The top pension authority in New York State has requested Spotify Technology SA for details on the effectiveness of its new content regulations, citing complaints such as podcaster Joe Rogan spreading false information regarding COVID-19 vaccines.
In a letter addressed to Spotify Chief Executive Daniel Ek on Feb. 2, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, who controls funds that hold Spotify shares, demanded the report, which was seen by a major Newswire.
Spotify was also encouraged in the letter to provide users with an easy way to report content that might violate its policies, as well as to outline how its board of directors evaluates content risks and enforcement.
Spotify has been accused of hosting content such as COVID-19 disinformation, as well as racist and antisemitic material, according to DiNapoli. Neil Young, a well-known rock musician, departed the platform last month, claiming that Rogan had misled the public regarding vaccines, and was followed by other celebrities.
Failure to successfully filter content on a company's platforms can lead to numerous reputational, regulatory, legal, and financial problems, as we have seen with other technology and media firms that host or publish content," DiNapoli stated.
Representatives from Spotify did not reply to calls for comment.
Rogan, the former host of the TV reality show Fear Factor and a mixed martial arts pundit who just inked a $100 million contract with Spotify to give his podcast exclusive rights, has promised to bring more balance to his show. To try to defuse the criticism, the corporation announced it would add a content advisory to any episode that discussed COVID.
Spotify also issued "platform standards" on Jan. 30 that prohibit "material that incites violence or hatred against a person or group of people based on race, religion, gender identity or expression," among other things.
As of December 31, DiNapoli's retirement funds owned $41 million worth of Spotify stock, which was just the 73rd-largest investment in the company.
DiNapoli, on the other hand, has been part of a group of powerful campaigners who have successfully fought for more content supervision at other social media sites.