Spotify Gets COVID-19 Advisory and New Feature

Spotify found itself involved in controversy a few months ago over Joe Rogan’s podcast. The podcast, which tops Spotify’s charts, was repeatedly spreading misinformation about the virus.

As a result, hundreds of scientists and physicians wrote to Spotify demanding that it institute misinformation policies. Now, the popular music streaming app is finally rolling out content advisory warnings for podcats that discuss COVID-19.

The advisory will appear as a blue bar above podcasts discussing COVID-19 and it will suggest users to learn more. This will take you to Spotify’s COVID-19 information hub which was added back in March 2020.

The advisory shows up for podcasts that have words like “COVID-19,” “coronavirus” or “pandemic” in their metadata including the title. Spotify says that it has been rolling out the feature since February this year, but it took longer to appear in some regions.

Now, however, Spotify has marked over 1.4 million podcasts with this warning.

Similar features were rolled out by Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook in 2020 when COVID-19 misinformation was surging on social media. Twitter even started banning tweets that could potentially help the virus spread. It also released advisory warnings on tweets discussing the virus or the pandemic.

New Feature

In related news, Spotify is testing a feature to help you find the podcasts you like. The news comes a year after Spotify acquired podcast discovery platform Podz for $49.4 million.

The music app is now adding a dedicated Tik-Tok style vertical scrolling feed for podcasts. This feed will include 60-second audio clips from different podcasts with subtitles.

But since the feature is only in testing, for now, it is quite possible that there will be some changes before the official launch. There is no official launch date either.