SPOTIFY last night was accused of helping fund the invasion of Russia by paying royalties directly to Putin’s Red Army Choir.
The American streaming giant lists the official Red Army Orchestra among the artists that customers worldwide can stream.
The choir is owned and operated by the Russian Ministry of Defense, which means all royalties help Putin’s Army.
Spotify stopped collecting subscription revenue from subscribers and ended advertising in Russia last Wednesday.
However, despite the fact that Western companies are rushing to divest from Russia because of the crisis, the military choir is still ready to stream on the service’s platform last night.
The choir has more than 100 million streams on Spotify – bringing the potential income of the Russian military up to £500,000.
Yesterday, the service was also hosting playlists called “Let’s Invade Ukraine” and “Playlist to Listen to When Russia Invades Ukraine”.
Former Conservative leader Iain Duncan-Smith criticized the setup, saying: “They should shut it down now and shut it down forcefully.
“Any missing royalties they should put into one of the funds to help the people of Ukraine.
“If there’s any offer they keep paying royalties they’re putting profits before everyone else.
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“The people they have profited from before are the people who fight for the freedoms they take for granted.
“They need to stop it now and not take their liberties for granted.”
Spotify’s Russian offices were closed last week and podcasts uploaded by Russian state-affiliated media were removed.
But it continues to allow users in Russia to stream its massive catalog for free, and says it will continue to operate in Russia to “maintain the free flow of information.”
Last night, Spotify did not respond to attempts for comment.
Criticism of other Western companies continues, with sandwich giant Subway failing to properly withdraw from the Russian market.
The takeaway company claimed it could not order Russian franchise owners to stop trading, prompting other Western companies with the same business model, including Starbucks, to divest.
Mr. Duncan-Smith added: “Western companies with a franchise model should have the right to withdraw allowing businesses to call themselves Subway.
“They will also control the supply chain, so they should take advantage of that to stop trading now.”
Italian tire maker Pirelli, valued at 4.53 billion euros, said last week it was constantly monitoring developments through a specially created “crisis committee”.
It said it did not expect to stop either plant in Russia producing 10% of global output. “As things are going, we don’t foresee a production shutdown at any plants.”
The US oil services giant has continued to operate oil fields in Russia despite a specific call from a top Ukrainian official.
Jeff Miller, chief executive officer of Halliburton, said in January of the prospect of war. “
But from a business perspective, we’ve managed these things up and down for almost 100 years.”
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https://www.the-sun.com/news/4886366/spotify-funding-putin-red-army-choir/ Spotify ‘helps fund Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by paying royalties directly to Putin’s Red Army Choir’