'We do not yet have the necessary level of robustness in our processes...to responsibly validate and review this content.'
Spotify is suspending the sale of political ads on its platform beginning next year, the company has confirmed to Billboard.
“Beginning in early 2020, Spotify will pause the selling of political advertising,” said a Spotify spokesperson in an emailed statement. “This will include political advertising content in our ad-supported tier and in Spotify original and exclusive podcasts. At this point in time, we do not yet have the necessary level of robustness in our processes, systems and tools to responsibly validate and review this content. We will reassess this decision as we continue to evolve our capabilities.”
The decision only applies to Spotify in the U.S., as the service does not run political ads in other countries. The policy applies to candidates for office, elected and appointed officials, political parties, political action committees including SuperPACs and 501c4 orgs. It also bans any content that advocates for or against political entities as well as for legislative or judicial outcomes including ballot initiatives, referendums and propositions. It does not cover ads embedded in third-party content that runs on the platform (i.e. podcasts), though that content will continue to be subject to Spotify's broader content policies.