Joni Mitchell has removed the majority of her back catalogue from Spotify, effective immediately. In doing so, Mitchell follows the lead of her friend and contemporary, Neil Young, who earlier this week took a stand against the “dangerous life-threatening COVID falsehoods found in Spotify programming.”
Mitchell announced the decision in a blog post titled “I Stand With Neil Young!” Mitchell said she was moved to remove her music from Spotify because “Irresponsible people are spreading lies that are costing people their lives.” She continued: “I stand in solidarity with Neil Young and the global scientific and medical communities on this issue.”
Mitchell shared a link to the open letter signed by a “coalition of scientists, medical professionals, professors, and science communicators,” which takes issue with COVID misinformation broadcast on the Joe Rogan Experience, a Spotify-exclusive podcast. Of particular concern to the coalition of experts is episode #1757, which features a conversation with Dr. Robert Malone.
“The episode has been criticized for promoting baseless conspiracy theories,” says the open letter. “By allowing the propagation of false and societally harmful assertions, Spotify is enabling its hosted media to damage public trust in scientific research and sow doubt in the credibility of data-driven guidance offered by medical professionals.”
Young echoed this sentiment in a blog post titled “Spotify: In the Name of Truth”, which confirmed his departure from the streaming giant. “I realized I could not continue to support Spotify’s life threatening misinformation to the music loving public,” wrote Young.