Spotify Purges Violent, Hate-Inspired Music From Its Service Amid Charlottesville Fallout

“Illegal content or material that favors hatred or incites violence against race, religion, sexuality or the like is not tolerated by us,” streaming service says

Last Updated: August 16, 2017 @ 5:39 PM

Sorry, white supremacists; you’ll have to look somewhere other than Spotify for the playlist to your next dance party.

A spokesperson for Spotify told TheWrap on Wednesday that the streaming service is taking action to remove music that “favors hatred” from its catalog.

“The music in our catalog comes from hundreds of thousands of record companies and aggregators all over the world, and those are at first hand responsible for the content they deliver,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “Illegal content or material that favors hatred or incites violence against race, religion, sexuality or the like is not tolerated by us. Spotify takes immediate action to remove any such material as soon as it has been brought to our attention.”

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The statement comes just days after deadly violence erupted in Charlotessville, Virginia over the weekend, after white nationalists descended on the city to protest the planned removal of a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Police evacuated crowds from Emancipation Park, where a rally was to be held at noon, after the white nationalists faced off with counter-protesters. Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe was prompted to declare a state of emergency.

The violence culminated in a multi-vehicle incident during which a car plowed into a crowd of counter-protesters. One person was reported dead and 19 injured. More than 30 were hurt in total as a result of events at the rally. Two Virginia State Police troopers were also killed when a police helicopter assisting with the melee crashed outside of Charlottesville. The incident is under investigation but police say that foul play is not suspected.

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As a bit of counter-programming, Spotify launched its “Patriotic Passion” playlist on Wednesday. The playlist includes Jimi Hendrix’s rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Lady Gaga’s “Americano” and Khalid’s “American Teen,” among others.

In a tweet posted Wednesday, Spotify described the playlist as “a soundtrack to an America worth fighting for.”

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