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Spotify: Over a dozen singles pass Spotify's content check without explicit lyrics.


Spotify has shown obscene lyrics to young followers of Olivia Rodrigo, Eminem, and other music performers despite users' efforts to restrict explicit material.

When playing the clean, ' radio-friendly' version, the streaming service often displays a song's original lyrics on screen, which may include racial slurs and curse words.

The BBC discovered the problem was happening with several popular songs by musicians such as Dua Lipa, The Weekend, Drake, and Lil Nas X.

Spotify refrained from providing any comments.

The BBC has received information that the firm is cognizant of the issue and is striving to resolve it.

In response to parental demand, Spotify implemented a system in 2018 to address explicit material, marking such tracks with an 'E.'

Individuals who want to prevent exposure to profanity can activate content filters in their settings, which typically provide sanitized alternatives.

Nevertheless, the lyrics stored in Spotify's database for several modified versions may remain identical to the original ones, exposing anybody perusing them to explicit language.

Almost 33% of the songs included in Spotify's UK top 50 ranking consist of explicit lyrics. Among them, 50% display the explicit lyrics on the screen while the clean version plays.

The BBC discovered an additional 100 prominent pieces of music that have been impacted, including those included in soundtracks for children's films or playlists intended for children. The songs included are as follows: • "IDGAF" by Dua Lipa • "Bad Idea Right?" by Olivia Rodrigo

• "Starboy" by the Weeknd • "Nice for What" by Drake • "Gold Digger" by Kanye West • "Godzilla" by Eminem (with Juice World)

• "Goosebumps" by Travis Scott • "Hot Girl Summer" by Megan Thee Stallion with Nicki Minaj & Ty Dolla $ign

Spotify seemingly eliminated lyrics for a limited selection of songs on Wednesday after the BBC notified it of the issue.

The BBC has also uncovered that individuals may still access the lyrics of explicit song versions on desktops or laptops, even if the tracks are restricted. That can be done by clicking on the track titles from a search or artist profile page.

Spotify is the leading music streaming platform globally, with a user base of 500 million.

'You read everything'

James Roach, a music producer known as Midlo and a contributor to the parenting website Music Football Fatherhood, is the father of two children, one of whom is now exploring their musical interests.

"The significance of this matter only becomes apparent when one has a child who reaches an age where they can genuinely understand and grasp the meaning of words and language," he remarks.

"My son is seven years old and will soon turn eight." This phenomenon has only recently emerged as a potential concern. Previously, he had shown disinterest in reading and lacked attentiveness. However, he has now developed an affinity for music and has acquired proficient reading skills.


"Children desire to emulate these artists and perform the songs; however, the lyrics are not always completely comprehensible. “Therefore, you can access the Internet or visit these platforms to ascertain the precise wording. Furthermore, actively seeking it exacerbates the situation. You comprehend every word.

Roach, a producer, explains that individuals who post songs have the choice to provide distinct lyrics for various versions of the music. However, he fears some individuals may display laziness by using the same lyrics for explicit and clean edits.

"One would assume that Spotify headquarters has implemented a well-defined procedure," he remarks. "It is unexpected that they are engaging in outsourcing."

Spotify and other music streaming platforms get lyrics from Musixmatch, a company that claims to be the world's most extensive repository of song lyrics. Millions of users use Musixmatch's lyrics to access synchronized lyrics in real time.

Musixmatch enables fans to contribute, rectify, or translate lyrics in return for "kudos." The corporation failed to respond to a request for comment.

Unlike films and some TV streaming services, music lacks an age rating system, which would otherwise indicate unsuitable material.

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