Spotify Will No Longer ‘Promote’ R. Kelly

Starting today, Spotify will no longer be streaming R. Kelly’s music on its editorial or algorithmic playlists, Billboard reports. Under the company’s new “public hate content and hateful conduct policy,” the service will not be featuring Kelly’s songs on its popular curated and automated playlists—like RapCaviar or Discover Weekly. “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,” Spotify told Billboard in a statement. “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.” Kelly is the only artist currently affected by the new policy, but others might be affected in the future. In a statement, R. Kelly called Spotify's move “without merit [and] based on false and unproven allegations.” He also pointed out that the streaming service “promotes numerous other artists that are convicted felons [or] arrested on charges of domestic violence[.]” This comes as Kelly has been accused of running a “sex cult” of young women, and the #MuteRKelly movement has gotten support from Time’s Up.