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Spotify removed our release for bot streams, even after i reported it and was told they cant help!

Spotify removed our release for bot streams, even after i reported it and was told they cant help!

Hey there, 

I am in a band called CØVES and today we received the gutting email that we have had a release taken down from Spotify for suspicion of artificial streams.
We have never paid for any music promotion service which is why when i noticed a spike in streams I flagged it Spotify via Spotify for artists in October last year. I asked if the track can be removed from the playlist, but I was told there’s nothing we can do. (Please see images attached).

Spotify for artists have been incredibly unhelpful, taking no accountability and suggesting i speak to Distrokid to resolve the matter. When speaking to Distrokid, the response i get is:

“It has nothing to do with Distrokid. We are just passing along the information provided to us by Spotify and we haven't been given any additional information from Spotify other than what has already been provided.”

We feel incredibly hard done by in this situation, as we were aware of the artificial streams and went through the necessary channels to report it. Only to be told theres nothing can be done and now we pay the price. To make matters worse, neither Spotify or Distrokid are taking any accountability and sending us the other way for help.

What can we do in this situation? It seems like small artists like us are paying the price for these bot streams. Spotify should be targeting the botters, rather than taking down our music. This was our first release and our most popular track, we had put a lot of time and money into organic social ads to push the track, and now we feel heartbroken that we might have to start again from 0.

Please any advice here would be much appreciated.

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11 Replies

Exact same thing has happened with myself. Please could we get any kind of explanation Spotify, this is so unfair for musicians working hard to get their music heard! 

Its unacceptable that we pay the price, rather than the botters being suspended, truly upsetting. 
Shocking/non-existent customer support as well


This happened to me too. My artist name is Kobe Banks and I got flagged 4 days ago for 1 track and then last night Spotify took down my entire album. I've been in college too so the only way I could promote was through THEIR marquee and I did it for $100/release. It's really wild how there is no artist protection and how people adding your tracks to their fake playlists falls back on you, who is worried about making the music, not worried about looking at where what playlists the statistics are coming from each hour of the day just to save YOUR own release from THEIR platform. Before this happened I was pumping out music for my catalog because I really wanted to grow fast, and I was.. After getting off of their unhelpful support this morning though, I'm feeling disheartened by the situation as a whole, and not as motivated as I was.

Same. Some of us, its our first time uploading music and my music "Deejay Wells: Breakout" was removed and I had to reupload my album because of a bot.

Distrokid recently banned my band's songs due to "fake streams", which is clearly not the case becase we didn't use any such services. I'm also reading that loads of other people is in a similar situation. I'm waiting for a response from Distrokid but in any case, I'm done with it. 
What happens if a start using another distributor and I upload the same songs on my artists page (which I think it's no banned, only the songs are...?)? Is this illegal or against the rules? I'm not trying to circumvent any ban, I just want to stop using Distrokid and start with another distributor, I just fear that the ban of my songs carries over. I found zero help online. I'm asking here because I'm confused to the relationship between Spotify and Distrokid. I don't care about my Distrokid account, I just want to have my music back on Spotify and I want to be sure not to do anything wrong on the Spotify side of things.

I'm in the same exact situation...
Back in November, one of my songs was added, without my consent, to a weird playlist on Spotify. I noticed it and contacted Spotify straight away.
They told me they would investigate the playlist and inform me of anything. (they didn't)

I also have screenshots of this conversation.

Yesterday, I got an email from Tunecore (my distributor) that's basically taking down my entire EP (not just that one song) because of Spotify complaint (they clearly state that this comes from Spotify)
My EP has also been removed from all the other streaming platforms, and I'm not allowed to re-upload it to Tunecore.

I've contacted Spotify again, but they've been pretty rude about it, not giving me any option, even though I've got the screenshots of the original conversation to prove that this was done without my consent.

I'm now in a position where I could change distributor to get my songs back online, but I'd risk being added to another bot playlist in the future, and having to do that all over again, or just give up...

This seems so common for small independent artists, that I think the best option is to NOT publish your songs onto Spotify until they fix this issue.
Spotify is facing a big problem with these bot farms, but is choosing to punish artists instead of closing these playlists. 

This is such a massive issue. There's nothing we can do on our end. We can't remove songs from playlists and contacting Spotify support is useless.
On top of that, anyone can just add one of your song to one of these playlists randomly, and you'd be at risk loosing your entire release.

Crystolbol Records will be filing a class action law suit against Distroy Kids and Spotify for removing songs without legitimate basis. We have had a song removed with claims of fake bot when we did not and will never use bots. This is a problem because we spent thousands of dollars to release the song and have a music video coming up soon. This is embarrassing to our company, and the artist.


Feel free to contact us if you wish to join the class action lawsuit @:


Yomi Dairo


I've had the same issue with Distrokid / Spotify. I've never used any promotional service, my play counts are not high, but my songs are being removed. I feel this issue has probably arisen following an update to the algorithm using A.I. I've had no proof presented to me that I've used such a 'bot' service, the tracks being removed have been available for 10 years or more with less than 1k of plays. Easy maths. No bots.

David Akahum.

I’ve had the exact same experience…. I saw an increase in streams but assumed it was just an increase in listeners… not AI.. 

like you I’ve NEVER PAID FOR or ENGAGED with ANY 3rd party! I have too many screenshots for this?!

Yes they should target the Botters/Services that exploit…..

Extremeky frusted!



It’s dreadful isn’t it?! Shame on them!

Hi! to Everyone on this thread - there is a new idea 'a way for artists to remove their songs from a specific playlist' that they suspect of being botted. Please go and show it some love

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