Spotify responds to accusations of trying to "game" their system.
Earlier this week, Vulture published an article titled “The Streaming Problem: How Spammers, Superstars, and Tech Giants Gamed the Music Industry," sparking much discussion surrounding allegations that Spotify was essentially paying producers to create music under fake names that would be placed on premium playlists to, in turn, generate more money for the streaming platform.
According to the article, the payment upfront keeps Spotify from having to issue streaming checks, tricking "listeners into thinking the artists actually exist and limits the opportunities for real music-makers to make money."
The article's author, Adam K. Raymond cited this August report from Music Business Worldwide to support his claims.
Of course, the platform came out denying any wrongdoing.
“We do not and have never created ‘fake’ artists and put them on Spotify playlists. Categorically untrue, full stop,” a Spotify spokesperson told Billboard.. “We pay royalties — sound and publishing — for all tracks on Spotify, and for everything we playlist. We do not own rights, we’re not a label, all our music is licensed from rightsholders and we pay them — we don’t pay ourselves.”
The article went on to touch on Spotify users who try "game" the system to generate more cash by putting out cover songs by much bigger artists, and even misspelling names of popular artists in order to confuse the public.
“As we grow there will always be people who try to game the system," the spokesperson said. "We have a team in place to constantly monitor the service to flag any activity that could be seen as fraudulent or misleading to our users."