We all have them: Those musical artists we can’t stand, whose songs we just can’t listen to anymore. Maybe yours is Taylor Swift, or Post Malone, or hey, maybe it’s even The Beatles. We may not agree on the specific artist, but we get it. And Spotify apparently gets it too, because they’ve just introduced a feature that enables you to block entire artists from your playlists. So, say you want to select a random pump-up playlist, or a Top 40 station in Spotify Radio, or even just listen to a playlist a friend shares with you, but you don’t want to risk hearing a specific musician. Now you don’t have to hear them on Spotify ever again.
According to Pitchfork, you activate the feature by going to the artist’s page and toggling the block feature either off or on. It’s currently only available on the Spotify mobile app (so you can’t use it on Spotify on your desktop yet). However, the platform is currently unable to block an artist when they’re merely featured on another artist’s track, so there is a small chance the musician in question will sneak through to your ears if they frequently collaborate with others.
It stands to reason that the new “muting” feature is a direct response to the #MuteRKelly movement, in which Spotify “muted” R. Kelly from automatic playlists and radio stations only to reinstate his music after public outcry. Now, it seems, users can mute R. Kelly—or any other artist—themselves.
While we appreciate the ability to do so (because we can now at least avoid supporting problematic artists by unintentionally streaming their music), we still wish the company would take a stronger stance on this one. Because there are plenty of artists who aren’t also serial abusers who Spotify can support.