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Spotify takes down thousands of AI-generated songs after suspected bot use to inflate streams, report says

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Photo of Spotify CEO Daniel EK with its logo behind himDaniel Ek, Spotify CEO.

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  • Boomy is an AI company which lets users generate music then get royalty payments from streams.
  • Tens of thousands of its songs were taken down by Spotify, the Financial Times reported.
  • Universal Music warned streaming services that the number of streams had been boosted by bots.

Spotify has taken down tens of thousands of songs which were generated by the AI startup Boomy, the Financial Times reported.

Boomy lets users create tunes in different styles from rap to lo-fi, then release it to streaming services where they can be paid royalties.

Despite only fully launching to the public in 2021, Boomy’s website claims it has generated 14.5 million songs or 14% of the world’s recorded music.

But the tracks were removed because the number of streams had been artificially boosted, Spotify said.

Universal Music warned all the main streaming platforms that it had seen suspicious activity on Boomy songs –  suggesting that bots had been used to inflate audience statistics – and Spotify then took down about 7% of the tracks uploaded by Boomy, according to the FT. 

In a statement sent to Insider, Spotify said: “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.”

The FT also previously reported that Universal told 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.”

Last month, the 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 using the voices of Drake and The Weeknd racked up millions of views on TikTok last month, before being taken down for copyright infringements, The Guardian reported.

Boomy did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment, sent outside US working hours.

Read the original article on Business Insider
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