Spotify Removes Thousands of AI-Generated Songs amid Fraud Concerns

Streaming music giant Spotify has taken action against AI music start-up Boomy, removing tens of thousands of songs from its platform amid growing concerns over streaming fraud and clutter.

The Financial Times reports that amid growing worries about streaming fraud and cluttered playlists, Spotify has taken action against AI music start-up Boomy by removing tens of thousands of songs from its platform.

Spotify chief Daniel Ek

About seven percent of the tracks uploaded by Boomy were removed by the dominant audio streaming service because they were thought to have been artificially streamed by online bots posing as human listeners. The decision was made at a time when the music industry is grappling with issues related to the growing trend of AI-generated songs and the subsequent manipulation of streaming data.

A source with knowledge of the situation confirmed that Universal Music, a major recording company, alerted major streaming platforms to suspicious streaming activity on Boomy tracks. To address the AI streaming problem affecting the entire industry, Spotify responded by removing the flagged content. “Artificial streaming is a longstanding, industry-wide issue that Spotify is working to stamp out across our service,” the company said in a statement.

Boomy, a California-based start-up founded two years ago, lets users use different styles or descriptors to generate tracks automatically. These songs could be made available on streaming services, earning users royalties. Over 14 million songs have been written by Boomy users to date.

Universal’s Chief Digital Officer, Michael Nash, praised the vigilance of streaming services, saying: “We are always encouraged when we see our partners exercise vigilance around the monitoring or activity on their platforms.”

The Chief Executive of Universal, Lucian Grainge, has voiced concerns about the abundance of music on websites like Spotify, where 100,000 new songs are added every day. Grainge cautioned that generative AI, if unchecked, will increase the volume of unwanted content on platforms and lead to problems with existing copyright laws.

Last month, according to a report in the Financial Times, Universal wrote to streaming services pleading with them to take action against the use of generative AI on their platforms. Daniel Ek, the CEO of Spotify, acknowledged the quickening pace of AI development and said, “I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like it in technology.”

Over the weekend, Boomy resumed submitting fresh music to Spotify, and it is currently negotiating the return of its catalog. The company emphasized its stance against manipulation and artificial streaming, asserting, “Boomy is categorically against any type of manipulation or artificial streaming. We are working with industry partners to address this issue.”

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