Jan 25, 2022 - Health

Neil Young demands Spotify take down music over vaccine misinformation

Neil young
Neil Young in 2019. Photo: Jo Hale/Redferns

Musician Neil Young demanded that Spotify pull his music from its service, accusing the company of spreading vaccine misinformation in a since-deleted letter that was briefly posted to his website Monday night, Rolling Stone first reported.

Why it matters: The letter added to mounting pressure on Spotify to better regulate vaccine COVID-19 vaccine misinformation on its streaming platform.

  • Spotify has landed in hot water before due to anti-vaccination remarks made by Joe Rogan, whose podcast Spotify hosts.
  • Earlier this month, hundreds of scientists and public health professionals posted an open letter to Spotify asking the company to better handle vaccine misinformation on its service, singling out Rogan's show for "promoting baseless conspiracy theories."

The big picture: Young's letter, addressed to his management team and record label and posted on his website, also singled out Rogan in demanding that Spotify take down his music, per Rolling Stone.

  • “I am doing this because Spotify is spreading fake information about vaccines – potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread by them," the letter read, Rolling Stone reported.
  • “I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform,” he added.
  • “They can have [Joe] Rogan or Young. Not both.”

State of play: The letter had been removed from Young's website by Tuesday morning, per the New York Times.

  • Young's manager, Frank Gironda, confirmed to The Daily Beast that his client had posted the letter on Monday evening, adding, "We’re trying to figure this out right now."
  • “It’s something that’s really important to Neil,” Gironda said. “He’s very upset about this disinformation.”
  • Spotify didn't respond to a request for comment.
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