Russian Podcasts

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Russian Podcasts

Ycrad
Casual Listener

I've lived in Russia for years and got around the lack of availability by paying on my Australian PayPal, but unfortunately, I've just got a new Russian bank card which my Australian PayPal wouldn't accept. I changed my region to Russia and was horrified to see all my podcasts had disappeared, then after a quick google realised they weren't available at all in Russia?!

I see posts going back to 2020 complaining about it, and the answer is licensing or whatever? It was released in Russia over a year ago, and literally every one of your competitors here offers podcasts. How is that they have arranged it, but in a year one of the largest platforms in the world hasn't? On a free account I can listen, but as a paying customer of 5+ years I can't? The Russian podcasts I listen to ask people to leave reviews on Spotify! This is ridiculous! 

I'd even be happy to change my region back to Australia and pay 4x the price, but I can't do that either. I move around a lot for work, and this is a deal breaker. I won't be renewing my premium at the end of this month if they don't appear (seems optimistic). The part that really gets me is how I raved about and recommended the platform to my Russian friends before it was released - what a joke. 

5 Replies

Eni
Moderator
Moderator

Hey there @Ycrad

 

Thanks for reaching out about this here in the Community.

 

Due to translation and extensive product development, it is common to launch in markets without offering the full Spotify product range. That said, podcasts are an important part of Spotify. We are working to get our podcast offering up and running in Russia as soon as we are able.

 

Hope this sheds some light on the matter. We'll be right here in case you need a hand with anything else.

 

EniModerator
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Ycrad
Casual Listener

Hi Eni,

Thanks for the reply, but I'm more confused than I already was. What translation? I don't need translations for any of the podcasts I listen to, and Russians want to listen to English podcasts as well. 

I suspect you're talking about Spotify exclusive content, in which case I understand you want the material to be ready for everyone - but why disable the entire function? Can't you just not release your material until it's ready and let the rest of us listen and enjoy? If you can't stagger your releases, that's an issue for the developers, but you can already grey out songs based on region so I don't see how it would be an issue?

All the podcasts I want to listen to are already on your platform, in Russian, and have been for years. You won't let Russians access Russian language podcasts because of... translation? You don't need to do anything with them, just enable the podcast functionality so that they can be accessed?...

As far as product development goes - I don't understand at all. The functionality already exists in the application? What are you developing? Russia has a very well-developed IT industry, and in my experience local apps tend to be well-featured and more usable than their western counterparts. It seems strange to me you'd release in such a market, then spend over a year on "extensive product development", when all you need to do is enable the feature?

I'm afraid neither of those reasons make any sense to me - I'd really appreciate if you could give me a bit more detail about how either of those things are stopping you? The pessimistic view would be that, as Russia has regional pricing, it's not profitable. Fine, create a separate podcast premium plan that bumps the price up 20%. I wouldn't be bothered at all. As it stands I really don't understand Spotify's position. 

Ver
Moderator
Moderator

Hey @Ycrad,

 

Thanks for getting back to us.

 

We'll try to explain some more.

 

We mean that when we launch in a new region, this means the Spotify service becomes available and people can sign up for it.

 

However, all content on Spotify needs to be re-negotiated with the license and copyright holders for the specific markets, unless that has been done beforehand, which can take quite a while and there's never a guarantee that all markets will have the same content available as it varies heavily from region to region.

 

The fees Spotify needs to pay and the subscription prices also depend on these licenses and the content available, so it's a very complicated business process to actually align all content and we can understand if it is a bit confusing, but it really isn't as simple as flipping a switch.


We hope this makes more sense now.

VerModerator
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Ycrad
Casual Listener

Hi Ver,

Thanks for the reply and the explanation. It does make it clearer. Sorry if I was a bit short in my original messages. I guess you can't give any indication of how far you are from success in this area? The region is also connected to the licensing I assume, so there's no way for me to set my region to anything else? 

Like I said, this is a bit of a deal-breaker unfortunately. If I can't find a way to get onto a different region or otherwise return the podcasts, it doesn't make much sense for me to continue my premium when there are alternatives. Bit of a pity, as I've got over 5+ years of stuff saved and I'd really like to continue using the service. 

Eni
Moderator
Moderator

Hey @Ycrad

 

Thanks for getting back to us. 

 

We're sorry to hear you feel that way and understand your point.

 

We're afraid it isn't possible to change the country or region of your account and therefore the available content you can have access to.

 

For more info, you can check this and this article. 

 

We appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback with us and will make sure to pass it onto the right team, as we always strive to improve your experience.

 

If you need help with anything else, just let us know. 

 

Cheers!

EniModerator
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If you appreciate my answer, maybe give me a Like.
 
“Music acts like a magic key, to which the most tightly closed heart opens.”– Maria von Trapp
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