With more than one-third of Spotify plays coming from playlists, the business of placing music on these curated lists has boomed. With a variety of companies and services now offering producers and musicians placement, Spotify has begun to crack down with updates to its Terms of Service and heavier enforcement of those policies.

One service which recently got the axe is SpotLister, which offered to connect those willing to pay with “influential curators on Spotify.” SpotLister was ultimately shut down for violating Spotify’s ToS in the way that it utilized the streaming service’s API. According to Daily Dot,

“Here’s how it works: When you upload a track to [SpotLister], it gets analyzed by what it calls its Playlisting Indexing Algorithm, which uses Spotify’s API and Echo Nest to scrape the song’s characteristics and uses that metadata to identify the most appropriate playlists to submit to. That way an indie rock band isn’t wasting time sifting through EDM playlists (or vice versa).”

Spotify also enacted a provision in 2016 that would prohibit “selling a user account or playlist, or otherwise accepting any compensation, financial or otherwise, to influence the name of an account or playlist or the content included on an account or playlist.”

Essentially, exactly what SpotLister and so many other services like it do.

SpotLister intended to rebrand as JamLister and enact a subscription-based model to combat criticism lobbied by Daily Dot in its original report, but the service is instead shutting down for good.

Daily Dot notes that it is all but impossible to completely stop payola from influencing Spotify playlists altogether, so it’s best to use your ears and just go with what sounds good to you, the listener.


via Daily Dot