Spotify has announced plans to introduce a new ad format called sponsored songs. The new ads will only affect non-premium users.
Spotify told TechCrunch that sponsored songs are “a product test for labels to promote singles on the free tier.”
This new format will allow labels to pay Spotify so that selected songs will be shown at the top of playlists.
If the practice takes off, it will mean Spotify will go down the same road as radio, another puppet for record labels.
The new format is also a U-turn for the company, who back in 2015 banned users from accepting payment to put certain songs on playlists. Curators of third-party playlists were asking anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 per song.
“We are absolutely against any kind of ‘pay to playlist’, or sale of playlists,” Spotify said in a 2015 statement to the Financial Times. “It’s bad for artists and it’s bad for fans.”
If you don’t have Spotify premium, luckily titter users have found a way to turn of the sponsored songs.
— Chris Messina 🦅 (@chrismessina) June 18, 2017