Spotify Shuts Down Huge Third-Party Service Over Playlist Scandal

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


One service which recently got the axe is SpotLister, which fered 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  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 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 , 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.