Harry and Meghan will continue to work with Spotify amid ‘misinformation’ drama

The pair currently have a $34 million deal with Spotify.
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have spoken out about their $34 million dollar deal with Spotify amid the ongoing drama surrounding the platform for hosting podcast star Joe Rogan, who has been accused of spreading vaccine “misinformation”.

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In case you missed it, singer Neil Young last week declared he would be removing his music catalog off Spotify if they continued to provide a platform for anti-vax rhetoric in a now-deleted letter to his manager and a Warner Music Group executive.

He specifically named Joe Rogan, who has drawn major criticism for fueling conspiracy theories about COVID-19 treatments and vaccines on his podcast the Joe Rogan Experience.

Harry and Meghan have a $34 million dollar deal with Spotify. (Credit: Getty)

The bold statement later saw #CancelSpotify trend on Twitter, with artists including Joni Mitchell and Nils Lofgren of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band backing Neil Young by also pulling their music from the platform.

Amid mounting pressure to address where they stand on the issue, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have now released a statement, where they said they have expressed their concerns to Spotify bosses about “the all too real consequences of Covid misinformation on its platform” – though added they would continue to work with them.

“Since the inception of Archewell, we have worked to address the real-time global misinformation crisis,” the pair began.

“Hundreds of millions of people are affected by the serious harms of mis- and disinformation every day.

“We have continued to express our concerns to Spotify to ensure changes.” (Credit: Getty)

“Last April, our co-founders began expressing concerns to our partners at Spotify about the all too real consequences of Covid misinformation on its platform.

“We have continued to express our concerns to Spotify to ensure changes to its platform are made to help address this public health crisis.

“We look to Spotify to meet this moment and are committed to continuing our work together as it does.”

Since the drama unfolded, Spotify announced they would be taking extra precautions to combat anti-vaccine misinformation spreading on the platform.

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In a statement posted to Spotify’s website, CEO Daniek Ek said that the platform will implement a new warning that will redirect users to a data hub of coronavirus facts.

“Based on the feedback over the last several weeks, it has become clear to me that we have an obligation to do more to provide balance and access to widely-accepted information from the medical and scientific communities guiding us through this unprecedented time”.

“I want you to know that from the very first days of the pandemic, Spotify has been biased toward action. We launched a variety of educational resources and campaigns to raise awareness and we developed and promoted a global COVID-19 Information Hub.”

He added, “We take this seriously and will continue to partner with experts and invest heavily in our platform functionality and product capabilities for the benefit of creators and listeners alike. That doesn’t mean that we always get it right, but we are committed to learning, growing and evolving.”

Joe Rogan’s podcast has been a source of major controversy. (Credit: Instagram)

The response follows an open letter penned to Spotify last month, which was signed by hundreds of scientists, professors and public health experts who urged Spotify to crack down on Rogan and pandemic misinformation at large.

“With an estimated 11 million listeners per episode, [Rogan’s show] is the world’s largest podcast and has tremendous influence. Though Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, the company presently has no misinformation policy,” the letter read.

“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Joe Rogan has repeatedly spread misleading and false claims on his podcast, provoking distrust in science and medicine. 

“This is not only a scientific or medical concern; it is a sociological issue of devastating proportions and Spotify is responsible for allowing this activity to thrive on its platform. We, the undersigned doctors, nurses, scientists, and educators thus call on Spotify to immediately establish a clear and public policy to moderate misinformation on its platform.”

Back in December 2020, the Duke and Duchess revealed that they had signed a multi-year contract with the audio streaming service to create exclusive audio programming under their newly formed Archewell Audio production company.

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“What we love about podcasting is that it reminds all of us to take a moment and to really listen, to connect to one another without distraction,” the couple said at the time

“With the challenges of 2020, there has never been a more important time to do so, because when we hear each other, and share each other’s stories, we are reminded of how interconnected we all are.”

Spotify added in a press release that Harry and Meghan’s podcasting ventures are an attempt to “build community through shared experience, narratives and values.”

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