threatening, or obscene,” a spokesperson said.

This incident isn’t even the first time Spotify got caught hosting white supremacist content. Back in 2017, Digital Music News highlighted 37 hate bands available on Spotify. The service quickly took action to remove most of the groups highlighted in that article, but user-generated content still gets free reign nearly three years later.

Spotify defended its initial action, saying content flagged by Germany’s Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Persons is removed automatically. Other cases receive attention on a case-by-case basis.

“We’re a global company, so we use the BPjM index as a global standard for these issues. Other potentially hateful or objectionable content that is flagged by users or others but not on the BPjM list is handled on a case-by-case basis,” Spotify told The Times of Israel.

Unfortunately, it took the Anti-Defamation League stepping in to get Spotify to remove the user-generated content. The hate images set off the controversy, since they shouldn’t be able to pass automatic checks in the first place.

Many of the user-created images depicted concentration camps, Anne Frank, and pro-Nazi imagery that should have met Spotify’s standards for removal immediately. Spotify hosting Nazi playlists shouldn’t be something that needs to be covered in 2020, but here we are.