Spotify has confirmed that it is removing songs from Neil Young's catalogue after the singer issued an ultimatum to the streaming giant earlier this week.
Why does it matter?
He demanded that the platform take a stand against Joe Rogan, its biggest podcaster, for repeated shows featuring misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic and its vaccines.
What's my take?
Okay, so Neil Young being removed from the platform isn't going to really make a huge difference to most Spotify listeners. but it does show how fragile Spotify's business model is. I don't think he'll be the last artist to raise concerns over podcast content, neither.
It would only take a couple of other artists or labels to pull their music from the platform and the company will have a major crisis on its hands.
That was always the fear for Netflix too. But, the video streaming giant countered by making its own movies and TV shows. That way, it had its own content to lure in customers and wasn't so reliant on third-parties.
We've not seen Spotify move into the music ownership or publishing business in a serious way yet, but I believe it should look at that option. If it owns music rights itself, it will have better control on where it's played and who gets to listen to it.