Streaming giant Spotify has found itself at the centre of public scrutiny in the wake of the Joe Rogan vs. Neil Young controversy.
While the effort of certain musicians and artists to battle misinformation is notable, Western University expert Norma Coates believes the boycotts may be missing the real issues surrounding the streaming service.
Coates is available for comment and contends the boycotts are successful in drawing attention to Spotify but miss the mark in addressing the main problem: that being a “middle-class” musician is virtually impossible.
“As much as I respect the artists who have pulled their music in solidarity, they have the financial ability to do so. They will not suffer too much, if at all. I would be happier if they pulled their music in order to support the majority of artists whose livelihoods were at best threatened and at worse destroyed by streaming services, especially Spotify.”
Coates is jointly appointed with the Faculty of Media and Information Studies and the Don Wright Faculty of Music. She is president of the U.S. Branch of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music and is currently working on a book about popular music on American network television for Duke University Press. Her research spans a wide range of topics all unified by a connection to popular music.
Commentary reflects the perspective and scholarly interest of Western faculty members and is not an articulation of official university policy on issues being addressed.
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