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Joni Mitchell joins Neil Young in pulling songs from Spotify over COVID-19 misinformation

Canadian songwriter Joni Mitchell said in a statement on Friday that she supports Neil Young, whose songs were pulled from Spotify earlier this week after an ultimatum with the streaming service, and said she wanted her music removed from the platform, too.

“I’ve decided to remove all my music from Spotify. Irresponsible people are spreading lies that are costing people their lives. I stand in solidarity with Neil Young and the global scientific and medical communities on this issue,” Mitchell said.

She has roughly 3.7 million monthly listeners, according to her Spotify page.

The announcement comes as Spotify earlier this week removed Young’s music after he gave the music streaming service an ultimatum to choose between his music or Joe Rogan’s podcast, which he said was “spreading fake information about vaccines.”

“I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform. They can have [Joe] Rogan or Young. Not both,” Young said in a letter to his management team and record label.

Earlier this month, 270 health care professionals signed an open letter asking that a counter-misinformation policy be developed in light of “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast, calling Rogan’s ideas “fringe” and “not backed in science.”

The podcast host has openly stated he is not vaccinated and will not get the vaccine, and took anti-parasitic medication ivermectin, which health officials have warned against taking to treat COVD-19, when he tested positive for the virus.  

Spotify said in a statement earlier this week that the company regretted Young’s decision but said it wanted to balance “safety for listeners and freedom for creators.”

“We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing both safety for listeners and freedom for creators,” a Spotify spokesperson told ITK in a statement on Wednesday.

“We have detailed content policies in place and we’ve removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic,” the statement added. “We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon.”

The Hill has reached out to Spotify for comment.

Tags Joe Rogan Joni Mitchell Neil Young Spotify

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