Spotify, one of the world’s largest streaming services, has taken down tens of thousands of songs generated by the artificial intelligence (AI) startup Boomy. The Financial Times reported that Universal Music warned streaming services about Boomy’s suspicious activity, suspecting that bots had been used to inflate audience statistics.
Boomy: The AI Company Behind Thousands of Generated Songs
Boomy is an AI company that allows users to generate music and receive royalty payments from streams. The startup lets users create songs in different styles, from rap to lo-fi, and then release them to streaming services where they can earn royalties. Despite only fully launching in 2021, Boomy’s website claims that it has generated 14.5 million songs, or 14% of the world’s recorded music.
Spotify’s Response to Suspicious Activity
According to the FT report, Spotify took down about 7% of the tracks uploaded by Boomy because the number of streams had been artificially boosted. Spotify said in a statement sent to Insider, “Artificial streaming is a longstanding, industry-wide issue that Spotify is working to stamp out across our service.”
“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,” it added. “This allows us to protect royalty payouts for honest, hardworking artists.”
Universal Music’s Warning to Streaming Services
Universal Music previously warned streaming platforms to block AI services from training themselves on its songs. “You could say: compose a song that has the lyrics to be like Taylor Swift, but the vocals to be in the style of Bruno Mars, but I want the theme to be more Harry Styles,” a person close to the situation told the FT. “The output you get is due to the fact the AI has been trained on those artists’ intellectual property.”
Spotify CEO’s Take on AI-Generated Music
Last month, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said the music industry had “legitimate concerns” about AI-generated songs, adding that Spotify was hoping to “establish a position” where it can protect creators but also permit innovation on its platform.
AI-Generated Songs on TikTok
AI-generated songs using the voices of popular artists such as Drake and The Weeknd racked up millions of views on TikTok last month, but were taken down for copyright infringements, according to The Guardian.
Boomy did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment, sent outside US working hours.
In conclusion, Spotify’s removal of thousands of AI-generated songs highlights the issue of artificial streaming and the need for the industry to take action against stream manipulation. The rise of AI-generated music also raises concerns about copyright infringement and protecting creators’ intellectual property. While innovation in music creation is necessary, it is important to ensure that it is done ethically and legally.