Spotify scraps political ads ahead of 2020 US elections

Spotify is playing the good guy because someone has to. The audio streaming app announced that it will no longer earn from selling political ads. This comes ahead of the 2020 election season in the United States.

Last Friday, the music and podcast streaming platform explained the rationale behind putting political ad sales on hold next year. In the company’s statement to Variety, Spotify says it isn’t capable of validating and reviewing political advertisements.

“Beginning in early 2020, Spotify will pause the selling of political advertising,” said a company spokesman, as per the news outlet. “This will include political advertising content in our ad-supported tier and in Spotify original and exclusive podcasts. At this point in time, we do not yet have the necessary level of robustness in our processes, systems, and tools to responsibly validate and review this content. We will reassess this decision as we continue to evolve our capabilities.”

AdAge first reported the platform’s move to ban the aforementioned ads. Previously, Spotify ran ads on its platform from Sen. Bernie Sanders who is currently campaigning for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

As the U.S. 2020 election nears, concerns have been raised about how giant web platforms will deal with political ads. Particularly when it comes to verification and fact-checking. Recently, social media giant Facebook shut down a massive network of falsified accounts spreading pro-Trump campaigns. “We detected these accounts because they were engaged in fake behavior,” says Nathaniel Gleicher, head of Facebook’s security policy. Twitter has also made a similar move.

Ben Hornery
Ben Hornery
Ben is is a senior journalist and sport columnist for Best in Australia. He previously worked for the BC and other radio stations.
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