Apple Music pulled R. Kelly from curated playlists weeks ago amid abuse allegations, repor...

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in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited May 11
After revelations that music streaming leader Spotify ceased active promotion of R. Kelly songs and playlists as the singer faces assault and sexual misconduct allegations, a report on Friday claims Apple applied similar policies to its Apple Music service weeks ago.

R. Kelly


On Thursday, Spotify sparked a minor controversy in announcing Kelly's songs would no longer be promoted as featured playlists, a move that satisfies the company's new policy against "hate content and hateful conduct." As noted by Rolling Stone, the artist's songs are still available for streaming, but users need to conduct a search to access them.

"His music will still be available on the service, but Spotify will not actively promote it," Spotify said in a statement to Billboard on Thursday. "We don't censor content because of an artist's or creator's behavior, but we want our editorial decisions-- what we choose to program-- to reflect our values."

A day later, Pitchfork, citing a source familiar with the matter, reports Apple Music took a similar tack when it began removing Kelly's music from curated playlists like "Best Slow Jams of the 90s, Vol. 1" and "several weeks ago." Despite no longer being part of the playlists, Kelly's image still appears in-app posters for the curated content as Apple has yet to update those images.

It appears Apple's policies regarding promotional activities are not as wide-reaching as those instituted by Spotify. There are at least seven Apple Music playlists that currently feature Kelly, some of which namecheck the artist in their respective titles, the report notes.

A separate report from The Blast notes Pandora also halted Kelly-related promotional efforts, saying the decision comes as it grapples with methods of approaching "artists with unacceptable conduct."

Over the past few years, a number of women have come forward with accusations of abuse, though the singer has never been convicted in court. Criticism of the singer's extracurricular activities reached new heights over the past weeks, in large part thanks to the #MuteRKelly campaign, an offshoot of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements.

For his part, Kelly and his management team deny the allegations and characterize recent events as an "attempted public lynching of a black man who has made extraordinary contributions to our culture."

Promoting -- or more accurately not promoting -- content created by artists whose private lives court controversy is a relatively new phenomenon for streaming companies. The policies that resulted in Kelly's playlist ban, and that of XXXTentacion on Spotify, have some fans crying foul, with critics saying the new guidelines adopted amount to censorship.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 28
    I don't see it as censorship if his music is still available.  It would be different if they pulled all his music from their catalog, but even then I would feel that it's within the right of Apple or Spotify or whatever streaming service to not make his music available. Is there anything saying Apple (or whichever company) MUST carry every artist and all of that person's music and make it available forever?

    BUT, will they treat all artists the same? They should. And if a particular person's personal behavior starts affecting their professional life maybe we'll start to see less and less of that unacceptable behavior.  That wouldn't be a bad thing.
    edited May 11
  • Reply 2 of 28
    AF_HittAF_Hitt Posts: 45member
    “Alleged”. Apparently that word doesn’t mean what it used to. Look, I get it, R. Kelly doesn’t have the best track record and these accusations aren’t pretty, but he still hasn’t been proven guilty. I wonder, if Drake or Kendrick Lamar had these allegations against them, would Apple take the same stance? I’m not saying those two have, but R. Kelly is far from the only musician or artist to have bad behavior.
    wonkothesanecornchip
  • Reply 3 of 28
    mac_dogmac_dog Posts: 581member
    So...guilty until proven innocent. How the mighty have fallen. 😔
  • Reply 4 of 28
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    What's this "innocent until proven guilty" shit? Apple isn't a court of fucking law? I bet you're the same people that decry that your First Amendment rights are being violated if your comment on private internet forum gets deleted for breaking their rules.

    If you think that Apple shouldn't "cease active promotion" of R. Kelly then you can censure them by censoring them. You have that right!
    edited May 11
  • Reply 5 of 28
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,405member
    mac_dog said:
    So...guilty until proven innocent. How the mighty have fallen. 😔
    Just the beginning my friend. #MeToo is just getting started. All it takes is the accusation and it’s all over. Take him out and string him up.
  • Reply 6 of 28
    I Believe I Can Fly Into Jail
    payecocornchip
  • Reply 7 of 28
    toku2toku2 Posts: 1member
    I love the hypocrisy on display. R Kelly and XXXTentacion have been convicted of nothing and are removed from all playlists. Meanwhile Dr Dre, Tupac, and Chris Brown have all been convicted but they haven’t been removed. In the case of Dr Dre, he’s even still an employee of Apple despite a long history of assaulting women and being convicted of it in a court of law (Dee Barnes, Michel’le, Tairrie B, etc).
    cornchip[Deleted User]
  • Reply 8 of 28
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    1) "Spotify announced today that it's removing R. Kelly's music from all of its curated playlists as part of an updated policy toward objectionable content and conduct by artists, which is rough for him because he's totally into streaming." — Seth Meyers

    2) Dave Chappelle lampooning R. Kelly over previous weird shit he's done.

    edited May 12
  • Reply 9 of 28
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,288member
    toku2 said:
    I love the hypocrisy on display. R Kelly and XXXTentacion have been convicted of nothing and are removed from all playlists. Meanwhile Dr Dre, Tupac, and Chris Brown have all been convicted but they haven’t been removed. In the case of Dr Dre, he’s even still an employee of Apple despite a long history of assaulting women and being convicted of it in a court of law (Dee Barnes, Michel’le, Tairrie B, etc).
    WTF are you on about? Kelly has been found guilty in the past. He also has a very long history of heinous crimes. Having a good lawyer because you have money, settling out of court, or being found not guilty is not the same as innocent.

    Are you still defending OJ for not being a murderer because he was found not guilty in criminal court, or Casey Anthony of not murdering her daughter, or that Bill Cosby only raped 1 person because that's all he was convicted of which means the other 59 are liars?
    edited May 12
  • Reply 10 of 28
    irelandireland Posts: 17,422member
    Extracurricular ?
  • Reply 11 of 28
    joogabahjoogabah Posts: 108member
    It’s all driven by hypocrisy and fear.  At best it is self righteous and ugly groupthink. I’m a feminist and firmly on the left but #MeToo is illiberal and anti-democratic.  It’s a pseudo-left McCarthyite-style witch hunt probably used to go after people to settle old scores. 

    And since when does one have to approve of an artist’s values or conduct in order to buy and sell or enjoy their art?  And why only blacklisting for alleged sexual misconduct (that in at least some cases seems to include awkward passes as “assault”). 

    And yes, the idea of enforced discussion moderation rubs me the wrong way too.  Why can’t people just read past text they disagree with or don’t like?  Moderation is an Orwellian term for censorship.  If this society tries to minimize government as much as possible and everyone runs around saying civil liberties are meaningless in the private sector then those liberties don’t amount to much. 
    cornchip
  • Reply 12 of 28
    Is this the guy who was in the closet with Tom Cruise in South Park?
    sphericwilliamlondon
  • Reply 13 of 28
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    Apple Music should curate every artist, so we can play music fit for the ears of children. They should represent what's best in people, like Disney. Apple has to take a stand for what is good and pure.
  • Reply 14 of 28
    darkvaderdarkvader Posts: 323member
    Is this the guy who was in the closet with Tom Cruise in South Park?
    Along with John Travolta, yes, R. Kelly was in the closet with Tom Cruise.

    South Park missed an opportunity with that one, Kelly didn't pee on anybody in that episode.

  • Reply 15 of 28
    darkvaderdarkvader Posts: 323member
    Interesting that they're doing this now.

    He's been known to be like this for years.  Here's a rundown from almost a year ago, it's all been going on since the '90s.


  • Reply 16 of 28
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,757member
    mac_dog said:
    So...guilty until proven innocent. How the mighty have fallen. 😔
    Apple is not a court of fracking law, got that bud. He can sell his crap on his own web site.
    Soli
  • Reply 17 of 28
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,757member
    joogabah said:
    It’s all driven by hypocrisy and fear.  At best it is self righteous and ugly groupthink. I’m a feminist and firmly on the left but #MeToo is illiberal and anti-democratic.  It’s a pseudo-left McCarthyite-style witch hunt probably used to go after people to settle old scores. 

    And since when does one have to approve of an artist’s values or conduct in order to buy and sell or enjoy their art?  And why only blacklisting for alleged sexual misconduct (that in at least some cases seems to include awkward passes as “assault”). 

    And yes, the idea of enforced discussion moderation rubs me the wrong way too.  Why can’t people just read past text they disagree with or don’t like?  Moderation is an Orwellian term for censorship.  If this society tries to minimize government as much as possible and everyone runs around saying civil liberties are meaningless in the private sector then those liberties don’t amount to much. 
    Right.. Pile on the false equivalence...  Go on, pile on the straw man an the intellectual and moral bankruptcy.

    The guy's a well known scum for a decade; he should be shunned by all men, women, everyone for his vile actions.
    If you have a damn PR problem for being a piece of crap, well don't be a piece of crap and it will all go away.
    That's the same thing with any product, if you produce a fantastic smart phone built on the back of slavery and environmental catastrophes, it will affect public perception and the ability to get others to sell it. Many won't buy it and retailers won't sell it.

    Also, Artist don't just "sell music", so your whole spiel sounds hollow.

    You also know that Apple is not the god damn gov, if he wants to sell his "music" he can still do it on his own web site.


  • Reply 18 of 28
    macmarcusmacmarcus Posts: 36member
    I knew this would become an issue, same for books, movies, actors you name it. Bad move by Apple.

    Let the people who curate the playlists use any song, artist, album they want in their playlists. THEN LET THE SUBSCRIBER DECIDE by giving them the option to opt out of any artist, song, album, rating, whatever they don't want to hear and the curated playlist will skip those. If not, good lordy half the hip hop artists would be off all playlists. Bad move by Apple.
    edited May 12
  • Reply 19 of 28
    mygigmygig Posts: 24member
    guilty until proven innocent?
  • Reply 20 of 28
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,757member
    macmarcus said:
    I knew this would become an issue, same for books, movies, actors you name it. Bad move by Apple.

    Let the people who curate the playlists use any song, artist, album they want in their playlists. THEN LET THE SUBSCRIBER DECIDE by giving them the option to opt out of any artist, song, album, rating, whatever they don't want to hear and the curated playlist will skip those. If not, good lordy half the hip hop artists would be off all playlists. Bad move by Apple.
    They can decide by going to buy it elsewhere, see, all is done. The a book store has no obligation to host nazi literature and just "let people decide". The owners are also people and they have their right to sell what they want.
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