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Spotify CEO Apologizes Following Privacy Policy Furor

“We understand people’s concerns about their personal information and are 100 percent committed to protecting our users’ privacy,” Daniel Ek assures users

Ek

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has apologized for the streaming service's intrusive, confusing updated Privacy Policy

Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has apologized for the popular streaming service’s confusing, intrusive Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy that would allow Spotify to access the users’ contacts, track their location and even view their photos. In an apology posted on the service’s official blog, Ek clarified the controversial updated terms agreement and promised that Spotify would only access user’s mobile phones if granted permission.

“We are in the middle of rolling out new terms and conditions and privacy policy and they’ve caused a lot of confusion about what kind of information we access and what we do with it,” Ek wrote in a post titled “SORRY.” “We apologize for that. We should have done a better job in communicating what these policies mean and how any information you choose to share will – and will not – be used.”

When Spotify announced that they would update their Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy, one of the terms read, “With your permission, we may collect information stored on your mobile device, such as contacts, photos, or media files. Local law may require that you seek the consent of your contacts to provide their personal information to Spotify.”

It was soon discovered that the terms even allowed Spotify to access a mobile device’s microphone (“Many people like to use Spotify in a hands-free way, and we may build voice controls into future versions,” Ek later explained.) The service also tersely warned users opposed to the updated terms, “If you don’t agree with the terms of this Privacy Policy, then please don’t use the Service.”

After the new Privacy Policy was unveiled, Minecraft creator Markus Persson tweeted to Spotify, “Hello. As a consumer, I’ve always loved your service. You’re the reason I stopped pirating music. Please consider not being evil.” Persson then alerted his 2.4 million followers that he had canceled his Spotify account before debating the new Terms and Conditions with Ek on Twitter.

“We understand people’s concerns about their personal information and are 100 percent committed to protecting our users’ privacy and ensuring that you have control over the information you share,” Ek assured users in his blog post.

In This Article: music streaming, Spotify

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