Is a crackdown on AI-generated music by streaming services beginning? AI music startup Boomy has revealed that its distribution pipeline to Spotify has been cut off.
“Very recently, Spotify stopped publishing new releases from Boomy. Additionally, certain catalog releases were removed from their platform,” the company announced in its Discord server.
“This decision was made by Spotify and Boomy’s distributor in order to enable a review of potentially anomalous activity.”
Update: this is a key point. The removals are NOT due to Boomy’s music being AI-generated. It’s about patterns of activity around some of that music. Spotify confirmed to Music Ally that some tracks had been removed after it detected artificial streaming. The service has also excluded streams of that music from its royalty calculations.
“Artificial streaming is a longstanding, industry-wide issue that Spotify is working to stamp out across our service,” said Spotify’s spokesperson.
“When we identify or are alerted to potential cases of stream manipulation, we mitigate their impact by taking action that may include the removal of streaming numbers and the withholding of royalties. This allows us to protect royalty payouts for honest, hardworking artists.”
Boomy’s service enables anyone to create music, edit it and/or add vocals, then package tracks up into albums for release on streaming services. The company has warned its community that Spotify may not be the only DSP to see this kind of blockage.
“As the music industry continues to navigate the use of bots and other types of potentially suspicious activity, these pauses are likely to happen more regularly and across a wider set of platforms.”
Nearly 14.4m songs have been created using Boomy since its launch in 2019, although that’s ‘created’ rather than ‘released’ – the latter metric isn’t public.
Plenty of Boomy-created music is still available on Spotify – only a few tracks on its flagship ‘This Is Boomy’ playlist are greyed out at the time of writing – but the development will be a concern for the company.
To be clear, though: Spotify detected streaming manipulation for some tracks that had been created using Boomy, but that does not mean Boomy was the manipulator. The fact that plenty of Boomy-made music remains on the service strongly suggests it was not, but we expect more details to emerge in the coming days. We’ll bring any developments to you as they emerge.
This story was amended on 3 May with Spotify’s statement, and to clarify that artificial streams were the cause of the removals, not the AI-generated nature of the music.
However, the clarification does raise an issue relating to that. Boomy’s USP is that you can use the service to quickly create LOTS of tracks, then release them commercially. That could attract fraudsters, if they see it as a way to release music at scale then use bots to ramp up its plays.
Boomy (or any similar service) isn’t the scammer in this instance: it would be one of the tools being used. But that would give it a responsibility (together with its distributor) for monitoring streaming patterns and cutting off any creators who are misusing its platform.
If this is the scenario – we’ll update this piece again when we hear from Boomy – tackling this issue is also a commercial necessity, because being blocked from streaming services would be a big problem for its business.
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